croton-petraThis colorful shrub is native in the southern tropics from Java to Australian down to the South Sea Islands. The leaves are waxy and usually stand upright. It really likes temps around 80 degrees. It will not like the winter temperatures, so it would probably be a good idea to leave it in a pot. It makes an excellent indoor plant for the winter months and should receive bright light. This plant likes humidity.

Use a good fertilized soil with some acidity, like an azalea mix. Soil should be kept moist but do not let the plant sit in water. If the leaves droop or if the plant is dropping leaves, it needs more water.

Make sure it gets half a day of sun, preferably in the morning or it can sit in filtered light all day. If it gets too much hot sun, the colors will fade; if not enough sun, the leaves will develop more green color.

Some caution is necessary when considering this plant as it is classified as poisonous to pets and children.