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Euonymus Emerald Gaiety is a cultivar of the Euonymus fortunei plant, which is a broadleaf evergreen shrub popularly known as wintercreeper euonymous. It is a member of the genus Euonymus. Being a relative of bittersweet vines due to its membership in the staff-tree family, it has the potential to become invasive in certain areas, as does bittersweet.
Emerald Gaiety is a hardy plant that can withstand drought conditions as well as the pollution seen in metropolitan environments. The shrub grows in a mounding shape, with branches that spread out in all directions. It can be grown as a shrub, a ground cover, or a vine, depending on what you want.
Emerald Gaiety, like many other types of E. fortunei, has variegated foliage, but unlike other cultivars, which have green and yellow/gold borders on their leaves, this one has green with white margins on its leaves. As the season changes and the winter weather approaches, the creamy white edges take on a rosy hue.
Emerald Gaiety, which is classified as a shrub or bush with upright-growing branches, may be used as a screen or informal hedge provided the branches are regularly trimmed. However, if you allow it to grow uncontrolled, it may also be used as a vine or as a ground covering.
Plant it in large quantities as a ground cover and let it gradually take over an area by drooping branches that take root when they come into contact with the ground. If you want to grow it as a vine, you’ll need to give it support and be prepared to train the branches and tie them up with twine or tape to keep them from falling over.
As an evergreen shrub, this plant has the ability to provide some visual appeal over the winter months. However, if you live in a place where severe snowfalls are common, you will want to train it to grow up a support, which will raise it above the snowline.
How to grow the Euonymus Emerald Gaiety plant
This shrub may be grown in full sun to light shade. The other members of this species that have variegated leaves that are green and gold or yellow in color tend to have their greatest color when grown in full sun, while the color variegation on Emerald Gaiety is better when it gets some shade. This is a common misunderstanding.
As with any variegated shrub, you will need to be on the lookout for reversion—new branches with solid green leaves that show no signs of variegation will need to be separated from the main branch. As soon as these branches start to grow, they should be cut off of the plant. Otherwise, the plant will return to having all green leaves and lose its distinctive creamy white variegation.
Long stems that touch the ground have a tendency to root, so you must be careful when you remove them if you don’t want the shrub to grow.
Light and Soil Requirement
Variegated Euonymus varieties with variegated leaves, such as Emerald Gaiety, enjoy situations with part sun and part shade. Average, well-drained soil with a little alkaline pH is ideal for this plant’s growing conditions. It does not thrive in a moist environment.
Water and Temperature
While establishing themselves, euonymus plants need a lot of water, but after they reach maturity, they have high endurance for drought conditions. For established plants, a light shower or watering every few weeks is all that is necessary in terms of irrigation.
All types of Euonymus fortunei have a high level of tolerance for all temperature and humidity fluctuations that may be encountered across the range of their hardiness. In the winter, ice can sometimes hurt plants, but the plants are usually able to heal quickly.
Emerald Gaiety is a plant that flourishes on its own, without any further nourishment. An application of fertilizer over the root zone may help the plant stay healthy in poor soils.
Removing any stems that have become completely green is recommended. If you want to shape this plant, you should do it as soon as possible after the blooms in late spring.
Pests and Diseases Problem
Because the Emerald Gaiety euonymus is a hardy plant, controlling its expansion is the most difficult task. For example, the Missouri Botanical Garden advises against the use of this plant in landscaping because of its invasive nature in that particular area of the country. Remove any offshoots that root themselves from branches that contact the ground, as well as any shoots that are growing out from the root ball, in order to keep the plant under control.
Scale insects are a major threat to the health of euonymus plants. Treatment is only performed after the scale insect eggs hatch into first instar nymphs, which occur in April and May and are known as crawlers. During the months of late July and early August, a second generation of crawlers is manufactured. Scale bug infestations may be controlled by spraying crawlers with Neem oil (which is non-toxic and organic).
How to Propagate Euonymous emerald Gaiety
Emerald Gaiety is readily grown from semi-hardwood cuttings, which are as follows:
- Preparing a cutting that is 8 to 12 inches long and has both leaves and a section of hardwood stem may be done in the late summer or early autumn. Make a cut just below a growth node.
- Remove the leaves from the bottom half of each segment of the stem by cutting them into 3-to 4-inch pieces and pulling them off.
- Insert the cut end of each cutting into a seedling container filled with a wet combination of peat moss and coarse sand or perlite, and water the container well.
- Use a plastic bag to make a mini-greenhouse and position it in a location that receives plenty of indirect sunlight. Remove the container from the ground and probe the soil with a knife to check for root development on a regular basis.
- Remove the pot from the plastic bag after the roots have grown to approximately 1 inch in length (this usually takes six to eight weeks), and place it in bright direct sunlight to continue the growth process.
- Maintain a light moisture level in the soil throughout the winter.
- If there is no threat of frost the next winter, move the specimen into the garden in the spring.