Hoya Pubicalyx – Everything You Need to Know About This Stunning Hoya Plant

When it comes to low-maintenance succulent vines, Hoya pubicalyx is the best choice. I bought my first hoya last year, and it’s a nice, low-maintenance houseplant. Although it looks a lot like the hoya carnosa, it’s not exactly the same.

There are lanceolate leaves on the plant that are deep green. You can sometimes even find greyish spots on the foliage and purplish-grey stems. It also produces a beautiful scent at night. Additionally, Hoya Pubicalyx is known for its air-purifying properties, making it an excellent choice for any indoor setting.

I think you will agree more that it’s a beauty once the pink star-shaped blooms arrive. So, you ready to make your low-maintenance plant work for you? Here’s what you need to know about Hoya pubicalyx to enjoy its beauty.

Hoya Pubicalyx Quick Facts

Scientific nameHoya pubicalyx
Common namesPorcelain Flower, Silver Pink Vine, Wax Plant
Light Indirect sunlight
PlacementSouth-facing windows are best. A west or east-facing window will do.
WaterWhen the top inch of soil feels dry, water hoya
Temperature 65-85 degrees Fahrenheit.
HumidityAt least 60 %
FertilizerLiquid Fertilizer
Pruning TimeSummer or Spring months.
RepottingRepotting is not required often. 
Propagation Seeds, and cutting 
Blooming timeLate spring to late summer

What do we know about Hoya Pubicalyx?

The porcelain flower is a proud member of the Apocynaceae family. Native to the Philippines, this floral beauty has green foliage with dusty pink star-shaped flowers.

This Hoya is a pretty plant from the Apocynaceae family with stunning flowers that is easy to grow inside your home. The flower on this plant is a tiny pink star with a lighter pink star in the middle and a maroon center. This is an evergreen plant with leaves about four inches long and 2.4 inches wide that can climb to reach about 10 feet high.

If you appreciate fragrances, you are bound to adore the sweet scent of the blooms that are more noticeable at night. The fantastic thing is that this Hoya plant protects its young with Anthocyanin. It is a natural pigment protecting the young or soft leaves from too much light.

What do we know about Hoya Pubicalyx

One of the charms of the Hoya variety is that it ranges from inexpensive, common varieties and even more expensive ones. All of them can be as gorgeous and interesting as rare, expensive ones. This is exactly the case with Hoya pubicalyx, an easy-to-grow Hoya that blooms in clusters of up to 30 small, fuzzy flowers.

The plant has crisp, ovoid leaves that happen to splay out from vines that grow up to eight feet long. The flowers that grow on the plant are known to last for up to a fortnight.

Pubicalyx is a hardy-twining variety of vine that can trail or climb, but it’s a little unruly. You might have to make time to unwind the plant from its neighbors. It’s one of the fastest-growing plants in Hoyas and very easy to propagate – just put a cutting in water.

Hoya pubicalyx is quite inexpensive and can be found effortlessly locally and online. There are cultivars with flower colors that range from black to deep red to light pink. One of the most sought-after versions in this category is the ‘Pink Silver’ hybrid flecked with white variegation.

The hoya pubicalyx goes by more than just one name. Probably it has the most number of names than any other plant we know.

It is also called the carnosa, compacta, hindu rope, crimson princess, crimson queen, pink silver, porcelain flower plant, silver pink vine, and wax plant. A lot of these names are shared by many other varieties of Hoya too!

Types of Hoya Pubicalyx

Hoya Pubicalyx is so old that it has several cultivars or varieties. You can differentiate between them based on the color of flowers and foliage. Some of the more famous varieties include-

  • Red Buttons: The flowers on this variety of Pubicalyx are usually dark purple with a reddish center. This plant also possesses proud splashes of red and purple on the green leaves.
  • Royal Hawaiian Purple: This variety is known to have green leaves with silver or greyish patterns. It has pinkish-red or black star-shaped flowers that take cluster-like formations.
  • Black Dragon: The leaves of this version are lime green and are really quite smooth with no marks at all. The flowers are generally black with a red center. The Hoya blooms well even under artificial lights.
  • Pink Silver: This variety usually has green leaves that don silver splashes. The leaves take on a pinkish silver hue in sunlight, which justifies the name Pink-Silver. The flowers of this Pubicalyx are light red and have small pink centers.

Caring for a Hoya Pubicalyx

Like a lot of Hoyas we know, a Pubicalyx is an amazing plant because it is pretty as well as easy to care for. This exotic beauty has a few quirks that one needs to know about before one venture into the world of Hoyas. 

Here is everything you need to know about caring for a Hoya Pubicalyx.

Water Requirements of the plant

Watering a Pubicalyx plant is the same as watering any other species of the Hoya. This Hoya also happens to be a drought-tolerant houseplant. But make sure you water the plant regularly during the growing season. 

As a responsible plant parent, keep an eye on the moisture level in the soil and water the plant when the top 2 inches start feeling dry after you conduct a finger test.

Also, remember that you should let your plant dry out between watering. This must be followed by soaking it thoroughly until the water drains out the bottom. The Pubicalyx has an affinity towards moisture but the roots should never be left sitting in water, or they will end up with root rot.

If your Hoya gets more sunlight, during the summer seasons, it will need more water and it will need less, if the sunlight received is less, of course. 

It is common for a Pubicalyx to receive water about twice a week in the summer and once a week during the winter months, but it tends to depend on the soil, temperature, and humidity.

One of the best things to happen to your hoya is for them to receive a shower once a month. Place it in a warm shower for about five minutes, depending on how big the pot and plant are. Let the excess water drip and your plant dry in the shower afterward for 30 minutes and then put it in a warm spot that receives a lot of indirect light to let it dry.

Light Requirements of the plant

The Pubicaliyx is known to enjoy indirect sunlight and a lot of it. A few hours a day is recommended in a spot that does not get too direct sunlight, but rather a lot of indirect ones. Tread around your house and see where the sun comes in and place your plant in the line of sight of the sunlight.

Because this plant is an epiphyte, like a lot of other Hoyas, it appreciates growing on other plants or objects. When grown in wild, they are used to getting dappled sunlight, which is why they prefer bright but indirect light. 

If they do not receive enough light, they will not grow well and get stunted and with too much, they will burn.

You should aim for at least 6 hours of bright, indirect sunlight every day. But if you have time at hand and are really committed to your plants, let them get an hour of early morning direct sunshine before you move them to the shade. The more bright, indirect light your plant gets, the more lively its foliage will become.

Soil Requirements for proper growth

One thing that is absolutely important to your Pubicaliyx is the soil. You have to make sure that you get the substrate right, so your plant does not get too wet or too dry. You have to acquire well-draining soil for the plant, but it also has to be rich in terms of organics.

You can usually get a premade mix for houseplants that are made with potting soil, orchid grow mix, and worm casting or you can easily make one of your own!

The ideal soil pH for this variety of Hoya ranges from 6.5 to 7.5, i.e., slightly on the acidic to neutral side. You can make your potting mix by combining one part orchid bark, one part coarse perlite, and one part peat-free compost. 

Another way of going about this is using cactus compost, but you will have to add some extra perlite to improve drainage.

Soil Requirements for proper growth

Temperature Requirements of the plant

Keep the plant in indoor places with temperatures ranging from 65 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. As a tropical plant, the Hoya Pubicalyx does not handle frost well and is known to have an affinity for warmer places. Therefore do not place the plant in temperatures below 50 degrees Fahrenheit as the growth will stop.

During the winter months, the minimum temperature should not be less than 50 degrees Fahrenheit. If you want this Hoya to adorn your outdoor garden, USDA hardiness zones 10 b to 11b are recommended.

Remember that the plant does not like dry heat either, it does well with moist heat and does not like drafts or wind.

Humidity Concerns regarding the plant

This variety of Hoya needs humidity and appreciates being in an area with at least 60% humidity. Because of its tropical nature, humidity is so important to your plant, it becomes important that you pay particular attention to this factor.

  • Humidity tray: A humidity tray happens to be an amazing option because it is inexpensive and easy as well as very efficient. You can make it all by yourself with a tray along with some clean pebbles. All you have to do is fill a shallow tray with pebbles and fill it with water until the liquid reaches right below the top of the pebbles. It does not matter what you use when it comes to trays and pebbles. A lot of people tend to go ahead with a cookie sheet and garden stones. This works well as long as it is easy to dump or drain as needed.
  • Humidifier: Another option to opt for is a humidifier to keep your plant moist. This can be used along with the humidity tray to be sure your pubicalyx does not dry out. However, you do not want an air humidifier to blow air right on the plant. An ultrasonic humidifier is a wonderful choice because it keeps the moisture level steady and does not put out cold air. A warm mist humidifier is perfect because it gives your plant both heat and humidity. An evaporative humidifier is a good option in case you don’t have a warm mist as it uses airflow and a wick to produce vapor but not air.
  • Misting: Give your hoya a light misting every day to keep it moist and humid, especially in the summer months. This is especially good in dry areas where it is not possible to keep your green friend humid enough. It gives your plant the requisite moisture and is a perfect partner for your humidity tray.

Fertilizing rules to follow

Just like many other Hoya species, Pubicalyx doesn’t really need a lot of feeding, but the plant will appreciate some extra added nutrition in the active growing season. It is recommended that you fertilize the plant using liquid fertilizer. 

You can opt for fertilizer high in potassium and spray it on the leaves as well to encourage flowering.

You can keep your plant healthy with a monthly dose of compost tea or a dilute fish emulsion. If not, you can add any other available balanced organic or diluted synthetic fertilizer. Another pro tip for you, fertilize the plant in the blooming season to see a boost in the flowers.

Avoid fertilizing the plant in the winter months because your Hoya enters a semi-dormant state during this season. 

Take advice from professional gardeners and fertilize the houseplants at least once or twice a year. Before adding any kind of fertilizer, always make sure the soil is damp. Avoid adding fertilizer when the potting mix is dry.

Potting the plant

Hoya Pubicalyx is famous as a vigorously growing vining plant with deep green leaves that gracefully spread over the sides of its pot. But these plants really like being root-bound; therefore, repotting is not required often. 

Because this plant is an epiphyte, a Hoya Pubicalyx needs good drainage without fail. You can also assist the plant with some vertical support to help the plant climb upwards.

Most professional gardeners recommend terracotta pots that have drainage holes for growing Hoya Pubicalyx. You should also try to avoid large containers to facilitate the plant in the process of staying root-bound. 


It has been established so far, that this is a low-maintenance houseplant and hence requires little or no pruning. The ideal time to prune this Hoya plant is in the summer or spring months.

It is recommended that you prune the plant right after the blooming season is over. During the flowering months, you can trim some leaves from the lower part of the plant to enhance the overall appearance of the plant.

If the plant has started becoming very large, prune some parts of the plant and propagate them for new growth in a separate pot. While pruning, try to remove all the dead or yellow leaves and damaged stems. 

You should always keep a pair of gloves handy. The white sap from the plant is a very common allergen.

Is Hoya Pubicalyx toxic?

The hoya isn’t toxic to pets or kids. The plant isn’t meant to be ingested, so it’s always a good idea to keep it away from curious critters. It’s a good thing these plants look awesome hanging from the ceiling. Additionally, this will prevent your pet from eating the plant.

Hoya Pubicalyx Flower Care

After the blooming season has ended, do not remove the stalks. Additionally, it will save the plants energy that would otherwise be spent on growing new stalks.

Furthermore, you shouldn’t touch the new stems of the plant since they are sensitive, and this may cause the plant to take longer to flower. Additionally, sunlight plays a crucial role in the plant’s blooming.

How to Propagate Hoya Pubicalyx

You can easily grow a new plant from your hoya pubicalyx in one of three different available ways: stem cuttings, leaf cutting, or seeds. Out of all of the options, one can look for, seeds are the easiest but take the longest and may not be the most effective.

Stem Cutting

During the active growing months of spring and summer, go ahead and use a clean cutting tool dipped in alcohol to cut a six- or seven-inch stem. The cutting should be taken from the end of the stalk where you see nodes. After cutting a part of the stem, remove any lower leaves and place the cutting in a sunny spot for a couple of hours.

Plant this available cutting in a pot with the same type of soil as the mother plant and make sure the nodes are put in the soil at the depth of at least 4 inches. 

Make sure that the soil is moist until they start growing. You can water this cutting three or more times a week and cover it with a plastic bag to keep it moist.

Leaf Cutting

Leaf cuttings also can be just as effective in some cases but sometimes they just do not propagate as the stem cuttings do. Take a leaf and plant it about 1.5 inches under the soil, but never completely. 

After about four to six weeks, new plants will start sprouting from the base of the leaf and you can use them each to start a new hoya.

Like you do with stem cuttings, a leaf cutting needs well-draining soil just like the mother plant. It also tends to need a lot of warmth and moisture so it will thrive with a plastic bag over it. You can even get the growth started by placing it in warm water until it roots.

  • Always use a pair of sterilized pruning shears or scissors or the plant will be infected. You can sterilize your garden tools with the help of isopropyl alcohol.
  • Take a cutting that is about 5 to 7-inch long from the growing end of the stalk with nodes.
  • Remove the leaves from the lower end of the shoot.
  • Place the cutting in the shade for some time to let the tissue heal.
  • Now plant the cutting keeping the nodes under the soil medium at least 4 inches deep.
  • Water the soil generously till the plant starts growing, about thrice a week. Make sure to keep the soil mildly moist until new growth is seen.
  • Place this cutting in a warm and humid place with indirect sunlight light.
  • Usually, root development begins in about three to four weeks.
  • You can repot the newly propagated plant after the cuttings have established roots.
  • Look for a sunny location with partial shade to protect the newly grown leaves from burning.

Growing hoya pubicalyx from Seeds

Growing hoya pubicalyx from seeds might possibly be the easiest way of growing them. Place the seeds in a peat moss soil mixture in a place with very high humidity and lots of light. Keep them in a place that has at least 77 degrees temperature and cover the pot with a plastic bag to keep them moist.

It can take about 4 to 5 weeks for your seeds to germinate depending on the environment. Make sure to keep the soil moist at all times and provide protection against the cold and wind. A greenhouse or inside the house is best for your hoya until it is well established.

A Pubicalyx plant can also be grown from seeds and stored the seeds in a dark and dry location. Sow the fresh seeds in a peat moss soil mixture. Provide the cutting with high humidity and lots of light for the seeds to start germinating. 

During the daytime, the temperature should be around 25 degrees Celsius (77 degrees in Fahrenheit).

In addition to the above conditions, a monthly treat of fish emulsion or compost tea is a nice boost for your hoya to get it to flower. Any form of organic fertilizer will work well with the plant but with extra potassium, your plant will flourish. 

Common problems with Hoya Pubicalyx

Although all plants have problems of their own, the hoya pubicalyx is a relatively easier as well as stress-free plant, especially when grown as a houseplant. 

However, all plants are known to be susceptible to pests, overwatering, underwatering, and a lot of other problems. Here are the issues you need to know about and keep an eye out for.

Red and Drying Leaves

A lot of people like to think that because this variety of Hoya is a tropical plant and hence needs all the light that it can get. Well, this isn’t entirely true. If your hoya is exposed to too much sun or direct light, it can end up burning the leaves of your Pubicalyx. Red or dried-out leaves are the most straightforward sign of too much sun. 

It is recommended that you move your plant to a different location. Sometimes, if the heat is too intense, the leaves can even be ruined beyond repair, hence you need to look out for any signs.

Yellow or Shriveled Leaves

Any color other than green on the leaves can be assumed as bad for your plant. So is the case with the yellowing leaves on your Hoya. This discoloration can usually be a sign of mealybugs, aphids, or not enough water or humidity. You need to be very careful about keeping your plant moist. Keep misting the plant when necessary and keep the humidity in check with the help of a humidifier.

And regarding pests, you must keep a check on the leaves for any kinds of pests or insects on the surface of the leaves as well as the stems of the plant.

Limp Leaves and Shoot

Leaves are the biggest indicators of any problem that your plant might be dealing with. If the leaves or the entire plant looks limp or unhealthy, the culprit might be the roots. They may have died because of too much or inadequate water supply to the plant. 

As was mentioned, both over and underwatering can be grave issues that your plant might find hard to deal with.

Check the roots for any decay and remove the dead ones. It is important to stop the spread of rot to the healthier parts of the plant. You can start a new cutting to propagate a healthy plant, just in case. 

Wilting leaves

Another common problem with this variety of Hoya is its leaves falling off. If the leaves keep falling off your plant, this typically means that your hoya is placed in a spot that is either too cold or too windy. Move your hoya to a warmer spot with high humidity. If you want this Hoya to adorn your outdoor garden, USDA hardiness zones 10 b to 11b are recommended. This variety of Hoya needs humidity and appreciates being in an area with at least 60% humidity. Because of its tropical nature, humidity is so important to your plant.

No flowers on the Hoya Pubicalyx

An ideal mix of all the care guides for your Pubicalyx is a necessity if you want to see flowers on your green friend. It is not hard but isn’t that easy either! Either the hoya pubicalyx is not getting the right amount of light or it is not getting proper conditions in the dormancy period. 

Your plant needs to be exposed to cooler temperatures with less light during the winter months to encourage blooms in the spring. Humidity and watering also take up an important role in the process and cannot be ignored at all. An amalgamation of the right factors would lead to the best flowers.

Hoya Pubicalyx – Common Pests

While this tiny green trailing beauty is quite easy-going yet rewarding greenery, you still need to watch it for pests. The leaves and flowers on the plant can attract the following insects causing harm to their gorgeous foliage.


Mealybugs are common pests that can infest your Hoyas fast, causing them to rot and ultimately die. To get rid of these pests, you can sprinkle an insecticide in the potting soil when potting your plant. 

Instead of this, you can also opt for a spray on your Hoya pubicalyx with neem oil. Alternatively, another way to go about this is to use isopropyl alcohol using a q-tip dipped in it to the infected leaves.

Although all sorts of plants are susceptible to mealybugs and the pests are attracted to warmth and moisture. This makes your hoya a lot more susceptible than others. These tiny pests can suck the life out of your plant if you let them so make sure you get rid of any trace of the pests from the plant.

Since the bugs are so small, it often happens that you cannot see them until there is a large infestation and the leaves start to turn yellow or shrivel up. They might also infect your plant with fungi. 

Be sure to get rid of any trace of the problematic pests with a high-powered shower and isopropyl alcohol, neem oil, or insecticidal soap.

Fungus Gnats

Because fungus gnats have an appreciation for humidity, these pests tend to be annoying to your hoya. The best possible method of keeping them away is to make sure the soil is well draining. If you manage to keep the top two inches stay dry, the fungus gnats will not be able to lay their eggs there because it is not good for the larvae.

If your plant still gets infested with fungus gnats, you have to start by removing the first two inches of soil to get rid of the eggs. Use any kind of neem or insecticidal soap and place yellow sticky traps to control the gnats.


This is the name given to the tiny insect that can be found on the back of the leaves or the flower buds. You can also find these annoying insects at the base of the stem. To remove the problematic pests, you can get started by spraying the plant with water or using insecticidal soap. 

Another way you can opt for is to make an aphid spray using liquid soap and water applied to the affected parts.

Aphids happen to be common on houseplants as well and can be found on the back of the hoya’s leaves. They appear to be small brown, black, or yellow dots by the base of the leaves. They have the potential to make the leaves curl up or turn yellow like with mealybugs.

To get rid of these insects, give your plant a nice long shower or use a high-powered hose to spray them away. This can be followed by a coat of the plant in neem oil or insecticidal soap. Repeat the process every three days for two weeks.

Root-Knot Nematodes

The most damaging pest that we are aware of for a hoya pubicalyx plant is the root-knot nematode. These insects are dangerous because they affect the roots where you cannot see them. But the damage becomes very evident as your hoya gradually declines until it dies if you do not get rid of them.

The worst problem you can face with this variety of Hoya is this kind of pest. So it is best that you keep an eye out for yellowing, wilting leaves, and stunting in growth. If left untreated, your Hoya will die. 

If your houseplant gets heavily infested, you should take a cutting from the top section to propagate it into a new plant.

One nematode has the potential to lay up to 1,000 eggs so these pests can take over your plant’s roots if you do not act quickly. The best possible method of finding out if your plant has nematodes is to remove the plant and inspect the roots. If you witness anything that looks like large knots in the roots, your plant is infested.

The best thing to do in case of an infestation is to take a cutting from the top of your plant where it is the healthiest. You can get started by ridding them of any pests by removing infested roots and treating the soil, but it does not work that well. And the insecticides to kill the pests happen to be too strong, enough to kill your hoya too.


You will find these insects on the Hoya during the warmer months, causing the leaves to turn yellow and further dry out. To prevent these flies from affecting your Hoya plant, you can place yellow sticky traps to control them. Another helpful remedy in case of an infestation is to use insecticidal soap or neem oil.

Hoya Pubicalyx Decor Ideas

  • In an indoor houseplant collection, this tropical perennial is an excellent permanent addition. An attractive hanging basket is a perfect place to display Hoya Pubicalyx.
  • When it is warm outside, this Hoya thrives on a porch or patio. In the evening, its sweet aroma makes outdoor areas a welcoming place to sit.
  • A tropical setting is the perfect setting for the porcelain flower. It grows best in USDA hardiness zones 10b-11b in the United States.
  • When grown outdoors, the vines can reach a length of 20 feet. By strategically placing supports and twine, you can train the vines to climb or ramble.


Why is my Hoya Pubicalyx plant not blooming?

Generally, a lack in the number of blooms on a Hoya Pubicalyx means that the plant is not getting enough light. Make sure that you are giving your Hoya plenty of bright indirect light. It might not be totally happy in a place it is kept in by default. 

It is common knowledge now that plants can thrive in some areas of my home and putter out in others, even though they have similar lighting conditions. 

Play around with where you want to place your Hoya Pubicalyx to find the best spot for it and give it a break from the heat and direct sun in a shady spot outside if you can! 

You can also consider increasing the amount of light and humidity for your plant by putting it in a greenhouse cabinet. This can be found online.

How does the Hoya Pubicalyx flower smell?

The blooms on a have Pubicalyx a sweet fragrance more noticeable at night than during the day. The plant is also known to produce a natural pigment that goes by the name Anthocyanin. The pigment helps protect soft leaves and the young from intense light.

Is Hoya Pubicalyx toxic?

Hoyas are not toxic to pets and children. However, the plant is not exactly meant to be ingested either, so it’s always the best practice to keep plants away from curious furry friends or your tiny tots. Luckily these plants look amazing hanging from the ceiling.

One of my cats is very interested in munching on leaves, while the other is not. He mostly leaves my hoyas alone since he prefers leafy greens over the hoya’s thick, succulent leaves. 

How do I train my Hoya Pubicalyx to the vine?

One of the coolest things to know about Hoya Pubicalyx plants is their tendency to climb up and vine down. In most scenarios, they are very convenient and don’t need any particular training to start with the vining. It just starts climbing the hanging part of the pot, while some stems trailed down.

To begin with, the training of your Hoya Pubicalyx to help the vine formation, just start wrapping a few vines around things you want them to trail on. The plant will start by “grabbing” the existing vines and twisting them around one another. It’s a super easy plant to train because it does most of the work itself.

Is the Hoya Pubicalyx variegated?

No, the Hoya pubicalyx does not happen to be a variegated plant, but you can find a variegated plant of the Hoya carnosa that goes by the name of Hoya pubicalyx Splash. 

This variety of plants has long pointed leaves with splashes of white silver. When it produces flowers, you will start noticing it has a dark mauve flower.

How can I get more splash on my Hoya Pubicalyx?

To increase the splash on your Hoya pubicalyx leaves, you can do what professional gardeners do, use Agromax Pure Boom. The splash found on the leaves is not exactly variegation but stored energy in the form of starches. 

Hence it does not contradict the last asked question for you!


From everything that we have discussed so far, a few things to pick out would be rather hard. But it is clear from all the material that a Hoya Pubicalyx is a climbing houseplant with evergreen leaves and fragrant pink star flowers that has an affinity for humidity and sunlight. 

The plants work at their best in about 6 to 7 hours of indirect yet bright sunlight. Although the plant is tough, the plant must remember all of its quirks.

With all the information you now have on this green beauty, this plant is ready to be a part of your garden!

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  • Manish Lakhera

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  • Vinni Balyan

    11 years ago when we left NY and started living in the suburbs, I developed the passion for gardening. I'm a mom of two, and a big time gardener here helping you pick you right battle in gardening. 🙂 Stay tuned.

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