Hi, my name is Winston and I am the newest member of the Bret-Mar team. I am a 14-month-old Dachshund. Ashley adopted me a few months ago from a shelter that brought me up from Texas after the hurricane. I am adjusting to the good life and my brother Tucker is teaching me so much, especially about the family business. Tucker says he wants to pass his plant of the week posts to me, so I can get to know all our wonderful clients like he does.
My first plant is one I know from my days in Texas, it’s called Codiaeum variegatum, or Croton for short. This plant is one of my favorites because it’s name reminds me of croutons and it has large evergreen foliage that I’m told is all different colors, but I’m pretty sure its just shades of gray.
Some other names this plant goes by is Joseph’s Coat and Garden Croton. It originates from Asia where some varieties are grown in tree form. A small tree grown in southeast Asia known by the same common name is in the same family, but the plants are very visually different so don’t get them confused!
Croton is native to warmer tropical climates but is growing in popularity in the north as an annual. Down south it makes a nice hedge that grows about five feet tall for a great privacy screen. In this area it is used more for an accent plant that usually stays about the same height as me. This plant enjoys sun and likes to have a moist well drained soil. It doesn’t handle cold temperatures well, anything below 60 degrees can be harmful to the plant.
Even though the name reminds me of food, I must remember I can’t snack on it because it will make me sick. This plant has a toxic chemical in the bark, roots, leaves, and sap that can cause irritation to skin and can be harmful to pets and children if ingested. As long as no one munches on this it is a great accent plant for any landscape or container.
Thanks for reading,