With mid summer approaching plants have taken the opportunity to maximise growth with the longer day length. Two plants with variegated foliage that lighten up dreary corners are Hosta fortunei var. albopicta and Iris pseudacorus ‘Variegata’.
Hosta fortunei var. albopicta has a mass of creamy yellow variegation throughout the leaf. This is one of the most attractive of the variegated Hosta’s. The leaf colour darkens through late summer. It possibly arose as a vegetative sport on a green leaved specimen of H. fortunei. This was introduced from Japan to the Botanic garden at Leiden in the Netherlands by a German doctor; Philipp Franz von Siebold. Siebold amassed a collection of native Japanese plants which were donated to the Leiden garden during the 1830’s.
The cultivar ‘Variegata’ of the “Yellow Flag Iris” is a coloniser of marginal land around ponds and water courses. The sharp pointed linear shape to the foliage develops and spreads as the vigorous rhizomes take hold. Floriferous; at the rock garden stream it is now producing spikes of yellow flowers. Again; with the passing of the season the colour tends to fade from the variegation.