One of the great things about hoyas is there are hundreds of varieties to choose from. And, different kinds will come in varying forms. One example is the Hoya linearis.
Unlike many hoyas, the plant has a different look to it as its leaves aren’t fleshy like many of those that are succulent-like. In addition, it is flatter in appearance as it trails down overflowing from the edges of the container.
That said, it has its similarities too. This comes in the form of beautiful flowers. While they come in different colors and appearance, they cluster together in a lovely way.
Also, as beautiful as their blooms are, they are likewise elusive.
The plant is often found in Australia and South Asia. It enjoys warm weather making it fairly easy to care for indoors in homes.
The plant itself can grow to about 6 to 7 feet indoors, which lets you show off its long vines.
Hoya Linearis Plant Care
Hoya Linearis Light
The Hoya linearis thrives on bright, indirect light. You can likewise give it filtered or dapples light and it will be happy. The key is plenty of bright natural sunlight.
However, be careful of what kind of sun it gets.
It can tolerate direct sunlight only in the morning and late afternoon when the sun’s rays are not intense. It can likewise do so during wintertime when the sun is much weaker.
Still, you want to limit it to about 3 hours a day.
Beyond that, direct sunlight is just too much for the plant. It cannot tolerate long hours of direct sunlight, hot summer sun or the intense afternoon light. This can cause its leaves to burn.
So, if you keep it outdoors, bright shade is ideal.
You also want to be wary of low light areas. Too little light will prevent the plant from growing optimally. Also, if you’re after its lovely flowers, be aware that it needs lots of bright light to bloom.
Because the plant likes to sprawl outward or trail, it is a good idea to consider how the light hits the plant based on how you pot it.
In hanging baskets, the top of the plant is often unexposed or less exposed because it stays under the cover of the ceiling or whatever’s overhead keeping the basket suspended. Lack of light on the top most leaves will cause your plant to grow unevenly there.
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Hoya Linearis Temperature
Hoya linearis does well indoors because it appreciates temperatures similar to what you and I do. This makes it easier for it to adapt.
However, it is important to keep in mind that the plant grows in higher elevations. This means that nighttime temperatures are quite a bit cooler than in daytime.
That said, as long as you keep temperature between 60 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit, it will be happy. At night, as long as it doesn’t get colder than 50 degrees, it will do fine.
Hoya Linearis Humidity
The plant enjoys higher humidity. Ideally, between 60% and 70%. But, it can likewise tolerate lower humidity levels between 40% and 60%.
This makes it more manageable indoors for most homes. But, you’ll probably still need to either mist it regularly to keep it happy.
You can likewise use several other approached to help increase humidity around the plant. These include:
- Keeping in the bathroom, provided that there’s enough light coming through the windows there.
- Grouping it with other plants. Make sure to leave enough space between them so air can circulate. This allows moisture to quickly dry to prevent mold and fungus from developing.
- Water tray with pebbles. Keeping the plant on top of pebbles or a platform in a water tray or saucer likewise helps as long as you keep it from getting wet.
- Humidifier. This is your best bet if you need to increase humidity by a considerable amount.
Keep in mind that humidity is very important for your Hoya linearis. It doesn’t like dry conditions.
Watering Hoya Linearis
The very first thing to remember about your Hoya linearis is it is susceptible to overwatering. And, giving it too much water or watering it too often will likely lead to root rot.
This means it is a good idea to stay on the drier side of things.
But, you never want to let the plant completely dry out.
One reason for this is that is isn’t as tolerant as other hoyas because its leaves are not fleshy or thick like theirs. Instead, it has longer, softer, narrower foliage.
So, there are two things to remember when watering.
- In its growing season (spring and summer), allow the top layer of soil to almost dry out before watering.
- In the winter, cut back of watering so you only water sparingly. The goal here is to keep the plant from drying out.
Just as importantly, water thoroughly. This allows you to soak the entire root ball slowly. If you dump water all at once, it will quickly go down and try to sneak through the creases.
Instead, you want to slowly soak the entire root ball so water reaches the bottom.
Then allow the excess moisture to complete drain away. Leaving water in the soil will promote root disease which you want to avoid by all means.
This also means that watering in the morning is the best time to do so. Meanwhile, the worst time to water is late in the afternoon or at night.
You want to water when there is enough sunlight to and warm air to help excess moisture to dry up. At night, both are absent. So, water tends to sit longer which increases the risk of problems.
Hoya Linearis Soil
When it comes to soil, keep your Hoya linearis in loose, airy, well-draining potting mix.
This gives the plant enough moisture to stay hydrated. But, will not less excess water sit around to cause problems in the long run.
Well-aerated soil is likewise important because the plant’s roots enjoy oxygen. The texture of the soil allows air to easy get to the roots. In contrast, heavy soil or soil that tends to get compacted over time will prevent this from happening.
So, when it comes to potting mixes, you have a few options.
You can go with an African violet mix then add perlite to improve drainage. This requires less mixing. And, you can get the African violet mix from the nursery.
On the other hand, you can also create your own from scratch. This is a cheaper option which many growers tend to move towards as they gain experience.
Here, you want to combine 1 part cactus potting mix with 1 part peat moss and 1 part perlite.
As always, only use containers with drainage hole/s at the bottom. This ensures that excess liquid can easily escape. Even if you have fast draining so, if the water has nowhere to go, it will still pool in the container.
Your Hoya linearis is a light feeder. Also, it only needs to be fed during the growing season. When it is resting during wintertime, don’t fertilizer.
That said, if you use compost or rich soil, you may not need fertilizer at all. But, most growers do use it just to make sure the plant gets all the nutrients it needs.
The one thing you want to be careful with here is overfeeding. Like water, too much of something that’s helpful to the plant can cause irreparable harm.
In this case, overfeeding can burn its roots.
As such, use a balanced fertilizer once a month during its growing season. Make sure to dilute it to half strength.
Also, make sure to water the soil when applying fertilizer. You never want to apply plant food to dry soil because the high concentration can cause fertilizer burn.
Hoya linearis produces beautiful fragrant star-shaped flowers. These are white in color with a slightly yellow center. And, they grow in clusters which makes them amazing to look at.
However, there is no guarantee that they will ever bloom.
For starters, you need to wait 2 years before the plant will begin blooming. So, don’t expect anything during year 1.
In addition to patience, it needs a lot of bright light, and to be root bound. As such, proper lighting and potting are very important if you want to be able to savor is stunning blossoms.
The plant is a moderate to fast grower. And, it can grow to a length of about 7 or so feet indoors.
Because of its trailing nature, it is often found in hanging baskets.
This means you may or may not want to keep pruning it.
In most cases, having cascading vines that are long enough make the plant look more beautiful when hung. So trimming is only needed if you feel it is getting too long.
That said, you’ll want to remove any damaged, dead, dying or discolored foliage.
But, be carefully with being too aggressive. You don’t want to cut into flower bearing stalks because the blooms will regrow from them in the future.
If you do trim the stalks, they plant will need grow the stalks again before it will be able to flower once more. This significantly delays the process.
Hoya Linearis Propagation
As with most of caring for Hoya linearis goes, it is likewise easy to propagate the plant. Stem cutting is the best way to do it because it is straightforward. And, there is no complicated thing to do.
The best time to propagate this hoya is during the spring and summer when the new plant can start growing right away.
Here’s how to propagate Hoya linearis from stem cuttings.
- Begin by choosing one of the top stems. Since the plant will spread outwards then down, you want to get the top section so it doesn’t end up growing sideways or downward when starting out.
- Cut the stem at about 6 inches long. Make sure that it has at least a couple of nodes as this is where the roots will start growing from. Leaf nodes are where the foliage joins the stem.
- Dip the cut end into rooting hormone. This is optional. But, it speeds up the root growth and development.
- Place that end into a small container with potting mix.
- Water as needed, making sure that the soil never gets completely dry.
- After about 4 or 5 weeks, some roots should have started growing. You can test this by gently pulling on the plant. The goal isn’t to pull the plant out. Instead, it is to see if there’s resistance. If there is, then some roots are growing. This means you’re on the right track. If not something went wrong. Try to fix it by figuring out what you missed. If you can’t find fix it, just start over again.
Transplanting & Repotting Hoya Linearis
Hoya linearis don’t like being moved. They don’t like being disturbed either once they’ve settled into their home. As such, leaving them be as much as possible is ideal.
This includes repotting.
Additionally, the plant likes to be pot bound. In fact, this helps it produce flowers.
So, you only want to repot when absolutely necessary. Otherwise, hold off.
In most cases, this will mean having to repot once every 2 or 3 years. But, the exact time will depend on how quickly the plant outgrows and overwhelms it pot.
When you do repot, keep in mind a few things:
- Always choose a container with drainage holes
- Only go up 1 size. This is about 1 to 2 inches larger.
- Use well-draining soil as mentioned above in the soil section. If you feel that the potting mix you’re using is not providing enough drainage, add perlite and/or orchid bark to loosen the substrate and improve its draining ability.
- Porous containers may help as they allow excess water to seep out. But, they’re not necessary. So, if you want or already have them, you can try using clay pots or terra cotta ones.
Good news! The plant is not toxic to humans and animals. Although the sap can cause irritation. This means that while you still want to handle with a little care, you don’t need to be overly worried if your kids, dogs or cate happen to get curious and play with it.
Also, because it is mostly grown as a hanging plant, it is easier to keep it out of reach.
Pests and Diseases
Hoya linearis can contract aphids and spider mites. These are two of the more problematic pests for this plant. And, both work in different ways.
But, they both take nutrients away from your plant causing its growth and later on healthy to slow down and deteriorate.
As such, it is important to regularly inspect the plant for potentially unwanted visitors.
This will allow you to treat them as soon as possible with soap and water solution to get rid of them.
Similarly, because the plant enjoys humid conditions, mold and fungus are always potential issues.
Thus, it is always a good idea to allow any wetness to dry quickly.