Hoya Australis Lisa Plant & Flower Care

Hoya Australis Lisa

The Hoya Australis Lisa is a rare, variegated cultivar of the Hoya Australis. It is also known as the Hoya Australis Variegata, Variegated Hoya Australis or Hoya Australis Variegated.

The plant has similar waxy green leaves. Although, it is easy to distinguish between the two as the Hoya Australis Lisa has light green, yellow, white/cream variegations in the center portions of its leaves.

It is worth noting that new leaf growth have a pinkish-red hue to them. Don’t let this throw you off or worry you. As they grow, they will turn into the variegated light green and white colors.

Like its parent species, the Hoya Lisa produces beautiful star-shaped flowers. in this case, its blooms are mostly white with more subtle red and pink middles.

It also features vining stems that will climb if given a chance.

In addition to the Hoya Lisa, the Hoya Australis also has quite a few other varieties and cultivars. These include the:

  • hoya australis kapoho
  • hoya tenuipes
  • hoya australis albomarginata
  • hoya australis suzy
  • hoya grande
  • hoya oramicola
  • hoya rupicola

Hoya Australis Lisa Plant Care

Light Requirements

The Hoya Australis Lisa enjoys bright indirect light. it actually needs more light than the standard Hoya Australis because of its variegations.

As with other variegated plants, the lighter colors on the leaves make the Hoya Lisa a very popular houseplant. But these sections also don’t absorb light as well as the green areas. That’s because they lack chlorophyll.

Chlorophyll is the substance that provides the green color in leaves. It is also what allows the plant to absorb light.

So, while the lighter color of the variegations make it look prettier, they also mean that the Hoya Australis Lisa needs more light to sustain itself.

In the same way it cannot tolerate low light as well as the standard Hoya Australis either.

More importantly, you want to give it ideal lighting in order to grow optimally and increase its chances of blooming.

What does this mean?

Place your Hoya Australis Lisa somewhere with bright indirect light. This can be from:

  • Gentle early morning sun which is the best for promoting flowering as well
  • Late afternoon sunlight (after 4:00 p.m.)
  • Keep it in a well-lit room
  • Avoid low light places

However, keep it away from direct sun.

While the plant can tolerate some direct sun (mostly in the morning and later afternoons), it cannot take the intensity and heat of mid-day or summer sunshine.

This will cause its leaves to lose their waxy texture and variegations. It can also scorch the leaves over time.

If you want to leave it outside, partial shade is ideal especially from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

 

Temperature

The Hoya Australis Lisa stays healthiest and grows its best when temperature is consistently kept between 65 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

It is a tropical plant which means that it is used to a lot of sunshine even through the winters. More importantly, it does not see snow nor experience freezing weather and frost during winter.

As such, it is not well-suited for cold climates.

This means you want to keep it from temperatures that are below 50 degrees. Once the conditions get colder than this you’ll notice the plant start to struggle. A common sign is slower growth. Eventually, the plant will stop growing altogether.

And the lower it gets, the more problems it will experience.

Because home temperature is usually between 65 and 75 degrees this is not usually a problem unless you place the plant near an air conditioner or radiator. Open windows can have cold breezes as well.

Outside, your Hoya Australis Lisa will prefer USDA Hardiness Zones 10 and 11 where it will happily stay outdoors 365 days a year.

 

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Humidity

Humidity is usually not a problem as well when it comes to caring for your Hoya Australis Lisa. However, it is important to note that the plant enjoys humid environments.

Again, this stems from its tropical origins.

The Hoya Australis Lisa has an ideal humidity of 40% to 60%. Although the plant can tolerate lower humidity better than other hoya species.

That said, if you live in the desert or somewhere with dry air, it is a good idea to invest in a digital hygrometer. This is an affordable device that tells you humidity.

With it you know what the humidity is at any given minute in the room.

So, you can easily tell whether the plant needs some help or not.

If humidity gets too low, you’ll see your Hoya Australis Lisa grow slowly and have dry leaves, crispy tips and also brown patches on its foliage.

This means it needs more air moisture and you can oblige by misting it regularly or setting up a humidifier. Another option is to place water trays below the plant with rocks to keep the pot above the liquid.

 

How Often to Water Hoya Australis Lisa

The Hoya Australis Lisa is an epiphyte. It also has semi-succulent leaves which allow it to store moisture.

As such, it does not need a lot of water.

In fact, it is more susceptible to overwatering. And tis is what you want to watch out for since watering the plant too often will leave its small root system in water. if you do this often enough or long enough, it will lead to root rot.

This means the best way to water the plant is to allow the soil to dry out first.

Here, you have a few options:

  • If you like to water your plant more often than not, try to wait until the top 2-3 inches of soil is dry before doing so. This prevents overwatering.
  • If you find that you often forget or are late a few days, try to water your plant before the soil dries more than 75% of the way down.
  • If you don’t like watering the plant often, you can allow the soil to dry out before watering. The Hoya Australis Lisa can tolerate a little drought. But avoid long periods where it is left bone dry. After a while, this will damage the plant.

Once you see the leaves get soft and flat it means they need water. if they get crinkled or start to droop  then they’re already quite dry and need water.

Similarly, there are many methods to test when to water your plant.

  • You can stick your finger into the soil and feel up to what level is dry
  • You can use a wooden stick and insert it down into the soil. The wet portion of the stick will indicate where the soil still has water.
  • Some growers lift the pot. A light pot means it has little water or the soil is dry. And a heavy pot means the soil is still moist.
  • You can also use a moisture meter and check the reading

 

Hoya Australis Lisa Potting Soil

Since the Hoya Australis Lisa is an epiphyte, its roots enjoy having lots of oxygen. This means that they do not appreciate being drowned in water.

And for this reason, the best soil for Hoya Australis Lisa is well-draining, lightweight soil with good aeration.

This will allow their roots to soak in water to get hydrated. But ensure that the excess water quickly drains.

And you can achieve this by using ingredients like perlite, pumice, orchid bark and even coconut coir.

Here are some potting mixes that work well for Hoya Australis Lisa.

  • Mix 1/3 potting soil with 1/3 coconut coir and 1/3 perlite
  • Combine 1/2 potting soil with 1/2 succulent mix
  • Mix 1/2 potting soil and 1/2 perlite
  • Place 2/3 peat moss with 1/3 perlite

In addition to good draining potting soil, make sure the container you use has drainage holes as well. This will allow any liquid that drains from the soil to drip out of the pot.

If you have a saucer under the pot, throw away any water that collects in the saucer.

Does the Hoya Australis Lisa Climb?

Yes, the Hoya Australis Lisa is a climber and this is how it lives in its native habitat.

As such, it will appreciate some kind of support. It will climb and wrap around the support which makes it grow habit different from monsteras and philodendrons which go straight up.

This is why you’ll see a lot of hoyas with trellises or wires. As the plant climbs and wraps itself around the support it will take the shape of that object.

 

Fertilizer

Feed your Hoya Australis Lisa once every 2 to 4 weeks during the warmer months as this is its growing season.

Start with once a month and see how the plant responds. if it is growing slower than normal, adjust to once every 2 weeks.

The Hoya Australis Lisa is a light feeder. So, you don’t want to overfertilize it.

Also, because it is a foliage plant, you want to use a nitrogen-rich product most of the time. A balanced formulation of 15-15-15 N-P-K likewise works well.

However, once you notice the plant is about to bloom, you can switch to a high phosphorus fertilizer. This will encourage flowering. An orchid food works well or you can go with a  bloom booster as well.

Some growers like to switch back the regular fertilizer once the flowers grow. Although I’ve noticed that sticking with the high phosphorus product helps the blooms last longer.

Try each one out for your yourself and see how your hoya responds.

Once the cold weather comes around stop feeding.

You want to allow the plant to rest during this time. So, around mid to late fall, (or October in many cases), halt fertilizer and don’t feed through winter.

 

Flowers / Blooms

In addition to its variegated leaves, the Hoya Australis Lisa is also known for its very attractive flowers. With many of the other Hoya Australis varieties you sometimes need to wait for them to bloom in order to distinguish one from the other since their leaves look similar.

That’s not the case with the Hoya Lisa because of its unique light green variegations.

That said, you don’t want to miss out on its lovely white blooms. These grow in clusters that are shaped like a ball.

Each flower is actually small and star shaped with a white/cream color and a tinge of red and pink in the middle. They also have a nice fragrance which is mild during the day and is strongest during early evenings.

The plant will usually flower late summer to early winter although it can likewise do so during spring (but only on occasion). Thus, it is a good option if you want something the blooms somewhat later in the year.

Note that flowers are not a given. And you may never see your Hoya Australis Lisa bloom as it needs certain conditions for this to happen. Here are a few things you can do to increase the chances of flowering.

  • Give it bright indirect light (it will not bloom in low light)
  • Leave it underpotted. It enjoys being slightly root bound which helps with flowering
  • Keep temperature cooler at night. It has a better chance of blooming if night time temperature is 10 degrees Fahrenheit or so lower than its day time temperature.
  • Feed it with a high phosphorus fertilizer
  • Don’t prune the old spurs

 

 

Pruning

The Hoya Australis Lisa is a fast growing epiphyte. This means its vining stems will get longer over time. And they can grow to lengths of 8 to 10 feet.

In its native habitat, it is a climber and will do so if you give it a trellis or wire to wrap itself around. In the wild, it can reach as high as 30 or so feet when climbing up trees.

As such, you will need to regularly do light trimming to keep the plant neat and tidy looking. This also prevents wayward stems from growing in every which direction.

However, as I mentioned in the previous section, it is very important not to prune the old spurs even after the flowers have faded.

That’s because these spurs are perennial. Therefore, new flowers will keep growing from them over the years. If you cut them off, you take away any opportunity of that happening.

Also, it will take time for new spurs to grow which means you’ll miss out of at least one blooming season.

 

How to Propagate Hoya Australis Lisa

Like other variegated plants, the best way to propagate Hoya Australis Lisa is through stem cuttings. By using stem propagation, you’re able to keep the plant’s variegations, which is not always guaranteed if you grow them from seeds.

Remember, the variegations are often genetic mutations. And the reason why they’re rarer than the regular version of the plants it that these DNA mutations happen often.

As such, to make sure that your new plants also have their beautiful variegations, stem propagation is the way to go.

To do so, take a 3-5 inch stem cutting. You can root it in water, soil or sphagnum moss. The plant does well in all of these substrates which makes it easy to propagate them.

Keep the cuttings in a warm location with good humidity and bright, indirect light.

It will take about 4 or so weeks for the roots to grow and develop.

 

How to Repot or Transplant Hoya Australis Lisa

In most cases, you will only need to repot your Hoya Australis Lisa once every 2 or 3 years. However, I’ve seen some growers keep them in the same container for up to 5 years without any problem.

The important thing is that the plant is healthy and happy.

If it outgrows its pot and the container gets too tight, you’ll notice the plant will grow slower or stop growing. After a while, it will get stresses and experience problems as well.

Thus, you do need to repot it once the roots start coming out of the bottom of the pot.

When repotting, choose a container that is 1-2 inches wider than the current only. Avoid overly deep pots as the plant does not have an extensive root system.

 

Is It Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs

The Hoya Australis Lisa is non-toxic to cats, dogs and humans. It does not contain any poisonous components that will harm your kids or pets if accidentally ingested.

Nevertheless, like other objects you’re not supposed to eat, it can cause gagging, choking or get stuck somewhere in the throat or esophagus. So, try to avoid this situation if possible.

 

Hoya Australis Lisa Problems & Troubleshooting

Pests

The Hoya Australis Lisa can get pests. And the most common ones are mealybugs, thrips, aphids and spider mites.

These can be bothersome although they are easily eradicated if you spot them early and treat them immediately,

Don’t allow them to grow into an infestation. That’s when they can damage your plant and are harder to get rid of.

 

Diseases

The plant is not prone to diseases although it can experience them if you overwater the plant. This puts it at risk of root rt and fungal infections.

So, try to avoid wetting the leaves too much and overwatering the soil.

Root rot is caused by wet, soggy soil. On the other hand leaf spot, blight and molds can affect leaves if there don’t get good air circulation and light to help them dry quickly after getting wet.