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Products > Houttuynia cordata 'Chameleon'
Houttuynia cordata 'Chameleon'

Habit and Cultural Information
Category: Perennial
Family: Saururaceae (Lizard-tails)
Origin: Asia, East (Asia)
Variegated Foliage: Yes
Flower Color: White
Bloomtime: Summer
Synonyms: [Houttuynia cordata 'Variegata']
Height: 1 foot
Width: Spreading
Exposure: Sun or Shade
Irrigation (H2O Info): Medium Water Needs
Winter Hardiness: <15 F
Houttuynia cordata 'Chameleon' - This is a low-growing perennial that spreads by runners to 3 feet or more . The 1 to 2 inch long aromatic heart-shaped foliage is beautifully variegated with cream, pink, yellow and red. One inch wide white four-bracted flowers appear in early summer. Plant in sun or light shade with moist soil. Can be used around ponds and can grow out into shallow water. It spreads by runners that root along the stems, so best to be contained by a root barrier but also does not grow out into dry soil so can be constrained by irrigation practices and dies back to the ground in the cooler months. The green form of this plant is used in oriental cuisine to impart a cilantro-like flavor to food and is also used for medicinal purposes. This plant is native to Japan, Korea, southern China, and Southeast Asia, where it grows in moist, shady places and is grown as a leaf vegetable, eating fresh in salads or as a herb garnish. The 'Chameleon' cultivar is synonymous with plants called 'Court Jester', 'Tricolour', and 'Variegata' and is less less vigorous than the parent species. The name for the genus name honors Maartin Houttuyn, an 18th century Dutch botanist who published Natuurlyke Historie, a 37 volume work on all of the known plants and animals of the time. The specific epithet means "heart shaped" in reference to the shape of this plants leaves.  The information on this page is based on research conducted in our nursery library and from online sources as well as from observations made of this plant as it grows in our nursery, in the nursery's garden and in other gardens that we have visited. We have also incorporated comments received from others and always appreciate getting feedback of any kind from those who have some additional information, particularly if this information is contrary to what we have written or includes additional cultural tips that would aid others in growing  Houttuynia cordata 'Chameleon'.