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Hoya Pubera Care From Start to Finish

Hoya Pubera Care From Start to Finish

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Hoya Pubera is also commonly known as Hoya Picta. Its origins can be traced back to some beautiful plantations in European and Asian countries, like the Indonesian valleys. This species also thrives in tropical and sub-tropical rain forests.

It is a delightful member of the Apocynaceae  family of plants that got its name from Greek and loosely translates as “dog-away.”

It was so-called because some members of this family release toxins that people used to ward off stray dogs from entering fields and homes in medieval times.

However, Hoya Pubera is not poisonous and is primarily used for ornamental purposes due to its enticing features.

Along with the cluster of tiny yellow flowers, it has sturdy and small leaves that grow in an entire range of dark green shades-from mint to seaweed.

With proper care and efficiency, you can adorn your home by planting it in the garden, in plant rooms, or in classic hanging baskets.


Hoya Pubera Care From Start to Finish 1

Hoya Pubera Photo Credit: @sunnyside.plants on Instagram


Basic Plant Care Instructions for Hoya Pubera

Hoya Puebera requires a well-drained soil that includes peat or sphagnum moss and orchid bark in the potting mix. It is best to fertilize it every few months, but more regularly in the blooming season or the warm months like April. Besides, it needs filtered sunlight and an atmosphere where humidity is greater than 50%. It would be best if you watered it sparingly since it is sensitive to over-watering.



This plant thrives in good soil as it comes from tropical forests and lush valleys with rich soil. It is usually present in crowded plantations. It is a gentle and loving plant as its vines spread out in different directions and often intertwine with other trees’ stems and branches.

Hoya Pubera often feeds off humus-the nutritious debris collected from leaves of plants in the soil. Since it is habitual of receiving nutrition from the ground, you must keep it in a well-drained soil mix. It will enrich your plant roots, provide it support, prevent pooling of water, and provide it nourishment.

I experimented with several materials and found that using 50% sphagnum moss, 20% perlite, and 30% orchid bark makes for an ideal soil composition for this species. To create a perfectly fluffy soil, you should also add some grit and sand before planting your Hoya Pubera in it.



When it comes to the water needs of your plant, you should cautiously remember the golden rule of moderation. As it is a forest plant, it needs sufficient water to flourish. However, I have grown several Hoya plants and was surprised to observe the water sensitivity of Hoya Pubera.

If you water it daily, it is liable to suffer from hazards like root rot. I would suggest you start from the top leaves and only water it twice or thrice per week. It allows the plant to stay healthy and prevents it from dehydration or dying due to over-watering.



Sunlight is a vital factor in the growth of any plant, as it provides them the energy they need to perform photosynthesis. Hoya Pubera also delights in sunlight. Your plant will be visibly happy and healthy if you place it where the sun can reach.

However, placing it in direct sunlight can cause problems like dehydration when all the water evaporates through transpiration. When this happens, most people naturally want to water the plant but run the overwatering risk while doing so.

The heat from direct sunlight can also damage the foliage. This species has small waxy leaves, and despite their robust appearance, they are quite sensitive and velvety. Since the waxy texture depends on a layer of fluid covering the leaves’ surface, exposure to too much sunlight can severely scorch the leaves, leaving them brittle and dry.

To preserve the appearance and health of your plant, only provide it filtered sunlight. You can do this by placing the pot in a shaded part of your patio or by installing curtains if you wish to keep it in the vicinity of a window.


Hoya Pubera is relatively tolerant of a wide range of temperatures, and you do not have to take any hefty measures unless you reside in extreme climatic conditions. I live in mild surroundings where the weather is around 60 degrees Fahrenheit (15.5 degrees Celsius) to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (26.5 Celsius) for most of the year, and I have found the growth of my plants to be ideal.

To eliminate all risks, you should be extra cautious of the temperature in the blooming season. It is because the Hoya Pubera has tiny flowers with delicate petals. These are so small that you could fit hundreds of them in your palm.

It is best if you do not let the temperature fall below 55 degrees Fahrenheit (12.7 degrees Celsius) or rise above 70 degrees Fahrenheit (21 degrees Celsius) while they are blooming.



When the leaves of a plant are thin, dry air can result in the loss of water vapors from the pores on the surface. Fortunately, Hoya Pubera is significantly immune to this problem as it has thick leaves. The waxy texture helps retain the moisture, making your plant tolerant to different humidity levels.

Though occasional exposure to dry or humid air does not cause any severe changes in the plant, you should avoid exposing it to extreme weather as it may not adapt accordingly. My research tells me that 50% of humidity in the air is ideal for this species.

If you face a harsh climate, remember to maintain the humidity around 50% for your plant. You can regulate this by lightly misting the leaves or using a humidity dish with cool water in it.



If you provide it right external conditions like the filtered sunlight and well-drained soil, this plant does not ask for fertilizers. However, it grows best when it can avail of significant nutrients and minerals from the soil. After some time, the soil may become deficient in terms of its nutritional value for the plant.

For this reason, it is best to fertilize your plant every three months. I find a liquid fertilizer efficient and easy to use, as I can spray it on my plants after adding a water potion. When summer or spring on-sets, remember to increase the quantity of the fertilizer as this would let you witness beautiful flowers with healthy leaves on your plant.



If you chose an ideal pot size that gives it room to grow, your plant would not need frequent repotting. It has an average growth rate, so the initial cuttings can take several months to double in size.

Despite this, it grows in trailing vines that love to wrap themselves around each other intricately. Surprisingly, if you place any vertical objects like a pole nearby, you may see the vines trying to climb on it. Due to this curling nature of the vines, it may become difficult for you to handle the plant.

If that is the case, repotting it to a larger pot would be liberating for you as well as for the plant.



Due to its natural growth tendencies, pruning can be beneficial for Hoya Pubera. It gives the plant a neater appearance and makes your home look organized too. As I described above, the vines can curl and tangle when they grow long and may come out of the drainage holes.

Some people prefer the vines to grow naturally and hang from the basket, as they find the display aesthetically pleasing. While it is beautiful, it can make it hard for you to take care of the plant. Some leaves and flowers may not receive adequate nourishment, such as water and sunlight, as they may be caught up in the tangle of the vines.

In such conditions, it is best to prune the overgrown areas. Remember to disinfect the blades of your scissors and wear protective gloves when you do it.



Propagation can be a great way of multiplying your plant. You can propagate your Hoya Pubera if you want to place it in other rooms or simply want to witness the spectacular sight of its growth. I have listed two easy-to-follow propagation methods below.


Water Propagation

  • Disinfect your scissors and wear goggles for safety before you start.
  • Choose a neat vine or branch of your plant.
  • Make an angled cut from the stem while ensuring that there are some leaves and at least two nodes on the cutting.
  • If it is too long, you should trim it to 5 to 6 inches.
  • Take a transparent jar with clean water in it.
  • Carefully submerge the cutting in the water, keeping the leaves above the surface to give them room to breathe.
  • Place the jar in an area with filtered sunlight; it may take up to 3 weeks to grow.
  • After a maximum of four weeks, carefully shift it to a good potting mix to receive proper nourishment.


Air Layering

  • Take a handful of moist sphagnum moss, a knife, and an aluminum foil.
  • Locate a healthy stem with leaves on the top.
  • About 5 inches below the leaves, use your knife to make a circular mark around the stem gently.
  • Carefully peel off about an inch of the outer layer of the stem from where you made the mark. The layer you peel off is called phloem. It reveals another paler layer underneath.
  • Secure the sphagnum moss around the exposed area and wrap the aluminum foil around it tightly.
  • Wait for the roots to grow for a month or two.
  • Once you can see the roots on removing the foil, make an angled cut below them.
  • While treating your stem gently, transfer it to a well-drained soil mixture, and your new plant is ready!
  • Take care of it the way you look after your original Hoya Pubera.



Hoya Pubera has exquisite blooms with unique colors, sizes, and shapes. The buds are a pale yellow, and I always recognize them as miniature versions of garlic due to their profile. Once they bloom, the flowers are intriguing as they have gorgeous patterns despite the small size.

The bright red in the center creates a stunning contrast with the lemon-yellow petals. Some of the flowers on my plant also have strips of white on their petals. These flowers have a refreshing, sweet scent that prevails all over the place.


When you first plant some cuttings, they may take up to two years to bloom. Hoya Pubera has a moderate growth rate, so you do not have to stress about pruning and repotting early on. For a few years, your plant will do well in its first pot.

Though its growth rate is not very fast, its requirements are also considerably low. So, if you want a plant that grows slowly, does not require too much care or experience, and is gorgeous all the same, Hoya Pubera would be a perfect choice.


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A post shared by Ann Vo (@sunnyside.plants)


Common Problems for Hoya Pubera

It is prone to attack from various bugs and diseases, but you can successfully deal with them if you identify them early on. Here are the most common encounters you are likely to have.


White Houseflies

These are small house flies that may be pinkish-white in color. Though you may not consider them serious at first glance, you will see how persistent they are if you observe. They also create honeydew on the plant like mealybugs, but unlike the latter, they are not invisible to the naked eye.

Whitefly loves to feed on ornamental houseplants, so your Hoya Pubera can be a potential target. It channels the food of the plant and leaves black mold. This deposit would look very prominent against the evergreen leaves of your plant, so keep an eye open for that.

These bugs are troublesome because they are most likely to appear in the summer months, and Hoya Pubera blooms from late spring to summer to early autumn. So, even if your plant has peduncles and bugs, whiteflies can stunt its growth.

There are several pesticides sprays you can use for this problem. While looking for one, make sure it is organic. You can also make your own horticultural soaps, sprays, or oil, as various videos illustrate.



You may mistake these for remains of fluffy, white cotton on the stem and branches, but it is only due to their appearance. A closer look can reveal several indications of the presence of mealybugs. These include the cotton-like substance that multiplies over time. It is because mealybugs reproduce and overgrow very quickly.

You may observe decaying leaves and weak stems if mealybugs have attacked your Hoya. They feed on the cells and vessels that carry the cell sap, a fluid that has all essential nutrients and is known as the life force of the plant. You may notice a sooty mold or a sticky substance called “honeydew” on Hoya Pubera.

I find the alcohol method quite useful when it comes to removing the mealybugs. It includes applying alcohol gently on affected areas of the plant by using cotton balls soaked in alcohol. You can also try high-pressure water steam to scare off the bugs if this method does not work.


Tips for Growing

  • Never overwater your Hoya Pubera as it may kill the plant. Signs of overwatering include plump leaves and stems. As this is a naturally waxy plant, you would have to examine it closely.
  • Ensure the pot you select has a sound drainage hole, so excess water does not accumulate and cause root rot to your plant.
  • Since it has beautiful vines, I find it more gorgeous in hanging baskets. You can hang these from the skylight or in windows like a chandelier to enhance the outlook of your place.
  • Choose a space that is not generally crowded by people, children, and pets, especially in the blooming season. It is essential because some may find the scent overwhelming or be allergic to it.
  • If you propagate your Hoya, you can boost its growth by applying a rooting hormone in the form of a gel. It would help you achieve better results.


Frequently Asked Questions about Hoya Pubera


Why are the leaves of my Hoya Pubera wilting?

It happens due to inadequate nourishment or prolonged exposure to heat. If you were keeping your plant indoors, it would be a good time to move it to a more shaded area. If it receives all the vital sources like water and humidity, using an all-purpose fertilizer will help you solve this problem.


Why does my Hoya not bloom?

Hoya Pubera is a naturally blooming plant, but initially, it may take up to a few years to bloom, so be patient with this one. Provide it with rich sunlight and humidity, and you will see several blooms in the warmer months.


Is it better to keep it indoors or outdoors?

As long as filtered sun rays reach it, you can place it wherever you prefer. Some good options are putting it on a windowsill with curtains or a shaded patio, veranda, or balcony. You can also keep the pot on your work desk or hang the baskets from the ceiling.


Hoya Pubera is a rare and beautiful plant that can add tremendous value to your collection. It has fuzzy-textured leaves and lemon-yellow flowers, alongside gorgeous green vines.

It is not only a refreshing sight but also has a dreamy scent. Taking care of this species is easy, and as long as you look after its water, soil, and soil needs, it would flourish for many years.

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