plant image thumbnail
plant image thumbnail
plant image thumbnail
plant image thumbnail
Croton

English Name

Codiaeum Variegatum

Scientific Name

Description

Codiaeum is one of the most colourful of all houseplants. The leaf shapes found in Codiaeums vary considerably. Some being oval, some are narrow, others like large oak leaves and strap-like. The new leaves may be mainly green, developing their colours as they mature.

Malaysia

Origin

Euphorbiaceae

Family

59°F - 81°F

Temperature (°F)

1' - 3'

Height (feet/inches)

Perennial

Life Cycle

None

Fragrance

Watering

Water 2-3 times a week in Summer, every 5 days in Winter, using tepid water. Never allow compost to dry out.

Feeding

Feed every 14 days from Spring until late Autumn, with standard liquid fertilizer.

Repotting

Re-pot annually in late Spring. It prefers to be in pot which is slightly too small, maximum size 8 inches. Therafter annual topdressing with fresh potting mixture will suffice.

Propagation

Propagate by air layering or by cuttings preferably taken from side shoots in Spring and Summer. Dip 6 inch long cuttings in rooting powder. Like most members of Euphorbia family, Codiaeums are filled with a milky latex. Seal the cut ends by wetting them. Plant each cutting in a 3 inch pot of moistened cutting compost, enclose the pot in a plastic bag or heated propagator for 4-6 weeks.

Cultivation

Plenty of light is necessary for good coloration. If put in full sun it should be sprayed later during the day. The plant get rather tall with age but pinching out the growing tips will encourage side shoots to form. Tall plants can be reduced in size by air layering in Spring.

Pruning

Pruning should not be necessary as long as the plant becomes too big for the available position, however cut it back as much as required in early Spring before new growth begins.

Tips

In the Winter months the plant should be moved away from the window to avoid exposure to cold.

Care

Warmth, humidity and good light are the basic needs, but take care that the plant is not positioned in a draught or the leaves will fall. Starvation is another cause of failure. Red spider mites can be troublesome.

Decorate

Codiaeum looks beautiful on its own or in mixed bowls where it benefits from humidity provided by the other plants. It is useful as office plant, for bright lit dining room or lounge.

Humidity

Spray daily in Summer but not in direct sunlight. Spray weekly in Winter. Stand pot on saucer of pebbles almost covered with water. Don't allow pot base to touch water.

Soil

Peat based compost.



Did you know?

The world's tallest-growing tree is the coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens), which grows along the Pacific Coast of the United States, mainly in California. Interestingly enough, it's not the world's oldest-growing tree; that award goes to a bristlecone pine (Pinus aristata).