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9 Hoya Plant Problems and Their Solutions

Hoyas are extraordinary plants with perfectly geometrical blooms to die for.

The gracefully overflowing foliage and flowers are so well-formed that they might look like artificial ones at first glance. And the fragrance is just out of the world.

Hoyas are easy-going plants that don’t generally come across any severe problems.

However, Common problems encountered while growing the Hoya plant includes leaves turning brown, wilting of leaves, falling leaves, plant not flowering, and incidence of pests. In addition, due to their fragrant nature, bugs could infest your hoyas once in a while. 

Hoya plant wilting and browning
Hoya plant wilting and browning

All the hoyas out there have unique features; the color of the leaves, the flowers, and the fragrance are very diverse.

Likewise, the growing conditions and the problems are also slightly different. They are also very sensitive to overwatering and underwatering.

If you want to understand the reasons and solutions for everyday problems in Hoyas, read along and find out more in detail.

Common Hoya Plant Problems

Hoyas are easy-going plants that don’t frequently come across a variety of life-threatening issues. However, if you have recently started gardening or collecting hoyas, you might need to be a bit careful.

Hoyas don’t need too much attention, but they are very particular about their requirements for proper growth. So let us have a look at some of the problems and solutions to keep you hoyas happy and fulfilled!

1. Leaves Turning into Different Colors

If you have a variegated hoya and the leaves are filled with different shades of green and red, that’s terrific.

However, if your green-leafed hoyas start appearing brown or yellow, that might be a sign that the plant is not very happy.

Yellow and floppy leaves mean that your Hoya could be overwatered.

To be sure, check the soil. And on rare occasions, it could also indicate fungal infections on the root.

On the other hand, if the leaves appear brownish and dehydrated, that would indicate excessive heat and lack of humidity.

Or, you probably are not watering your Hoyas enough.

Leaves may turn brown because of the use of excessive fertilization as well.

A Healthy Hoya Plant
A Healthy Hoya Plant


  • For yellow leaves, uproot your Hoya and plant it in a new potting mix. Also, ensure that the pot has drainage holes for a proper flow of excess water.
  • It is best to change the location of your hoyas with brown leaves and place it in a shady spot.
  • Do not use more fertilizers than recommended.

2. A Limp Plant

Sometimes due to watering issues, hoyas tend to appear limp and weak.

The leaves start drooping, and your Hoya might look as if it is dead or dying. In most cases, you can save your plant if the dehydration and over-hydration have not damaged the internal plant system.

Another cause may be high temperature. Pests like Mealybugs and Aphids suck the juice from the plant resulting in wilting.


  • Check the soil; if it is soggy, the limping might be due to excessive water. Stop watering your hoyas for a few days; they will start looking healthy again.
  • If the soil is parched, your hoyas are probably severely dehydrated. Give it some water, and it should bounce back to health in no time.
  • Sometimes, if the damage is severe, you might not be able to restore your hoyas. However, you can cut a part of their stem and propagate them into a new plant.
  • You can use insecticide soaps to eliminate pests.

3. Extended Hoya Internodes

Trailing plants tend to develop a stringy look with extended internodes if you place them in a dark spot.

This is basically the survival trick of plants. Similarly, hoyas extend their growth and distance between the internodes, searching for the appropriate amount of light.


  • Please place them in a spot with bright indirect light.
  • If your apartment doesn’t have any natural light source, invest in a good fluorescent lamp. It will do the trick.

4. Slow Growth or Stunted Plant

Does it appear as if your hoyas have stopped growing? Sometimes this is a common phenomenon in the winter seasons. But, if your hoyas don’t grow as much as they should in the summers, that’s a big problem.


  • Try fertilizing your hoya plant. Sometimes, it might need that extra food for undisturbed growth.
  • Keep it in a well-lit area with a few hours of direct sun. Slow photosynthesis might be the reason for stunted growth in hoyas.

5. Buds Fall Before Blooming

Finally, after a long wait, your pretty hoyas are budding. They appear as if they might bloom tomorrow or the day after, but suddenly all the buds start to fall off. Could there be anything more disheartening?

The buds in hoya plants fall as a response to watering problems.

You have either watered too much or too little.

A Hoya Plant Budding
A Hoya Plant Budding


  • It is best to water your hoyas only when you see that the topsoil is starting to dry. However, do not wait for the topsoil to dry out completely, as hoyas love slightly moist soil.
  • You can occasionally mist your hoyas. They will love that hydration boost.

6. Falling Leaves

Hoyas tend to lose their leaves at the start of the winter season, especially if they are placed outdoors.

There is not much to worry about as it is the tendency of almost all plants. They do so to save their energy for the growing seasons.


  • Shift your hoyas to a warmer spot or indoors during the winter.
  • Increasing the humidity with a humidifier will also prevent excess falling of leaves.

7. Failed Propagation

Many hoya lovers complain about failed propagation.

The problem with Hoya is the propagation process. Hoya propagation is not difficult, but it can be time-consuming, and Hoya plant cuttings do not always root.

Sometimes while propagating in a soil medium, they tend to decay and die. Other times, the light and temperature conditions are too harsh, and the plant is dehydrated.

Some Hoyas, like Hoya linearis are considerably challenging to root. They require more patience than the others!


  • Water propagation works best for hoyas, as you can see what is happening with the roots.
  • Make sure to change the water once in three days to avoid decay.
  • Do not place the propagation vase in direct sunlight or a bright spot.

8. Hoya Not Flowering

If you have recently got yourself a hoya plant, give it some time to flower and flourish. Unfortunately, you might have to wait at least two years to receive the first bloom.

And after that, there is no stopping. Hoyas are heavy flowering plants.

Additionally, your hoyas might not flower if you keep them away from the sun for too long.

Too large a pot, too much water, or too much fertilizer will prevent Hoya from blooming.


  • Patience is the key. If your hoya plant is too young and small, wait for them to mature.
  • Indoor hoyas take several years to flower. However, you can speed up the process by positioning them in a bright spot with few hours of sunlight.
  • A mature plant can be grown in a five-inch pot due to its short root system. Being pot-bound is not harmful to this plant; in fact, it may increase flowering.

9. Pests Infestation

Although hoyas are pest-resistant, you might find the snotty little mealybugs and aphids colonizing under the leaves once in a while.

Additionally, most of the hoya varieties produce sweet and fragrant nectar. Hence, you might see a few ant colonies as well.


  • You can use a bug-specific insecticide if the infestation is severe.
  • Run down the plant under tap water and spray some diluted mixture of dishwashing liquid to ward them off.

Tips to Avoid Problems in Hoya Plant

If you love your hoyas to death and would not want to risk them going through any of the conditions mentioned above, the best thing to do is avoid the problematic situations altogether.

Find a few life-saving tips below to keep your hoyas happy.

  • Although hoyas love damp soil, a wet medium could create many problems for your plant, such as root rot and fungal growth. Henceforth, a frequent light watering schedule works best for hoyas.
  • You can occasionally spray your hoya plant with neem oil to prevent any bugs from targeting your plant. Neem oil is a natural insecticide that will not harm your hoyas.
  • It is best to bring your hoyas inside during winter or at least keep them safe from frosts. Anything below 10°C is not very suitable for hoyas.
  • Hoyas have strong roots, and sometimes they block the drainage holes if your plant is extremely root bound. Henceforth, check the drainage holes and, if necessary, re-pot your hoyas.
  • It is always best to use a terracotta or ceramic pot rather than a plastic pot to provide proper air circulation to the roots.
  • In addition, the microscopic holes in clay pots aid in water absorption and prevent root rot.
  • Despite all your efforts, in case your hoyas don’t flower at all, fertilize them. Your hoyas might be lacking plant vitamins or minerals.

Some Common Concerns About Hoyas

Are Hoyas Poisonous?

Although most hoyas are non-toxic to humans and animals, some produce milky substances when the leaves or branches are injured or broken.

This liquid might cause mild irritation to the skin.

Do all Hoyas Love the Same Kind of Growing Conditions?

Some hoyas have specific requirements. For instance, a variegated hoya will lose its variegation if kept for too long in direct sunlight. However, others might enjoy a few hours of direct sun.

A Healthy Hoya Pubicaly Flower
A Healthy Hoya Flower

Therefore, check your hoyas’ specific requirements and follow the instructions for a healthy hoya all year long.

Do you want to learn more about Hoya Plants? Check out this article: 10 Best Small Leaves Hoya Plants


Hoyas are very friendly plants. They will reward you with lots of blooms throughout the year for all your love and care.

Give them proper growing conditions helping them avoid any problems, and you will have elegant hoya trails all over your living space.

And did you know that Hoya symbolizes protection and wealth?

All the more reason to protect your hoyas from the trouble! Hoyas are labeled as “grandmother’s plants,” but giving in to the low-maintenance needs, it has become the ideal plant for millennials today.

That’s all the dos and don’ts when it comes to taking good care of hoya plants.

Lastly, let me remind you to bring the tropical vibe home with hoyas!

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