How Do I Get My Hoya Plant to Bloom?

Like many other 1970’s trends, the hoya, or “wax plant,” is coming back in a major way! This retro beauty is known for its glossy, waxy leaves that grow along trailing vines. You can train its vines to climb up around window frames and trellises or just let them hang. 

And if conditions are just right, your hoya will treat you with a burst of fragrant, colorful blooms! But to encourage your plant to begin flowering, it’s important to understand its stages of growth and everything they need for successful flowering.  


Recognizing The Stages of Hoya Flowering

When your hoya is about to bloom, a spur, or “peduncle,” will produce a cluster of buds that dangle downward. They begin as tiny reddish buds, which gradually lighten and take on a pentagonal shape. The buds then develop little bumps, and soon they begin to burst open, revealing cute, pale pink flowers with red centers and an irresistibly sweet scent. 

After it finishes flowering, you don’t want to remove that peduncle! Your plant will continue flowering from this bloom spur and will deal with its spent blooms independently. No need to pull them off once they’ve finished blooming! 

hoya open and closed blooms oc succulents

How Long Does It Take for a Hoya to Flower?

If you propagate a hoya plant from a cutting, it will take about five years to grow big enough to begin flowering, provided you’ve given it the necessary sunlight, water, and soil nutrients. However, if you purchase a mature plant that’s already reasonably large and leafy, it shouldn’t take long for flowering to begin. 

Depending on your chosen variety and the sunlight levels of your home, your hoya may bloom year-round. However, it’s most likely that your plant will bloom in summer when sunlight levels are at their highest. If it isn’t flowering, go through the following list and see if there’s anything you’re doing incorrectly. 


How to Get a Hoya to Bloom

To encourage your hoya to produce those famously fragrant blooms, make sure you’re doing the following four things: 

hoya quick tips oc succulents

Put Your Hoya in Bright, Indirect Sunlight

Hoyas like lots of sun, but direct beams can give their leaves a sunburn. A bright, north or east-facing window is a fantastic spot for your plant. Alternatively, a south or west-facing window with a sheer curtain will help soften those intense light beams. 


Make Sure the Pot Isn’t Too Big

Some plants don’t like being root-bound, but if your hoya is snug in its container, this will actually encourage flowering! A 5-inch pot should be a sufficient size for a mature plant. 


Don’t Over-Fertilize

Fertilizer containing phosphorus is essential for your plants to go through their bloom cycle, but too much can stress out your plant and throw them off course. A balanced, slow-release fertilizer in spring and summer will work great for properly fueling your plant. Don’t fertilize in fall or winter—your plant needs a chance to rest and recharge before its next spring growth spurt.  

-hoya tricolor oc succulents

Don’t Overwater

Allow the top two inches of soil to dry out before watering your hoya again. In winter, let the soil dry out for longer, but top it up with water before the leaves begin to shrivel. Too much water can cause root rot and attract fungus gnats, so you want to avoid overwatering at all costs!


If you’d like to bring some of that retro ‘70s realness to your interior decor, visit OC Succulents to see the best selection of hoyas for sale in California! Our knowledgeable staff will be happy to offer some guidance on encouraging flowering if you do not see any results.

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