Hoya Care

A Beginner's Plant Care Guide to Wax Vines, Hoya (Wax Plants)

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Family: Apocynaceae
Common Name: Wax plant, Wax Flower, Porcelain Flower, or just Hoya
Botanical Name: Hoya species (see below for available varieties)

"Hoya Hoarding" is a real thing - many avid hoya collectors are out there, and it's hard to let any go! Finding and adding new hoya varieties to your growing indoor plant collection is almost as irresistible as acquiring art or antiques! From the delicate hanging needle-like foliage of the Hoya linearis to the bold and glossy leaves of the Hoya australis, these indoor plants fill many homes with elegance, beauty, and glamour.
Hoya will give you bursts of flowers in suitable environments. However, their bloom time is brief, so keep your eyes peeled for their fragrant and fleeting offering. Hoyas are easy-care indoor plants if you have the medium to bright indirect light that they need. They don't require constant watering and do not require high humidity levels. But note -- species with thinner leaves will need more water than those with waxy leaves.


These vining houseplants like heaps of bright, indirect sunlight and will be right at home if they can make contact for at least 6 hours each day (indirect contact, that is!). Hoyas can tolerate medium light, but they’ll become weak and leggy and produce fewer leaves in lower light. To avoid being sad and somewhat guilty, ensure these wax vines are close to an east, or north-facing window or set back from a south or west-facing window. The more natural dappled light they absorb, the greater the odds they will shower you with flowers during the summer!


Let your hoya indoor plants dry out between watering. Soak the soil thoroughly until the water drains out of the drainage holes. You’ll need to water more when they’re receiving more light, so adjust accordingly. Avoid over-watering. When the colder months arrive, cut back on watering; in wintertime, only water when their soil is completely dry. 


Almost all types of hoyas need soil with excellent drainage. Hoyas should never be planted in dense soil mixtures with moisture-retaining crystals. You can use a universal potting soil for hoyas, but reduce the watering frequency when using this type of soil as it will retain water longer causing potential damage to the roots! Nutrient-rich, loose soils are perfect mixtures for wax vines! If your soil is not draining well, or you are transplanting your hoya, mix 1/2 cactus soil with 1/2 potting soil to increase drainage of the soil.

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Most hoyas love warm environments - 65-85℉ - and should be kept away from drafty windows and doorways during the colder months.


Although hoyas can handle most household humidity levels, they will grow more rapidly when the humidity is higher than 60 percent. Do what you can to increase the humidity for these tropical, hanging, indoor plants. Try adding pebble trays filled with water under your indoor plants, group plants together, or use a cool mist humidifier. Learn how to increase the humidity in the air around your indoor plants!


For hoyas, a higher nitrogen fertilizer encourages foliar growth. When they’re about to bloom, switch to a fertilizer with higher phosphorus content. Fertilize with a complete liquid fertilizer (diluted to 1/4 the recommended strength) or fish emulsion twice a month during the summer. You can also apply a top dressing of worm castings or compost in the spring, as this acts as a slow-release fertilizer. Only fertilize during the growing season (spring through summer).

Pro Tips

  1. Hoyas like to be root bound so don’t be so quick to re-pot!
  2. You can train your hoyas to grow up a pole or some other support - if you like that look.
  3. When you find the right spot for your hoya, and it is living its best life, try not to relocate it. What's the point!
  4. New growth on a hoya can look like a dried up and dead vine, please do not cut off this new growth! Give it a few weeks and you will be glad you did not remove it!

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