Golden Leaf Osmanthus. The great plantsman John Elsley of Greenwood, SC, gave me this selection some years ago. A plant of this cultivar is planted by John's front entrance to his home where he maintains it at about 48" high and wide. This is one cultivar that must be planted in filtered sun or shade here in the Deep South, because it tends to burn in full sun. As this plant reaches maturity, it will start to flower as well as loose the spines in its leaves becoming a simple elliptic shape with just a single spine at the tip. This is one of the best golden foliage plants for the shade. If planted in dense shade, it will be a mere chartreuse color.