Pittosporum Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver'

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Not blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
pittosporum 'Collaig Silver'


The Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' is an ornamental plant with an elegant appearance highlighted by its attractive foliage. Its leaves are variegated, featuring a unique pattern where the main part of the leaf is a deep, glossy green with edges that are a striking creamy-white. This contrasting coloration gives the plant a bright and vibrant look, adding an element of visual interest and texture to gardens or landscapes. The leaves of Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' are typically oval-shaped or oblong, and they are arranged alternately along the stems, providing a dense and bushy appearance. During certain times of the year, the plant may produce small, inconspicuous flowers that are generally not its main feature but can add an additional layer of appeal to the overall aesthetic of the plant. The plant's overall form is naturally neat and rounded, making it a superb choice for hedges or as a stand-alone specimen in a garden setting. Its variegated leaves catch the light and can bring a luminous quality to areas that might otherwise be unremarkable. The contrasting foliage can be particularly striking when placed against a backdrop of darker green plants or when used to brighten shady spots. As a versatile and evergreen plant, Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' maintains its color and structure throughout the year, providing a constant display of beauty irrespective of the season. Its resilience and attractive appearance make it a favored choice for gardeners looking to add a touch of elegance and continuity to their plantings.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Variegated Pittosporum, Silver Pittosporum, Variegated Japanese Mock Orange

    • Common names

      Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Pittosporum, commonly known as mock orange or Japanese cheesewood, can be toxic if ingested. The plant contains saponins, which can be poisonous to humans if consumed in large quantities. Symptoms of pittosporum poisoning may include vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain. Contact with the sap can also cause skin irritation or an allergic reaction in some individuals. It is important not to eat any part of the pittosporum plant and to keep it away from children who might accidentally ingest it.

    • To pets

      Pittosporum or mock orange is also toxic to pets if ingested. The plant's saponins can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain in animals such as dogs and cats. Depending on the amount ingested, symptoms can range from mild to severe and may require veterinary attention. It is advisable to prevent pets from chewing on or eating any part of the pittosporum plant to avoid the risk of poisoning.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Height

      8 feet (2.44 meters)

    • Spread

      8 feet (2.44 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ornamental Appeal: The plant has attractive variegated leaves that can add aesthetic value to gardens and landscapes.
    • Low Maintenance: Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' is known for being easy to care for, requiring minimal upkeep once established.
    • Hedge Plant: It is often used as a hedge for its dense foliage, providing privacy and acting as a windbreak or noise barrier.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, the plant has good drought tolerance, making it suitable for drier climates or water-wise gardens.
    • Pest Resistance: It has a resistance to many common pests, reducing the need for chemical treatments.
    • Versatility: This plant can be used in a variety of garden designs, from formal to wild, and can be planted in containers or directly in the ground.
    • Wildlife Attraction: It can attract birds and insects, providing shelter and food resources, thus supporting local biodiversity.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Photography Subject: The variegated foliage and unique silver-green color of Pittosporum can be a captivating subject for plant photography and horticultural showcases.
    • Floral Arrangements: The leaves of Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' can be used in floral arrangements as filler foliage, providing a contrasting backdrop to flowering plants.
    • Texture in Landscape Design: The textured leaves can add interesting visual variety when used in mixed shrub borders or as an accent plant in gardens.
    • Seasonal Decor: Branches of Pittosporum can be integrated into festive wreaths or holiday decor due to their dense and lush foliage.
    • Education: Used in educational settings such as botanic gardens and horticultural courses to teach about plant variegation and care.
    • Privacy Screening: With its dense growth habit, it can be cultivated as a hedge or privacy screen in residential and commercial landscapes.
    • Topiary Art: The plant can be trimmed and shaped into various forms, making it suitable for topiary gardens and artistic garden displays.
    • Cultural Significance: It can be planted in gardens designed to reflect specific cultural styles, such as Japanese or Mediterranean themes.
    • Soil Erosion Control: Its root system can help stabilize soils on slopes and prevent erosion in certain landscape situations.
    • Windbreaks: When planted in rows, Pittosporum can act as a windbreak to protect delicate plants or garden areas from strong winds.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Pittosporum is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Pittosporum is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Resilience: Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver,' like many other Pittosporum species, symbolizes resilience due to its hardy nature and its ability to thrive in various conditions.
    • Protection: The dense foliage of Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' has been associated with shelter and protection, representing the plant’s capacity to guard against the elements.
    • Peace: The soft, silvery-green leaves can be seen as a symbol of tranquility and calm, bringing a peaceful presence to the garden.
    • Longevity: As a plant that can live for many years with proper care, Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver' is often associated with long life and endurance.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 3-5 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Japanese Cheesewood 'Collaig Silver' should be watered regularly to maintain a consistently moist soil profile, particularly during the growing season. A good rule to follow is to water once a week, providing about 1-2 gallons per plant, depending on the size and environmental conditions. Always check the top inch of soil for dryness before watering. During the winter months when the plant is dormant, reduce watering frequency to prevent waterlogged soil which can lead to root rot.

  • sunLight

    Japanese Cheesewood 'Collaig Silver' thrives best in full sun to partial shade. It is ideal to place it in a location where it receives at least six hours of direct sunlight daily, but it is also tolerant of light dappled shade. Avoid deep shade locations as this can result in leggy growth and reduced foliage variegation.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Japanese Cheesewood 'Collaig Silver' prefers mild to warm climates and is hardy in USDA zones 8-10. They can generally tolerate temperatures down to 20 degrees Fahrenheit (-6°C) but prefer a range between 50-75 degrees Fahrenheit. Protection from extreme cold is necessary to prevent frost damage to the foliage and stems.

  • scissorsPruning

    Japanese Cheesewood 'Collaig Silver' can be pruned for shape and size management, ideally during late winter or early spring before new growth begins. Pruning can also stimulate thicker growth and improve the overall health of the plant. Prune as necessary, but always ensure to remove any dead or diseased wood to maintain plant vigor.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    The best soil mix for the Mock Orange is well-draining with a peat-based component. Aim for slightly acidic to neutral pH, between 6.0 and 7.5.

  • plantRepotting

    Mock Orange should be repotted every 2-3 years to prevent becoming root-bound and to refresh the soil.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Mock Orange prefers moderate humidity levels, maintaining between 40-50% for optimal growth.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Mock Orange in bright, indirect light with some direct sun.

    • Outdoor

      Plant Mock Orange in partial shade with shelter from strong winds.

    • Hardiness zone

      7-10 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver', commonly known as Tawhiwhi 'Collaig Silver', begins its life cycle as a seed, which germinates in the right conditions of warmth and moisture. The seedling emerges and grows into a young plant with characteristic silver-edged leaves, establishing a root system and beginning to photosynthesize. As it matures, the Tawhiwhi 'Collaig Silver' develops into a bushy evergreen shrub, experiencing periods of active growth in the spring and summer. During this time, if conditions are favorable, it will produce small, inconspicuous purplish flowers that may be followed by seed capsules if pollination occurs. Over the years, the shrub can reach up to 2 meters high with proper care, including pruning to maintain its shape and encourage new growth. Eventually, as the plant ages, growth slows, and it may become more susceptible to environmental stresses, diseases, or pests, leading to its decline and the completion of its life cycle.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The most popular method of propagating Pittosporum 'Collaig Silver', also known as variegated pittosporum, is through semi-hardwood cuttings. This process is typically done in late summer. Cuttings should be about 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 centimeters) long and include several leaf nodes. The lower leaves are removed, and the cut end is dipped into a rooting hormone to encourage root development. The cutting is then placed in a well-draining potting mix and kept under a plastic cover to retain humidity. With consistent moisture and warmth, roots usually develop within 4 to 8 weeks. After rooting, the young plants can be gradually acclimatized to less humid conditions and eventually planted in their permanent location.