Gardening

Learn about the cultivation and care of Croton

The Croton or Codiaeum variegatum , is a species native to Malaysia, which is grown indoors for its colorful foliage. This beautiful plant needs a place with good light and a uniform temperature at all times.

These shrubs reach large dimensions, but when cultivated they grow up to one meter in height. The leaves are always simple, soft, leathery, with a great variety of shapes and colors; Juvenile green, with white or yellowish areas that gradually acquire a reddish or orange hue. The Croton is a mature plant that produces small, inconspicuous flowers in long inflorescences during the summer.

Soil, luminosity and temperature

It requires a substrate rich in humus, porous and slightly acidic; It can be made up of equal parts river surf, peat, black earth and sand. It does not require too deep or oversized containers.

I require a place with intense luminosity and direct sunlight to achieve the best coloring of its leaves. Grown in shady places the foliage turns pale or green; recovery is achieved with a gradual exposure to greater luminosity until reaching full sun.

It is a species sensitive to sudden variations in temperature; thrives well up to 15 ° C in winter and 27 ° C in summer. Its ideal temperature is 24 ° C. It is affected by temperatures below 13 ° C or when it exceeds 30 ° C.

Irrigation, compost and humidity of the environment

Keep the substrate continuously moist with 2-3 weekly waterings during the summer, avoiding waterlogging of the roots. In winter water the Croton every 4-5 days with warm water ; It is favored by rainwater but without wetting the foliage.

During the summer growing season, 100 ml of a solution of 3 grams of fertilizer composed per liter of water is incorporated every 15-20 days into the substrate. The incorrect use of some foliar fertilizers can cause deterioration in the leaves.

You need a humid atmosphere. In dry environments, during the summer, spray the foliage with rainwater or place the pot in a dish with water and gravel without wetting the base.

Croton cultivation

  • It offers fewer problems when growing indoors in late spring or early summer.
  • The plant is selected for the appearance of its foliage; It must be provided with leaves to the base and that they do not appear pale or dull.
  • The Croton moves protected from drafts , intense sunlight and sudden variations in temperature.
  • It is convenient to place it near a sunny window during the morning hours.
  • It requires a change of pot as it develops and the roots are too abundant.
  • During winter it is necessary to keep it away from heaters and protected from drafts.
  • Plants that lose their foliage recover when placed in a very humid and warm environment. It is propagated by cuttings in spring.

The pot change

  • It takes place in spring.
  • Croton Propagation
  • By cutting in spring.

Considerations

  • Cleaning the foliage should be done with a damp cloth and it tolerates the use of polishes up to 2 times a year.
  • It is grown alone or in mixed groups to show its color combined with philodendrons, dracens, ferns, etc.
  • With continuous care it lasts for several years.
  • The Codiaeum puntactum aureum with subtle thin green leaves and white, somewhat dark or pale yellow spots, is one of the hardiest species.

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