How to Transplant Croton


Croton is a tropical shrub with a stunning variety of leaf shapes and colors. Though some varieties can reach heights of 12 feet, most croton plants are 4 to 8 feet high with a foliage spread of 3 to 8 feet. Croton can be grown outdoors in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 10b to 11 and is widely avaliable in these areas, according to the University of Florida Cooperative extension. The bright foliage of the croton makes this tropical shrub a unique focal point in your garden or landscape.

Step 1

Water the croton two days before you transplant. The soil should be damp to a depth of 12 inches.

Step 2

Measure the spread of the canopy with a measuring tape. The root ball will be 2/3 the size of the foliage canopy, according to North Dakota State University.

Step 3

Dig a hole at the new planting location that is twice as wide as the root ball and 12 to 15 inches deep. Break up the soil in the bottom of the hole with a shovel.

Step 4

Cut around the root ball to a depth of 12 to 15 inches with a sharp garden shovel. Using two or more shovels (and a few extra hands), lift the root ball from the hole and place it in a wheelbarrow.

Step 5

Transfer the croton to the new planting site and lower it carefully into the hole. The base of the trunk should be level with the surrounding soil.

Step 6

Fill in the soil around the root ball a few shovels at a time, patting the soil down as you go to prevent air holes around the root system.

Step 7

Water the area so that the soil is damp to a depth of 12 inches. Water the soil around your croton once or twice a week for the first four to six weeks after transplanting. The soil should be damp but not saturated.

Things You'll Need

  • Measuring tape
  • Shovels
  • Wheelbarrow
  • Water


  • University of Florida: Codiaeum Variegatum
  • North Dakota State University: Transplanting Trees and Shrubs
  • Washington State University: How to Transplant Trees and Shrubs Successfully

Who Can Help

  • United States National Arboretum: USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map
Keywords: tropical plant care, tropical shrubs, USDA hardiness zones

About this Author

Olivia Parker has been a freelance writer with Demand Studios for the past year, writing for Garden Guides and eHow. She has studied herbal and alternative medicine and worked as a landscape artist and gardener. Parker is currently pursuing a Bachelors of Arts from Boston University Online.