How to Care for Croton Plants Indoors
- This article was last updated on 10/06/2017
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Croton plants are famous for their colorful foliage. The leaves come in many bright colors so they can add a lot of tropical flare to your garden. If you want to grow them indoors you will need to dedicate some time since these plants can be tricky to grow inside of the home.
If you want a success, it is important to choose a Croton variety that doesn’t need as much light as other Crotons. Good varieties to grow indoors are Croton Mammy, Croton Petra and Croton Norma.
One thing you need to keep in mind if you wish to grow Croton plants indoors is that they require relatively high light levels. This is particularly true if you want to keep the bright colors of the leaves. Yes, certain varieties need less light but you should be ready to provide some consistent light to your Crotons.
Varieties that are good for indoor care can handle light levels as low as 100 to 200 foot candles. However, you might be ready to provide more since more light mean brighter colors. It is not unusual that indoor Crotons keep their leaves green even when they mature.
Remember, mature plants should have colorful leaves so if it doesn’t happen you need to change something in your care regime. This mainly refers to light: keep in mind that these plants require plenty of light to produce vibrant colors on leaves.
While it is important to provide your Croton plants with plenty of light, it doesn’t mean that they should be at too hot temperatures. On the contrary: they produce the most colorful leaves under bright light but somewhat cooler temperatures.
During hot summers, Crotons have a hard time to produce bright colors. This is why you should never keep your plant at a very hot place in your home.
You should not go overboard with a fertilizer. Keep in mind that too much fertilization in summer can make the leaves less colorful. During winter, you can fertilize your plants but make sure that it’s not excessive.
The soil or other potting media for Croton plants needs to have good aeration. At the same time, it should not have excessive drainage because the plants can wilt quickly if you allow them to dry out. Keep this in mind when choosing the soil for your Crotons and doing the watering.
If you want to root your Crotons, keep in mind that they are specific in this regard. It is possible only to root their leaves. Once the leaves are rooted you can plant them. Low arrangements seem to work best for these newly rooted leaves. They can provide a lot of color and will last about 2 to 3 months.
One word of warning: Croton leaves will leak a white sap when punctured. This sap can easily stain clothes and it can irritate people’s skin. This is why you need to be careful when handling your Crotons and their leaves. Keep this in mind to avoid accidents, particularly during rooting.
Photo credit: wlcutler CodiaeumVariegatum-Croton_20150103_AlaWaiBlvd_Cutler_092753 via photopin (license)