If you’re interested in knowing how to propagate croton, you must be a lover of leaves splashed with vibrant shades of purple, orange, red, yellow, and green. Croton or Codiaeum variegatum can easily add life to any space.
In most climates, this magnificent plant is grown indoors. However, in the UK areas where the weather is frost-free, croton tends to thrive outdoors. If there’s one thing you need to know about croton, it’s the fact that you can quickly propagate it through the process of air layering or air layering.
A Few Basic Facts About Crotons
Since crotons are tropical plants, they require moist soil that quickly drains and is rich in humus. Furthermore, these plants need extra moisture during the winter season in the UK; that’s why it’s best to set their pots or containers on pebble trays. Although their growth rate slows during their winter resting period, they’re capable of adapting to lower humidity levels.
If you want these plants to maintain their stunning colours, be sure to expose them to plenty of bright light all year round. However, be sure to avoid exposing them to too much sunlight unless you want to end up bleaching the colours of your croton leaves. Consider placing them in the light shade outdoors or next to a picture window that faces south during the winter season.
How to Multiply Crotons Through Stem Cutting
A croton plant can grow as tall as 12 feet with leaves that could spread up to 6 feet with the right growing conditions. Check out this step-by-step guide to multiplying crotons through stem cutting.
Step #1: Do the cutting below a growth nodule
To do this, you must take about 4 to 6 inches from the tips. However, you need to look for a growth nodule and do the cutting below it. When you’re stripping the stems off, be sure to leave about three to five top leaves.
Step #2: Dry out the sap
You can choose to lay the cutting on a newspaper to dry out the sap. Tapping the cutting in powdered charcoal is also acceptable.
Step #3: Plant it in the right kind of soil
It’s essential to use perlite and peat moss or river sand when you’re planting your cutting. If you’re wondering, peat moss or sphagnum moss is a type of organic matter that’s partially decomposed and harvested from acidic wetlands. On the other hand, perlite refers to the processed volcanic material mixed with soil to change the soil substructure, enhance aeration, and prevent compaction.
Step #4: Tie a plastic bag around the pot
Once your cutting planted, grab a large plastic bag and tie it around your container or pot to maintain its warmth and moisture. You can expect your cutting to root within a month if the temperature kept above 70˚F.
How to Grow Crotons Through Air Layering
This technique involves taking a branch that exposed to indirect sunlight. Keep in mind that the stem would have to be rooted while being attached to the plant. Check out this guide to propagating crotons through air layering.
Step #1: Cut a limb diagonally and hold it open
Again, be sure to make a diagonal cut through a limb below a growth node. It would help if you made a diagonal cut through the stem up to approximately one-half of its diameter. The cut has to be kept open with a wooden toothpick that’s inserted sideways in it.
Step #2: Apply some rooting hormone powder
Next, use a small brush to apply some rooting hormone powder on the wound of the stem.
Step #3: Use sphagnum moss to cover the cut
Once you’ve applied the rooting hormone, you’ll need to keep the cut area covered with damp sphagnum moss. You can keep the area moist if you wrap this with polythene and tape it to keep both sides of the wound closed.
Step #4: Cut the stems when roots begin to show
As soon as you notice the roots showing against the plastic cover, it would help if you cut the branch below the layering before you remove the plastic.
Step #5: Place your newly rooted branch in peaty loam
After cutting, you may plant your newly rooted branch in a container that’s filled with peaty loam. Expect your cuttings to root within a month if these are kept warm.
Can You Grow Crotons in a Hobby Greenhouse?
A hobby polytunnel is an ideal place to grow your gorgeous crotons and other types of tropical plants. Since this enclosed environment allows you to manipulate its internal temperature and humidity levels, your plants can enjoy stable and consistent tropical weather all year round!
A polytunnel is a perfect option for greens lovers who live in the United Kingdom, where the climate is mostly cold. Think about having your tropical oasis where you can de-stress, recharge, and rejuvenate – regardless of the weather outside!
Aside from protecting your plants from harsh weather conditions, a hobby polytunnel can also act as a protective barrier against seasonal pests and destructive animals that can potentially cause irreversible damage to your tender plants.
Learn How to Propagate Croton in a Hobby Greenhouse!
Now that you know how to propagate croton try doing it in your hobby greenhouse in the UK! Discover why setting up your hobby polytunnel is worth the investment.