Hoya densifolia is similar to Hoya cumingiana; some sources even consider this species synonymous with the latter. However, Hoya densifolia can be distinguished by its larger and darker leaves with a more prominent midvein and a more pointed tip.
Hoya densifolia Turcz.
Hoya densifolia subsp. densifolia
Hoya densifolia is a shrubby plant with strong, upright stems that bear light to mid-green leaves. The stems can reach up to 3.3 feet (1 m) in height and require some support as they grow. The leaves are ovate, rounded at the base, and pointed at the apex, measuring up to 2.4 inches (6 cm) long and 1.6 inches (4 cm) wide. They turn darker as they mature.
From spring to fall, Hoya densifolia produces umbels of 10 to 20 flowers with a delightful fragrance reminiscent of Gardenia. The flowers are about 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) in diameter and have a yellow to yellow-green, reflexed corolla and a red-violet corona. They last for about a week.
How to Grow and Care for Hoya densifolia
Light: Even if this plant can tolerate lower light levels, it may become weak and leggy if the light is too low, producing fewer leaves and flowers. Therefore, keeping it indoors in bright, indirect sunlight is best.
Soil: Well-draining soil that provides excellent aeration and does not hold too much water is most important for growing a healthy plant.
Temperature: Hoya densifolia thrives in hot and humid climates, so keep it away from drafty windows and doorways during the colder months. It grows best in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 11a to 11b, with average minimum winter temperatures ranging from 40 to 50 °F (4.4 to 10 °C).
Watering: As this plant is sensitive to overwatering, soak the soil thoroughly during the spring and summer, but allow it to dry out before watering again. Otherwise, you will increase the risk of root rot, and your plant will not be happy. It is relatively dormant during the fall and winter and needs only moderate watering.
Fertilizing: While Hoya densifolia is not a particularly heavy feeder, it can benefit from high-potassium fertilizer at half strength every two weeks during the growing season.
Repotting: As an epiphyte, this plant has shallow root systems and does need a deep container. It also does not require frequent repotting. It actually prefers to be slightly rootbound, so repot it in spring only if it outgrows its container.
Propagation: Although layering is the easiest, using stem cuttings is the most popular method of propagating Hoya densifolia. Using leaf cuttings can be more challenging, while starting it from seeds is the simplest but the most time-consuming method. For best results, take cuttings only when the plant is actively growing and sow the seeds in spring and summer.
Learn more at How to Grow and Care for Hoya.
Toxicity of Hoya densifolia
Hoya densifolia is considered non-toxic, so having it around kids and pets is safe.
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