Codiaeum variegatum – croton

Croton Sunny Star

The croton (Codiaeum variegatum) is a common member of the Euphorbiaceae family. It has many cultivars available in a variety of colors, with broad, small, or twisted leaves. The foliage is leathery and starts out green, developing more color as it matures.

Croton Mora
Croton cultivar “Mora”

Plant care

To maintain the colorful foliage of the Croton, it needs a bright and sunny location; if placed in a lightly shaded or shady area, the plant will tend to develop more green foliage. Plants that are fully grown and in large containers can withstand exposure to intense summer sunlight.

Use a good regular potting mix and keep it evenly moist, but not wet, as sitting in water can cause rotten roots. The soil’s surface should be allowed to slightly dry between watering, but it shouldn’t dry completely.

Codiaeum variegatum Sunny Star
Codiaeum variegatum “Sunny Star”

In spring and summer, you can give a water-soluble fertilizer at half strength once a month.

Codiaeum variegatum can be grown at room temperature throughout the year with a winter minimum of 15°C/59°F. If kept within this temperature range, it requires less watering (but should not be allowed to dry out completely) and does not need to be fed.

Variegated croton Mora


You can propagate the croton like other members of the spurge family by using cuttings.

Wolfsmilchgewächse Kroton
Spurges: Euphorbia tithymaloides “Variegata” (left), Euphorbia lenewtonii (right) the fire croton.