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Re: variegation was: Acquisition

Well that's interesting Marge. In my hibs it's definitely a virus. It also causes the leaves to crinkle up. If you cut away the effected parts and give it good doses of fertilizer it can straighten itself out again. I had about 100 plants do this on me this last summer. Sucking insects spread the virus so the plants have to be isolated. I had a plant hospital in operation. After the plants were isolated and the effected parts cut away they all grew out normally after that.

----- Original Message ----- From: "Marge Talt" <mtalt@hort.net>
To: <gardenchat@hort.net>
Sent: Wednesday, October 20, 2004 11:24 PM
Subject: Re: [CHAT] variegation was: Acquisition

From: David Franzman <dfranzma@pacbell.net>
Because Cathy they do.  Varigation is caused by a virus.
> From: "cathy carpenter" <cathyc@rnet.com>
>> Cute, but why is it that variegated plants always look like they
>> some dread disease???

Well, Cathy, tho' I am a certified variegated nut, I have to agree
that some variegated plants do look sick...but not this one; it's

David, some variegation is viral in origin, but most is not.  I do
not pretend to understand the botany involved, but have pulled some
bits from saved posts on the subject:

Dr. James W. Waddick said:  "Oxford University has published a
variety of reports that report well over 95% of all variegated plants
are sectorial chimeras or other genetic mutations. Less than 5 % are
due to viral causes..."

"The most praised variegated plants are what is called a periclinal
chimera. This essentially means it is a mix of two or more tissues in
somewhat fixed patterns. That is, there are green (normal) tissues
and white (mutated) tissues in the same structure - the leaf. Sports'
show a range of patterns, but color/tissue margins are usually very
distinct and lack the fuzzy edges described. Look at your variegated
Miscanthus for sharp lines of differentiation."

"The origin of most variegation is said to be a 'sport'. This covers
a variety of presumably genetic 'mutations'. Sports can cover a range
of expressions from flower color, to doubleness of flower, dwarfism

"The world of variegation is immense. Consider natural or 'pattern'
variegation (Arum italicum pictum) and colors ('Bloodgood' maples)
and that any plant can be variegated and exhibit as many as 10 or
more distinct patterns of variegation (longitudinal stripes,
horizontal stripes, edged, centered, spotted, tipped, basal,
sectoral, etc etc and these color patterns may be in white, and
another set in yellow and even more variety."

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
Editor:  Gardening in Shade
Shadyside Garden Designs
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