Crotons develop their best leaf colors when planted in shifting sun. Plants placed in shade or semi-shade tend to develop a large amount of green color. Soil should be enriched with compost, muck, or peat moss, and fertilized regularlywith a general all purpose fertilizer, preferably one that is high in acid, such as azalea fertilizer. Also, up until September, use of high nitrogen is preferred. After that, only use a fertilizer that has more phosphorus and potash.