Decorating the house with houseplants like the Croton is not just an excellent way to bring nature indoors, but it may also help you achieve spiritual goals as well. Practices like Feng Shui account for decorations like live plants when determining how energy will flow in your home. Aside from spiritual symbolism and considerations for Croton plants, you also need to consider the plants’ physical needs. Here’s what you need to know to properly position any kind of Croton plant in your home or office for optimal plant care and energy flow.
- Where to Position Croton Plants in the Home – The Essentials
- About Croton Plants
- Croton Plants and Feng Shui
- Where to Position Croton Plants in the Home
- Where Not to Place Croton Plants in the Home
- Where to Place Croton Plants Outdoors
- Essential Croton Plant Care
- Where to Position Croton Plants FAQs:
- Where to Position Croton Plants – The Final Word
Where to Position Croton Plants in the Home – The Essentials
Like most live houseplants, the Croton plant does well when placed in the East or Southeast, according to Feng Shui. Crotons thrive in bright, indirect sunlight, so a position a few feet away from an east or south-facing window protected by a partially drawn blind or sheer curtain for at least six hours per day would be ideal for optimal plant care.
About Croton Plants
Types of Croton plants vary significantly in appearance, even among the limited species that are grown as houseplants. They all have relatively stiff leaves with a glossy appearance due to the typical desert habitat in which the plants tend to grow.
The genus is part of the Euphorbiaceae family, which includes many other desert-adapted plants like Spurge and Euphorbia. The Croton genus is native to Malaysia, South Asia, the Pacific Islands, North America, and some parts of Africa.
Species popular as garden or houseplants, thanks to their host of uses and benefits and tend to feature brightly colored or multicolored foliage and unusual leaf shapes. Some Crotons grow from main stems or trunk-like structures, but most varieties form multiple independent stems to support a few leaves each.
Almost all of the popular Croton plants sold as houseplants, in particular, are a variety of Croton variegatum. This can be surprising since each variety can look drastically different from the next.
For example, it’s easy to think that the ‘Dreadlock’ and ‘Gold Star’ varieties are completely different species, but they’re simply cultivars of the same one. This means that despite the color variations and interesting types of foliage, almost all of these plants need the same kind of care and positioning within the home. It’s easy to own a variety of different Croton plants without having to adapt to a wide range of conditions in your houseplant area.
Croton Plants and Feng Shui
Feng Shui remains relevant today, although it began hundreds of years ago as an ancient Chinese practice for laying out tombs and other ceremonial areas. In modern times, it’s often applied to homes and houseplants instead.
Even if you can’t change how your home’s layout is built, you can arrange decorations like Croton plants to create better energy patterns according to the map known as the Bagua. A Bagua is used to orientate certain features in the home according to the cardinal directions of the compass.
Traditional methods call for using a compass and aligning the Bagua with the true northern direction, while more informal practices involve aligning the map with the home’s entrance regardless of the compass direction.
Croton plants play an interesting role in Feng Shui because even when alive, they’re considered a part of the wood element. Wood symbolizes strength, stability, growth, and togetherness when used to its best benefits in this practice.
Croton plants impart a fun and somewhat playful side to this energy because they’re more colorful and feature more unusual foliage shapes than other houseplants. This helps them generate positive energy without being as overwhelming as some other common houseplants, such as the Snake plant.
Croton plants offer a general symbolism of positive change, joyfulness in the face of adversity, and overcoming the challenges of life. Since some varieties feature multiple colors in their leaves, they’re often used to bring a mix of elements into a room that’s lacking in the fire (red) or earth (yellow) as well as wood. Use a white-colored planter or pot, in this case, to help maximize the plant’s energetic benefits.
Where to Position Croton Plants in the Home
Plants are used to generate energy and boost the focus of specific parts of the home. The Bagua is used to determine where plants like the Croton belong in the home, but it can’t tell you where the plant will actually thrive.
You’ll need to balance the practical needs of the plant with the recommendations of practices like Feng Shui to find just the right placement. According to Feng Shui, live plants like a Croton provide the best boost to your home’s energy when located in the East and Southeast parts of the home. These sections of the compass encourage growth in your wealth and prosperity, in the Southeast, or your family, in the East.
If you choose a variety of Croton with reddish leaves, you can also help stimulate the fire element in the South of the home for more recognition and fame. Small and curly-leaved Croton varieties can be placed in almost any room since they boost energy without being too much for the space, especially if kept in the corner.
Placement Tips for the Croton’s Needs
Finding the right place for a Croton plant is a little more complicated once you move past the recommendations of Feng Shui.
This plant needs more light than Peace Lilies or Snake Plants, so they’ll need to be within two to three feet of a window that gets good exposure for at least six hours per day. Yet they can easily burn if exposed to direct sun for more than brief periods during the day.
Choosing a window with a Southeastern or Eastern exposure gives them plenty of morning light while minimizing the risk of sunburn from the direct afternoon sun. This also fits well with the recommendations of Feng Shui alignment.
Croton plants can easily handle being placed near an entrance or in a corner as long as there is adequate light.
Where Not to Place Croton Plants in the Home
Since Croton plants generate energy and stimulate activity, they aren’t recommended for placement in the bedroom. Feng Shui principles call for keeping these plants in areas that are used for work or gathering with family and friends instead.
It’s also a common piece of advice to keep houseplants away from entrances and exits to the exterior of the home. Placing them too close to a door will not only cause energy to leave your home rather than staying within, but it’s practical advice to keep drafts from affecting the plant’s health.
If you place a Croton plant near a window, make sure to keep it at least two to three feet away from the glass to prevent sunburn and issues with drafts, such as yellowing leaves or wilting.
It’s also worth noting that Croton plants are considered toxic to pets, so it’s often prudent to keep them out of reach if possible from your furry friends.
Where to Place Croton Plants Outdoors
Many varieties of Croton are grown outdoors, where they can reach maximum heights of 10 feet or more in some areas.
They’re generally grown only in USDA zones 9 and up since they need relatively mild winter temperatures to return year and year. Choose a partial to full sunlight location for Croton plants in the ground since they need plenty of sun exposure to produce bright colors.
If you move potted Croton plants outdoors for the summer, keep them in the indirect sun since they won’t have the larger root mass to adapt to full sun exposure.
Plant them near a sheltered location against a wall to boost the warmth, especially if you are in a climate zone on the edge of where they thrive.
Essential Croton Plant Care
Croton plants need bright but indirect light for at least six hours a day. They prefer warm but not hot temperatures when grown indoors. They prefer higher humidity levels of 60% and up and will grow best in a humid room or with their own humidifier nearby.
Fertilize the plant with half-strength general-purpose houseplant fertilizer once a month during the growing season to maintain color and new leaf growth (and prevent croton leaf drop). Use a well-draining soil mix and water when the first inch of the soil dries out completely.
Croton plants will also benefit from some light pruning in the spring and summer months and should be repotted when rootbound and have outgrown their current potting vessel. You’ll also need to keep an eye on any common Croton plant pests and diseases.
For those looking to expand their Croton collection, these plants can also be propagated.
Where to Position Croton Plants FAQs:
What room is best for a Croton Plant?
East, South, and Southeastern rooms all work well according to the plant’s light needs and the recommendations of Feng Shui.
How far away from the window should a Croton Plant be?
Keep Croton plants at least two feet away from windows, so they’re not exposed to direct sunlight. Watch out for how light exposure changes from winter to summer as well, potentially moving the plant further away in the winter.
Can I put my Croton Plant in a corner?
Feng Shui plant placement calls for placing live plants in corners. Consider using supplemental lighting if you place a Croton plant in a corner.
Can Croton Plants thrive in low-light environments?
Croton plants need quite a bit of indirect lighting to thrive. Consider Snake plants or Peace Lilies for low-light areas.
Can Croton Plants tolerate drafts?
Keep Croton plants protected from both hot and cold drafts.
Where to Position Croton Plants – The Final Word
Cultivate a variety of Croton plants to add color and fun shapes to your home. Consider using Feng Shui to guide placement after considering the basic needs of these particular houseplants. For more, see our ultimate guide to growing Croton plants at home.
Andrew is the Editorial Director at Petal Republic. He holds a BSc degree in Plant Sciences and has trained professionally at leading floristry schools in London and Paris. In amongst overseeing a global editorial team, Andrew's a passionate content creator around all things flowers, floral design, gardening, and houseplants.