Spots and stripes

Another source ot horticultural novelty is variegation (Latin variegatus). TTiis results from a local absence of the green pigment chlorophyll. The tissue affected appears white—or yellow or pink if these other pigments were masked by the green (2.22). Not all such striping or mottling is stable: some may be caused by temporary nutritional maladies (calcium deficiency, for instance), and even the best variegated plants may throw occasional reversions. All-green reversions are best removed, because they are more vigorous and will in time outgrow the other shoots and take over. Stems entirely without chlorophyll, or with too little to manufacture sufficient food, can never lead an independent existence, but they can be kept going as grafts (6.27), as long as the stock

Above (2.22): Variegated Kalanchoe tedtschenkoi. in which the uppermost leaves have lost their chlorophyll, and hence draw all their nutriment from the lower leaves

Right (2.23): Fasciation in a cactus (Lemaireocereus). Only some stems on h large shrubby specimen are affected: nori growth can be seen in the background

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