Looking for an Easy Indoor Plant?
Trying to find a good office plant, or an easy tropical plant for your home?
If you are lazy, forgetful or just want an indoor plant that takes very little effort, why not choose a Hoya? Most Hoyas are easy to keep, easy to propagate and easy to flower. This makes them the perfect choice for the beginner or for someone looking for an easy indoor plant that will reward your meagre efforts. Hoyas bring an exotic touch to your surroundings and are among the easiest tropical plants to grow.
There are dozens of varieties of Hoya plants for sale, including many that bear enormous fragrant flowers and some that have specialist needs. Most are relatively easy to care for, but one Hoya is the perfect choice for the beginner looking for a plant that is easy to grow. A perfect easy indoor plant is Hoya carnosa, commonly known as The Porcelain Plant or Wax Plant, among many other names. It is a tropical flowering vine that is so easy to grow, many people say it thrives on neglect.
Hoya carnosa Flowers
Once your plant has established and matured, you will be presented with exquisite flowers. Hoya carnosa is easy to flower, in fact it usually flowers with no special attention at all. The gem-like flowers are held in umbels of up to 30 or so. The flowers themselves are predominantly a subtle pink with darker centres. Colour does vary depending on the conditions Hoya carnosa is grown in. The flowers emit a sweet nectar and have a sickly sweet aroma. The scent cascades though your home, especially on warm summer evenings.
Flowering Hoya carnosa
A flowering Topical Vine originating from The Philippines, Hoya carnosa is an easy plant to grow. Along with many other Hoyas, Hoya carnosa sends out vines that are easy to train up a trellis or through other plants. It is equally well displayed in hanging baskets, where the vines will trail beautifully. Once established, fresh foliage will emerge on the vines, and before too long flower stalks will appear.
Hoya carnosa Foliage
As with many easy indoor plants, Hoya carnosa is extremely good at conserving water. This is mainly due to the relatively thick, fleshy leaves that help prevent water loss. The leaves of Hoya carnosa are usually a rich dark green, flashed with silver/ white flecks to varying degrees. As you can see in the picture, the foliage of this tropical flowering plant is a feature in itself.
Hoya carnosa is a Good Office Plant
Most good office plants need very little care and Hoya carnosa is no different. Hoya carnosa is a good office plant and creates a bit of interest, especially when it is flowering. Many varieties of Hoya make good office plants, but some, like Hoya imperialis and Hoya kerrii, can easily get too large.
Watering Hoya carnosa
It is true that Hoya carnosa can take a lot of neglect mainly because it can last quite a while in between waterings. It is best to wait until the pot is fairly dry before wetting well, and you won’t go far wrong. Watering plants is the biggest fear factor with many people, so abide by this one easy rule and you will do OK!
You can also spray Hoya carnosa with a water mister. This is an easy way to keep humidity high.
Feeding Hoya carnosa
I only feed my Hoya carnosa a few times a year. Feed with a dilute seaweed extract or similar every couple of months in warmer weather. I always feed an extra dose during flowering. Feed can be applied in a foliar spray, which also helps increase humidity. When you are feeding Hoya carnosa, start with a weak solution and work upwards, to ensure you find the optimum regime for you and your plant.
Hoya carnosa Light Requirements
Whilst Hoya carnosa enjoys bright light, they will cope with quite dark conditions. In low light levels, leaf growth can increase and the shade of green may darken. In bright light, leaves may suffer a bit, becoming bleached. It is said, though, that brighter light can help promote flowering. Remember that Hoya carnosa generally inhabits shady tree canopies, so would not be subjected to bright direct sunlight in nature, so make sure you don’t leave your Hoya on a baking windowsill and you won’t go far wrong! One easy way to hurt your Hoya is to give it sun-burn!
Potting Hoya carnosa
I use a light mix of perlite and good quality compost with a handful of sharp sand. Orchid compost or similar would also suit your Hoya carnosa very well. Make sure there are plenty of drainage holes so water can run away from the roots freely. This makes it easy to avoid water logging and ultimately rot. Don’t be afraid to allow your Hoya carnosa to become pot-bound as this can help promote flowering. I sell Hoya carnosa in 3 inch pots, where they will be fine for at least 2 years.
Removing a Hoya carnosa from its pot
Water your Hoya well and leave it for half an hour. Then just partly fill a larger pot with fresh compost mixture and tease your Hoya out of one pot and into the new one. Back-fill with compost mixture, tap lightly to settle in and lightly water.
Training and Pruning Hoya carnosa
Hoya carnosa is easy to train. Simply position the flexible new growth where you want it, attaching it where necessary with twine. I find that Hoya carnosa will find its own way, and will attach itself to any suitable support it encounters. Try growing one through a rubber plant – it adds a bit of interest and a stunning floral display!
Don’t be afraid to cut dead wood back but be careful not to remove flower spurs – new flowers emerge from the same site time after time.
Taking Cuttings from Hoya carnosa
It is easy to propogate Hoya carnosa through cuttings. Take a look at this guide to taking cuttings for simple instructions – Taking Cuttings.
We’ve established that Hoya carnosa is easy to grow, it is easy to water, it is easy to flower. Overall, it is definitely an Easy Indoor Plant.