The Hoya Brevialata is a beautiful vining plant with thick, succulent-like leaves. While its leaves are small, they make up for it in number.
The plant will also get quite full and dense if you let it keep growing. This makes it stunning to look at.
As with other hoya varieties, the Brevialata produces colorful, fragrant flowers. These are tiny compared to other hoya species but they grow in clusters with each bloom being white and pink in the center.
The plant is native to Southeast Asia so it enjoys tropical weather.
How do you care for Hoya Brevialata? Bright, indirect light is ideal to promote flowers. Also, keep it in a warm area with good humidity. Avoid excess watering and don’t leave the soil wet.
The plant will appreciate fertilizer. And you can use orchid fertilizer to help it bloom. Don’t repot unless needed since it likes being root bound which helps it bloom.
Hoya Brevialata Plant Care
The Hoya Brevialata tolerates many lighting conditions. This will let you place it just about anywhere indoors or outdoors.
It also lets you design or decorate your home using the plant how you want to.
The key is knowing how to manage the light.
Ideally, the Hoya Brevialata does best in medium to bright indirect light. Indoors, this is easily done near an east or west facing window.
You do want to be more careful with a south facing window due to the strong amount of light it gets during mid-day.
Too much exposure to this can burn the plant’s leaves.
Therefore, keep it at least 2-3 feet from a south facing window. Or use sheer curtains to filter the light from the window.
Meanwhile, a north facing window will work fine.
But monitor how much light your home gets from there. This tends to the be direction with the least amount of light among the four.
Too little light will slow the plant’s growth. It also hinders flower production.
So, if the light is insufficient from the north, either consider keeping the plant in another location or supplement it with grow lights. The Hoya Brevialata responds well to artificial lighting.
Outdoors, it thrives in partial shade.
There, you can keep it in the patio, balcony or anywhere with a cover or shade provided that there’s still plenty of light.
The Hoya Brevialata is native to tropical regions. This makes it prefer warm over cold environments.
That said, it has better tolerance to cooler conditions compared to other hoya varieties.
Its ideal temperature range is between 45 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit. As such, it will easily do well indoors and in most cases outdoors.
The only thing you want to watch out for are very cold weather.
Avoid anything below 45 degrees Fahrenheit since the plant will struggle there.
This will initially affect its growth. But the longer it stays there, the more problems it will experience. This includes leaf discoloration, dropping foliage and possibly even plant death.
As such, avoid leaving it outdoors during the colder months. It will not survive winter.
However, it does enjoy the outdoors in USDA Hardiness Zones 10 through 12.
Additionally, he plant dislikes sudden or dramatic temperature changes. So, keep it away from places where these fluctuations can occur as it will stress or even shock the plant.
Another aspect of tropical climate is high humidity. And so, it should come as no surprise that the Hoya Brevialata enjoys humidity of 60% to 80%.
This is its ideal range although it will tolerate a slightly lower range of 50%.
Because most homes average between 20% to 50% humidity indoors, this can become challenging.
Therefore, if you don’t live in a tropical, subtropical climate region, near a large body of water or have a greenhouse, then consider getting a hygrometer.
A hygrometer tells you what the humidity is at any given time. It is small, affordable and portable.
So, you can move it from room to room to check if needed.
This will also tell you if you need to take any action to help the plant out.
The reason is that once humidity drops too low, the Hoya Brevialata will develop brown leaf edges and tips. Its leaves can also turn yellow later on. And you may see the leaves drop or shed.
Therefore, these are symptoms to watch out for.
And a hygrometer can warn you ahead of time.
In case, humidity is low you can increase it by using any of the following methods.
- Get a humidifier
- Group all your houseplants together
- Mist your Hoya Brevialata regularly
- Place it on a pebble tray or humidity tray
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How Often to Water Hoya Brevialata
Watering is by far the most important aspect of Hoya Brevialata care. That’s because this is where many growers end up harming their plant.
The reason is that it can be tricky.
Hoya Brevialata has lots of small but thick, succulent-like leaves. Therefore, it is able to store water in its foliage to allow to get through dry periods.
Additionally, the plant is an epiphyte, which means that in the forest, it does not live in the soil but clings onto trees instead.
So, its roots don’t stay wet for long after it rains since the exposure to air quickly lets them dry.
Together, these factors make the plant susceptible to overwatering.
As such, avoid watering too frequently.
Instead, use the soil as a guide. And wait until the top 1-2 inches of soil has completely dried before you add more water.
Otherwise, if you add moisture when the soil is still wet, the roots will eventually end up swimming in too much water. This can result in root rot if not remedied fast enough.
Following this method also allows you to avoid using a fixed watering schedule.
Instead, it lets you automatically adjust to the weather as they change throughout the year. That’s because you let the soil tell you when to water.
Hoya Brevialata Potting Soil
Light, airy, well-draining soil is ideal for the Hoya Brevialata. This is important for the same reasons above.
This kind of soil allows excess moisture to quickly drain. It also has good aeration which lets the roots get enough oxygen.
To help the plant grow, it is also a good idea to give it soil that’s rich in nutrients and with soil pH between 6.1 to 7.3.
This is the ideal pH range for the soil as it lets the Hoya Brevialata efficiently absorb the nutrients.
So, how do you achieve the ideal soil mix for the plant?
Luckily, there are many ways to do this.
A simple potting mix recipe that works well uses:
- 1 part potting soil
- 1 part coco coir
You can also go with:
- 1 part potting soil
- 1 part succulent & cactus mix
Or if you have orchid bark at home:
- 1 part potting soil
- 1 part orchid bark
Any of these will work great. And if you noticed, they all have similar features in that there’s a component that provides some moisture retention while another that drains and helps keep the substrate well-aerated.
If you don’t like making your own potting mix, you can just buy a bag of African Violet soil and use that.
The Hoya Brevialata requires a little bit different fertilizing because it produces beautiful foliage and flowers.
As such, you don’t only want to optimize leaf development and growth, but also flowering.
Of course, you can just go with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer which will help the plant grow long and bushy while producing some flowers.
But if you want it to bloom quite a bit, you may need to adjust a little.
To do this, I like to feed it with an all-purpose or balanced, liquid fertilizer like above. But once it shows any signs of blooming, I’ll switch to an orchid bloom booster (orchid fertilizer).
This is higher in phosphorus which will promote flowering. It also helps make the blooms last longer.
Of course, you can go with any other fertilizer with a higher phosphorus. That will work too.
That said, it is very important to only feed the plant during spring and summer. Don’t fertilize in fall or winter as the plant won’t grow much in cold weather.
Flowers / Blooms
The Hoya Brevialata is known for its showy flowers. These are also fragrant exuding a scent similar to caramel.
Together, they make the plant a great addition indoors or outdoors.
Note that its flowers are small. In fact, each bloom is less than an inch wide. However, the flowers grow in bunches or clusters which makes them unique.
Additionally, they have beautiful colors.
Each flower is white with a pink/purple center. And at any time, you may see more than one umbel which makes them stunning to look at.
While the Hoya Brevialata can bloom a few times a year, it will likely do so during the warmer months.
However, keep in mind that the flowers are not a given. You need to give the plant the right environment.
The most important thing here is bright, indirect light. Keeping it in slightly root bound also helps. Plus, the phosphorus rich fertilizer will increase the chances of blooming as well.
The Hoya Brevialata grows at a moderate rate. But it can reach about 10 to 12 feet if you let it grow. Its leaves are fat and fleshy which allow them to store moisture.
Another important thing is that the plant can get very full and bushy.
In fact, I saw one that was huge with the stems and leaves puffed up together forming something that looked like a huge ball.
This just goes to show much dense it can get.
As such, pruning is needed on a regular basis. But how much you’ll need to prune will eventually be up to the look you’re going for.
If you want to keep it neat and not overly thick, then regular trimming is needed.
But if you want to let to get big, compact and fat, then you won’t need to prune often.
How to Propagate Hoya Brevialata
Hoya Brevialata propagation is simple and straightforward because it responds well to stem cuttings.
This makes it easy to grow new plants at home for free.
Additionally, you can propagate in water or in soil depending on what you prefer to do.
The best time to propagate the Hoya Brevialata is spring to early summer.
That said, the most important thing to make sure of with Hoya Brevialata propagation is to get the right stem cuttings.
This means that each cutting should have at least 1-2 nodes and several leaves on it. Also, don’t take any stems that have flowers.
You can take stem tip cuttings or use a longer stem and cut it into several segments. Either method works.
Now that you know what to look for, here’s how to propagate Hoya Brevialata from stem cuttings.
- Begin by taking the stem cuttings. Decide how many you need based on how many new plants you want to grow.
- To cut, sterilize the blade of your scissors with rubbing alcohol. Then cut each stem just below a node.
- Next, fill a pot with well-draining soil mix. You can use any of the options above.
- Plant the cuttings into the soil with the nodes buried under.
- Water the soil and keep it moist. Also, leave the pot in a well-lit location with no direct sunlight.
In about 3-4 weeks, new roots should have developed.
It will take another month or so for shoots to develop. They will then be followed by leaves.
Alternatively, you can propagate the Hoya Brevialata in water as well.
Here, place the cuttings in a container filled with water. It will take about 2-4 weeks for roots to develop.
And you will want to wait for the roots to grow to 2 inches or longer. Then move the cuttings from the water and plant them into potting mix.
How to Repot or Transplant Hoya Brevialata
The Hoya Brevialata only needs repotting every 2 to 4 years. Its root system won’t suddenly grow big on you so don’t worry about that.
Additionally, the plant enjoys being slightly root bound.
In fact, this state increases its likelihood of flowering. Therefore, if you want to see the plant bloom, you can hold off a bit on repotting.
That said, don’t let the roots get over crowded.
Past a certain point, you’ll see the plant wilt, slow down in growth and struggle. The soil will also dry up very quickly.
Try to repot before this happens.
When repotting, choose a pot that is one size larger and has drainage holes at the bottom. Also, replace the soil to replenish its nutrients and reduce the risk of compacting.
Is It Toxic/Poisonous to Humans, Cats & Dogs
The Hoya Brevialata is non-toxic. This makes it safe for cats and dogs. It is also non-poisonous to humans which lets you display the plant anywhere you want.
That said, you still want to avoid letting pets and young children consume parts of the plant since it can cause gagging and vomiting.
Hoya Brevialata Problems & Troubleshooting
Mealybugs, scale and aphids are common pests that like the plant. They are attracted to its juicy leaves.
Unfortunately, this is one of the downsides of having those nice, fleshy foliage.
However, the plant has natural resistance to these bugs which also helps reduce the risk. Therefore, when healthy, you may never need to deal with any pest problem.
Still, it is very important to regularly inspect the plant for insects as these will quickly grow in number.
Since the plant retains water in its leaves and is an epiphyte, it is susceptible to overwatering. Unfortunately, overwatering is a big problem because it can lead to root rot.
As such, try to avoid this at all costs.
In addition to root rot, overwatering can cause bacterial or fungal infections.