Chimera Variegata



Chimeras are present only in nurseries or come from tissue culture studies.


In botany, a Chimera is an organism in which two different genotypes are both present. This happens because, sometimes, in the bud developing, a genetic mutation occurs and a group of mutated cells develop beside the normal ones. This can cause many different effect on the plant growth and developing: from the absence of Chloroplasts, that causes the developing of red leaves or stems, to an irregular, strange growth habits, depending on the kind of bud and on the kind of gene afflicted by the mutation. The curious fact is that the groups of cells with different genotypes coexist permitting the normal life of the plant, giving to it an unusual appearance which make it sometimes amazing, sometimes weird, but unique in any case. Chimeras are in facts really rare.


To cultivate Chimeras you should refer to the species from which it has been developed. Although it has many mutated cells, the plant still belong to its species, and its growing necessities are similar to the ones of the species.


To propagate Chimeras it’s better to use cuttings, when possible, because if you try to use seeds it’s not sure that they can germinate and develop correctly a new plant, and also the irregular growing make blossoming and developing of seeds much more difficult. Morover, it is not sure if the new plant will have the aspect of the Chimera, because the mutation can be loosed from a generation to another.


The name “Chimera” is because of the fact of this plants being like living “hybrids” of different organisms fused together in one individual. For that reason they are called Chimeras, like the monstrous creature of Greek mythology, a fire-breathing creature with the body and a head of a lion, and another head of a goat protruding from its back.

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