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For Your Discriminating Hoya

Posted by greedyghost 5 (My Page) on
Wed, Mar 30, 11 at 12:33

As you know from my earlier thread about spring cleaning, I'm in the middle of a mass as-needs repotting, and I'm taking this opportunity to make some medium switches for plants I've gotten to know a bit better.

I thought it might be useful to ask you guys what Hoyas you grow in a medium or blend different from your default. Or, really, any plant-specific strategy you feel like sharing.

I've researched all of my plants, but it's a lot more useful to hear someone expound on their personal experiences than read a cryptic one line "Keep moist."

Personally, I keep bella and multiflora in a very dense medium and they are acting happy so far, so I guess I'm not going to change it even though it's not very Hoyaish.

Mitrata is in hydroton, thanks to Joni, and it does awesome that way.

Macrophylla var. is in coir chunks and I think I'm going to switch some of my other moisture-loving plants that are still acting funky despite being kept moist to this setup, (e.g. bella 'Luis Bois').

I'm switching villosa and dasyantha to an even drainier mix. I don't know what the issue is with these guys, really, but they used to be happy in the corporate apartment and aren't as happy now. The windows there were brighter, they were closer, and they were drying out a lot faster. So, I think I either need to move them or change their mix, or both.

Finlaysonii was acting crappy all fall, and then I put it in the aquarium over the winter and now it's acting like it's been born to grow. So... I'm thinking I'll keep it under high artificial light for a while and see if that's what it was responding to. If it was just the warmth, too bad, I can't do much about that.

I almost lost polystachya to overwatering this winter, so, um. In need to try to make that less likely to happen. I've been ignoring it in the aquarium for a while and it's growing back what it lost, so perhaps for this one, for me, a teeny bit of neglect is the solution.

I'm thinking nummularioides needs to be rescued from me, too. Perhaps a higher draining mix, here, because it's alternating between growing and dying, and that's definitely my doing.

Pusilla is strangely not so thrilled with me. Seems like a robust plant and isn't dying off, but looks a bit dehydrated all the time. This might just be a reroot me situation.

I haven't decided yet what to do with my other not-dying-but-less-than-thrilled plants: longifolia, obscura var. longipedunculata, pimenteliana, pubera, walliniana


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Well, my answer is rather boring, I'm afraid ;-)

I grow everything (Hoyas) in fine-grade Orchid Bark. My most recent Hoya is grown in
a mix of Orchid Bark, Turface, and Pumice. And that's it.


Josh


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

I mix coconut coir, seedling bark mix, and perlite. I mix different ratios based on the individual plant.

Also, I last summer I started some cuttings in semi-hydro, to see how they would do. - So far none have died.

And my bellas never dry out also, and they seem to be happy that way.


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

My trick with the large leafed species like polystachya, rigida, loyceandrewsiana etc. that like to have a dry period each year is to grow them in a mix that has some grit or Diatomite in it to help with drainage. I also grow these ones in large clay pots or those eco pots because they dry out faster and during the winter this is a big plus. I admit that during the summer I have to water these plants often but it's worth it if they are happy during the winter months.

I grow my Hoya pusilla in coconut husk chips,potting soil and perlite. I find that this is a thirsty Hoya and I have to check it mid way through the week in case it needs to be watered again. I aim to keep this one moist and it's relativly large but still fairly thin leaves must be adding to the amount of water lost through the leaves.

Hoya nummularioides is not too fussy as long as it gets failry bright light and is allowed to dry out between watering. I have had problems with my plant in the past and now I know not to water unless the potting mix is dry on top.

Hope some of that helps but the diferences in our growing conditions is always the wild card. Hopefully your problem plants perk up for you once you adjust their mixes and spring takes hold.

Mike


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

I use a soil-less potting mix consisting of 3 main ingredients...Turface, Pine Bark fines and Crushed Granite or (Perlite or Silica sand) depending on availability. I tweek the ingredients accordingly depending on the moisture preferences of the plant. But a good basic mix for me is one third of each.


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

G.G.....best wishes on your re-potting. Please explain to me how you grow your mirata in hydroton? I've had nothing but difficulty with this plant....leaves are generally dehydrated in appearance, and yet I know that it needs to dry out totally between waterings. I'd love to know about growing it in hydroton...which I recently bought a bag of. Thanks for any assistance!! Fondly, Patrick


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Thanks, everyone, for your responses. I like getting all up in your business, can't you tell?

Mike, I really appreciate your advice re: my problem Hoyas. This is exactly why I started this thread. The timing is perfect for me to follow any and all repotting advice. So, I'm really looking forward to implementing your suggestions and seeing how they play out in my conditions. I hadn't thought to use the clay pots, since they've frustrated me in the past by nearly killing some moisture-loving cuttings, but that makes so much sense. You're right, it's totally worth watering more in the summer in this situation.

Patrick You know, when I was posting that, I (amazingly) wondered for the first time how Joni cared for it. So, I might be being goofy, but it's definitely working, because the plant doubled in size over the winter. So, here's the plant at arrival:

Hoya mitrata (IML 1575)

Weirdly, you can't see the hydroton in that shot, I guess because of the lighting and the shredded newspaper remnants. But it's not cut with anything. Personally, I treat it just as though the hydroton is a potting medium and simply water it twice a week. I don't have it in a saucer or anything, it drains right through. It's been in a bottom-heated rooting aquarium, a la Denise's guide, all winter, but I got it in August and all through the fall it was just sitting on a shelf with eastern exposure, and it grew pretty fast then, too. So, I don't think it NEEDS the extra heat and humidity. Well, those are my experiences, anyway. Hope it helps!


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya 2

NOTE: Yes, yes I know hydroton IS a potting medium, but you know what I mean. I mean that I am not growing it semi-hydro. ^_^


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Really?!?! You water it once a week and there's no reservoir? So this one likes to be DRY? Do you know if Joni rooted it hydroponically or right in the hydroton?

Interesting....


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

This plant was Joni's mother plant. I asked for a cutting and it didn't really have any bits to cut, so she offered the whole thing! lol /joy

I water it around twice a week, or really, whenever I'm in the tank and water's handy. I'm not really particularly anal about it. It's never sulked even a teeny tiny bit, so I don't consider it fussy. It does get spritzed with VF-11 water a lot, since there are usually cuttings in there with it. But, like I said, all fall, it was out of the tank and got no special attention or spritzing and acted just the same. I guess it must like it dry. The leaves now look just the same as in the picture, nice and healthy. I'll take a picture when I have a camera available again.


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

GG,

Can you explain for me how to grow in hydroton?

I know you've already explained but I didn't catch some details such as: you use only hydroton and water? Nothing else? Sorry but sometimes my neurons are a bit confusing with words in English LOL!!!!

Thanks

Mitzi


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Mitzi Well, this is an unusual method, to say the least. So, maybe your English comprehension is just fine and you just can't believe I am being so crazy.

Usually with hydroton, a person would be using a semi-hydroponics method. You would pot the plant either:

[A] Using a regular pot, with a water-filled saucer
[B] Using a homemade pot, with a water reservoir and drainage holes on the side
[C] Using a store-bought hydroponic pot, with a water reservoir

In any of the above scenarios, the hydroton sucks up the water from the reservoir, and the roots absorb it from the hydroton.

What I am doing is:

[D] Using a regular pot, with no water reservoir. Watering regularly.

So, the hydroton soaks up some water, like if the plant were potted in bark, but the plant dries out much much faster. Clearly, not a system most Hoyas would enjoy, but I can't argue with results.


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Very interesting!
Do you think this might work rooting hoyas, with hydroton and water????


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya 2

YES! Many people have reported that rooting with hydroton (with a water reservoir) works very well. You can also use perlite. I'm trying the perlite method right now, for the first time. It's like mini semi-hydro!

Hoyor suggests rooting in perlite AND filling it up to the surface level with water. So, similar to rooting in water. That sounds interesting.

Here is a link that might be useful: Hoyor: Rooting in Perlite


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya - perlite

GG, I never say perlite in Brazil, I don't think we have it.

I looked at google but did find it to sell here.

I want to root some cuts in water just to make an experience, but when I get the cuts I feel afraid to loose then and I don't do the experience!

Thank you for the link.

Mitzi


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya - mistakes

I meant saw instead of say LOL


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya - Perlite

GG,

I found perlite here, so I'll try to see what happen!

Mitzi


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

The basic mix that I sue for 99% of my hoyas, I mix myself. it consists of the following

1-4 cubic ft bag of a soiless mix that I purchase from a local HIGH end nursery (it's their own mix) to this I add
3- 8 qrt bags of Better-gro special orchid mix (it's big and chuncky)
2-8 qrt bags perlite

Now for those discriminating ( I have another name for them,picky,hard to grow *^$@#$%&, I grow them in hydroton. I only have a few that I grow like this. I have tried numerous times to grow davidcumminggi and sp. square leaf in soil. It just DOES NOT work for me. Since planting them both in hydroton they have grown by leaps and bounds.


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya.

Last summer, I started about 20 different cuttings to root in semi-hydro, with Hydroton. All except 1 took less than 7 days to root. The one took about two weeks.

I've left them in this set-up as I want to see if they will bloom this way, not just grow.

Interesting about the sp. sq. leaf in Hydroton, I have mine in mostly seedling bark mix, with a little coir and perlite mixed in. It grows pretty well, but I haven't bloomed it yet. I may have to try hydroton next time it needs repotted.

Great semi-hydro pots are deli containers, solo plastic drinking cups, DQ take out lids, and anything like that.


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

I'd estimate about 85% of mine are in hydroton. The rest are in either a loose peat and perlite mix (sort of like what Joni grows in) or a bark, peat and perlite mix.

I really like the hydroton as it takes some of the guess work out of watering and allows the plant to take water as needed.

Kelly


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Mitzi I was going to ask what happens when you say PERLITE in Brazil! (j/k I knew what you meant ^_~) Let me know how it goes for you. I started rooting a group in perlite a few days ago and tonight I am going to start a group in hydroton, so I can compare experiences roughly.

David They are punks, aren't they? I left square leaf in Joni's mix, as described by Kelly, and it seems happy, but it did die back once when I let it dry out a bit, so I've kept it close to moist ever since. It does seem to be one you can't make mistakes with. My davidcummingii is pretty small after dying back a bit this winter, so I might take up your endorsement of growing it in hydro. Even if it stalled at some point, as some people report of semi-hydro, it would at least get some growing done!


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya 2

Kelly/Patrick I asked Joni about how she handled mitrata and she says she was doing it just as I am, only in a hanging clay pot. (Editor's note: Good! So, I'm not crazy!) Thus, hers possibly dried out even faster lol. It didn't do anything for her, so maybe it was just in the mood to grow when it reached me.

She just rooted another mitrata, but didn't mention whether in hydroton. I would assume so, since that's how she grows it. She didn't root the one I have, but I don't think it was rooted in hydroton, because it still has a few fragments of peat clinging to its roots.


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How is growing hoyas in hydroton? It is only hydroton and water? No soil mix, no nothing? How the hoyas will get its nutrients? Only from the water?

I only grow hoyas in a soil mix, never tried in a different way.

Should try to see what happens.

Mitzi


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Mitzi That's correct. No soil mix. You have to fertilize through the water.

Some people love it, because fussy Hoyas aren't over or under watered. And you can use the same medium basically forever. And it's clean! Others say it "works with some Hoyas and not others" or that it isn't viable longterm (perhaps due to setups where the roots penetrate the reservoir and become waterlogged).


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya 2

Just wanted to share some pictures of my strangely grown mitrata.

Here it is today:

Hoya mitrata

As you can see, I have a couple of new leaves. Aren't they cute? ^_^

Hoya mitrata (New leaves)


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Very nice mitrata plant! My Hoya mitrata has been a little fussy and it has lost a couple leaves over the winter. I have yet to really figure it out but it sounds like it wants a fast wet dry cycle but not to stay dry for too long. I may have to try a different potting mix for this one.

Mike


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

GG, I LOVE your Mitrata...it looks so healthy and happy. Great job!

I have a small one of this from a nice friend...I hope it will look like yours eventually. I think this one has blooms similar to Darwinii which I really like.


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GG, your hoya looks great.I can only hope my mitrata will grow to look has happy as yours.This hoya has been on my wish for a long time.It took a few times buying cuttings before I got one to root.

Cindy


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Hi GG...I agree with Cindy, your H. mitrata looks awesome. I have two of these, but I realize that one is mislabeled. The other one is totally dehydrated...I took a cutting two days ago and have it sitting in a glass of water, hoping to rehydrate it ... next I'll place it in 95% hydroton and 5% of my soil mix, water lightly, place into a ziplock bag and place on heat. I really believe the roots died on this mitrata, and am very disappointed that the other "mitrata" isn't what it's labeled as. Thanks for your suggestions and the insight from Joni. Let me know if you think I'm doing something wrong...I'd sure hate to lose this plant. Thanks again, fondly, Patrick


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

Thanks, everyone! It's really quite flattering to receive the big thumbs up from a group of experts like you.

Pug I like those toothy blooms, too!

Patrick Your method seems sound to me! I'm so sorry that you've been having troubles, both with roots and labeling. I'm rooting for you! (pun?) It's interesting to me that mitrata would get mislabeled since it's such a distinctive plant. What do you think you have there? When I was on Epiphytica the other day, I noticed they have a "large leaf" mitrata that looks extremely different. I suppose there's no chance that's it?

Here is a link that might be useful: Epiphytica: Giant Mitrata


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I'm finding it interesting that everyone is having issues with sp. square leaf. I had problems when I first received it, but it was visibly dehydrated and not getting better. Once I rerooted it though, it has been tough as nails. I routinely forget to water it as often as I feel I should, and it doesn't show any signs of being upset with me. I am growing it in coco husk chunks.

Finlaysonii, for me, wants to stay moist. If I do not water it at least every other day (it is in coco husk chunks also) it sulks. It seems funny to me, because it looks like it should be tough, but it is definitely sensitive to drying out. My rule of thumb has been, when in doubt, grow it moist, as long as it is in a well draining medium. Well, in theory that's my rule of thumb. As of late I have been overwhelmed and watering everyone very little. They are being nice to me and not dying. I'm trying to get back on track; I need more hours in my day!


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GG...I have no idea what this phony "mitrata" might be...but, as soon as I received it I knew if wasn't mitrata...it's very tall with large internodes...one leaf at each internode...so atypical of mitrata...actually this NOID is kinda ugly leaf-wise....maybe it'll turn out to have fabulous blooms!! Thanks for your assistance, GG. I did pot the mitrata cutting today...used Dyna Grow rooting Gel that I just received from Logee's...it'll be interesting to see if it helps....I used mostly hydroton and a tad of my soil mix. Fondly, Patrick


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RE: For Your Discriminating Hoya

I've been switching away from the semi-hyrdo. It's just not working well for me personally. I had fun trying the method with moderate success. Nothing died, but some orchids shriveled and violets withered. I wasn't reliably watering when the leca needed water, so they would get too dry. Then, it would take a long soak to get all the leca drenched again and working properly. I wanted it to handle my watering neglect more gracefully. It's funny, I never had issues with Orchids until I tried the leca. I've got some orchids sitting in loose moss right now and they are happily growing again. It's not packed down at all, though. And, for the Hoyas, I'm switched them to variety of mixes on trial, such as a typical chunky orchid mix with bark and the bromeliad mix from repotme, too. We'll see how it goes.


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