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Tips For Growing The Hoya Kerrii – Everything You Need To Know


Hoya Kerrii has waxy leaves and blooms, yet it is an easy-care climbing plant that can enhance any indoor garden. This houseplant is popular among plant collectors because of its distinctive appearance and texture.

This post will discuss the most crucial information you’ll need to successfully care for a Hoya Kerrii!

If you choose to purchase one for yourself, there are a few viable options for you to consider. Continue reading to learn more about the intriguing characteristics of this hoya.

What Is Hoya Kerrii?

The Hoya Kerrii is also known as Sweetheart Hoya, Heart-shaped Hoya, and Valentine Hoya.

This perennial from the Apocynaceae family is well-known for its large heart-shaped leaves and thick vining stems. It has heart-shaped and bright green-colored leaves.

We will mainly discuss the good conditions when caring for the Hoya Kerrii as indoor plants, but it can also be grown outdoors in hardiness zones 11.

Origin And Family

The Sweetheart Hoya comes from the hoya genus, which belongs to the Apocynaceae family. This plant is originally from Southeast Asia. In recent years, it has become a popular houseplant, typically easy-to-care-for.

Discovered in the early 1800s by Robert Brown, this waxy plant makes a great addition to any indoor grower’s collection. Often in summer, it produces significant small brown and white flowers.

Where To Buy

Etsy provides some of the best and most varied plant selections online, like Hoya Kerriis.

The pretty high prices of a Hoya Kerrii are approximately between $20 for cuttings to $100+ for larger or more mature plants.

Hoya Kerrii Plant Size

Indoors, the Hoya Kerrii reaches a height of 13 ft. long. This hoya is slow-growing but beautifully thrives when placed near east or west-facing sunny windows.

Hoya Kerrii Care Needs

Your Hoya Kerrii will flourish brilliantly if it is tended to properly. It prefers dry soil and bright direct sunshine for growth. however indirect light

In most cases, you will need to water your Hoya Kerrii plants when the leaves get thinner and wrinkled. Soak the soil until water begins to seep out of the bottom of the little pot. As a plant that craves dampness, it will be in good health when this requirement is met in abundance.

Care Difficulty

Although all plants require upkeep, most indoor gardeners consider the Heart-shaped Hoya minimal maintenance. This plant’s optimal health may be maintained with the perfect balance of factors, including enough sunlight and well-draining soil.

Growth Rate

As a houseplant, the Valentine Hoya reaches a mature height of 13 feet. Spring and summer are typically characterized by more rapid and robust growth.

The majority of hoya species are slow growers.


Hoya plants prefer a container with adequate drainage. Drainage holes are necessary to prevent excess water from drowning the Sweetheart Hoya’s roots.


Once your plant reaches a particular size, it is advisable to repot it into a larger container to maintain its health.

On average, Hoya Kerrii grows slowly and does not need to be repotted often, but soil tends to lose its natural nutrient components over time, so it’s better to add some organic potting soil when you’re repotting.


For the Heart-shaped Hoya, organic potting soil is a suitable choice. Add together components such as perlite, orchid bark, and sand to make your own soil mix. Keep in mind that this plant prefers growing medium.

Ensure that the soil type you choose allows for adequate drainage and aeration so that the roots may breathe better.

We suggest the following planting media:

Photo Title Price Buy
Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting...image Miracle-Gro Indoor Potting Mix 6 qt., Grows beautiful Houseplants, 2-Pack $12.96 ($0.03 / Ounce)
Burpee, 9 Quarts...image Burpee, 9 Quarts | Premium Organic Potting Natural Soil Mix Food Ideal for Container Garden-Vegetable, Flower & Herb Use for Indoor Outdoor Plant $12.99 ($0.04 / Ounce)
Sun Gro Horticulture...image Sun Gro Horticulture 8-Quart Black Gold 1310102 Purpose Potting Soil With Control, Brown/A $14.73 ($0.06 / Fl Oz)
Miracle-Gro Potting Mix Miracle-Gro Potting Mix $32.46
FoxFarm Ocean Forest...image FoxFarm Ocean Forest Potting Soil Mix Indoor Outdoor for Garden and Plants | Plant Fertilizer | 12 Quarts | The Hydroponic City Stake $23.99 ($0.06 / Fl Oz)


For Valentine Hoya, you’ll need neutral to acidic soil. In most cases, organic potting soil is close to this pH level, so this shouldn’t be a significant concern.

Conduct a pH test to determine whether your soil is acidic enough. There are inexpensive pH meters available for purchase online and in garden centers.

Add calcitic or dolomitic lime, wood ash, or baking soda to your soil to elevate its pH. To reduce it, you can employ sulfur or aluminum sulfate.


The watering frequency will vary based on the temperature and the humidity in your plant’s surroundings. Generally speaking, your Sweetheart Hoya prefers growing medium.

Avoid overwatering your ‘Sweetheart Hoya.’ When the leaves are thinner and slightly wrinkled, it’s time to give your plant a drink. Water directly on the soil and take care not to wet the foliage so you can avoid fungal diseases.

Allow the water to flow through the bottom of the pot. Remember to empty the collection tray if your plant is sitting in one.


Hoya Kerrii prefers six hours of bright direct light per day. Remember that you are attempting to replicate the Southeast Asian growing conditions. In most cases, placing this plant near an east- or west-facing window is optimal.

When the leaves of your Hoya Kerrii scorch or become yellow, the plant is receiving too much light.

Avoid putting your Hoya Kerrii in direct sunlight, as this could severely damage or even kill it.


A balanced liquid fertilizer is ideal for the Heart-shaped Hoya. A balanced liquid fertilizer, for example, would work. During the spring and summer, feed your plant once a month.

Propagating Hoya Kerrii

You can quickly reproduce your Hoya Kerrii through various methods. Check out the step-by-step instructions for each propagation method below.

Stem Cuttings In Soil

One approach for growing Sweetheart Hoya is to place stem cuttings directly into the soil. If you do not already have this plant, you can acquire a cutting from Etsy or your community’s Facebook Marketplace.

1. With clean pruning shears, remove a healthy portion of the plant. Ideally, a cutting should be at least three inches tall and contain a few leaves and nodes.

2. Bury the stem’s nodes in a container or pot with moist potting soil. Use wooden skewers or pin the dirt around the stem to secure the plant. Too much movement can inhibit root development.

3. Place your container near a window in bright, indirect light. Remember to keep the soil moist.

4. Expect new roots in around two to three weeks. A developing sprout is the most reliable indicator that a cutting has successfully developed roots!

Stem Cuttings In Water

To propagate Heart-shaped Hoya cuttings in water, follow these steps:

1. Cut. Cut a portion of your plant measuring between 4 and 6 inches in length. Very long cuttings may become lanky.

2. Submerge. Allow the cutting to soak in water until it produces roots. To prevent rotting, remove leaves that have become submerged in water.

3. Refill. Refill the glass every 3 to 5 days with clean water. Keep plant nodes submerged to accelerate rooting.

4. Transplant. When the roots are sufficiently developed, place the cutting in a sterile potting mix. Frequent watering will facilitate root adaptation to the soil.

Humidity And Aeration

This hoya is a plant that prefers moderate to high humidity above 40%.

If your Hoya Kerrii has curling or crispy leaves with brown edges, you may want to invest in a humidifier. This gadget is meant to continuously emit steam and considerably increase a room’s relative humidity.


This plant prefers warm temperatures that range between 60-80 degrees Fahrenheit and is best for your Valentine Hoya.

Sudden temperature swings can be fatal for your Valentine Hoya. During the winter, close windows and seal any openings where cold drafts may enter. Don’t place your plant near appliances that emit heat.


Typically, plants will only bloom when exposed to natural elements. However, your Sweetheart Hoya might still produce brown and white flowers throughout the summer.


The Heart-shaped Hoya is non-toxic to humans or animals. According to the ASPCA, ingesting it would not hurt dogs or cats, and there are no elements in the plant that are dangerous to humans.

Hoya Kerrii - Featured

Pests, Diseases, And Other Problems

Overall, I conclude that Hoya Kerrii is not resistant to disease and pests. Here are some quick remedies for common ailments, as well as basic guidelines for maintaining the health of this plant.

Spider Mites

Unfortunately, spider mites are a common concern, especially with Valentine Hoya. Spider mite damage will initially appear as little brown or yellow dots on the leaves of this plant. You may also observe stunted growth or leaves that unroll slowly.

As they are linked to spiders, spider mites construct webs (which is gross). Only one or two spiders will inhabit a spider’s web with a more sophisticated design. On the other hand, a spider mite infestation is indicated by a web that is fine, sticky, and teeming with numerous little red insects.

To tackle spider mites on your Valentine Hoya, take your plant outside and thoroughly spray it down to eliminate the insects. When you bring it back inside, quarantine it from the rest of your plants until you are sure there are no remaining spider mites.

Neem oil, insecticidal soap, and horticultural oil are organic products that can do the trick if that doesn’t work!

White Flies

If your plants have mottled, discolored leaves which are deformed or falling off, they might be infested with whiteflies. These bugs are cousins of mealybugs, scales, and aphids.

Yellow glue-based traps can attract and catch Whiteflies and help monitor their emergence early on.

As a more natural approach, you can release a population of natural predators in your indoor growing space. Ladybugs, lacewings, dragonflies, parasitic wasps, and praying mantises will eat various pests without harming your plants.

Scale Insects

On the stems or leaves of your Hoya Kerrii, scale insects may manifest as bumps. Once attached to a plant, these little insects, which may be green, gray, brown, or black in appearance, are often sedentary.

If the infestation is not too bad, you can dissuade scale insects from attacking your plant with a teaspoon of neem oil diluted in four glasses of water. Spray the plant vigorously with a spray bottle.

Neem oil and horticultural oils might not kill the bugs, but they will definitely cause them harm. There are various pesticide sprays considered safe for indoor usage against scales.


Aphids are microscopic insects that feed on the leaves of your Heart-shaped Hoya, causing brown and black spots.

To combat an infestation, use insecticidal soap or neem oil. Dish detergent in low concentrations can also eliminate aphids without hurting your plant. Choose a fragrance-free product, such as Ivory Liquid, for example.

Start by diluting 1 teaspoon of dish soap in 1 gallon of water, then adjust as needed. This solution should be sprayed on the damaged plant, particularly on the leaf undersides where aphids are typically present.


Your Valentine Hoya may be affected by mealybugs. These tiny parasites sap the sap from your plant, thereby weakening it. The honeydew that they secrete can also promote the growth of fungi.

Mealybugs are oval-shaped insects that appear as cottony lumps on all plant sections. They will either remain still or slowly creep.

To combat a mealybug infestation, dip a cotton swab in rubbing alcohol and brush it over the plant’s heart-shaped leaves and other damaged places. I also suggest using a mixture of neem oil and water as a preventative spray.

Yellow Leaves

If you see yellowing leaves on your Heart-shaped Hoya, you might need to consider several factors to determine the culprit. 

  • Are you watering your plant too little or too much? 
  • Is your plant getting enough light? 
  • Did you fertilize your plant recently? 
  • Are there sudden changes in the weather?

Of course, bottom leaves that turn yellow can indicate that your plant is growing and the leaf’s energy has been spent. In this case, simply pluck off the yellowing leaves so the plant can focus on increasing new green leaves.

Root Rot

A typical cause of death for the Valentine Hoya is root rot, which occurs when you overwater your plant. Remember to use only water when the leaves are thinner and slightly wrinkled.

Poor drainage is another source of root rot, and this hoya needs organic potting soil that drains well.

When choosing a pot for your plant, ensure there are drainage holes to allow excess water to flow through. Clay pots and unglazed ceramic planters can also help absorb moisture from the soil and slowly release it into the air.

Similar Plants

Love Sweetheart Hoya? Here are some other similar semi-succulent plant options you should try:

Hoya Crimson QueenThis wax plant is a variegated variety of Hoya carnosa, often known as Hoya Tricolor. It has thick waxy leaves with three colors—pink, creamy-white, and green variegation.

Hoya Lacunosa (Cinnamon Hoya) – This plant looks excellent climbing a trellis, hanging in a basket, or on a windowsill. Due to its aroma, it’s perfect for summer porches and indoor overwintering.

Hoya AustralisEuropeans initially discovered Hoya australis on Australia’s northeastern coast around 1770. Because of its fragrant and spectacular white blossoms, Hoya australis is becoming a famous garden and houseplant.
Hoya Carnosa (Porcelain Flower, Wax Plant) is a frequent houseplant with a porcelain or wax plant texture. It has long, slender vines with waxy, dark green leathery leaves occasionally flecked with silver or creamy white.


The Hoya Kerrii is an excellent choice for plant enthusiasts due to its large heart-shaped leaves and thick vining stems.

If you’re looking for a new plant to add to your collection or are just getting started as an indoor gardener, use the tips you’ve learned from us to begin growing Hoya Kerrii today!

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