How to Get Hoya Plants to Bloom: The Ultimate Guide

Hoya plants, also known as wax plants or porcelain flowers, are tropical plants native to southeast Asia and the West Pacific. With their thick, waxy leaves and stunning star-shaped flowers in various colors, Hoyas are a popular choice for indoor gardening.

However, getting these plants to bloom can sometimes be a challenge. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the key factors that influence Hoya flowering and provide practical tips to help you achieve a beautiful flower show. Let’s dive in!

Factors That Encourage Hoya Flowers

To maximize the bloom potential of your Hoya plants, it’s important to consider several key factors. These factors include providing the right light conditions, ensuring the plant is old enough, fertilizing appropriately, keeping the plant root bound, and considering a dry rest period. Let’s explore each of these factors in detail.

1. Bright Light is Required

Light is crucial for triggering Hoya flowers. These plants require bright indirect light to thrive and bloom. However, the term “bright indirect light” can be vague. To ensure your Hoya receives sufficient light, follow these tips:

  • Place your Hoya plant immediately in front of a window to maximize light intensity.
  • Consider the orientation of the window. An unobstructed East-facing window that receives gentle morning sun or a West-facing window with late afternoon sun is ideal. Avoid windows with full sun exposure all day, unless you live in an area with dark winters.
  • Use a light meter to measure the light intensity. The University of Florida recommends light intensities of 1500-2000 foot-candles for optimal Hoya development.
  • If your windows don’t provide adequate light, consider using grow lights. Hoyas thrive under artificial light, so supplementing with grow lights can help ensure sufficient light exposure. Keep the grow lights on for at least 12 hours a day, or 14-16 hours per day to encourage blooming.
  • During the summer months, consider moving your Hoya to a shady outdoor space. Ensure the temperature is consistently above 55°F (13°C) and place the plant in complete shade. Be cautious with direct sun exposure and acclimate your plant slowly to prevent burning.

2. Your Hoya Plant Needs to be Old Enough

The age of your Hoya plant plays a role in its ability to bloom. While some species may bloom in their first year, others may require 2-3 years or more to reach maturity. However, even if your Hoya is old enough, poor growing conditions, particularly inadequate light, can prevent blooming.

3. Fertilization for the Most Flowers

Proper fertilization is essential for Hoya health and flowering. Use a well-balanced fertilizer to provide the necessary nutrients. One recommended option is Dyna-Gro Grow, a urea-free fertilizer that contains all the macro and micro nutrients Hoyas need to thrive. Dilute the fertilizer and apply it with every watering during the active growth phase.

If your plant is not blooming despite good light conditions and regular fertilization, consider alternating applications of your regular fertilizer with a bloom booster fertilizer. Bloom boosters have a higher middle number and can help trigger flower production. Dyna-Gro Bloom, with a ratio of 3-12-6, is an excellent choice to provide an extra boost of phosphorus.

Regular fertilization is especially crucial if your Hoya has been in the same pot for many years. Nutrient deficiencies can occur in long-term pot-bound plants. Nitrogen deficiencies may cause pale, yellowish leaves and slow growth. Phosphorus deficiencies can lead to reddish or bronze-colored leaf edges and stunted growth.

Potassium deficiencies may result in bronze or reddish leaf tips and edges, eventually turning brown and burned. If your plant shows signs of nutrient deficiencies, start fertilizing regularly to provide the necessary nutrients.

4. Keep Your Hoya Root Bound

Hoya plants tend to flower more when they are somewhat root bound. Avoid using overly large pots when repotting your Hoya. Choose a new pot that is only 2 inches in diameter larger than the old pot. For example, if your Hoya is in a 4-inch diameter pot, move it to a 6-inch diameter pot and no larger.

Repotting should be done when your Hoya is about to enter a period of active growth, typically in early spring. Ensure the new pot has drainage holes, as Hoyas require excellent drainage to avoid root rot.

Use a well-draining soil mixture, such as a blend of all-purpose potting mix and horticultural pumice. Alternatively, you can try the Hoya soil blend from Oh Happy Plants for a ready-to-use mix specifically formulated for Hoyas.

5. Consider a Dry Rest Period

In some cases, providing a dry rest period during winter can help trigger blooming. If your Hoya species typically blooms in spring, give it a 4-5 week dry period during winter. This period of reduced watering can stimulate flower production in some Hoyas.

Other Important Care Tips for Hoya Flowering

In addition to the key factors mentioned above, there are several other care tips to keep in mind to encourage Hoya flowering. These tips include proper pruning, maintaining adequate humidity levels, considering seasonal blooming patterns, and ensuring optimal temperatures.


While Hoyas can rebloom from their existing bloom spurs, pruning can stimulate new growth and result in a bushier, fuller plant with more flowers. Consider pruning your Hoya to promote a larger flower show, sacrificing some flowers temporarily for a greater bloom in the long run.


Although Hoyas are resilient to humidity levels, they tend to grow and bloom better in environments with adequate humidity. Aim for humidity levels between 40-60% to optimize Hoya growth and flowering. If your indoor humidity is too low, consider using a humidifier to maintain an optimal environment for your plants.


Different Hoya species bloom at various times throughout the year. While some may bloom year-round, others have specific blooming seasons. It’s important to research the blooming patterns of your particular Hoya plant to have realistic expectations and understand when to anticipate flowers.


Hoyas prefer temperatures within the range of 68-75°F (20-24°C), which is typically the average room temperature in most homes. If the temperature drops too low, it can inhibit growth and flowering. Ensure your Hoya is kept in a suitable temperature range to promote optimal blooming.

By considering all of these factors and implementing the appropriate care practices, you can increase the chances of getting your Hoya plants to bloom and enjoy their stunning flowers.


Getting Hoya plants to bloom requires attention to several key factors, including providing sufficient bright light, ensuring the plant is old enough, fertilizing properly, keeping the plant root bound, and considering a dry rest period.

Additionally, proper pruning, maintaining humidity levels, considering seasonality, and optimizing temperatures can further enhance Hoya flowering. By following these guidelines and providing the ideal conditions for your Hoya plants, you can enjoy a spectacular flower show that will bring beauty and fragrance to your indoor garden. Happy blooming!

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