University of Missouri Extension

MP903, New May 2008

Quail-Friendly Plants of the Midwest

Croton

Forb

Brood coverFood
HogwortA dense covering of white hairs gives croton flowers a fuzzy white appearance

Croton capitatus (hogwort) is a common midwestern species.

Scott Sudkamp, Missouri Department of Conservation

Croton produces abundant seeds and is a common summer weed in pastures and other disturbed areas. A dense covering of white hairs gives croton flowers a fuzzy white appearance.

Scott Sudkamp, Missouri Department of Conservation
 

Crotons tend to bear many flowers and produce many seeds

Crotons tend to bear many flowers and produce many seeds.

Scott Sudkamp, Missouri Department of Conservation

Croton seeds

Croton seeds are large (here, 4 mm across) and vary by species from nearly round to oblong.

Fred Fishel, University of Missouri

Description

Crotons are annual plants; most with dense white or rust-colored hairs on the leaves and stems. Tiny flowers occur in dense clusters, and each seed capsule contains three seeds (C. capitatus) or one seed (C. monothogynus). Plants are typically less than 18 inches tall. Several species are common in overgrazed pastures and disturbed areas.

Bloom period

July to October

Use by bobwhites

Croton seeds are large and readily consumed when mature. Dense stands or plants mixed with other forbs and grasses provide an open understory and dense canopy, thus affording good brood cover. Crotons readily respond to overgrazing and may be found in abundance in late-summer pasture that has been heavily used.
 

 

MP903 Quail-Friendly Plants of the Midwest | University of Missouri Extension

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