Tips for care - Gold dust crotons
Gold dust croton has yellow gold-colored specks on green leaves. Generally, all crotons are gorgeous, with lush green leaves flushed with purple, golden-yellow, red-orange colors. Crotons come in varieties like gold dust croton, Florida select croton, bush on fire croton, etc. Some types are air purifiers and appear in Dr. Wolverton's list of air purifiers.
Potting - Potting should be such that the roots are not bound. Hence, should repot the plant after getting the plant from the nursery. While repotting, retain parts of the original soil. Use 1/3rd garden soil + 1/3rd sand & 1/3rd cow dung manure. Alternatively can be planted in 4/5 compost and 1/5 sand mix with left tea leaves added to the compost. If grown outdoors, add a little bit of sand or perlite near the roots. The hole in the pot should be covered mainly by concave shape stone with an open side facing the hole.
Watering Requirement – The roots should remain moist; overwatering results in rotten roots. In winter, don't use cold water; use lukewarm water. It should be watered once every day in summers and once a week in winters. If underwatered, the leaves wilt. Over-watering results in brown-colored leaf corners. The leaves fall both due to over and underwatering. Crotons don't tolerate very low temperatures.
Light Requirement – It is a tropical plant that loves indirect/ filtered sunlight. Hence it is an ideal plant to be kept on a balcony, patio, or verandah, it can survive direct sunlight, but colors become dim.
Propagation – Use half soil and half compost for planting the cutting. Bury organic kitchen waste in soil for 4-5 days to make compost. Base of the pots should have small holes. The stem should be cut at least 6 inches in length to make a plant cutting, leaving 2-3 layers. Remove large leaves and cut the rest of the leaf in half to take less nutrition. Now remove 1 inch of bark from the bottom of the stem and cut at 45O. Put rooting hormone around the cutting, then plant by making a hole of 2 inches in the pot.
Fertilization – They love acidic fertilizer. Fertilize once every two weeks. Use apple cider vinegar, sirca one spoon in 1-liter water. NPK (20:20:20) dissolved in water can also be given from time to time.
General Tips - Spider mites, bugs, etc., easily latch into the plant. In such cases, use soapy (1 spoon soap in 1-liter water) water to clean the leaves.
Air purifier: Yes
Common name(s): Croton, Zanzibar Croton.
Bloom time: Early Summer, Summer, Late Summer