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Gold Dust Plant Harvesting:
Optimal Time and Technique

Updated: May 20, 2022

The Gold Dust plant, also known as Aucuba japonica, is a popular ornamental plant that is native to Japan. It is loved for its striking foliage that features dark green leaves covered in golden-yellow spots. The plant thrives in partial to full shade and is easy to grow. However, the proper technique for harvesting the plant is essential to maintain its health and beauty. In this article, we will discuss the optimal time and technique for harvesting the Gold Dust plant.

When to Harvest Gold Dust Plant?

Timing is crucial when it comes to harvesting the Gold Dust plant. The best time to harvest the plant is in late winter or early spring, just before new growth appears. The reason for this timing is that the plant goes dormant during the winter months, which means that it is not actively growing. Harvesting during this period will not harm the plant.

Techniques for Harvesting Gold Dust Plant

There are two main techniques for harvesting Gold Dust plants: pruning and propagation. Both techniques require different tools and methods.


Pruning involves removing parts of the plant to encourage new growth and maintain its shape. To prune the Gold Dust plant, you will need pruning shears and gloves. Follow these steps:

  1. Identify the stems that need pruning. Look for any dead, damaged, or diseased stems.
  2. Cut off these stems at their base, making sure to cut at a 45-degree angle.
  3. Remove any suckers or shoots that are growing from the base of the plant.
  4. Trim back any branches that are crossing or rubbing against each other.


Propagation involves taking cuttings from a healthy Gold Dust plant and rooting them to create new plants. This technique requires sharp scissors or pruning shears, a rooting hormone, and a pot filled with moist soil.

  1. Choose a healthy stem to take cuttings from. The stem should be at least 6 inches long and have several leaves attached to it.
  2. Cut the stem just below a node (where the leaves attach to the stem).
  3. Dip the cut end of the stem into rooting hormone powder.
  4. Place the stem in a pot filled with moist soil.
  5. Cover the pot with a plastic bag to create a humid environment.
  6. Place the pot in a warm, bright location but out of direct sunlight.
  7. Wait until the roots have developed before transplanting the new plant into a larger pot or garden bed.


Can I harvest my Gold Dust plant at any time of year?

It is not recommended to harvest your Gold Dust plant during the summer months when it is actively growing. Pruning during this period can harm the plant and affect its growth.

Do I need to fertilize my Gold Dust plant after harvesting?

Yes, it is recommended to fertilize your Gold Dust plant after harvesting to encourage new growth. Use a balanced fertilizer and follow the package instructions for application.

Can I propagate my Gold Dust plant through division?

Yes, you can propagate your Gold Dust plant through division. However, this technique is best done in the spring when new growth is starting.

Can I propagate my Gold Dust plant in water instead of soil?

While it is possible to propagate your Gold Dust plant in water, it is not recommended. Water propagation can cause root rot and other issues that can harm the plant.

In conclusion, harvesting your Gold Dust plant can be an easy and rewarding process if done correctly. Remember to prune in late winter or early spring, and use proper techniques for propagation. With proper care and maintenance, your Gold Dust plant will continue to thrive and bring beauty to your garden or indoor space for years to come.