Emerald n gold euonymus care

Euonymus evergreen – Pruning, Winter Care and Fertilizing

This broadleaf evergreen needs little pruning, but when it is done, should only be done in early spring before any new growth begins. Prune branch tips back to increase density and direct the plants growth. Touch up can be done in summer, if needed, until mid July.

Young shrubs respond very well to fertilizing. Either granular, liquid or stake type fertilizers can be used. Granular fertilizers can be worked into the soil around the plant at a rate of 2 lbs or 2 pints per 100 square feet of planting bed. This method of fertilization should only be done once a year, and is best done in late fall after leaf drop, or in early spring before bud break. Multi Purpose 10-10-10 Fertilizer by Greenview works well.

Liquid fertilizers (such as Miracle Gro ) are mixed with water and applied the same as you would water the plant (see product for specific details). This should be done three or four times per year starting in late April and ending in mid July. Stake type fertilizers can be used following the directions on the package. With any of the above techniques, a balanced mixture should be used; 20-20-20 or similar mix is a good choices. Organic fertilizers, like manure, can also be used with good results. The material should be worked into open soil at a rate of one bushel per 6’ of shrub or 100 square feet of bed area. As a plant matures, less fertilizing will be needed.

Rabbits can do a great deal of damage to this plant in the winter. The plants can be protected with a fence formed with hardware cloth (looks like chicken wire but with small square holes). To do this, the plants branches should be tied in towards the center, and a circle of hardware cloth can be placed around the outside. The base of the hardware cloth should be buried in the soil or mulch. This protection should be installed in late November and removed in mid April.

These evergreens will perform well through most winters. In severe winters, however, they may discolor, but will bounce back in spring. Winter protection may be needed, however, for the first few years after installation, or if the plant has been under stress. To protect the plant, spray it with an anti-transpirant (such as Wilt-Pruf) in mid to late November. The timing for this application can be somewhat tricky. The temperature must be above 40 degrees, and it cannot rain on the plant after the product has been applied. The plant can also be protected by wrapping it in burlap, or enclosing it in a burlap tent. This form of protection will keep the wind and sun off, but will not cut off air flow or trap heat, which can be harmful to the plant. A burlap tent is made by setting three wooden stakes into the ground around the plant and stapling burlap to it on all three sides. The top of this tee-pee like structure should be left open. If the plant is in open soil it should be mulched and get a good watering in early November if the soil is dry. Watering in late fall is very impotent for the winter health of any evergreen and should be done to young plants every year in early November. Even more mature plants can benefit from late season waterings, especially after a dry fall season.

Euonymus japonica
( Greenspire Euonymus )

Tidy, compact evergreen shrub with rounded, dark green foliage. Performs very well as a hedge or border. Requires very little maintenance. Size is usually 4 to 5 feet in height, and 3 to 4 feet in width. Maintains a rich color throughout the year. Prune as needed to keep at desired height. Prefers full sun and evenly-moist soil. Can tolerate some shade.

Important Info : Can be affected by pests and diseases.

Google Plant Images:


Cultivar: Greenspire
Family: Celastraceae
Size: Height: 4 ft. to 5 ft.
Width: 3 ft. to 4 ft.
Plant Category: ground covers, landscape, shrubs,
Plant Characteristics: low maintenance, poisonous,
Foliage Characteristics: evergreen,
Flower Characteristics:
Flower Color:
Tolerances: heat & humidity, seashore, slope,


Bloomtime Range: not applicable
USDA Hardiness Zone: 6 to 9
AHS Heat Zone: Not defined for this plant
Light Range: Sun to Full Sun
pH Range: 5.5 to 6.5
Soil Range: Sandy Loam to Clay Loam
Water Range: Normal to Moist

Plant Care


How-to : Fertilization for Young Plants
Young plants need extra phosphorus to encourage good root development. Look for a fertilizer that has phosphorus, P, in it(the second number on the bag.) Apply recommended amount for plant per label directions in the soil at time of planting or at least during the first growing season.
How-to : Fertilization for Established Plants
Established plants can benefit from fertilization. Take a visual inventory of your landscape. Trees need to be fertilized every few years. Shrubs and other plants in the landscape can be fertilized yearly. A soil test can determine existing nutrient levels in the soil. If one or more nutrients is low, a specific instead of an all-purpose fertilizer may be required. Fertilizers that are high in N, nitrogen, will promote green leafy growth. Excess nitrogen in the soil can cause excessive vegetative growth on plants at the expense of flower bud development. It is best to avoid fertilizing late in the growing season. Applications made at that time can force lush, vegetative growth that will not have a chance to harden off before the onset of cold weather.


Conditions : Partial Shade
Partial Shade is defined as filtered light found beneath trees with high limbs. Partial shade usually offers some protection from direct afternoon sun.
Conditions : Light Conditions
Unless a site is completely exposed, light conditions will change during the day and even during the year. The northern and eastern sides of a house receive the least amount of light, with the northern exposure being the shadiest. The western and southern sides of a house receive the most light and are considered the hottest exposures due to intense afternoon sun.

You will notice that sun and shade patterns change during the day. The western side of a house may even be shady due to shadows cast by large trees or a structure from an adjacent property. If you have just bought a new home or just beginning to garden in your older home, take time to map sun and shade throughout the day. You will get a more accurate feel for your site’s true light conditions.
Conditions : Full to Partial Sun
Full sunlight is needed for many plants to assume their full potential. Many of these plants will do fine with a little less sunlight, although they may not flower as heavily or their foliage as vibrant. Areas on the southern and western sides of buildings usually are the sunniest. The only exception is when houses or buildings are so close together, shadows are cast from neighboring properties. Full sun usually means 6 or more hours of direct unobstructed sunlight on a sunny day. Partial sun receives less than 6 hours of sun, but more than 3 hours. Plants able to take full sun in some climates may only be able to tolerate part sun in other climates. Know the culture of the plant before you buy and plant it!
Conditions : Types of Pruning
Types of pruning include: pinching, thinning, shearing and rejuvenating.

Pinching is removing the stem tips of a young plant to promote branching. Doing this avoids the need for more severe pruning later on.

Thinning involves removing whole branches back to the trunk. This may be done to open up the interior of a plant to let more light in and to increase air circulation that can cut down on plant disease. The best way to begin thinning is to begin by removing dead or diseased wood.

Shearing is leveling the surface of a shrub using hand or electric shears. This is done to maintain the desired shape of a hedge or topiary.

Rejuvenating is removal of old branches or the overall reduction of the size of a shrub to restore its original form and size. It is recommended that you do not remove more than one third of a plant at a time. Remember to remove branches from the inside of the plant as well as the outside. When rejuvenating plants with canes, such as nandina, cut back canes at various heights so that plant will have a more natural look.
Conditions : Light and Plant Selection
For best plant performance, it is desirable to match the correct plant with the available light conditions. Right plant, right place! Plants which do not receive sufficient light may become pale in color, have fewer leaves and a “leggy” stretched-out appearance. Also expect plants to grow slower and have fewer blooms when light is less than desirable. It is possible to provide supplemental lighting for indoor plants with lamps. Plants can also receive too much light. If a shade loving plant is exposed to direct sun, it may wilt and/or cause leaves to be sunburned or otherwise damaged.
Conditions : Full Sun
Full Sun is defined as exposure to more than 6 hours of continuous, direct sun per day.


Problems : Waterlogged Soil and Solutions
Waterlogged soil occurs when more water is added to soil than can drain out in a reasonable amount of time. This can be a severe problem where water tables are high or soils are compacted. Lack of air space in waterlogged soil makes it almost impossible for soil to drain. Few plants, except for bog plants, can tolerate these conditions. Drainage must be improved if you are not satisfied with bog gardening. Over-watered plants have the same wilted leaves as under-watered plants. Fungi such as Phytophthora and Pythium affect vascular systems, which cause wilt.

If the problem is only on the surface, it maybe diverted to a drainage ditch. If drainage is poor where water table is high, install an underground drainage system. You should contact a contractor for this. If underground drains already exist, check to see if they are blocked.

French drains are another option. French drains are ditches that have been filled with gravel. It is okay to plant sod on top of them. More obtrusive, but a good solution where looks aren’t as important, think of the French drain as a ditch filled with gravel. Ditches should be 3 to 4 feet deep and have sloping sides.

A soakway is a gravel filled pit where water is diverted to via underground pipes. This works well on sites that have compacted soil. Your soakway should be about 6’wide and deep and filled with gravel or crushed stone, topped with sand and sodded or seeded.

Keep in mind that it is illegal to divert water onto other people’s property. If you do not feel that you can implement a workable solution on your own, call a contractor.
Tools : Watering Aides
No gardener depends 100% on natural rainfall. Even the most water conscious garden appreciates the proper hose, watering can or wand.

    Watering Cans: Whether you choose plastic of galvanized makes no difference, but do look for generous capacity and a design that is balanced when filled with water. A 2 gallon can (which holds 18 lbs. of water) is preferred by most gardeners and is best suited for outdoor use. Indoor cans should be relatively smaller with narrower spouts and roses (the filter head).
    Watering Hose: When purchasing a hose, look for one that is double-walled, as it will resist kinking. Quick coupler links are nice to have on ends of hoses to make altering length fast. To extend the life of your hose, keep it wound around a reel and stored in a shady area. Prior to winter freezes, drain hose.
    Sprayers: Are commonly thought of as devices for applying chemicals, but can really be a step saver for watering houseplants or small pots of annuals rather that dragging out a hose or making numerous trips with a watering can. The backpack sprayer is best suited for this. Take care not to use any kind of chemical in tanks used for watering!
    Sprinklers: Attached to the ends of garden hoses, these act as an economical irrigation system. Standing Spike Sprinklers are usually intended for lawns and deliver water in a circular pattern. Rotating Sprinklers deliver a circle of water and are perfect for lawns, shrubs and flower beds. Pulse-jet sprinklers cover large areas of ground in a pulsating, circular pattern. The head usually sits up on a tall stem, except for when watering lawns. Oscillating sprinklers are best for watering at ground level in a rectangular pattern.

Conditions : Normal
Normal is defined as regular watering to a depth of 18 inches, but periodically dries out in the top 7 inches between waterings.
Conditions : Moist
Moist is defined as soil that receives regular watering to a depth of 18 inch deep, does not dry out, but does not have a drainage problem either.
Conditions : Regular Moisture for Outdoor Plants
Water when normal rainfall does not provide the preferred 1 inch of moisture most plants prefer. Average water is needed during the growing season, but take care not to overwater. The first two years after a plant is installed, regular watering is important. The first year is critical. It is better to water once a week and water deeply, than to water frequently for a few minutes.
Conditions : Outdoor Watering
Plants are almost completely made up of water so it is important to supply them with adequate water to maintain good plant health. Not enough water and roots will wither and the plant will wilt and die. Too much water applied too frequently deprives roots of oxygen leading to plant diseases such as root and stem rots. The type of plant, plant age, light level, soil type and container size all will impact when a plant needs to be watered. Follow these tips to ensure successful watering:

* The key to watering is water deeply and less frequently. When watering, water well, i.e. provide enough water to thoroughly saturate the root ball. With in-ground plants, this means thoroughly soaking the soil until water has penetrated to a depth of 6 to 7 inches (1′ being better). With container grown plants, apply enough water to allow water to flow through the drainage holes.

* Try to water plants early in the day or later in the afternoon to conserve water and cut down on plant stress. Do water early enough so that water has had a chance to dry from plant leaves prior to night fall. This is paramount if you have had fungus problems.

* Don’t wait to water until plants wilt. Although some plants will recover from this, all plants will die if they wilt too much (when they reach the permanent wilting point).

* Consider water conservation methods such as drip irrigation, mulching, and xeriscaping. Drip systems which slowly drip moisture directly on the root system can be purchased at your local home and garden center. Mulches can significantly cool the root zone and conserve moisture.

* Consider adding water-saving gels to the root zone which will hold a reserve of water for the plant. These can make a world of difference especially under stressful conditions. Be certain to follow label directions for their use.

Conditions : Normal Watering for Outdoor Plants
Normal watering means that soil should be kept evenly moist and watered regularly, as conditions require. Most plants like 1 inch of water a week during the growing season, but take care not to over water. The first two years after a plant is installed, regular watering is important for establishment. The first year is critical. It is better to water once a week and water deeply, than to water frequently for a few minutes.
How-to : Reduce Watering
This plant requires less watering during winter months, so reduce watering from late November through early March.


How-to : Planting Shrubs
Dig a hole twice the size of the root ball and deep enough to plant at the same level the shrub was in the container. If soil is poor, dig hole even wider and fill with a mixture half original soil and half compost or soil amendment.

Carefully remove shrub from container and gently separate roots. Position in center of hole, best side facing forward. Fill in with original soil or an amended mixture if needed as described above. For larger shrubs, build a water well. Finish by mulching and watering well.

If the plant is balled-and-burlapped, remove fasteners and fold back the top of natural burlap, tucking it down into hole, after you’ve positioned shrub. Make sure that all burlap is buried so that it won’t wick water away from rootball during hot, dry periods. If synthetic burlap, remove if possible. If not possible, cut away or make slits to allow for roots to develop into the new soil. For larger shrubs, build a water well. Finish by mulching and watering well.

If shrub is bare-root, look for a discoloration somewhere near the base; this mark is likely where the soil line was. If soil is too sandy or too clayey, add organic matter. This will help with both drainage and water holding capacity. Fill soil, firming just enough to support shrub. Finish by mulching and watering well.
How-to : Making a Hedge
Hedges can be trained to be informal with only occasional shaping or to have a more formal shape with judicious pruning.

Shear off the tops 2 to 6 inches several times during the first two seasons. Shearing of the tops and sides will promote branching. A common mistake people make is to cut the sides at a 90 degree angle. In this case the top growth shades the bottom resulting in a leggy open canopy. It is best to cut the sides at an angle so that they flare out at the bottom. This will ensure healthy and compact growth all the way down to the bottom of the shrub.


Pest : Thrips
Thrips are small, winged insects that attack many types of plants and thrive in hot, dry conditions (like heated houses). They can multiply quickly as a female can lay up to 300 eggs in a life span of 45 days without mating. Most of the damage to plants is caused by the young larvae which feed on tender leaf and flower tissue. This leads to distorted growth, injured flower petals and premature flower drop. Thrips also can transmit many harmful plant viruses.

Prevention and Control: keep weeds down and use screening on windows to keep them out. Remove or discard infested plants, keep them away from non-infested plants. Trap with yellow sticky cards or take advantage of natural enemies such as predatory mites. Sometimes a good steady shower of water will wash them off the plant. Consult your local garden center professional or county Cooperative extension office for legal chemical recommendations.
Pest : Mealybugs
Small, wingless, dull-white, soft-bodied insects that produce a waxy powdery covering. They have piercing/sucking mouth parts that suck the sap out of plant tissue. Mealybugs often look like small pieces of cotton and they tend to congregate where leaves and stems branch. They attack a wide range of plants. The young tend to move around until they find a suitable feeding spot, then they hang out in colonies and feed. Mealybugs can weaken a plant leading to yellow foliage and leaf drop. They also produce a sweet substance called honeydew (coveted by ants) which can lead to an unattractive black surface fungal growth called sooty mold.

Prevention and Control: Isolate infested plants from those that are not. Consult your local garden center professional or the Cooperative Extension office in your county for a legal insecticide/chemical recommendation. Encourage natural enemies such as lady beetles in the garden to help reduce population levels of mealy bugs.
Pest : Aphids
Aphids are small, soft-bodied, slow-moving insects that suck fluids from plants. Aphids come in many colors, ranging from green to brown to black, and they may have wings. They attack a wide range of plant species causing stunting, deformed leaves and buds. They can transmit harmful plant viruses with their piercing/sucking mouthparts. Aphids, generally, are merely a nuisance, since it takes many of them to cause serious plant damage. However aphids do produce a sweet substance called honeydew (coveted by ants) which can lead to an unattractive black surface growth called sooty mold.

Aphids can increase quickly in numbers and each female can produce up to 250 live nymphs in the course of a month without mating. Aphids often appear when the environment changes – spring & fall. They’re often massed at the tips of branches feeding on succulent tissue. Aphids are attracted to the color yellow and will often hitchhike on yellow clothing.

Prevention and Control: Keep weeds to an absolute minimum, especially around desirable plants. On edibles, wash off infected area of plant. Lady bugs and lacewings will feed on aphids in the garden. There are various products – organic and inorganic – that can be used to control aphids. Seek the recommendation of a professional and follow all label procedures to a tee.
Fungi : Powdery Mildew
Powdery Mildew is usually found on plants that do not have enough air circulation or adequate light. Problems are worse where nights are cool and days are warm and humid. The powdery white or gray fungus is usually found on the upper surface of leaves or fruit. Leaves will often turn yellow or brown, curl up, and drop off. New foliage emerges crinkled and distorted. Fruit will be dwarfed and often drops early.

Prevention and Control: Plant resistant varieties and space plants properly so they receive adequate light and air circulation. Always water from below, keeping water off the foliage. This is paramount for roses. Go easy on the nitrogen fertilizer. Apply fungicides according to label directions before problem becomes severe and follow directions exactly, not missing any required treatments. Sanitation is a must – clean up and remove all leaves, flowers, or debris in the fall and destroy.
Fungi : Leaf Spots
Leaf spots are caused by fungi or bacteria. Brown or black spots and patches may be either ragged or circular, with a water soaked or yellow-edged appearance. Insects, rain, dirty garden tools, or even people can help its spread.

Prevention and Control: Remove infected leaves when the plant is dry. Leaves that collect around the base of the plant should be raked up and disposed of. Avoid overhead irrigation if possible; water should be directed at soil level. For fungal leaf spots, use a recommended fungicide according to label directions.

Pest : Leaf Miners
Leaf Miner is actually a term that applies to various larvae (of moths, beetles, and flies) that tunnel between upper and lower leaf surfaces, leaving a distinctive, squiggly pattern. A female adult can lay several hundred eggs inside the leaf which hatch and give rise to miners. Leaf miners attack ornamentals and vegetables.

Prevention and Control: Keep weeds down and scout individual plants for tell-tale squiggles. Pick and destroy these leaves and take advantage of natural enemies such as parasitic wasps. Know the Growing Degree Days (GDD)* for your area to target insecticide sprays when most beneficial for controlling the specific leaf miner. Seek a professional recommendation and follow all label procedures to a tee. *GDD numbers should be available from your local Cooperative Extension office.
Diseases : Anthracnose
Anthracnose is the result of a plant infection, caused by a fungus, and may cause severe defoliation, especially in trees, but rarely results in death. Sunken patches on stems, fruit, leaves, or twigs, appear grayish brown, may appear watery, and have pinkish-tan spore masses that appear slime-like. On vegetables, spots may enlarge as fruit matures.

Prevention and Control: Try not to over water. If your climate is naturally rainy, grow resistant varieties. In the vegetable garden, stake and trellis plants to provide good air circulation so that plants may dry. Increase sunlight to plants by trimming limbs. Prune, remove, or destroy infected plants and remove all leaf debris. Select a fungicide that is labeled for anthracnose and the plant you are treating. Follow the label strictly.
Pest : Scale Insects
Scales are insects, related to mealy bugs, that can be a problem on a wide variety of plants – indoor and outdoor. Young scales crawl until they find a good feeding site. The adult females then lose their legs and remain on a spot protected by its hard shell layer. They appear as bumps, often on the lower sides of leaves. They have piercing mouth parts that suck the sap out of plant tissue. Scales can weaken a plant leading to yellow foliage and leaf drop. They also produce a sweet substance called honeydew (coveted by ants) which can lead to an unattractive black surface fungal growth called sooty mold.

Prevention and Control: Once established they are hard to control. Isolate infested plants away from those that are not infested. Consult your local garden center professional or Cooperative Extension office in your county for a legal recommendation regarding their control. Encourage natural enemies such as parasitic wasps in the garden.


Conditions : Salt Tolerant
Anyone that lives close to the coast or in areas where soil salt content is high, can appreciate a plant that is salt tolerant. Salt damage is usually worse where the climate is arid: there is not enough rainfall to wash built up salts from the soil. It takes about 30 inches of rainfall a year to move salt through the soil. Plants that have salt damage usually have yellow leaves, brown tips or margins, and leaf drop. Soils may have a crusty white layer, too. Salt tolerant plants are often natives or introduced plants that have evolved in salty conditions.
Conditions : Slope Tolerant
Slope tolerant plants are those that have a fibrous root system and are often plants that prefer good soil drainage. These plants assist in erosion control by stabilizing/holding the soil on slopes intact.
Glossary : Hedge
A hedge is any tree, shrub, perennial, annual or herb that can be clipped and maintained in a formal or informal shape. Hedges can provide privacy and define property lines as well as rooms of a garden.
Glossary : Mass Planting
Mass is one of the elements of design and relates directly to balance. Mass planting is defined as the grouping of three or more of the same type of plants in one area. When massing plants, keep in mind what visual effect they will have. Small properties require smaller masses where larger properties can handle larger masses or sweeps of plants.
Glossary : Some Sand
Some Sand refers to a soil that drains fast, but has lower water holding capacity due to the presence of a little organic matter. A good workable soil that needs added fertilizer due to lower fertility levels and adequate water. Usually gray in color. Forms a loose, crumbly ball that easily falls apart when squeezed in the hand.

Glossary : Some Clay
Some Clay refers to a soil that is loam-like, but heavier. Drainage is not bad, prolonged periods of rain cause bog-like conditions. Rich in nutrients, but needs the addition of organic matter to improve texture. Easily forms a ball when squeezed and requires a firm tap with finger to crumble. Light brown to slightly orange color.
Glossary : Evergreen
Evergreen refers to plants that hold onto their leaves or needles for more than one growing season, shedding them over time. Some plants such as live oaks are evergreen, but commonly shed the majority of their older leaves around the end of January.
Glossary : Poisonous
Poisonous: any plant or part of a plant which is toxic or irritating in any way.
Glossary : Shrub
Shrub: is a deciduous or evergreen woody perennial that has multiple branches that form near its base.
Glossary : pH
pH, means the potential of Hydrogen, is the measure of alkalinity or acidity. In horticulture, pH refers to the pH of soil. The scale measures from 0, most acid, to 14, most alkaline. Seven is neutral. Most plants prefer a range between 5.5 and about 6.7, an acid range, but there are plenty of other plants that like soil more alkaline, or above 7. A pH of 7 is where the plant can most easily absorb the most nutrients in the soil. Some plants prefer more or less of certain nutrients, and therefore do better at a certain pH.
Glossary : Small Tree
A small tree is less than 30 feet tall.
Glossary : Landscape Uses
By searching Landscape Uses, you will be able to pinpoint plants that are best suited for particular uses such as trellises, border plantings, or foundations.
Glossary : Soil Types
A soil type is defined by granule size, drainage, and amount of organic material in the soil. The three main soil types are sand, loam and clay. Sand has the largest particle size, no organic matter, little to no fertility, and drains rapidly. Clay, at the opposite end of the spectrum, has the smallest particle size, can be rich in organic matter, fertility and moisture, but is often unworkable because particles are held together too tightly, resulting in poor drainage when wet, or is brick-like when dry. The optimum soil type is loam, which is the happy median between sand and clay: It is high in organic matter, nutrient-rich, and has the perfect water holding capacity.

You will often hear loam referred to as a sandy loam (having more sand, yet still plenty of organic matter) or a clay loam (heavier on the clay, yet workable with good drainage.) The addition of organic matter to either sand or clay will result in a loamy soil. Still not sure if your soil is a sand, clay, or loam? Try this simple test. Squeeze a handfull of slightly moist, not wet, soil in your hand. If it forms a tight ball and does not fall apart when gently tapped with a finger, your soil is more than likely clay. If soil does not form a ball or crumbles before it is tapped, it is sand to very sandy loam. If soil forms a ball, then crumbles readily when lightly tapped, it’s a loam. Several quick, light taps could mean a clay loam.
Glossary : Tolerant
Tolerant refers to a plant’s ability to tolerate exposure to an external condition(s). It does not mean that the plant thrives or prefers this situation, but is able to adapt and continue its life cycle.
Glossary : Pruning
Now is the preferred time to prune this plant.

Problem with Manhattan Euonymus

In the spring of 2014 I purchased eight manhattan euonymus from Fort Collins Nursery. I had Fort Collins Nursery install them on the north side of a six-foot privacy fence in my backyard, but they are not doing well. I am hoping you can offer suggestions. Details follow.

All of the plants are alive, but none are lush. The leaves on each branch are sparse. Some are green, others are yellow. None appear to be healthy.

In the spring of 2015 I purchased an underground lawn sprinkler system. One branch of that system waters each euonymus through a separate ¼ inch water tube for 15 minutes at 10:30 pm and 11:00 pm two evenings each week.

There is no evidence of insects. There are no trees or other competing plants. The grass in the lawn is doing well.

I fertilize the euonymus each spring with a single application of 10-10-10 dry fertilizer.

When weeds emerge, I spray them with weed spray, but NOT with RoundUp or similar products and not directly on the euonymus.

Each winter there is some winter kill, but not enough to threaten the survival of the plants.

Can you offer suggestions?

Wil Brumley

1312 West 36th Street

Loveland, CO 80538

Wintercreeper ‘Emerald ‘n Gold’ (Euonymus fortunei)

Planting Instructions

Plant in spring or early fall to give plants the best start.
Choose a location that will allow roots to spread and branches to grow freely. Space plants far enough from building foundations, walls, and decks so that the growing foliage won’t crowd the structure. Consider whether tall trees or shrubs will block windows or interfere with the roof or power lines.
To prepare the planting area dig a hole as deep as the root ball and three times as wide. After removing the soil, mix it with some compost or peat moss. This enriches the soil and loosens the existing dirt so that new roots can spread easily.
To remove the plant from the container, gently brace the base of the plant, tip it sideways and tap the outside of the pot to loosen. Rotate the container and continue to tap, loosening the soil until the plant pulls smoothly from the pot. The container can also be removed by carefully cutting it down the side.
Set the plant in the hole. If the root ball is wrapped in burlap fabric this must now be removed along with any string or wire securing the burlap. If roots are tightly packed gently rake them apart with your fingers.
Return the soil to the planting area packing it firmly around the root ball. Fill the hole until the soil line is just at the base of the plant, where the roots begin to flare out from the main stem.
Water the plant well then add a 2” (5cm) layer of mulch, such as shredded bark, around the planting area. Keep the mulch at least 4” (10cm) away from the trunk of the plant as this can keep the bark too moist and cause it to decay.

Watering Instructions

Depending on rainfall, new plants need to be watered weekly through the first growing season. A slow, one-hour trickle of water should do the job. During hot spells thoroughly soaking the ground up to 8” (20 cm) every few days is better than watering a little bit daily. Deep watering encourages roots to grow further into the ground resulting in a sturdier plant with more drought tolerance.
To check for soil moisture use your finger or a hand trowel to dig a small hole and examine the soil. If the first 2-4” (5-10cm) of soil is dry, it is time to water.
Monitor new plants through the first two years to make sure they are getting the moisture they need. After that they should be sturdy enough to survive on their own.

Fertilizing Instructions

Established trees should be fertilized every 2-3 years. Feed in early spring when plants start growing.
Fertilizers are available in many forms: granulated, slow-release, liquid feeds, organic or synthetic. Determine which application method is best for the situation and select a product designed for trees and shrubs, or go with a nutritionally balanced, general-purpose formula such as 10-10-10.
Always follow the fertilizer package directions for application rates and scheduling. Over-fertilizing plants or applying at the wrong time during the growing season can result in plant injury.

Pruning Instructions

Pruning may be needed to remove dead branches, encourage bushier growth, promote more flowers, or maintain a specific size or shape.
Dead branches should be removed close to the trunk, flush with the bark. When pruning to control a plant’s size or shape, cuts should be made just above a leaf bud and at a slight angle. This bud will be where the new growth sprouts.
Many shrubs can be regularly sheared to keep them shaped as a hedge, edging or formal foundation planting.
Always use sharp, clean tools when pruning. There are many tools available depending on the job. Hand shears, pruners, and loppers are ideal for most shrubs. Pole pruners and tree saws are better for large, mature shrubs or trees. If a tree is so large that it can’t be safely pruned with a pole pruner, it is best to call in a professional tree service.


Article by David Marks
All varieties of Euonymus Fortunei are evergreen and hold their colour particularly well in winter. Height and spread does depend on the variety from 1m / 3ft for “Emerald n Gold” up to 2.5m / 8ft for “Silver Queen”. They are easily pruned to the height and shape you require with only a pair of secateurs and 10 minutes required.

Any flowers produced are not noticeable, you are growing these shrubs for their foliage interest. Unlike some other evergreen plants, Euonymus loose none of their vibrant colour in winter.

Use the checklist below to decide if a Euonymus Fortunei is suited to your preferences and garden growing conditions:

  • An evergreen shrub providing year round colourful foliage
  • Height and spread varies by variety, anywhere between 60cm / 2ft to 2.5m / 8ft.
  • It is fully hardy in almost all areas of the UK withstanding temperatures down to -12°C.
  • It does well in an extremely wide range of conditions. Anything between shade to full sun, dry soil to moist soil is fine for your Euonymus Fortunei
  • Once established, it very rarely requires watering and will tolerate drought.
  • All varieties make excellent dense hedges,
  • Disease resistance is excellent.
  • It is maintenance free requiring only simple pruning to keep it to shape every couple of years.
  • They make ideal plants for containers.


Follow the steps below to ensure your Euonymus is planted correctly and in the best position:

  • The plant needs some air circulation so although it will thrive against a wall or fence, avoid planting it in the corner of two walls fences.
  • Almost all soil conditions are suitable although don’t plant where the ground can become water-logged
  • It can be planted all year long if the soil is not frozen. Mid March to April and mid September to October are the best times to plant this shrub.
  • Dig a hole twice the width of the rootball. Sprinkle in a handful of blood, fish and bone and work into the ground.
  • Place the plant into the hole, filling in with soil so that it is at the same depth as was in the pot. Fill around the rootball and firm the soil down gently but firmly. Water well to settle the surrounding ground around the rootball.


When established a Euonymus Fortunei will look after itself. It almost never needs watering except in severe drought and will grow quite happily on average ground without the need of additional feeds.

When you first plant a new Euonymus Fortunei make sure it has sufficient water for at least the first year of its life by which time the root system will have established itself well.

Six months or so after planting, normally April time, prune the top third of the shrub away. No other complicated methods, just take a pair of shears / secateurs and cut away. This will encourage new growth from the base of the plant which will make it bush out.

After that your Euonymus will look after itself. If you want to restrict its size, prune to shape in April or May time. We suggest that you take a look at the colour of the foliage every year or so to identify any which has lost its variegated markings. Prune the affected foliage away to retain the variegated areas.


All the varieties share the ability to grow well in almost all conditions including dry, shade. They do however differ in colour and size as the following paragraphs show.

These plants are available in varying stages of development from almost all garden centres and online plant suppliers. The online supplier we personally recommend for Euonymus Fortunei is Crocus.

When buying Euonymus Fortunei varieties it’s just as well to bear in mind that they grow relatively slowly, no more than 10cm / 4in per year and sometimes slower. This often explains the significant difference in price between young and older plants.


Emerald Gaiety has an Award of Garden Merit from the RHS and quite rightly it is one of the most popular varieties. The leaves are bright green with white edges. Young leaves take on a lightly pink hue in winter. Reaching a maximum height of 1.2m / 4ft and a spread of 1.5m / 5ft, they are easily kept to shape with an annual prune.

Emerald Gaiety makes an ideal hedge of up to 3ft / 1m high, easy to keep in shape, virtually maintenance free and has year round colour. An excellent choice if you want an evergreen plant for container growing.


Another Euonymus Fortunei with a well deserved RHS Award of Garden Merit. In all respects it’s the same as Emerald Gaiety (described above) however the leaves have a golden margin rather than a white margin.


Silver Queen grows slightly taller than the two varieties above, to an ultimate height of 2m / 6ft and spread of 1.5m / 5ft. The leaves are variegated with a green centre portion and a white / yellow margin. A good choice for a slow growing, low maintenance hedge or a single plant on its own. Not recommended for container growing.


A low growing variety reaching a maximum height and width of about 80cm. It’s not small enough to be a rockery plant but it is good for under-planting between taller plants. The distinguishing feature is the foliage which is almost pure white when it emerges, turning to a very bright green and silver as the leaves age.

Whilst ‘Harlequin’ are as strong and tolerant as the other varieties mentioned above, their foliage can suffer slightly if grown in full sun. On the other hand, the variegated foliage can be slightly bland if grown in shade. The best conditions seem to be full sun in the morning or the afternoon but avoiding full sun around the the middle of the day.


In general, these plants are very healthy and suffer from only a few pests / diseases. The most common are listed below:


The most frequently encountered problem with Euonymus Fortunei is Powdery Mildew, even so it is not a common problem. The symptoms are a fine, white, powder-like coating on newly emerging leaves. This disease affects new leaves far more than older leaves. The picture below shows Powdery Mildew on a blackcurrant leaf but the symptoms are same for all leaves.

We have a page written specifically about Powdery Mildew which describes the treatments available, both organic and chemical. to go there now.


Recognising an attack of Euonymus Scale depends on the time of year. From May to September the most visible sign will be the grey / white male insects on the surface of the leaves. Primarily on the undersides of the leaves they can also appear on the top surface. At certain times of year tiny crawlers will also be visible. See the picture below.

At all times of the year you will also see the female scale insects. These will appear as brown / black scales on the stems. They don’t move and have a protective outer coating. See the picture below.

Courtesy of reader Tamara S.

Plants attacked by Euonymus Scale will generally grow poorly and leaves on the inner stems and lower down the plant will fall off.

Euonymus Scale is native to East Asia and first appeared in the UK in 1936. It then disappeared and made a re-appearance in 1952. Over the last decade it has spread throughout England and Wales and is becoming far more common. In parts of the USA where this pest is better established the most commonly given advice is to dig up affected plants, burn them and replant resistant plants.

The life cycle of Euonymus Scale is described below. There are two generations each year, occasionally three. The first generation appears in May time when the females, which have overwintered on the stems, lay eggs. These become “crawlers” which feed for the next couple of days before choosing a permanent feeding place (males on leaves, females on stems) where they latch on and produce a waxy coating.

During the year the males mate with the females to produce more eggs. Finally in September / October the males tend to die off but the fertilised females hide under their covering during winter.

Pesticides are only effective when the scales are at the crawler or adult phase. The waxy coating which covers them at other stages of their life is impervious to pesticides. The problem is that that the two or three generations which occur each year tend to overlap. This effectively means that crawlers and adults are hatching from May to September time.

The best sprays are Provado Ultimate Bug Killer or Bug Ultra Clear. The best itme to spray is when the crawlers and insects are active. Probably the most effective time is in early to mid May or as soon as you see the crawlers in May time.

Having explained the treatment above, our advice we would be to consider carefully if you want to spend nearly a fiver on a pesticide which is not guaranteed to cure the problem. Sometimes it is best to dig the plant up, burn it and buy a different type which will not be affected.

If you have any other problems with Euonymus Fortunei plants then please use our contact form at the end of this page and we will do our best to help.


Below we list the key strengths and weaknesses of this plant.

HARDY (to -12°C)
SHADE Yes, full sun also
FLOWERING Insignificant

Sometimes our readers ask specific questions which are not covered in the main article above. Our
Euonymus comment / question and answer page
lists their comments, questions and answers. At the end of that page there is also a form for you to submit any new question or comment you have.


Euonymus fortunei
( Emerald ‘n Gold Wintercreeper )

Emerald ‘n Gold is a bushy shrub. Leaf form is oval, toothed and evergreen. This cultivar bears bright green leaves with broad, bright yellow margins that are tinged pink in winter. The flowers are not showy, are greenish-white appearing in early summer. The fruits can be quite showy, borne in fall, they are white capsules that dehisce to expose the bright orange seed. This plant tolerates a wide range of soil conditions, and high moisture, except swampy, full sun to full shade and pH tolerant. Native to China, introduced in 1907.

Important Info : May suffer winter burn in cold climate.

Google Plant Images:

Cultivar: Emerald ‘N Gold
Family: Celastraceae
Size: Height: 0 ft. to 2 ft.
Width: 0 ft. to 3 ft.
Plant Category: ground covers, shrubs,
Plant Characteristics: decorative berries or fruit, poisonous,
Foliage Characteristics: evergreen,
Flower Characteristics:
Flower Color: greens, whites,
Tolerances: heat & humidity, rabbits, seashore, slope,

Bloomtime Range: Early Summer to Early Summer
USDA Hardiness Zone: 5 to 9
AHS Heat Zone: Not defined for this plant
Light Range: Shade to Full Sun
pH Range: 4.5 to 8.5
Soil Range: Some Sand to Some Clay
Water Range: Dry to Moist

Golden Euonymus Care: Growing Golden Euonymus Shrubs In The Garden

Growing golden euonymous shrubs (Euonymus japonicus ‘Aureo-marginatus’) bring color and texture to your garden. This evergreen offers forest-green foliage that is broadly trimmed in bright golden yellow, making the shrub ideal for bright hedges or accent plants. You’ll find another enticing reason to start growing golden euonymous shrubs if you learn just how easy golden euonymous care can be. Read on for more golden euonymous information.

Golden Euonymous Information

Golden euonymous information tells you that this is a very dense shrub with an oval shape if grown in full sun. The thick foliage makes it ideal for a privacy or even a sound hedge.

The shrubs are really striking in the garden. The eyonymous leaves are leathery to the touch and grow up to three inches long. The boldly variegated foliage is the star here. Most leaves are emerald green splashed liberally with buttercup yellow. But, occasionally, you’ll get branches where all of the leaves are solid yellow.

Don’t expect showy flowers. The greenish-white blossoms appear in spring but you may not even notice them. They are inconspicuous.

Golden euonymous shrubs can grow to 10 feet high and 6 feet wide. One alone can make a stunning statement in your garden. However, the dense foliage of these evergreen plants adapts readily to pruning and even shearing, so they are often used as hedges.

How to Grow Golden Euonymous Shrubs

If you are wondering how to grow golden euonymous shrubs, it isn’t very difficult. You’ll need to plant them in a sunny spot, provide weekly irrigation and fertilize them annually. Consider growing golden euonymous shrubs if you live in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 6-9.

When you start growing golden euonymous shrubs, you’ll do best to select a site with moist, fertile, well-drained soil. However, don’t worry too much about your soil type as long as it drains well. The bushes are tolerant and will accept almost any kind of soil.

Caring for Golden Euonymous Shrubs

Euonymous shrubs are not high maintenance. However, caring for golden euonymous shrubs requires more effort the year they are planted. They will require regular water – up to twice a week – until the root system has established.

After that, a weekly watering is usually sufficient. Provide a balanced fertilizer in early spring. Use a slightly lower dose than recommended on the label to avoid burning the roots. If necessary, repeat in mid-autumn.

Golden euonymous care includes an annual pruning if planted in a hedge or you want your garden to look neat and tidy. Left to their own devices, they may outgrow the space you have set aside for them.

What Fertilizer Is Good for a Golden Euonymus?

Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images

Golden euonymus (Euonymus japonicus) is an evergreen woody shrub with green and yellow foliage. This perennial plant grows in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 through 9. A golden euonymus needs minimal care once it is established. The shrub tolerates a wide range of soils and requires little fertilizer, though it may benefit from light feeding once or twice a year.


Golden euonymus grows quickly, up to 2 feet a year, and matures at 3 to 6 feet wide and 10 to 15 feet high. The shrub tolerates a wide range of soils as long as the soil drains well. When the plant stands in water, it develops fungal disease. In damp climates, euonymus is prone to mildew and needs good air circulation. When the young shrub is initially planted or transplanted, add fertilizer by mixing organic compost into the existing soil.


Golden euonymus brightens shade gardens and accents ground covers. Planted as hedges or foundation plantings, euonymus shrubs grow into a dense screen. This shrub, vulnerable to wind and sensitive to hot sun, thrives as a background plant near a protective fence or building. Euonymus adapts to poor soils in planters, driveway strips and landscape borders that do not receive regular cultivation. In these locations, organic mulch or compost applied around the shrubs minimizes water evaporation and provides slow-release fertilizer as it decays.


Golden euonymus fills out quickly, but is not invasive, making it a companion plant for perennials and annuals. As it tolerates both sun and shade, this shrub makes an excellent companion plant to bedding plants, providing winter color when the flowers die off. It needs little fertilizer, so it does not compete with other plants for soil nutrients. In sandy and other soils with little organic matter, a time-release fertilizer specifically formulated for evergreen shrubs can be applied lightly in winter or spring. Time-release fertilizer is not suitable for summer feeding, as the bush responds with new late-season foliage susceptible to sun damage and frost burn. Golden euonymus fits into large containers, such as patio pots, ceramic entry tubs and wine-barrel planters. In these conditions, use a diluted liquid fertilizer in early spring and midsummer, as these fertilizers provide immediate feeding for container plants.


Golden euonymus adapts to many soils and requires so little care that the shrub can suffer from water neglect. This plant adapts well to low-water conditions and should not stand in water, but does suffer dehydration in windy, drought or winter-dry conditions. Its water needs are low, but the plant suffers more without water than without fertilizer. When leaves dry or fall off, check the plant roots. Use a soaker hose or drip irrigation to give your golden euonymus a good drink of water. Repeat weekly during prolonged dry spells. Winter or summer, the roots need some moisture from nature or irrigation to keep the plant healthy.

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