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Tree Campus: Variegated Aucuba

Tree Campus SCC is a multi-year and interdisciplinary college initiative to document, map, and celebrate the incredible diversity of trees planted on the campus. With over 200 species, Shoreline Community College is an arboreal paradise that deserves to b


Variegated Aucuba

Aucuba japonica ‘Variegated forms’ (GARRYACEAE)



China, Korea, Japan



"The flowers are visited by a variety of insects, including small bees, flies, and beetles." [1]


Equity: Cultural and Historical Significance

"It is widely cultivated for the ornamental effect of its foliage and red berries and the ability to grow on any soils in deep shade." [2]

A traditional medicinal herb. [3]



A. japonica contains Aucubin [3], "a highly active compound possessing extensive biological effects including antioxidant, anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, anti-fibrotic, anti-cancer, hepatoprotective, neuroprotective and osteoprotective properties... clinical studies are needed to confirm the efficacy of aucubin in specific diseases." [4]



[1] Abe, T. (2001). Flowering phenology, display size, and fruit set in an understory dioecious shrub, Aucuba japonica (Cornaceae). American Journal of Botany, 88(3), 455-461.

[2] Henricot, B., Perez Sierra, A., & Jung, T. (2014). Phytophthora pachypleura sp. nov., a new species causing root rot of Aucuba japonica and other ornamentals in the United Kingdom. Plant pathology, 63(5), 1095-1109.

[3] Rombouts, J. E., & Links, J. (1956). The chemical nature of the antibacterial substance present inAucuba japonica thunbg. Experientia, 12(2), 78-80.

[4] Zeng, X., Guo, F., & Ouyang, D. (2020). A review of the pharmacology and toxicology of aucubin. Fitoterapia, 140, 104443.

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