Croton collections in botanical gardens


Active Member
Is there a botanical garden in Florida with a decent croton collection? I went to Fairchild Tropical Gardens (Miami) this past March and I was disappointed that there were relatively few crotons. It seems to me, with all these cultivars, it would be nice if there was a decent publically-accessable, labeled, croton collection somewhere, other than people's private gardens, so that we'd know where to find everything.

It would be a nice project for the Croton Society to either establish such a garden or at least make an inventory of what collections have what varieties, with the society having the right to occasionally take and distribute cuttings to members. Otherwise, alot of varieties may disappear over time, as croton collectors come and go and private properties get re-landscaped when they change hands.

Phil Stager

Esteemed Member
The best that I have seen in Florida is Flamingo Gardens. The Edison Estate used to have a nice collection. Selby has a few; Sunken Gardens in St. Pete has some old time varieties. I'll let someone else address Caribbean Gardens in Naples.

Dealing with botanical gardens is worth a long discussion by itself. It is best experieinced to be appreciated. Some are cooperative; others are a pain in the....
Lots of big and small egos involved at all levels.

If ever in the Cayman Islands, check out the QEII botanical garden which should have a nice collection.

But if you really want to see a lot of crotons, join the Croton Society and attend some meetings.

Phil in sunny St. Pete


Active Member
I am already a Croton Society member but have not attended a meeting yet. I will have to try and plan my next Florida visit around a meeting.


Active Member
Hey Ron

Be sure to let us know of your visit ahead of time. I agree that Flamingo has the most comprehensive/labeled collection. Over the years, we have attempted to create a repository, only to run into the typical red tape of bureaucracy and the changing of ownership. We also, at this time, have a work in progress at Naples Botanical, which is not even open at this time.

Good to have you in the forum!

Jeff Searle

Well-Known Member
This is....and should be a great idea to get established. The one big hurdle that I see on the horizon though, is after maybe getting alot of varieties planted somewhere, then maintaining them is the bigger problem. And, I'm specifically thinking about the new croton scale that has to be dealt with. If a garden will comit to keeping these sprayed, then I think there's a good chance of maintaining the collections. Just my thoughts....



Well-Known Member
I believe Jerry from the Deerfield Beach Arboretum is attempting to get this collection started. But I agree, without adequate knowledge and commitment to the scale, the collection, regardless of how extensive, will be sticks.


Active Member
Sounds like you've all thought of the need for a permanent croton collection already. Well at least it sounds like the Society has made a start at this effort, though I see how complicated it might be. Still, it would be worth it in the end.

I don't know anything about this new croton scale problem. How long has this been around?


Active Member


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Well-Known Member
I believe Jerry from the Deerfield Beach Arboretum is attempting to get this collection started. But I agree, without adequate knowledge and commitment to the scale, the collection, regardless of how extensive, will be sticks.

Yes, I will be starting our croton garden soon but need help and advice. The Deerfield Beach Arboretum is open to all and never any entrance fee. I hope the plants survive people trying to take cuttings!

About the scale, I understand that imidacloprid is very effective and adding soap, garlic and tobacco is never a bad idea. If it works like on the Cycad Scale, only one or two heavy doses a year should suffice.

I believe that any long term solution is biological in nature and that spraying might only be necessary for the first few (several?) years as scale predators learn to eat them. That is what has happened to many of the last several "new" invaders.

I will be meeting with Mark Peters tomorrow (Wednesday July 15) to discuss crotons and the new garden.


lamingo Gardens provides a permanent refuge for injured, threatened, and endangered native wildlife. Native wildlife include alligators, flamingos, river otters, bobcats, turtles, and over 70 species of native birds. Free-roaming peacocks strut on the lawns in front of the historic Wray Home.The free-flight aviary includes a walk-through screened enclosure. Within the aviary's five ecosystems – coastal prairie, mangrove swamp, cypress forest, sub-tropical hardwood hammock and everglades sawgrass prairie – resides one of the largest captive collections of native wading birds. This is "bird watching made easy!" Some of Florida's most majestic birds – Bald and Golden Eagles, Osprey, Falcons, Hawks, Owls, and more inhabit the bird of prey center.

Crazy for Crotons

Well-Known Member
Miami's old Parrot Jungle (now Pinecrest Gardens) has many old, unidentifiable varities scattered throughout the garden. If you haven't been, it's worth your time.

I believe the Naples Botanical Gardens (Florida not Italy) has started a croton repository.