Plant Identification – Croton

Hey Judy,

Bought this on the sidewalk a couple of days ago, and it’s already not doing so great. It’s in very light weight, sandy soil that doesn’t retain water at all. He seems like he isn’t getting enough water. Top leaves used to be green, new ones are yellow?? The loss of the bottom leaves (dried up and falling off), makes me think not enough water. Worried about repotting since I’ve only had about a week, but I’m thinking it might prefer some denser, more nutrient rich soil…also I can’t find it’s name. I see them all the time, but don’t know what it’s called. It’s in a window/ Brooklyn.

 

 

Hi Alan,

Yellow, green, and orange Croton houseplant
Croton Mammy Plant

Your plant looks like a Croton “Mammy.” As this plant gets more light the leaves turn bright yellow, orange, and red which is what I think is happening to your top leaves. The bottom leaves are falling off from over watering. Now is not the time to repot. You can replace the top 1/3 of the soil with fresh soil. You can read all of my tips for a croton plant in the Popular Houseplant section of the website. The picture is of a different variety, but the care is the same.

https://www.houseplant411.com/houseplant/croton-how-to-grow-plant-care

These plants are considered poisonousPlants are a great addition to homes and offices, but it’s important to know whether your plants are dangerous to children, pets, or even adults. Some plants contain chemicals such as oxalates, solanine, glycosides, or alkaloid lycorine that may cause vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, swelling and redness of the mouth, throat, and lips, and trouble breathing. Touching parts of certain plants, especially the sap, may cause various skin irritations. The weight and age of the human or pet involved, and the part and amount of plant eaten determine how severe the reaction to the toxins will be. Although plants may be listed as non-toxic, they can still cause individual allergic reactions. If there is any question after a houseplant has been ingested or touched, immediately call the Poison Control Center 1-800-222-1222.  More poisonous houseplant information and pictures of common plants that are dangerous to children and pets can be found in my book Don’t Feed Me to Your Cat: A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants and should be kept away from pets and children. Read more about common houseplants that are poisonousPlants are a great addition to homes and offices, but it’s important to know whether your plants are dangerous to children, pets, or even adults. Some plants contain chemicals such as oxalates, solanine, glycosides, or alkaloid lycorine that may cause vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, swelling and redness of the mouth, throat, and lips, and trouble breathing. Touching parts of certain plants, especially the sap, may cause various skin irritations. The weight and age of the human or pet involved, and the part and amount of plant eaten determine how severe the reaction to the toxins will be. Although plants may be listed as non-toxic, they can still cause individual allergic reactions. If there is any question after a houseplant has been ingested or touched, immediately call the Poison Control Center 1-800-222-1222.  More poisonous houseplant information and pictures of common plants that are dangerous to children and pets can be found in my book Don’t Feed Me to Your Cat: A Guide to Poisonous Houseplants in my book Don’t Feed Me To Your Cat! A Guide to poisonous houseplantsIn her new book, Don’t Feed Me to Your Cat!, plant care professional Judy Feldstein shares information about twenty-five common houseplants, each with various levels of toxicity, and the possible consequences if your pet or child snacks on them..