Hoya Pachyclada: Ultimate Grow & Care Guide

hoya pachyclada flower
Hoya Pachyclada (Source: Wikimedia)

Roses, daisies, lilies, these flowers are now predated. Just look at Hoya pachyclada flowers, and you will be awestruck by their beauty.

And let’s not talk about how powerful and sweet their fragrance is. One sniff, and you’ll travel to multiple heavenly dimensions on your own.

You will not get a look at the beautiful flowers if you don’t provide the plant with good care.

Generally, Hoya pachyclada grows best in a few hours of direct sun, a temperature exceeding 70-80°F, a humidity of 60%, and good draining yet moisture-retaining soil. It needs repotting every 2-3 years and feeding with a weak liquid fertilizer every two weeks during its growing season.

Hoya pachyclada plant
Hoya pachyclada (Source: My Home Nature)

These plants do not need much water because of their succulent nature. Their leaves are thick and ovoid and retain most of the moisture.

Let’s look at how to provide these plants with utmost care and maintenance.

Overview of Hoya Pachyclada

Hoya pachyclada are vine plants and epiphytes that reward you with beautiful blooms if you provide them with suitable conditions.

These plants can be a great addition to the decoration battalion of your house.

Look below to find the general overview of this plant.

Scientific NameHoya pachyclada Kerr
Common NameRed corona, Wax plant
NativeThailand
FamilyApocynaceae
Growth ZoneZone 11
Plant TypeEpiphytic Tropical plant
Perennial
Growth Size30-60cm in height
15cm in width
Growth HabitSlow growth
Grown ForAttractive flowers
ContainerTerracotta pot with 2-3 drainage holes
Ornamental hanging basket
FloweringStart shaped creamy, white to green flowers
Flowering SeasonBetween spring and autumn
Foliage PatternThick, leathery, light green, obovate, succulent leaves
AvailabilityUncommon
ToxicityNon-toxic

According to PennState Extension, Scottish botanist Robert Brown named this plant after a fellow botanist and his close friend Thomas Hoy.

Where to Buy Hoya Pachyclada?

I get it; You want to have more of this plant in your household. You can go for propagation as the cheapest option.

But sometimes, you don’t want to wait for too long. You can visit your local nursery to look for this plant.

Look below to find out what places sell these plants and how much you must spend on buying them.

Buying PortalPrice
Amthai Orchids$24.00
In Succulent Love$18.00
My Home Nature$37.95
Etsy$79.99
Crystal Star Nursery$115.00

Hoya Pachyclada: Ultimate Grow & Care Guide

Hoya pachyclada belongs to the tropical regions of Thailand, but you can grow them anywhere if you provide them with suitable conditions.

Look at the table below to find out the optimum requirements for this plant.

FactorsOptimal Conditions
Sunlight Few hours of direct or patched sun
WateringOnce every 7-10 days during summer
Cut back watering during winter
TemperatureTemperature above 70-80°F
Humidity60%
SoilWell-draining but moisture retaining soil
pH from 6.1 to 7.5
FertilizationWeak liquid fertilizer once every 2 weeks
PropagationStem cutting
RepottingEvery 2-3 years
PruningOccasional light pruning
Pests and DiseasesMealybugs, Aphids and Root rot, Botrytis blight

1. Adequate Sunlight and Proper Location

If they get ample support, Hoya pachyclada climbs on other surfaces as a vine plant. They do so to get as close as possible to the light source.

Generally, Hoya pachyclada prefers direct morning or evening sun for a few hours. Although they can survive in bright indirect light, these conditions won’t promote bloom.

Use of Sunlight by plant
Use of Sunlight by the plant (Source: UCL)

You need to place the plant somewhere so the direct sun won’t hit the plant’s foliage for better growth. At any cost, protect them from the intense afternoon sun.

You can place the plant in an east or west-facing window to provide it with the light it needs.

Many plant enthusiasts prefer placing it close to the window rather than next to the window.

Look below for what improper light can do to your pretty plant.

Low LightExtreme Light
Slow GrowthLeaves will be scorched
Stems will be leggyTips and edges will turn brown
Leaves will be smallerLeaves will lose their shape
Loss of colorDestroys plant hormones called auxin

Tips for Maintaining Adequate Light

  • You can hang the plant next to a windowsill, which may also fulfill the plant lighting needs.
  • If you want to place the plant somewhere, it gets southern exposure, put drapes or curtains to shade it.
  • If you live in cold regions, place your plant in the sun for a few hours. Whereas, if you live in hotter areas, filtered light is enough.
  • You can use LED lights or artificial grow lights in low light conditions.

2. Weekly Watering

Being a succulent, Hoya pachyclada doesn’t need much water to sustain. Their leaves hold enough moisture to let these plants hold up in prolonged dry spells.

But it doesn’t mean that you should ignore watering your plants altogether.

Generally, it would be best to water Hoya pachyclada every 7-10 days and stop watering it during winter.

Watering the plant
Watering the plant (Source: Tenor)

The plant grows its best in its natural habitat. So, if you can mimic their natural conditions at your home, you are in for a treat.

Caring for this plant can get tricky as this plant loves moist soil in summer but can quickly submit to the effects of overwatering.

Let’s see what improper watering can do to Hoya pachyclada.

UnderwateringOverwatering
Petioles and leaf tips turn brownRoot rot
The leaves will have a smaller sizeLeaves will wilt
The plant will have fewer leavesFlower buds will not form

Tips for Watering Your Pachyclada Properly

  • Let the soil and the roots dry at least 50% before watering the plant again.
  • Water the plant more frequently during hot weather.
  • Hoya pachyclada prefers stored rainwater over tap water. So, if possible, water the plant with stored rainwater.
  • If your plant is young, you may need to water more.
  • Water it thoroughly so that the rootball is wet whenever you water the plant.
  • Empty the saucer beneath the pot to prevent the pot from standing on the water for too long.
  • One best method is by watering the soil around the base of the plant until the water drips out of the drainage hole.
  • Use tepid water to water the plant. The plant cannot handle extreme hot or extremely cold water.
  • Layer the soil with pebbles or coarse sand to avoid overwatering and retain moisture efficiently.

3. Warm Temperature

Hailing from the warmer climate of Thailand, Hoya pachyclada loves when the temperature is a bit on the warmer side of the coin.

Generally, Hoya pachyclada loves a temperature ranging from 70 to 80°F (21-26°C), although they can survive a temperature over 90°F (32°C).

Temperature effects on plants
Temperature effect on plants (Source: MDPI)

But remember, these plants cannot survive frosty conditions.

So, if you reside somewhere where the temperature is cold most of the time, we suggest keeping the plant indoors. You can keep the plant outdoors during summer.

The plant’s growth slows and eventually stops in low-temperature settings. When the temperature drops below freezing, the situation worsens.

According to hgic.clemson.edu, frost conditions damage the cells of plants by freezing them, thus damaging from the inside.

When the temperature goes astray during winter, you can use heat pads, frost blankets, or insulating plastics to protect it from extreme cold.

Avoid placing the plant near drafty windows and air conditioning vents during winter.

Whereas if the temperature is too hot, you may need to mist it constantly or even keep it in a room with an air conditioner.

4. High Humidity

At the place where the Hoya pachyclada is native, nobody complains that their plant is not getting enough humidity.

That means in the plant’s native zone, i.e., the humidity is very high, rendering this plant to get high humidity.

Generally, Hoya pachyclada prefers a relative humidity of a minimum of 60% and will give you a good chance of bloom if humidity is up to 75%.

However, if the humidity drops below 30%, it’s high time you get concerned about your plant’s health.

Effect of humidity
Effect of Humidity on Plants (Source: North Carolina Climate Office)

Low humidity conditions invited by winter months and drier summer days will slow down the plant’s growth and may halt it altogether.

Their thick succulent leaves stores enough moisture to let the plant survive a bit in drier conditions.

You can buy a hygrometer and check the room’s humidity. If the moisture is not up to the mark, you can buy a humidifier to maintain the humidity.

Or you can go for a cheaper option by placing a pebble tray near the plant.

Even cheaper? Mist the plant using a spray bottle a few times every week.

5. Well-draining Moisture Retaining Soil

Even if you provide your plant with all its required conditions, you might risk putting it under stress, if you don’t grow it in good soil.

Hoya pachyclada grows on whatever nutrients it can muster from the barks, fallen leaves, and rainwater in its natural habitat.

And trust me, it gets adequate resources. It would be best for your plant if you emulated such conditions at home.

Hoya pachyclada prefers chunky, moisture-retaining but well-draining, airy soil to provide good airflow.

Small Hoya in a Pot
Hoya in a Potting Mix (Source: Wikimedia)

They grow happily if the pH of the soil ranges from 6.1 to 7.5.

You can try the following mixtures at your home.

  • Regular potting soil with some coco coir and compost.
  • Combine 50% peat moss, 40% perlite, and 10% pine bark.
  • Take two parts of regular potting mix and add 1 part of perlite.

You can also opt for a commercial soil mix. Look below for the commercial potting mixes.

Want to know in more detail? Visit “How to Choose the Suitable Hoya Plant Soil?”

6. Weak Liquid Fertilizer Every Two Weeks

Hoya pachyclada doesn’t need much feeding. They take all the required nutrients from the forest debris and the surrounding in their natural environment.

The best type of fertilizer you can feed this plant is organic manure. These fertilizers prove to be good because they are slow-release fertilizers.

Hoya pachyclada does best if you feed them with slow-release fertilizers every two weeks during their growing season with no fertilizing in winter.

Hand of a man putting fertilizer to a plant
Fertilizing a plant ( Source: Stocklib )

The best and only time to fertilize these plants is during spring and summer, when the plant can ward off any stress caused by fertilizers.

To make your plant flower and focus on the development of leaves, use a fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 5-10-5. This means you have to use fertilizer rich in phosphorus but has average nitrogen.

Let’s look at the damage caused by improper fertilization to this plant.

Lack of FertilizationOver Fertilization
Slow plant growthLeaves will turn brown
Lack of phosphorus may lead to no bloomSalt build up on the soil surface
Weak stem and pale foliageYellowing, wilting of the stem

Remember to water your plants before fertilizing as the moisture helps the fertilizer spread evenly. Also, dilute the fertilizer to 1/4th strength.

Here are some recommended commercial fertilizers for Hoya pachyclada.

7. Growth Rate of Hoya Pachyclada

Hoya pachyclada are vining epiphytes that grow slowly compared to other Hoya varieties.

They can grow up to be one foot in height in about two years and grow a maximum of two feet in their lifetime.

hoya pachyclada hanging in a basket
Hoya pachyclada in a basket (Source: Mickeys Plants)

The leaves are oval-shaped, light green in color, leathery, and the base is wedge-shaped. They can grow up to be 10cm long and 5cm wide.

As a vine plant, they seek support for growing if you have potted them in a container. If you have hung them, the plant will be top-heavy.

To support the plant stem, you can stake the pot with some not-too-thick mini trellis. The branches will get woodier as they age, so support may not be needed at the later stages.

Flowering Habits

Hoya pachyclada is famous for its beautiful flowers. The flowers are star-shaped, and in the middle of the cluster is the corona, from where it gets the name ‘red corona.’

Hold up! This corona is not a pandemic but is a sweet-smelling delight.

Hoya pachyclada produces small clusters of creamy, green to white flowers with a red corona in the middle.

Flowers of Hoya Pachyclada
Flowers of Hoya Pachyclada (Source: My Home Nature)

One cluster can have up to 30 flowers, and the flower can vary in color depending on the variety of corona you have.

Pachyclada flowers from spring through autumn and goes dormant in winter’s chilling weather.

8. Repotting Hoya Pachyclada

As Hoya pachyclada is a slow-growing plant plus being an epiphyte, you need not worry about repotting it frequently.

You need to keep in mind the size of the pot you are planting in. Their roots are small, and you need to provide a suitable pot for them.

Check the pot’s drainage hole to see whether it’s time to repot the plant, and if you see the roots sticking out of the hole, it’s time to repot them.

Generally, it happens in 2 to 3 years. You can repot your Hoya pachyclada once every 2 to 3 years.

Repotting A Plant
Repotting Materials (Source: Unsplash)

You can go for a terracotta pot for optimal plant growth as it is porous and provides good airflow. They also retain moisture and provide good drainage.

Remember, a compact pot is always better than a pot lot bigger for Hoya pachyclada.

Tips for Repotting Hoya Pachyclada

  • Water the plant thoroughly in the morning of the day you decide to do the repotting.
  • Before going on with the repotting process, ensure you have pruning shears and gardening gloves and properly sterilize them.
  • Take the plant out of the previous pot. Do this gently to avoid breakage. Loosen the root balls gently.
  • Trim off the broken and dead roots in case of any damage.
  • Take a terracotta pot one size bigger than the previous one and fill 70% of it with the potting soil.
  • Gently place the plant in the pot and dab the soil around the base of the plant gently.
  • Water the plant properly and place it somewhere with adequate light and good warmth.

Know visually,

9. Occasional Pruning

Hoya pachyclada are slow-growing, vining epiphytes that can take support of the stakes to grow. Thanks to their nature, you don’t have to prune them regularly.

Sometimes the vines may grow long and mess up the plant’s appearance.

You can occasionally prune Hoya pachyclada during spring and summer to maintain its beautiful appearance.

A girl pruning indoor plant
A girl pruning an indoor plant with scissors (Source: Stocklib)

Be careful while pruning, though. It would be best if you did not prune the healthy vines and leaves at any cost. Remove the leggy, weak, and dead foliage.

You can trim the dead heads of the flowers, but you shouldn’t trim the peduncles of the dead flower as they can be the base for the next blooming.

Note: The plant may not bloom properly next time if you cut the peduncles.

Remember to wear protective gear and sterilize the tools properly before going through the pruning process.

Toxicity of Hoya Pachyclada

Well, we have good news. Hoya pachyclada is a safe plant to keep in your household periphery.

Your pets and kids can enjoy playing around with this plant without toxicity or poisonous risk. However, it would be a safe practice not to let them come in contact with its milky/white sap.

Even ASPCA has not listed this plant on its list of toxic plants on its website.

But the pot can still be heavy, and your kids might still trip on the vines of this plant. So, take care of that.

Err.. Trust me that doesn't taste good
Pet with a plant (Source: Pixabay)

Propagation of Hoya Pachyclada

If you have this beautiful plant in your home, you indeed might have thought about propagating this plant at least once.

Well, of course, you would. Propagating is a cheaper and better option compared to buying this plant.

You can propagate this plant by using two methods; stem cutting and air layering.

The best season to propagate Hoya pachyclada is the summer or spring season when this plant will be able to cover up any damage incurred by propagation.

Necessary Materials for Hoya Pachyclada Propagation

Make sure you have all these materials for successful propagation.

Materials RequiredPurpose
Gardening KnifeFor stem cutting
Gardening GlovesFor safety
Hoya Potting MixPotting Medium
PerliteFor extra drainage
Rooting Hormone (Amazon's choice)For best growth
Terracotta Pot with a Drainage HoleBest for Hoya pachyclada
HumidifierTo maintain the humidity
Liquid Plant Food for HoyaFertilizer for Hoya pachyclada

Propagate Hoya Pachyclada Via Stem Cutting

Follow the steps below to propagate this plant by stem cutting.

  • Get your tools ready and disinfect them with rubbing alcohol before diving into the propagation process.
  • Wear gardening gloves, masks, and goggles as protective gear.
  • Go for a healthy stem and cut at least 3 inches and not more than 6 inches. It must have at least two nodes and three leaves on it.
  • Trim the stem just below the leaf node. Remove the lower leaves and expose the nodes.
  • The stem must form a callous. So, leave the cutting for a day or so.
  • Prepare a transparent jar of water and place the cutting inside the jar.
  • Immerse the nodes in the water but leave the leaves outside. Or, you may end up leading the cutting to rot.
  • Place the plant in suitable required conditions and change the water every week.
  • You’ll see the roots in about 2-5 weeks. Let the root be at least one inch before moving it to potting soil.
hoya plant cutting
Hoya Cutting (Source: Etsy)

Alternatively, you can place the cutting directly in the soil. In a 4-inch container, make a well-draining potting soil with perlite and peat.

It will take approximately three weeks to root. Cover the plant with plastic to maintain humidity. Poke some holes in the plastic to let the plant breathe.

Propagate Hoya Pachyclada Via Air Layering

Air layering is another method of propagating, but many plant enthusiasts do not prefer this method. Nevertheless, you must know about it.

Stooling layering method
Layering method (Source: NCSU.edu)

Let’s go through the details;

  • Choose a stem that is hanging loose and has aerial roots.
  • Make a circular cut around the stem of the plant.
  • Lower the stem into the soil in the same pot or another pot and cover the aerial roots with soil. Use hairpins to hold the stem in the soil.
  • It would be best to be very careful in the process and not snap the stem.
  • Apply a little bit of rooting hormone to the stem and nodes.
  • Keep tending to your plant condition requirements. After some time, you’ll witness roots sprouting out of the nodes.
  • Once the root is a few centimeters long, cut its connection with the mother plant and let it grow separately.

You can also use seeds for propagation, but I would advise against it as it will test your patience to extreme measures.

Read about hoya propagation in detail “A Complete Guide to Hoya Propagation

Watch the following video for a better understanding,

There is another complicated method of propagating Hoya: Leaf-cutting.

We advise you to follow any of the two methods mentioned below as this method is very time-consuming and challenging.

You may have to wait as many as three months to see the leaf root.

Common Problems in Hoya Pachyclada

Well, you’d choose to ignore the notion that your plant will showcase problems, but they are there.

Let’s look at a few of them.

1. Common Pests

Most of the Hoyas are not affected by pest infestations. But sometimes, due to improper or unsuitable conditions, pests can attack this plant.

Another reason may be the plant’s thick-succulent leaves, which attract the pests which suck the juices in the leaves and stem dry.

The most common pests that attack this plant are Mealybugs and Aphids.

Mealybugs
Mealybugs (Source: Wikimedia)

If you can diagnose the attack in its early stages, it would be easier to get rid of them.

PestsSigns and SymptomsEffect on Plant
MealybugsWhite cottony powder like sightings on leaves and stem.Plant starts to lose nutrients and the leaves lose color.
AphidsYou can see honeydew on the flowersFlower blooming is affected.
Leaves turn yellow and stem is swollen.

Solutions

  • Dab some isopropyl alcohol using a cotton ball on the parts where you see the mealybugs infestation.
  • Take a high-pressure hose and spray the plant to get rid of sturdy pests.
  • There are many natural ways of getting rid of pests. You can spray neem oil or horticultural oil on the foliage.
  • Spraying soap water on the plant can also help you get rid of the pests.
  • Or, you can handpick some visible pests from the plant.

Preventive Measures

  • Check your plant regularly for pests and their symptoms in their early stages.
  • Keep your infected plant separate from other healthy plants.
  • Do not overwater your plants. Overwatering invites many problems.
  • Avoid overhead watering.

Be more sure about finding infestations. Read “How to Identify Insect Eggs on Leaves and Treat Pest Infestation?

2. Common Diseases

Hoya pachyclada are hardy when it comes to incurring diseases. Not many diseases attack these plants.

The most dangerous and common diseases that attack this plant are root rot and Botrytis Blight.

You can identify botrytis blight by checking the leaf margins and their edges. They turn grayish and appear mushy. Eventually, the leaves may collapse.

This disease is caused by the fungus Botrytis cinerea.

Its symptoms on flowers include wilting and discoloration, and in some cases, the buds may not open.

Roots after Rhizoctonia Root Rot
Root Rot (Source: Wikimedia Commons)

Root rot is the leading cause of the demise of many indoor plants. It is mainly invited when the plant’s roots stand on very soggy soil.

You should check the roots and plant every now and often for any root rot symptoms. If you diagnose the disease in its early stages, you may have a chance to save your plant.

But that would still be a problem. The roots are under the soil, and you can’t keep taking the plant out to check the roots often.

So, look for the following symptoms that the plant incurred root rot exhibits.

  • The leaves turn a yellow color, and the foliage loses color.
  • You’ll not get to see the flowers in the blooming season.
  • The stems become mushy.

If you see the above symptoms, you can gently take the plant out of the pot and inspect the roots. If root rot exists, look below for solutions.

Solutions

  • If there is any excess water in the saucer at the bottom of the pot, drain that water away.
  • Take the plant out of the pot and trim off the brown and mushy roots. Be careful while doing this, though. You don’t want to damage healthy roots.
  • Prepare a new potting mix in a new pot. Make sure the new pot provides good drainage.
  • Plant your Hoya in the new pot and keep it in optimal conditions.
  • Destroy the infected parts or prune them to get rid of Botrytis Blight.
  • Spray pesticides containing Copper captain, Chlorothalonil, mancozeb, maneb, sulfur, and thiophanate methyl to treat Botrytis blight.
  • Use proper fungicides for treating root rot.
Spray fungicide to prevent diseases
Spray fungicide to prevent diseases (Source: Amazon)

Preventive Measures

  • Regularly check your plants for infections. Keep infected plants away from healthy plants.
  • Avoid misting the plant at night as water cannot evaporate.
  • Apply appropriate fungicides occasionally to your plant.
  • Do not overwater your plant. Overwatering is the root cause of root rot.

Want to find out more? Read “9 Hoya Plant Problems and Their Solutions

Blooming Hoya Pachyclada
Blooming Hoya Pachyclada (Source: Happy Forest)

Conclusion

The species of Hoya is famous for its beautiful and charming blooms. On top of that, their fragrance is out of this world.

Being said that, you should not ignore the foliage and engage yourself with the flowers only. Having a fully grown Hoya has a plethora of benefits.

And, here is a bonus: It is entirely non-toxic.

You may be wondering, “Can I get a Hoya?”. Of course, you can.

Read about other Hoya varieties here: Lacunosa, Nummularioides, Polyneura, Serpens, Sunrise, Krimson Queen

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