Hoya Australis: Care and Growing Tips!

By Andrea Beck | Updated: October 13, 2023

Scientific name

Hoya australis

Common name

Hoya Australis


Indonesia, Australia

Checked by Jennifer Schutter, Certified Master Gardener

Hoya Australis


Infrequently, wait for soil to dry


Bright, diffuse light


Well-draining mix with bark






During growing season


Bright, diffuse light




During growing season

Let us introduce you to the fabulous Hoya australis, a down-to-earth and easygoing plant with a stunning appearance (we’re talking bright green leaves and a touch of rouge!).

When this green gem gets plenty of sunlight, its new leaves blush with a dazzling red hue.

Intrigued? We thought so!

We’re here to share our top tips and insights on caring for this amazing plant, making sure it thrives and becomes one of your favorite indoor plants.

We’ll get right into our Hoya australis care guide. Let the Hoya adventure begin!

Hoya Australis Plant Care Guide

History, Habitat, and Characteristics

Hoya australis, isn’t it a sight for sore eyes? This charming and easy-to-grow Hoya plant, also known as the honey plant, comes with quite the backstory and some captivating horticultural features.

Did you know it’s native to Australia, Oceania, and even parts of Southeast Asia and Fiji Islands? Now that’s what we call well-traveled!

With slightly more succulent and brighter green leaves than other common Hoya plants, the Hoya australis plant has that certain je ne sais quoi. It’s like a doppelganger of Hoya obovata, but with a bit more… kick.

Fun fact: Sometimes dubbed the “Wax Plant” (waxy leaves and all), the Hoya australis plant has a secret up its sleeve. Get ready for fragrant, white or pale pink star-shaped blooms with a red center – like little precious jewels!

Not only do they add elegance to your indoor garden, but they also fill the room with an intoxicating scent. Who wouldn’t want that?

From rainforests and coastal cliffs to mangrove swamps, Hoya australis plants thrive in various habitats and tropical climates (talk about adaptability!).

Ready to make Hoya australis a part of your plant fam?


Hoya australis has several captivating varieties, each with its own distinctive charm. Let’s take a quick peek at a few popular Hoya australis varieties available:

Hoya australis ‘Lisa’: This variety is known for its striking variegated leaves with cream, yellow, or white splashes on a vibrant green backdrop. It’s a showstopper!

Hoya australis ‘Tricolor’: As the name suggests, this variety boasts leaves with three colors – green, pink, and ivory. It’s a visual treat for Hoya lovers.

Hoya australis ‘Tenuipes’: This variety features long, narrow leaves with a slightly fuzzy texture. The leaves tend to be dark green, making it a classy addition to any plant collection.

Hoya australis ‘Rupicola’: This variety has round, succulent-like leaves with a waxy appearance. Its leaves are typically olive-green, adding a lovely touch of color to your indoor garden.

Hoya australis ‘Sanae’: Larger, elongated green leaves with bushy growth, this variety is quite a looker. It’s also known for its delightful dark flowers – a fantastic perk! Needs very little water.

Hoya australis (Hoya australis ssp. Australis): Has slightly smaller, more succulent leaves, while Hoya australis ‘Cenopus’ (Hoya australis ssp. Cenopus) rocks thinner and more flexible leaves.

Give it a lot of light, and… voilà! The new leaves turn a stunning red hue.


Imagine this plant’s natural habitat and think about how we can recreate those conditions in our homes.

Now, a south-facing window may seem like a great choice in the northern hemisphere, but hold on… We want to make sure your hoyaHaustralis is a few feet away from the window to avoid any pesky leaf-burn caused by direct sunlight.

(Nobody wants that!)

Did you know that the amount of light your Hoya australis receives affects the color of its leaves? Yup!

More light results in paler leaves, while less light creates deeper, dark green leaves. So, you can play around with the light conditions to get the exact shade you want.

Look out for leggy growth and leaves literally reaching for the light source. A lack of vibrant color is also a telltale sign your Hoya plant might need a bit more light, whether artificial light or otherwise. It’s important to provide enough indirect, bright light for the best possible growth.

On the flip side, what if your Hoya australis is basking in too much direct sunlight? You might spot burn marks or discoloration on the leaves. If you see this, consider moving your your plant indoors to a slightly shadier spot or add a sheer curtain to filter that intense direct sunlight.


Hoya australis, depending on the potting mix you use, generally needs a good soak every 7-10 days. When you water your Hoya plants, make sure the excess drains away, so the roots don’t sit in a puddle.

With Hoya plants like the australis, you’ll always want to pay attention to how thin or succulent-like their leaves are. They’re pretty durable plants, and this one in particular has waxy, thick leaves which can store a lot of water.

That’s our clue that we really don’t need (or want!) to overwater this plant. If your Hoya australis is not getting enough water, it’ll show you some signs.

You might see the peduncles drop and the leaves get all wrinkly… but don’t worry, your plant pal will bounce back once you give it the hydration it needs. To avoid underwatering, poke a finger about an inch or two into the potting mix; if it feels dry and crumbly, it’s time for a drink.

On the flip side, too much water can cause its own set of problems. You’ll notice lower leaves turning yellow and falling off – definitely not what we want! Overwatering can also lead to root rot, which is bad news for your Hoya plants. To avoid going overboard, let the soil dry out before watering again.

Temperature and humidity

Let’s start by discussing their ideal temperature conditions. Hoya australis thrives in temperatures ranging from 60 up to even 90 degrees Fahrenheit. This means it’s pretty adaptable to most indoor environments.

However, it’s important to avoid exposing your plant to sudden temperature changes or cold drafts. During winter, keep your Hoya australis away from chilly windows or doors, as they are sensitive to cold temperatures.

Now, let’s talk about humidity. Hoya australis doesn’t necessarily require extra humidity to grow successfully. However, more humidity means faster growth, especially as it has thinner leaves compared to some other Hoya varieties. Ideally, you want to aim for humidity levels between 40% to 60%.

If you notice the leaves starting to wilt or the tips turning brown, it could be an indication that your plant needs more humidity.

There are some simple ways to increase humidity around your plant. Consider placing a tray filled with water and pebbles beneath the pot, creating a small humidifying oasis for your Hoya plants.

Alternatively, just add a small humidifier nearby or group a few plants together. Misting the plant with water isn’t a very effective long-term solution, but it can help remove dust and potential pests as long as you wipe them down after.

Soil and Planting

This plant thrives in well-draining soil, replicating the epiphytic conditions where Hoya australis grows naturally.

To create these conditions, you’ll use a mixture of sphagnum moss (peat moss) and orchid bark. If you don’t have those, bark, perlite, coco coir, and general potting mix can also be used. When adding orchid bark, remember that finer is better.

Some signs of poor soil include yellowing leaves, slow growth, and a weak root system. The wrong potting mix can prevent the plant from absorbing necessary nutrients and may cause rot when soil doesn’t drain well.

Hoya australis enjoys being slightly root-bound, so repotting is not needed often. However, when the need arises, typically every 2-3 years or when new growth is stunted, spring is the best time for repotting, as the plant is in its active growing phase then.

Choose a pot only slightly larger than its current container, ensuring it has proper drainage holes to prevent root rot. Handle the roots gently during repotting, as Hoyas, like other vining plants, can have delicate root systems.

Propagation Guide

Ready to propagate your Hoya australis and share its beauty with friends and family?

We’re going to propagate with stem cuttings:

First things first — grab a pair of sterilized gardening shears, a small container with water (filtered, bottled, or rainwater is best), and your Hoya australis mother plant.

  1. Find a healthy stem with at least two nodes and pairs of leaves. Aim for a stem segment about 4 to 6 inches long.
  2. Gently pluck the leaves from the lower half of the stem (this is where your roots will form). You can trim to just below a node. You’ll also want to keep leaves out of the water to prevent rotting.
  3. Fill your small container with water, and dip the lower half of your stem cutting in it, making sure the nodes are submerged. Find a cozy spot with bright, indirect light for your new little friend to hang out.
  4. Change the water every few days to keep things fresh and clean. Keep an eye on those white, healthy roots as they grow. When they reach around two inches long, it’s time for the next exciting step!
  5. Prepare a pot with well-draining potting soil and plant your rooted cutting. Give it a good drink and place it in a bright spot with indirect light or partial shade. Keep the soil moist as your cutting settles into its new digs.

Common issues

Let’s cover the most common issues we have with Hoya australis care: wrinkled leaves and the mystery of the non-flowering Hoya.

Wrinkled leaves

More often than not, this is a sign of underwatering. When your Hoya isn’t getting enough water, its leaves lose their lovely plumpness and end up wrinkling. But hey, it’s an easy fix!

Just make sure you’re watering your plant buddy as needed (check out the “Water” section for guidance). Once your Hoya gets a good drink, those leaves should perk right up and regain their healthy look.

Not flowering

If your Hoya australis is acting a bit shy and not showing off its fabulous white flowers, there might be a few reasons why. First, let’s talk light.

Your Hoya needs proper light to bloom, so make sure it’s getting plenty of bright, indirect sunlight… but not too much direct sun, as that could put a damper on the blooming party.

Water is the next factor to consider when coaxing your Hoya to produce its beautiful waxy flowers. Stick to the recommended watering guide for your australis (too much water can be a flower buzzkill).

If you’re pretty sure you’ve nailed this, it’s time to increase the humidity and start adding some fertilizer. Start slow with the fertilizer, adding it once a month or so, pretty diluted (50% works).

Pests and diseases

Even the most beautiful and seemingly trouble-free indoor houseplant can get caught up in the wrong crowd (i.e., pests and diseases).

Root rot

One thing your Hoya australis might suffer from (like many indoor houseplants) is root rot. This happens when your plant is sitting in soggy soil for too long because you might be a little too generous with the watering.

If you start noticing yellowing leaves, wilting, or even a musty smell coming from the soil… it’s likely rot.

First, remove the plant from its pot and carefully cut away the dark, slimy, roots. Next, give your Hoya a fresh start in new, well-draining soil.

To keep root rot from coming back, try to hold back on the watering and only do it when the top inch of soil is dry. Oh, and make sure the pot has proper drainage holes!


Pests don’t really love to pick on your Hoya australis, but they can hitch a ride from some other houseplant (how rude!). Some of the usual suspects include mealybugs, aphids, spider mites, and scale insects.

To find out if your Hoya is hosting some unwanted guests, look for tiny bugs, yellowing or speckled leaves, or webbing on the plant. If you find any of those signs, it’s time to evict these pesky pests and protect your Hoya australis.

Here’s how to deal with common pests:

Mealybugs: These small, white, cottony insects cluster in groups on your plant. To get rid of them, use a cotton swab or soft toothbrush dipped in rubbing alcohol to gently wipe them away.

Alternatively, you can mix a solution of water, mild dish soap, and a few drops of neem oil, and then spray your plant generously. Make sure to treat your plant every week until the infestation is gone.

Aphids: These tiny, pear-shaped insects can be green, black, or brown. To remove aphids, you can rinse your plant with a strong stream of water, knocking off the pests. Alternatively, use the same soapy water and neem oil solution mentioned for mealybugs, and spray your plant thoroughly. Repeat this treatment every week until the aphids are gone.

Spider mites: These tiny mites can be hard to see, but their fine webbing gives them away. To treat a spider mite infestation, first rinse your plant with water to remove as many mites as possible. Then, use a mixture of water, mild dish soap, and a few drops of neem oil, spraying your plant generously. Treat your plant every week until the spider mites are no longer present.

Mites hate moisture, so you can consider upping the humidity or wiping down your Hoya plant’s leaves regularly with a damp cloth.


That’s a wrap on our Hoya australis care guide!

With its versatile adaptability and stunning features, there’s no doubt that Hoya australis is a fantastic addition to any indoor garden. If you want a vibrant, easygoing indoor plant companion, look no further!

Hoya australis care tips:

  • Provide plenty of bright, indirect sunlight to help it thrive and develop its stunning red-hued leaves.
  • Water your Hoya australis when the top few inches of soil feel dry and make sure it has proper drainage to avoid rot.
  • Normal household temperatures work great, but you might need to add a pebble tray to increase humidity, especially if you’re seeing mites.
  • Use a well-draining soil mixture, and don’t forget to fertilize during the growing season, especially if you want those beautiful blooms.

We hope our guide provided all the insights you need to help your Hoya australis flourish! Feel free to reach out if you have any questions, and don’t hesitate to share this guide with other plant enthusiasts.

Take care, and happy growing!


Is Hoya australis ‘Lisa’ rare?

Hoya australis ‘Lisa’ isn’t all that rare, but it is indeed a sought-after variety among hoya enthusiasts. This unique beauty sports variegated leaves with splashes of creamy yellowish green or white on its vibrant green foliage. Though not as easily found as the classic Hoya australis, ‘Lisa’ is an eye-catching gem that adds a touch of whimsy to any indoor jungle. So, if you happen to come across this dazzling plant, don’t hesitate to add it to your collection!

Why is my Hoya australis dropping leaves?

Oh no! Leaf dropping can be a sign that your Hoya australis is unhappy. A few possible reasons for this leafy drama might include:

Overwatering: Too much water can lead to yellowing, dropping leaves, and even root rot. Check your watering frequency and ensure the soil dries out a bit between waterings.

Underwatering: When your Hoya isn’t receiving enough water, its leaves may curl, wrinkle, and eventually drop. Adjust your watering schedule accordingly to keep your plant hydrated and content.

Temperature fluctuations or drafts: Hoya australis is sensitive to sudden temperature changes or cold drafts. Keep it away from drafty windows or doors and maintain a consistent temperature in its environment.

Pest infestation: Pesky bugs like aphids, mealybugs, or spider mites can cause your Hoya to lose leaves. Inspect your plant regularly for any signs of pests and take appropriate action if needed.

Is Hoya australis easy to grow?

Absolutely! This is an easy-to-grow and low-maintenance Hoya plant, making it ideal whether you’re a seasoned plant pro or a newbie plant parent. As long as you provide it with bright indirect light, well-draining soil, and a splash of water now and then, this charming hoya will reward you with its exquisite beauty and delightful fragrance.


Our Expert
Jennifer Schutter

Jennifer Schutter is a certified master gardener with over 14 years of gardening experience. Her expertise is in indoor plant propagation and home ecology.