Hoya kerrii f. Variegata
There are not synonyms for this plant
H. kerri is native to Cambodia, Jawa, Laos, Malaya, Thailand and Vietnam
H. kerri is a slow growing, shrubby succulent belonging to the Asclepiadaceae botanical family. The plant has an erect and climbing habit. The stem can reach up to 4 m in height and the succulent develops like a vine. Leaves are heart-shaped, bright green in color and grows in tufts along the stem. Blooming occurs in late spring early summer and blossom are borne on long stalks. Flowers are small, star-shaped, creamy white on petals with purple hues on the center. This plant is usually sold as a single-rooted leaf around Valentine’s day. The flowers have a delicate caramel smell. The plant is perfect for decorating homes and offices. The variegated form is a plant that has the stem or leaves with patches or stripes with two or more different colours, even distinct shades of green. H. Kerrii f. Variegata has yellow edge of the leaves.
This is a pretty plant, easy to cultivate. The best sun-exposure is full sunlight, and the plant does not like temperatures below 10 °C so it needs to be placed indoors. The soil should be mixed with pumice, clay and loam to allow the drainage and prevent the root rot, the plant is prone to it indeed. Remember to use perforating pot to drain excess water. Watering can be done regularly from May to September: during the vegetative period you can water the plant (every 7 days), checking that the soil is completely dry before watering again; in winter you should stop the watering to allow to the plant to enter dormancy. If you want a faster and lush growth you can fertilize the plant once a month during the growing season with the specifics fertilizers for cacti; stop fertilizing throughout the winter. If the pot starts to be too small for the plant you can repot the plant in a pot 2 cm wider. Repotting should be done early in the growing season with fresh new potting soil. When the Hoya finishes blooming, the flower stalks do not have to be removed to allow the plant to bloom the following year. Because the plant has a climbing habit it is necessary support pole for the development of the stem.
The easiest and fast method of propagation is by using cuttings. By cutting you can use leaf cuttings during the spring. Cut a leave and then let it dry; after a few days the cut surface will dry and a callus will form, then place the cutting in a mixture of sand, soil and pumice. To increase success of propagation you can cut two or more leaves at the same time. For cuttings is recommended temperatures around 20 °C. It is advisable to use rooting hormone at the base of the cut to energize root development.
The name of these plants is a hymn to friendship: the botanist Robert Brown, who classified them during the eighteenth century, called Hoya in honor of his friend Thomas Hoy (and botanical lover). The variegation is due to the loss of the ability to produce chlorophyll in some tissues of the plant, so that this tissue is no longer green. Chlorophyll-free tissues are usually white or pale yellow coloured (due to carotenoid pigments) in contrast to the normal green tissue.
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