Hoya Sunrise – Everything You Need To Know (Grow, Care, Propagation And Problems)

Did you know that the Hoya sunrise plants are gorgeous plants that can be easily maintained indoors as well as outdoors?

I just love the transformation of glossy hoya leaves from glossy green to enchanting blushes of pink or burgundy. It is a magical experience.

These plants can be maintained easily even by beginners. Now, I will not waste your time with unnecessary chit-chat, I will tell you more about this attractive plant and take a brief look at it.

The Hoya Sunrise plant is a hybrid of the Hoya Lacunosa and the Hoya Obscura, which was created in 1992. This beautiful plant is commonly called the wax plant, porcelain flower, and wax flower. The hoyas are native to Southeast Asia and belong to the Apocynaceae family. 

Growing this plant might be slightly challenging at first. But don’t worry: we have your back! In this article, we will discuss growth, care, propagation, and the common problems faced by the plant with their solution. So, let’s jump to the following sections to learn more about this plant!

About the Hoya Sunrise!

About the Hoya Sunrise!

Before telling you how to care for this attractive plant, let me tell you the botanical name, height, width, growth, toxicity, foliage, and flowering details of this plant.

Botanical NameHoya lacunosa or hoya obscura
HeightThe Hoya sunrise plants can achieve a height of up to 20 feet in the wild. But when grown indoors, they reach a maximum height of 5-6 feet.
WidthThese plants may have a width of 1-2 feet. Being a vining plant, it tends to climb up. So they have less width. Leave some space around it to avoid fungal growth. 
Growth Generally, all the species of the Hoya genus grow fastly and the Hoya Sunrise plants are not an exception to that.
ToxicityThese plants have no toxic effects on pests or humans. But ingestion of the parts of the plant as these plants are not edible. The sap of the plant may cause itching in allergic people. So, wear gardening gloves while pruning or dealing with plants for a long time.
FoliageThe foliage of this plant makes it more attractive. The newly grown leaves especially have a brick red color with bright lines on them, grabbing our attention towards it. The old leaves are light green with a faint white splash on them that enhances their beauty of it with a closer look. These leaves are oval with sharp edges. They are soft and waxy to the touch.
FloweringThe blooms of the Hoya Sunrise plants are small in size and are in yellow and white colors. If the plant gets more sunlight, then the blooms turn pink. These flowers are soft to the touch and have a velvet texture. They produce a sweet fragrance. These flowers are formed in clusters. Each cluster may contain up to 20-30 flowers. The more (indirect) sunlight it gets, the more blooms are produced.
Native areaSoutheast Asia

How to care for the Hoya Sunrise?

The Hoya Sunrise plants can be easily cared for. Even beginners can maintain it without much stress. But, you need to provide care to make it thrive. Proper care at the right time will make the plant long-lasting. 

Let me tell you some care tips that will make your experience with this plant beautiful! Don’t worry, there is nothing out of the world in this guide and I recommend you to pay close attention to this guide to avoid any issues occurring to your plant!

1. Sunlight requirements of the Hoya Sunrise plants!

Sunlight requirements of the Hoya Sunrise plants!

The Hoya Sunrise plants need bright indirect sunlight to grow. This plant thrives and produces more red foliage when it gets enough light. But this plant also can survive in low lights with green foliage and its tolerance for the low light makes it a good choice for planting indoors. 

But, keeping it away from the sunlight in a dark room is not good. Because every plant needs some amount of sunlight for photosynthesis. Another important thing to be mentioned is this plant enjoys direct sunlight during the early morning and in the late evenings. This boosts the growth of the plant and helps it in producing more blooms. So, you can take your plant outdoors at that time.

As I said before this plant turns red if it gets more sunlight. Many gardeners of this plant make it sit in a sunny location to make it gorgeous. But internally, the plant undergoes some stress, as it can’t tolerate overexposure to the sun. It is okay to place it in a sunny location for a while but make sure that you are not overstressing the plant, as it stops growing. Direct intense sunlight can burn its beautiful foliage.

It is better to place the plant near east-facing windows or in the east-facing balconies to provide enough light for your plant. Cover the windows with drapes during the summer, if you are placing the plant on the windowsill. If you’ve placed it outdoors, then make sure it is under a shade. If you are in a place with low light, then you can use plant lights to make it thrive.

Note: Wherever you place the plant, let it get bright indirect sunlight for at least 6 hours daily. The more light it gets, the more blooms it produces.

2. Watering the Hoya Sunrise plants!

Water is an essential thing that contributes a lot to the plant’s growth. But the water needs differ from plant to plant. The hoya plants do not require a large amount of water to survive. Water it enough whenever the soil mix becomes dry to make your plant thrive. 

I don’t follow a schedule to water my Hoyas. Instead, I wait for the soil to become dry to water them and I recommend you do the same. Because the plant needs water when the soil becomes dry, if the soil is wet, the roots absorb water from the soil and you don’t need to water it. 

Soil wetness depends on the climate. It becomes dry when the temperatures are high or when it gets more sunlight. It takes a lot of time to get dry in the rainy season, or the low temperatures. So, you need to check the soil by poking the soil. If the top 2-inch layer is dry, you can water it otherwise postpone watering. This technique has helped me in providing enough care for my plant at the right time in any season. 

The other important thing to be discussed is the amount of water. You cannot decide the correct amount of water that your fast-growing Hoya Sunrise needs. Water the plant slowly, to let the roots and the soil absorb enough water and continue it until the excess water comes out of the drainage system. Thus you can provide enough water to your plant.

3. Suitable soil mix for the Sunrise Hoya plant!

Suitable soil mix for the Sunrise Hoya plant!

Soil plays a vital role in the plant’s survival. It supplies nutrients, minerals, and essential things that promote healthy growth in plants. So, using suitable soil for potting the plant makes it happy. Remember, the plant should be in the same soil until you repot it and this may take years. So, if you love your plant then know about the soil mix in which your plant wants to stay. 

The Hoya plants, which have a sensitive root system, need to be planted in well-draining soil. Otherwise, if the soil does not dry quickly, it will rot the roots. This may cause the plant’s death. So, always use the best quality well-draining soil mix for planting the Hoya sunrise. 

You can get it in any local nurseries or online plant stores. Don’t worry, if you can’t afford the best quality soil mixes. I’ll tell you how I prepared a well-draining soil mix at home with organic matter and normal household soil.

Mix â…“ of perlite, â…“ of peat moss, and â…“ of orchid bark to 50% of the normal soil to make it well-draining. You can also mix charcoal, coarse sand, pine bark pumice, and vermiculite to the mix in smaller quantities to make it more well-draining. This not only drains the excess water fastly but also supplies enough nutrients to the plant as it is made up of organic matter. Mixing the normal soil and the cactus mix in equal quantities can also help your plant in staying comfortably. The plant loves to be in slightly acidic soil. The pH of the soil should range from 6.0 to 7.0. 

Note: Never use compact soils for planting Hoya Sunrise as it holds excess water for a long time and damages the root system of the plant.

4. Potting the Hoya Sunrise plant!

The care guides of the Hoya Sunrise include its potting. Potting a Hoya plant is not just placing the plant in a pot filled with soil. Selection of the best pot and the way of filling the pot are also included in this section. Let me explain to you in detail!

a) Selection of the best pot for your Hoya Sunrise plant

While selecting a better pot for planting this plant, you need to consider three things, the material of the plant, the second is size of the pot and the third is the drainage system of the plant.

b) The material of the pot for the Hoya Sunrise plant

The hoya plants needed to be grown in dry conditions, as their roots are prone to root rot. So it is better to use pots that have porous walls to allow the passage of air into the soil and to the roots. So, the clay, terracotta, and unglazed ceramic pots are the best suits for the plant. You can also use cement pots since their walls are also a bit porous. 

Note: I do not recommend using plastic pots for planting plants like Hoya Sunrise because they do not allow the soil to dry quickly.

c) Size of the pot for the Hoya Sunrise plant

The pot that is used to plant the Hoya Sunrise must have a diameter of at least 2-3 inches larger than the diameter of the root ball of the plant. The larger pots hold more soil and that takes a lot of time to get dry, which is not good for your plant. While the smaller pots do not allow root growth and lead to pot-bound and root-bound roots that may result in root rot.

d) The drainage system of the pot for the Hoya Sunrise plant

It is the main thing to consider while selecting a pot. The good drainage system of the plant allows the outflow of the excess water present in the soil and thus prevents root-related issues. Poor drainage can lead to root damage to the plant. So, select a pot with at least a big drainage hole at the bottom. It is better if the pot has 4 to 5 small drainage holes at the base of the pot.

After selecting the best pot for your Hoya Sunrise, let us know the process of potting your Hoya Sunrise plant.

e) Process of Potting the Hoya Sunrise plant

  • Take the selected pot and clean it before you fill it. It is better to sterilize it if it is an old one.
  • Place some pieces of bricks or gravel at the bottom of one inch of the pot. This helps in avoiding the clogging of the drainage holes.
  • Fill the second layer of the pot with the suitable soil mix. Then place the plant in it and support the plant by filling the soil mix around it.
  • Water it slightly and place it in a bright place.

5. Repotting a Hoya Sunrise plant!

Repotting the Hoya Sunrise plant keeps it healthy and avoids fungal growth in the soil and thus in the plant. The soil which supplies the nutrients and minerals to the plant gets futile after some time. Then the lack of nutrition results in a drop in the plant’s growth rate. Even fertilization cannot help the plant to thrive in this case. So, repot your Hoya Sunrise plant every 2-3 years to maintain its good health. Hoya plants like to grow root-bound and pot-bound roots to produce more blooms but, it may result in root rot. So, repot the plant regularly. 

Repot your plant in its growing season to reduce the shock of transplantation and encourage the plant’s growth by supplying more nutrition to it. Repotting in the winter season can cause stress in the plant.  However, you can repot the plant at any time in the year, if the plant is suffering from root rot. 

For repotting the plant use a 2 inches larger than the old) pot, to allow the further growth of roots. Water the plant before repotting to loosen the soil and roots. Then pull out the plant and remove the old soil that is stuck to the roots. Now, follow the potting process to complete the transplantation.

6. Fertilizing the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Fertilization helps in enriching the nutrients in the soil. It helps maintain the plant’s growth rate. As the plant absorbs the nutrients and minerals from the soil, it loses all its nutrients and becomes futile and can’t encourage the plant’s growth anymore. So, fertilizing in the growing season helps the plant’s further growth. The Hoya Sunrise plants do not need frequent fertilization. Fertilize it once or twice a month during its growth. 

Remember, the roots of this plant are sensitive and may burn when over or frequently fertilized. It is better to fertilize the plant every 3-4 weeks in the growing season. Use mild liquid fertilizers to feed your plant. Read the instructions given with the fertilizer before you feed it to the plant. NPK fertilizers improve plant growth and blooming. It also increases the blooming period. Organic fertilizers best suit the Hoyas, you can try them too. 

7. Pruning the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Pruning the Hoya Sunrise plant!

The Hoya plants are the vining epiphytes that climb the support you provide. Most of the time, you don’t need to prune them to give a shape, but you can cut the leggy stems that ruin the space in your home garden. But the two main things to remember while pruning the Hoya Sunrise plant are not prune the old flowers of the plant. 

Also, avoid pruning the new leaf nodes. Because the new flowering can be observed at these places. These perennial plants grow faster and might look messy without pruning, so you can prune them to make them look better. 

But, over-pruning is not a good idea. Shock due to over-pruning can cause stunted growth of the plant. Always wear gloves while pruning this plant as the sap expels out while pruning it can cause skin irritation. Use sharp scissors to prune the waxy stems of the plant. While talking about the benefits of pruning, it saves the energy of the plant and thus boosts its growth. Prune the plant in its growing season. Avoid pruning in the winter as it is the dormant season of the plant and pruning during this time may stress the plant. Removing dead leaves can be done at any time.

8. Ideal temperature range for growing the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Ideal temperature range for growing the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Being a tropical plant, the Hoya Sunrise plant loves to be in warm temperatures. This plant thrives in moderate temperature ranges. In the above paragraphs, I’ve mentioned that this plant is native to Southeast Asia, where the temperatures are too high. This plant can survive in moderate to hot climatic conditions. But, it cannot tolerate low temperatures. 

As it is an indoor plant, it adapts to the temperature present in the home. So, it is considered that the room temperatures best suit this plant. That is, temperatures between 60 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit will make the plant happy. It is okay if there are slight temperature fluctuations in the climate. But both too high and too low temperatures damage the plant. The temperature below 50 degrees Fahrenheit will make the plant dormant. It will lead to the fall of the plant’s growth rate and eventually, it results in stunted growth in the plant. 

So, it is better to bring the plant indoors during the winter, if you’ve placed it outdoors. You can also use plant heaters to balance the temperatures in the home. Also, never leave the plant outdoors in the mid-summer when the temperature rises above 85 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, as it causes dehydration in the plant. So, maintain the plant in its ideal temperature range.

9. An ideal humidity level of the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Generally, Hoya plants love to stay in humid areas to maintain their shiny leaves, but, having sensitive roots, it is not recommended to overwater this plant. Being an indoor plant it adapts to the humidity level present in the home. Thus 40 to 60% of the humidity is considered the suitable humidity level for the plant. Never place them near vents and remember not to place them on the windowsill while the climate is too dry. If you are staying in a dry environment, then you can try misting it. But make sure that there is no water present on the foliage of the plant. 

If the water lies on the foliage of the plant for a long time it will cause fungal growth on the spot. Allow the aeration of all parts of the plant. You can also use a humidifier in the hot summer and the cold winter when the humidity levels decrease. Even high humid conditions damage the plant by making the leaves mushy. In this case, let the plant dry for a while, and place it under a fan to remove the wetness on the foliage. Always check your plant at least once a week to avoid such problems.

How to propagate the Hoya Sunrise?

These low-care plants can be propagated easily. You can propagate these plants through seeds, stem cuttings, and also by layering. But many plant growers propagate their plants through stem cuttings. Because it is easy and also a fast method. 

So now,  I am going to explain to you how to propagate the Hoya Sunrise plant through cuttings!

Process of propagation through cuttings

  • Take sharp and sterilized scissors to cut the leaves or stems of the plant. Wear gardening gloves while cutting them. 
  • Do not cut a single stem or leaf to propagate. Collect at least 4-5 cuttings for successful propagation. 
  • Take a pot filled with soil and dampen it to plant the cuttings.
  • Small pots are used for propagating the leaf cuttings and slightly larger ones for the stem cuttings.
  • Apply rooting hormone at the bottom ends of the cutting to boost root growth. You can skip this step if the rooting hormone is not available for you. The cuttings can produce roots even if you don’t use rooting hormone.
  • The stem cuts should be deadheaded at the bottom by leaving some leaves on the top.
  • Place the cuttings into the soil and maintain the moisture in the soil until the cuttings produce roots.
  • Place the pot in a well-lit area.
  • These cuttings produce roots within 2-3 weeks.

What are the common problems faced by the Hoya Sunrise plant?

1. Pests that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Pests like mealybugs, scale, spider mites, fungus gnats, and aphids attack the plant by sucking up the nutrient-rich sap. The undersides of the plant cannot be observed in the beginning. 

These pests are treated by wiping off them with a cotton ball dipped in rubbing alcohol. You can spray mild pesticides to get rid of them. Applying neem oil and spraying soap water on the affected parts of the plant can also show its effect in preventing pest attacks. If the damage is more than I recommend cutting off the infected part to avoid its spread. Let the plant get enough light.

2. Diseases that can affect the Hoya Sunrise plant!

The hoya plants are hardy plants that do not fall sick frequently. But, the change in climatic conditions or lack of proper care at the right time may cause some diseases in the plant. Mostly the Hoya Sunrise plants are prone to root rots, this is one of the most dangerous diseases that can kill the plant. There are some common diseases like discoloration of the leaves, sunburns, fungal infections, fall in growth rate, stunted growth, stopped flowering, limp plant, droopy stems and leaves, leaf-drop, wilted leaves, and other such common diseases are caused due to improper care. 

You can treat them by following the care guide that I have given above in this article. But, some diseases need your action. They are Botrytis Blight and Sooty Mold. Let us now discuss how to treat these trouble-causing diseases!

a) Root rot that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Root rot that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

This is caused due to overwatering, fungal growth in the soil, improper soil mixes, and low temperature or high humidity conditions. The sensitive roots of the Hoya Sunrise plant get rotten easily if they sit in waterlogged soil for a long time. Yellow and squishy leaves, a pungent smell emitting from the soil, and white mold growth on the soil surface are the common signs of root rot. 

This disease can be treated by pruning the infected parts of the root. Then transplant the plant into a new sterilized pot with a fresh well-draining soil mix. Keep an eye on the plant, until it grows normally. 

b) Botrytis blight that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Botrytis blight that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Botrytis cinerea is a fungus that grows on the plant in humid conditions. Big gray-colored patches are formed on the steps of the plant. These patches spread with time and completely damage the plant. It makes the foliage mushy. This infection fastly spreads and may kill the plant in some cases. 

They can be treated by pruning the infected parts. Avoid the spread of it. Improve the aeration around the plant. Use mild fungicides to get rid of this.

c) The sooty mold that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

The sooty mold that can attack the Hoya Sunrise plant!

Black spots on the foliage and the stems of the plants, which is nothing but a type of fungus called sooty mold. This is caused due to the pest secretion on the foliage. 

Spray mild fungicides on the infected parts. If the infection is too high, then gently prune off those parts.

If you provide enough care for your plant, it won’t face such troubling diseases.

Fun fact: Did you know that Hoya Sunrise is the cross of Hoya Lacunosa and Hoya Obscura?


The Hoya Sunrise plants are beautiful plants that steal the heart of every plant lover. These perennial plants originated in the tropical regions of Southeast Asia. Not only their beauty, but their low-care growth habits make them popular indoor plants. They thrive in bright indirect sunlight, moderate watering, and well-draining soil mixes. I just love the pleasant smell that comes out from the exquisite golden blooms of this plant!

Fertilize the plant once or twice a month during the growing season. The pot should have porous walls and a proper drainage system to avoid root-related issues. Maintain the plant in ideal temperatures and humidity levels.

Read the article completely to know everything about this plant. It helps you to maintain your Hoya Sunrise plant healthy. I hope I’ve provided useful information that I’ve collected and I hope it will be helpful to you in growing your Hoya Sunrise. If you have any questions in your mind, feel free to comment down below, and don’t forget to share this article with your friends and family! Keep loving your plant and have a nice day!

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  • Purnima

    She is a Forestry and Agriculture graduate with over two years of experience in designing, planting, and maintaining an indoor plant and herb garden. She is an evergreen plant lover and plant parent.

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