croton flower

north53 Z1b MB(zone 1b Canada)June 23, 2011

Here's something I never saw before. One of the crotons in my care at the library flowered for the first time. At least, I think that's what it is.

It's not an exciting flower, but intricate and delicate looking.

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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hey North,

That's exactly what it is congratulations; I'd be pretty excited.

I only ever saw these in person once in Ft. Lauderdale, outdoor plants about 6-8 ft. tall, landscaped around a neighboring home. I described the bloom elsewhere recently as mini-fire crackers.

It must be getting superb light to keep such vibrant colors; seems to love your care, keep up the good work & of course, Enjoy!!

    Bookmark   June 23, 2011 at 10:06AM
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North, beautiful..You must have been surprised finding a flower on your Croton.
Your Crotons leaf colors are fantastic, so vivid. Toni

    Bookmark   June 23, 2011 at 1:32PM
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north53 Z1b MB(zone 1b Canada)

Yes, I was delighted to find the flower. I have used air-layering to renovate the old original plant so now have 3 crotons. I think they're beautiful.

Our local library is an old building that was refurbished. It started out as the water treatment plant. Basically it was gutted and is now open concept. It has ramps that circle up the 3 levels. It has high windows on all 4 sides. So yes, the light is fantastic and every plant (over 30)just thrives. I volunteer to care for them, but it is enjoyable, as my house faces north and is dark. I go there to get my fix, which is especially pleasant in the winter.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2011 at 2:07PM
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I am new here . I was searching for information about a never seen before bloom, just now, on my Croton plant that I have had over ten years . I have included a before photo on on the deck this summer (left)with the one on the right taken just now. I was amazed as it is on its most pitiful condition, being on the inside all winter. I keep it by a window with only minimal sunlight available. I water it once weekly and at least once a month I add Miracle grow to the water. So I didn't do anything out of the ordinary to cause it to bloom! Was glad to read all the helpful info I found here. Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 5:42PM
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Here is a close up of the bloom. Several fell off as I touched them.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 5:47PM
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I have seen some enormous Crotons in the Philippines, the size of trees, with all shapes and colours of leaves, and never saw one with flowers. Interesting!


    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 5:49PM
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Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Hi Myra, welcome to Gardenweb! Great Croton pics, thanks for sharing! Inspirational. Not sure where in AL you are, but feel pretty safe waving north, to wave at you!

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 9:39AM
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mine are just half-pints compared with yours. i keep them outside in summer, but overwinter them in western window, bagged all the time for humidity and warmth and stuffed under the shelf. so in tight quarters and barely moist.
2 of my other attemps failed due to mites and dropped leaves.
so this is the third. i have 2 broad-leaved petras. when i looked the other day i noticed that one of them has 2 flower spikes to my surprise. and is producing new leaves. guess it got warmed up enough.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 6:08PM
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here's 2 together. the bottom is 2nd overwinter - it lost some bottom leaves last year, before i mounted a full blown doting campaign.

This post was edited by petrushka on Mon, Apr 1, 13 at 9:37

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 6:14PM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

I grow these as yard plants and have often wondered why they never seem to set a pattern. Most plants with muticolored leaves have a very distinct pattern . Coleus comes to mind though they come in a gazillion colors the leaves on an individual are very much alike
With croton every leaf is different .. If there is a pattern to the color it's sure not obvious.
Anybody know why?? gary

    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 5:04AM
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I've got a number of bushes of crotons, some have relatively similar leaves, some are very different, both in colour and shape. And one of mine just seems to flower continuously. Not that the flowers are anything special.

Gary, perhaps their genetic code is unstable and causes the differences. But still stable enough to allow them to survive. I bought a small one recently with amazing colours, planted it, it shot up and all the new leaves were more green than anything. And any bit of colouring isn't the same as the original. I feel ripped off.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 10:35AM
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don't worry, new leaves are always mostly green, then as they age, the colors go thru yellow and finally red stages. the oldest leaves have the most coloration, the green will darken too.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2013 at 6:13PM
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garyfla_gw(10 Florida)

I think much might depend on which hybrid. ?? last i heard there are over 200 named
The "wild ones I seen in Costa Rica were mostly spotted
rather than patterned . yellow and orange predominating
About a third the markings of nursery stock. gary

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 5:06AM
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Pet, I wonder if older, lower leaf drop is normal...???

How many weeks/months is your Croton in plastic? Any ventilation or completely sealed?
After removing, are leaves green, and do they drop?

I think climate has a lot to do with coloration. Light, humidity, temps.

I no longer have a Croton, 'type pictured above,' but here in IL, during winter months, colors fade. Leaves turn pale green. wrote, Croton flowers aren't anything special.

I think all flowers are special..probably since I live in an area forcing tropicals into bloom takes a lot of work. :) Work and luck. lol.

While reading Croton info, I just found out Codiaeums are in the family, Euphorbiaceae.

Anyone know if Scientists recently discovered this?

When I think about Euphorbias, succulents come to mind. Toni

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 12:37PM
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cowgurl160(4 SD)

north, Myra, and petrushka you all have beautiful crotons! I have one in a west facing window right now and while its the best its ever looked in my apartment, it is no where near as nice as those pictured.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 9:05PM
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Toni, I think a lort of people get flowers on their crotons, but because they're so inconspicuous most don't notice.

This is the one that's "cheating" on me. Note the lower (smaller) leaves and then the upper ones which have grown since I bought it. The lower leaves are also very 'bubbly', the new ones are less so..

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 8:23AM
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Close up of the lower leaves.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2013 at 8:28AM
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i love your croton colors - i haven't seen those in nyc.
i've had corkscrew crotons with yellow/red dots and petra with color veining: on both there's never red/pink on new leaves. they need to mature for some time , like sev months to get that red going. most appear as green with yellow veins. some as pure yellow. pure yellows slowly (3 mo? or more) start greening and then by end of winter some red appears. so i would not worry.
that said, they say it needs dappled sunlight for good color - so if you keep it in shade it won't develop reds/pinks and would stay mostly green with cream/yellow veining. in winter it needs dappled south/western window. if humidity is low, nite/day temp fluctuates a lot, or it's too dry - it drops leaves.
in florida in the ground they drop leaves due to cold temps. they need to be above 60F.very hot sun at 90F will bleach color: in mid-july i move them into bright shade outside.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 10:05AM
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for winter mine go into large dry-cleaning bags after xgiving and thru april. large hole on top, checks every month for mites, misting or shower monthly/dry up, back into the bag. leaves touching bags is no problem, but bags never steam, no condensation either, soil never wet, only slightly moist. they are in AV soil with perlite, cocomatting on the outer rim : all to allow water wicks. they never dry-up this way, but water consumption is quite low, since they are not growing really. i fill water reservoir may be once every 3 weeks. the new one did not drop any leaves on the bottom, only 2-3 in the middle. the older one has a bare stem from last year, but it back-budded already.
my west window gets direct sun only 2-3 hours 1-3pm, but in march i start getting full sunset between buildings, so it heats up, much more light and they start growing/blooming. the sunlight is dappled, 'cause i have a calamondin tree and jade-tree casting sparse shade. new leaves now are green with a little yellow veining. i am really concerned with mites: but in a couple of weeks i'll start taking the bags off for the day and once it gets above 60f - i'll start taking them outside to NE early morning sun and bringing them back until i have above 60F at nite too. so pretty intense care. but they provide the best color for me in summer time and all thru xgiving, it's worth it for me.

This post was edited by petrushka on Mon, Apr 1, 13 at 10:48

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 10:21AM
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north and alabama,
can you comment on color changes in your crotons? when leaves start developing red? under what conditions? is the new growth green? mine in summertime is sometimes totally yellow, but that's outside. it's a diff ball game.
it seems you've overwintered yours much longer? i noticed that north has just green new growth, but directly below is very pink. so when does it start going pink?

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 10:22AM
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pirate_girl(Zone7 NYC)

Hi everyone,

I haven't grown Crotons for a few yrs. now, but found the colorful ones really needs lots of light to keep their colors, otherwise, they just go green (I grow indoors only, in apmt). I always kept mine on a pebble tray, finding it very thirsty & this was a good way to water copiously. I never had any trouble w/ Spider Mites.

Hi Toni,

Your question abt them being Euphorbia, that's not new info. I checked my favorite pre-Internet home reference book Success with Houseplants (Reader's Digest) & it has Crotons as Codiaeum as Euphorbiaceae, that copyright is 1979.

Have you ever cut back a Croton? Think about the white sap, I never found it irritating, but it's definitely that white sap that Euph often have.

Euph are such a large family I'm sure it's got plants which aren't succulent as well. Tho' I don't know many offhand, there's one I've killed twice now, w/ delicate foliage that I'd never have pegged as Euph. I think it's called E. continifolia or something like that.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2013 at 11:52AM
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if you google images you'll see that all new leaves are green/green with yellow veins/pure yellow. even on pink/red plants.
tropic yours is called 'harmonious' , see pic "here" with new green leaves (croton 6).
also I found I nice article "here": with great pics.

This post was edited by petrushka on Tue, Apr 2, 13 at 15:37

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 3:23PM
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Saw some huge crotons in the Philippines a couple years ago, hope to see more when I go back later this year. So many varieties, too. They thrive on the humidity there.


    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 5:05PM
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Reading these post i got kinda happy because some people stated it's hard to get your Croton to flower. Well i have had mine for less then a year and i believe it's in the process of growing flowers. I don't live in a tropical area i actually live in NYC, the Bronx. But i was surprised, this is the first time i had a Croton. My Croton is an indoor plant and we get bright indirect light. i would like to say and it's growing very fast. In the attached picture you can't see the buds but i think it's growing well. I just wish i had brighter light so i can get the reds. But all the green and yellow leaves are new growth.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2013 at 7:40PM
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CactusBoss(Zone 5a)

I just find it hard to keep crotons alive.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2013 at 7:47PM
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I am in central Florida and my croton had been doing really well until last month, (March,) it dried up and lost all its leaves. Now it has green stubs all over the stems that are there and some of them are putting out flowers. Will leaves come out again? If all the stubs flower, will the plant survive?

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 9:30PM
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Crotons are fairly drought proof, takes quite a bit to dry them out. If they're flowering they should still be alive, so yes, leaves should come back. Keep the plant damp but not too wet. I have a croton that started flowering about 2 years ago and hasn't stopped since. It's very healthy and full of leaves, currently growing about head height..

    Bookmark   April 13, 2014 at 10:21PM
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