How to Grow Ajania pacifica Plants in your Garden

Ajania pacifica, also scientifically known as Chrysanthemum pacificum or Dendranthema pacificum

It is a perennial garden plant that is grown as much for its beautiful, variegated silver and green foliage as for its clusters of small, button-shaped yellow flowers.

Gold and silver chrysanthemum
Ajania pacifica (Pacific chrysanthemum)in flower at Pali o Waipio, Maui, Hawaii photograph by Forest and Kim Starr.

Originally native to central and eastern Asia, it is now cultivated as a decorative perennial throughout the world

This plant thrives in USDA Zones 5-9 (will also grow in zone 4 so fine to -28°C / -20°F); this should classify it as hardy in the UK and Europe to RHS hardiness zone H7.

It is a member of the Asteracea family, along with the daisies and chrysanthemums, which is perhaps why the common name for Ajania pacifica is silver and gold chrysanthemum.

Ajania pacifica flowers close up
Ajania pacifica flowers close up, photograph by 阿橋 HQ; CC.

Unlike taller, showier chrysanthemum varieties, this particular variety is a low-growing plant perfect for borders and groundcover.

It can also be used in container arrangements.

With few pests and little disease pressure, it's an easy addition to landscaping and flower gardens even for beginning gardeners.

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Gold and Silver Chrysanthemum

Since Ajania pacifica is typically propagated by cuttings from stems or divisions of their rhizomes, gardeners looking to add them to their collection should look for transplants rather than seeds.

Plant them outdoors after any risk of frost in full sun to partial shade.

They tolerate a wide variety of soil types and pH levels, but good drainage is crucial.

Ajania pacifica aka Chrysanthemum pacificum leaves
Ajania pacifica Symn. Chrysanthemum pacificum leaves photograph by Forest and Kim Starr; CC.

The plants typically reach about 12 inches (30 cm) high, but pinching back taller growth in early summer will help promote a lower-growing, bushier habit.

Over time, they'll spread horizontally via rhizomes to form mounds up to 36 inches (90 cm) in diameter.

Divide plants in spring to prevent overcrowding. While Ajania pacifica is generally a fairly hardy plant, growers in colder regions such as USDA Zone 5 should provide a bit of extra mulch or other protection to prevent damage in winter.

Ajania pacifica Growing and Care Guide

  • Scientific Name: Ajania pacifica
  • Common Name: Gold and silver chrysanthemum
  • Growing Zone: USA: 5 to 9; UK H7.
  • Life Cycle / Plant Type: Perennial

Plant Details

  • Plant Height (Inches): 12 to 18
  • Plant Spread (Inches): 14 to 16
  • Time of Bloom: Late summer to Mid fall
  • Flower Details: Yellow
  • Leaf Foliage: Green, Silvery
  • Fruit:
  • Growth Form: Spreading / horizontal

Ideal Growing Conditions

  • Best Light Conditions: partial shade, partial sun to full sun
  • Rate of Growth: Average
  • Suitable Soil Types: Loamy, Neutral, Well drained
  • Soil Moisture: Moist

Caring Conditions

  • Care:
  • Level of Maintenance: Medium
  • Propagation:
  • How to Prune: Pinch back stems
  • Pests: Usually pest free
  • Diseases: Usually pest free

Further Information

  • Can Attract:
  • Tolerant of:
  • Best Garden Use: Alpine garden, Border, Ground cover, En masse , Rock garden, Specimen
  • Family: Asteraceae (Compositae).
  • Closely Related Species: Achillea, Aster, Callistephus, Cosmea, Helianthus, Leontopodium, Liatris, Sanvitalia, Stokesia, Townsendia, and Zinnia.

  • Miscellaneous: Attractive foliage
  • Genus Detail: Ajania
  • Further Reading and References: Here and Here

Gold and silver chrysanthemum
Gold and silver chrysanthemum image by Forest and Kim Starr; CC.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Ajania pacifica. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ growing guides: How to grow Townsendia and Lonas plants.