The Croton 'Petra' (Codiaeum variegatum'Petra') is an evergreen shrub native to southern Asia and the western Pacific Islands. It prefers hot, humid weather and grows only in U. S. In other climates, croton can be grown in containers and kept indoors during cold weather. This distinctive, variegated plant needs special care to stay healthy in all climate zones.
How to Care for your Croton Petra
Light: Place your croton where it will receive six to eight hours of bright, unfiltered sunlight each day. Provide shade from direct summer sun during the hottest part of the day.
Water: Irrigate moderately and infrequently, allowing the soil to dry out between watering. Water about once per week for outdoor plants. During the winter, water less often, keeping soil moist but not wet. Spray the leaves of indoor plants with lukewarm water once per day.
Soil: Plant your croton outdoors in a location with well-drained, humus-rich soil. For indoor growing, use a large container with unobstructed holes in the bottom and a commercial potting soil designed to provide good drainage. Add a layer of gravel to the bottom of the pot to improve drainage even more.
Temperature & Humidity: Maintain a consistent temperature between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Outdoors, avoid low spots that may become very cool on winter evenings. Move container-grown plants indoors when the temperature becomes too high or too low.
Fertilizer: Fertilize your croton about once per week with a 3-1-2 liquid fertilizer, or less frequently using a slow-release form. If the plant seems to be stunted or suffering from a nutritional deficiency, increase fertilizer quantities slowly, since too much can cause the leaf colors to become dull.
Toxicity: Ingestion may cause mild oral and gastrointestinal irritation resulting in mild drooling, vomiting, and/or diarrhea. Skin irritation may also occur after exposure to the sap but tends to be mild. If you have a pet, it is highly recommended to keep this plant out of reach.
Additional tip: Re-potting indoor crotons is highly encouraged every two years to promote healthy growth.
Arrives in a nursery grow pot. Pot sold separately.
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