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Hoya Krimson Queen Plant: The Ultimate Plant Care Guide

Hoya Krimson Queen is a beautiful houseplant that’s a joy to grow. This article provides a deep dive into growing Hoya Krimson Queen plants. It will end up being very long (spoiler alert), and you may not have time for that. For your convenience, we’ll add some quick facts below. If you need more information, you can scroll down and see full details and recommendations. 

What is a hoya?

  • Scientific/Common Name:  Hoya Carnosa (variegated)
  • Genus: Hoya
  • Scientific Family: Apocynaceae family
  • Origin: Hoyas are native to Asia and Australia and were cultivated more than 200 years ago. A variant of Hoya Carnosa, the Krimson Queen, was first coined as The Hoya TriColor as its waxy leaves sport variegation which can range from bright pink to white. 
  • Mature Height: This plant is a climber and a draper and most often grown on a trellis or hanging basket. When grown indoors, its tendrils generally reach up to 11-20″ in length. 
  • Distinguishing Features: Thick waxy leaves which grow in clusters on the vine. Its green leaves are framed in colors ranging from cream to pink. 
  • Home Placement: When grown inside, Hoya Krimson Queen will do well in a south or west-facing window. This houseplant enjoys bright light that is mostly indirect. 
  • Growth Speed: Hoyas are relatively fast-growing, though not as fast as other vine plants. The Krimson Queen’s vines usually grow more quickly than other Hoya variations.
  • Light Requirements: This Hoya enjoys bright, indirect light. However, a little direct sunlight can be a good thing – especially when it comes in the spring and winter. This can encourage flowering and bring out the pink color in the Krimson Queen. However, be cautious of bright direct light on warm summer days, as the Hoya leaves will scorch.  
  • Watering Requirements: Hoyas store water in their lush, succulent-like leaves. So, like succulents, they are somewhat drought tolerant. Leaving them unattended over your vacation shouldn’t keep it from thriving. Water 1-3 times per week, allowing the soil to dry completely between. 
  • Soil Requirements: The Hoya Carnosa Krimson Queen enjoys well-draining soil as they do not like “wet feet” and are susceptible to root rot. Potting mixes similar to those used for succulents and African Violets consisting of peat moss, perlite, and orchid bark will be ideal.
hoya krimson in black plastic pot

Hoya Crimson Plant Care Guide

  • Temperature: In many climates, these Carnosas make the ideal indoor plant as they enjoy mid-range, fairly consistent temperatures between 60-90 degrees F. Indoors or out, try to avoid extremes. Temperatures below 45 degrees F or above 95 degrees F for an extended period of time can damage the plant.  Also, keep in mind that the Krimson Queen is not tolerant of freezing temperatures, so it’s best to bring them inside on frosty nights.   
  • Fertilizer: Yes, do this. The Hoya’s growth accelerates when it is well fed.  A nitrogen-rich, water-soluble fertilizer is most recommended. Fertilize by watering deeply with diluted fertilizer once a month during the growing season. Over-fertilizing in the winter months can lead to unhelpful mineral build-up. If fertilizing year-round, use a half dose. 
  • Humidity: Because this variegated Hoya is a tropical plant with succulent-like leaves, it will enjoy higher levels of humidity. 60% humidity is ideal. In dryer, indoor environments, a bathroom with bright natural light will be the perfect setting for the Krimson Queen.
  • Flowering: The Hoya Krimson Queen produces fragment clusters of star-shaped flowers. Most young plants may not flower for up to three years; however, sufficient light is essential to achieve blooms once they have matured. Ample amounts of bright indirect light are required, and a small amount of direct sunlight will aid in the process. The Hoya’s flowers bloom out of new growth, so make sure you’re not continually pruning your plants.
  • Pruning: The main reason to prune your Hoya will be to shape and control your vine’s size. Also, remove dead leaves and unhealthy-looking areas to direct energy toward the creation of healthy new leaves.
  • Propagation: Propagate your Hoya using stem cuttings to start their new root growth either in soil or water. Make sure to start with a young cutting that has not yet flowered.
  • Repotting: You may repot your Hoya annually or every other season. Be sure not to repot in winter or while your plant is in bloom. Important note: if you repot your plant in a container that’s too big, it may prevent your Hoya from blooming.
  • Diseases and Pests: High humidity and overwatering are the leading causes of pests and disease in Hoyas. With proper care and the appropriate soil, much of this can be prevented. The most common condition is root rot, and the most common pests are mealy bugs, spider mites, and scale.
  • Toxicity: The Hoya Carnosa is considered a non-toxic houseplant. However, children and pets shouldn’t eat Hoya plants, as it could make them sick to their stomachs. 
six pots of hoya krimson queen for sale

Where Can I Buy Hoya Krimson Queen?

You can buy Hoya Krimson Queen through Etsy, which is one of the best places to buy houseplants online, as well as Amazon. Here are some of the top-rated places to buy the Hoya Carnosa. 

If you’re looking to purchase Krimson Queen Plants, you can do so at Icarus Plants. Click the image below, use the code 10now to get 10% off your order.

icarus plants discount

Hoya Krimson Queen Plants: 

Overall, the Hoya Krimson Queen makes an ideal low-maintenance house plant for just about any indoor grower. There are many different varieties of Hoya Plants to choose from, and they are all loved for their tropical look and thick, succulent-like waxy leaves. This is why they are often referred to as the wax plant. 

You also often find Hoyas when searching for “milkweed.” The two plants could not seem more different, but they are related as they have similar bloom structure, and both release a milky white sap when cut. 

Distinguishing Features of Hoya Krimson Queen:

The Krimson Queen (Hoya Carnosa Variegata) is specifically known for its variegated coloring. This variegation presents itself from the edges as white or varying shades of pink. In some leaves, the color can take over entirely. This distinguishes it from the Krimson Princess, a variety whose variation begins in the leaf center.

hoya plant in a basket

How Do You Care For A Hoya Krimson Queen?

Potting For Hoya Krimson Queen

Any growing medium of your choosing will do, as long as it has proper drainage. Like other succulent-like plants, your Hoya may benefit from a more porous container, such as terra cotta. This encourages adequate aeration and prevents soggy roots. 

When repotting, choose a top that is only one size larger than your current container. Too much space may discourage blooming and healthy growth.

Repotting is commonly done each or every other season. Spring and summer are the best times to repot. Though, be sure that your Krimson Queen is not in bloom at the time of repotting. 

However, take care not to repot too frequently or to upgrade to too large of a pot. The Hoya is more likely to bloom with tightly bound roots. For this reason, you will want to wait until completely necessary, and your plant is giving you signals that it is time for a larger repot. Signs will include yellowing leaves or roots that are growing out of the top of the soil.

Water your plant two to three days before repotting to ensure that the roots are healthy and not shocked by the change. After your plant is situated in the new pot, allow some time for the roots to settle in and heal from any damage before watering. 

Add fertilizer to the potting mix before repotting. This will encourage your Hoya’s roots to spread and fill their new, larger pot quickly. Because Hoya’s are most happy when root bound, the faster this can happen, the better. 

Potting Soil For Hoya Krimson Queen

Once again, the key to happiness is drainage. A well-draining soil will make all the difference. A potting mix with chunky texture made of ingredients such as perlite, peat moss, pumice, and orchid bark is preferred. African Violet Potting Mix is an excellent pre-mixed option. Other mixes meant for succulents can also be helpful. These fast-draining mixes promote aeration to discourage root rot. 

Light For Hoya Krimson Queen

The Variegated Hoya Carnosa needs bright, primarily indirect light or filtered light to promote proper growth and variegation.  However, a little direct sunlight can be a good thing, especially in the spring and winter. About an hour of direct sun in these months can help to encourage blooming. However, be cautious of bright direct light on warm summer days as the Hoya’s leaves will scorch. 

The ideal placement for your Hoya Krimson Queen is an east-facing window with plenty of bright indirect light. If you are placing your Hoya outside for the summer months, be sure it is provided with ample shade from direct light. For example, hanging it under the partial shade of a tree is a good option.

Fertilizing Hoya Krimson Queen

Yes, the Hoya Krimson Queen loves a snack! The Hoya’s growth accelerates when it is well fed.  

Use a gentle, organic fertilizer to help prevent root burn and promote the plant’s overall health. If using a synthetic fertilizer, I advise it to be heavily diluted. Always water directly into the soil or from the plant’s base to avoid damage to the plant.  

A nitrogen-rich, water-soluble fertilizer is most recommended. Fertilize by watering deeply with a diluted fertilizer as often as every two weeks or monthly during the growing season. Over-fertilizing in the winter months can lead to unhelpful mineral build-up. If fertilizing year-round, use a half dose.

Propagating Hoya Krimson Queen

Propagating Hoya Krimson is relatively easy. Here’s a quick video for reference:

Hoya Krimson Queen Stem Cutting

Start by taking a clean pruning tool and cutting a healthy (emphasis on the healthy!) stem from your parent plant. Cut from the topmost part of the stem. You want to cut just under the node, which is a small knob you’ll see on the stem. Longer cuttings can help you anchor your stem in the soil later.

Soil For Propagation

Soil is a crucial component of propagating the Hoya Krimson Queen (and most plants). Start with a cactus potting mix with perlite and orchid bark (equal parts is fine). This creates a well-draining soil, which protects your cuttings from root rot.

Potting For Propagation

Use a small pot – it doesn’t need to be more than five inches in diameter. Make sure that there are drainage holes, which will also protect your cuttings from root rot. If the holes are too big, you can line the bottom with a  plastic mesh to keep the soil inside. Fill your pot with the soil to the top of the container.

Rooting Hormone (Optional)

To increase new growth and root growth, you can add a basic rooting hormone to the cutting. Put the rooting hormone on the stem. Follow instructions for best results.

Placing Hoya Cuttings

Insert your cuttings into the soil. Having longer cuttings are preferred, as they help anchor the plant in the pot.

Water Cuttings

Water your cuttings until water runs through the drainage holes.

Cuttings Box

To create a growing environment that’s full of humidity, place your Hoya Krimson Queen stem cuttings in a simple, clear plastic storage tub. Place a glass of water next to the plant. Then, put the lid on top of the tub, and drill holes into the top to help with ventilation.

Here’s a fantastic video on creating a cuttings box:

Warmth and Light

Your cuttings box should be in a place where the plants receive bright indirect light. Too much light and the cuttings may not root. Your cuttings also need to be warm. If it’s nice outside, place them in the sun during the day. If it’s not, consider using a heating pad to keep the environment warm.

Water For Hoya Krimson Queen

Watering frequency will vary somewhat depending on the warmth and humidity of your environment. A good rule of thumb is never to water moist soil. Feel the soil with your finger up to just past the first knuckle. If the soil is completely dry, it’s time to water. 

Water deeply by allowing the water to run out the bottom of the pot. Do not allow water to collect and stay in the dish or tray that your plant is sitting in. This defeats the purpose of providing ample drainage and can cause root rot. If your pot sits in a dish, allow water to stop dripping from your pot before replacing it. 

If you are watering from the bottom up, place your pot with drainage holes in a dish of water and allow the soil to soak up through the soil until it is moist up to the first knuckle. This method can ensure that water reaches the roots and promotes profound growth. 

If you see the leaf tips begin to wither, your plant is starting to dry out and needs to be watered. 

woman misting her plants

Do Hoyas Like To Be Misted?

There are many mixed opinions when it comes to misting. While Hoyas love the proper amount of humidity, finely misting can be acceptable.  However, it can cause fungus without proper ventilation and does not always do much to raise your space’s overall humidity level. If your climate is arid, a quality humidifier placed in the room can be more helpful. 

Check out this highly-rated humidifier. It can tell you the humidity level of your space. For the Hoya, 60% is ideal. 

Is Hoya Krimson Queen Toxic To Cats?

As a cat owner, it’s always a joy to find a plant that won’t hurt my feline friends! Hoya Krimson Queen does not contain toxins that could affect cats or dogs. The ASPCA lists Hoya plants as safe around these pets.

Related blog: Pet-Friendly Houseplants: Indoor Gardening Guide
Also read: 16 Expert Tips To Keep Cats Out Of Your Plants

Final Thoughts

The Hoya Krimson Queen is a beautiful houseplant that’s easy and fun to grow. Have you had success (or struggles) with this indoor plant? We want to hear about them! Send us your stories and your pictures to [email protected]. If we like them, we may include your pictures in this article!

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