Category Archives: Hoya Chat

Meeting Ric Morier for the first time…it was a pleasure

Earlier this week, I received an invite from a local Hoya enthusiast to travel just north of here to St. Petersburg, Florida to attend a Rare Plant Network meeting.  I accepted since I knew of Ric for many years but our paths never crossed even though we lived in nearby communities for many years.  I also heard that he was offering some cuttings for sale and of course I could not resist.

The lights were dimmed and the meticulously planned slide show began.  With much detail but not too much, Ric introduced this Genus to a room full of receptive plant enthusiasts. It still amazes me how very few people know about hoyas.  About one in 20 will mention seeing the Hoya carnosa growing somewhere or maybe the Hoya compacta (Hindu Rope) plant. But that is about the extent of recollection of these wonderfully diverse and rewarding plants.  The show began with foliage and then finished with the spectacular blooms from Ric’s collection.  He was very knowledgeable and very patient when it came to explaining the differences and demands of each species.  Much more than I usually am when trying to introduce…I seem to go with my condensed version, leaving out many points and highlights.  Some of us are ‘teachers’ and others not so much.

There was some conversation as he went along but not much.  This was not due to boredom but because he covered so many points and questions along the way.  As he concluded the group quickly moved the the table set up in the front of the room which displayed the cuttings and a few potted plants.  Touching the leaves was what everyone wanted to do as they could have cared less about the ID label given.  I was asked most, “What color is this bloom? Which end of this vine do I plant?”  Since this was not my moment and Ric was the Guest Speaker I at first hesitated to get involved but after seeing he did not mind I assisted with some of the eager collectors.

Of course I could not resist buying a few cuttings that I did not currently grow. It was not hard to find “New to Me!!!” species but I kept it to a modest 6 new cuttings. Overall it was a very inspiring evening and I was honored to finally meet Ric Morier who grows many beautiful hoyas outside year-round here in Florida.

P.S Ric, Have fun on your visit to Thailand!!!! I am sure you will represent our part of the world well.

Posted in Hoya Chat, SRQHoyas Happenings.

On Hiatus…until post relocation

If you have been on the website you have noticed that there are no Hoya Cuttings available for purchase at this time.  This is correct!

I have begun prepping the plants for their journey to their new home and thought it best to cease taking ordering and shipping until we are settled in the new space.  For the time being the best thing to do is place your choices on a Wish List and when I begin offering cuttings again you will be notified via email.  Please be sure to Log In to your account and then Add to Wish List for easier use.  Being logged in to your account will allow you to manage your list, otherwise the emails will continue even after you wish they would not.

Enjoy the rest of your winter and I hope to be back up and running in mid to late March! As always I can be reached via email or telephone with any questions you might have.

Posted in Hoya Chat, SRQHoyas Happenings.

Cultivar Names correctly written

After reading the newest edition of The Hoya Telegraph I corrected the mistakes in the way I classified these species of hoyas.  I just want to take a minute to explain why you may not be able to locate these hoyas on my website since they are now alphabetized differently.

Since writing the cultivar name with the cv. is an old rule that was removed from international rules…I correctly use Hoya ‘Majic’ as opposed to Hoya cv. ‘Majic’.  It seems much simpler and I am glad Torill Nyhuus took the time to resolve this issue for many of us who strive to be totally accurate in labeling.

Posted in Hoya Chat.

Changes in Hoya Leaves grown inside

Since the hoyas have been brought inside the garage/greenhouse I am noticing changes in their growing habits as well as the ‘quality’ of the new growth. By quality I am referring to the superficial beauty in color and surface ‘shine’.  While they love the humidity and natural sunlight they recieve from March thru October, the plants do not fare well cosmetically.  The leaves are usually scarred with spots and pitting although this does not effect the plants growth or blooming capabilities.  As I look at the photos posted from you who grow you plants inside and protected from nature I find myself sometime jealous that my precious plants are really not that ‘pretty’ to look at.

This is one factor that I know I will enjoy as I move the stock to growing totally protected from the havoc of nature’s creatures in the new solarium up North.  The one thing I will miss is the bugs, bees, dragonflies, lizards, frogs (not so much), flies that somehow found their way inside the lanai and garage/greenhouse to pollinate the ‘sap dripping’ flowers each night.

hoyas grown in nature

hoyas grown in nature

DSC01173

Hoya erythrostemma Seed pod bursts

 

Posted in Hoya Chat, SRQHoyas Happenings.

SRQHoyas is Relocating to Pennsylvania!!!

After a little thought and many years of residing in the sunshine state, I have decided to move back to the area where I grew up.  Luckily my business allows me to do this and with a little planning and renovation to the new home and property the hoyas should not ‘miss a beat’.  The change will be a welcomed one to me since I will no longer have the chore of moving the plants outside in the springtime and back into the Garage/Greenhouse when the temperatures threaten to fall.  Although most of the plants adjusted with little struggle, some did not handle the change well at all.  Once I have them in their new Solarium, they will acclimate and spend time there year round!!! No more change of climate and light source, they will only rely on the natural sunlight coming through the insulated glass.

I must begin by thanking Doug at Vermont Hoyas for giving my the inspiration and hope that hoyas can and do thrive in the Northeast United States.  His plants are absolutely gorgeous and bloom well year round.  I chatted with him a little bit, via email, prior to making this life changing decision and although he would offer guarantees…I felt he was giving me the ‘two thumbs up’ to the environment I was about to create and build for my collection.  If you have not visited his website you are missing out on much beauty as well as information and education.

As far as the name SRQHoyas? It will remain the same even though we will no longer be in SRQ…which are the call letters for the airport here in town.  When I decided on the name I knew it would be perfect and I knew I would never leave my little piece of paradise. I have learned to never say never.  Keep posted for time-frame of the massive move north and I am hoping to have little or no downtime for offering the cuttings.  I look forward to my new adventure and the chance to spend more time with family!!!

 

Posted in Hoya Chat, Shipping Schedules, SRQHoyas Happenings.

Hoya megalaster Seed Pod has been spotted and wrapped to capture the seeds

Wow!!! As I busily took cuttings to fill my orders this morning I screamed “WooHoo”!!!  I was looking for the best cutting on my Hoya megalaster IML 1099 and noticed that when I handled one of the few vines…it was extremely heavy.  That is a good indicator for me to take a closer look.  I had almost taken a cuttings that would have detached the ripening seed pod.  I would have been so mad at myself if that had happened.

The pod itself measures 6 inches long and 1 inch at the thickest point.  I now have it wrapped so as to capture the ripe seeds and attempt to grow them out into plants.  I know that is a very difficult and lengthy task with little chance of success but I am willing to do my best.  When the seeds come, I plan to sow them inside under artificial lights in a controlled environment since the cooler days and nights will be here prior to any sense of maturity will be reached.  I am confident that delicate hoyas will not survive a change in environment since many of my established mature plants suffer each year from the move inside.

For now I will check on the seed pod often to be sure the everyday rains do not cause it to rot inside the netting I provided.

DSC00404

Posted in Hoya Chat, SRQHoyas Happenings.

Hoya campanulata SRQ 3218 is going to Bloom for the Third Time – What Color will it be this time?

This is a great hoya that I have in my collection that is easy to grow and is beautiful in bloom and out of bloom. The first time it attempted to bloom, the flowers were small cups that ran out of energy before they could open up fully.  The second try at blooming was successful as they opened into cluster of shallow shiny bowls of gorgeous subtle color.  Now a little over a month has past and the hoya plant has four umbrels that are puffing up to bloom but instead of the cream clusters of prior cycles, these are a dark deep red color.  I have kept the growing conditions and location the same so I am looking forward to see the result.

Blooming on June 22

Blooming on June 22

Gonna Bloom July 28

Gonna Bloom July 28

Posted in Hoya Chat, What's Blooming.

Hoyas attracting Bees and giving off their Yummy Scent

Yes, I realize that many hoyas can be messy when they are in bloom but this is such an important part of what nature does to continue and survive.  The worst culprit of oozing sap I have found is this Hoya pallilimba. She puts out many many little parasol looking bloom clusters and they stay open for over a week.  As the days go on the more sap is produced and you have this gorgeous bit of nature.  Fortunately for me, this is happening outside and unfortunately for the bees, it is a maze to get thru the screened enclosure to get to all of this yummy juice.  This is a full on beautiful hanging plant that rewards me with endless flowers with a butterscotch fragrance all summer!

Hoya pallilimba IML 1691

Hoya pallilimba IML 1691

Yummy Butterscotch Sap!

Yummy Butterscotch Sap!

Posted in Hoya Chat, SRQHoyas Happenings, What's Blooming.

Hoya Vines Twist in a Counter Clockwise Direction

Since returning to my collection after being away for 11 days there is a plethora of vines that are tangled, twisted, braided and just confused.  I can only assume that this is the way they support themselves in the wild.  As I have begun the endless but now concentrated task, since my absence, it occurred to me that the new vine actually winds around the ‘support’ in a counter clockwise direction. After spending a long time untangling fresh vines I have yet to come across a situation that would prove this to be false.  But I may find this to not be 100% true since this is never ending for me.  I think of it as therapy and ‘unwind’ away!

Posted in Hoya Chat.

About SRQHoyas

I thought it would be a great idea to share with you how SRQHoyas came to be, what I hoped it would become and my thoughts on where it will go in the future. So pour yourself a cup of coffee or a glass of wine and I’ll enlighten you…I promise to keep it short as I usually do.
Growing hoyas has been a passion of mine since my early adulthood but became a mission to follow through with by mid 2008.  I searched high and low in every garden shop and nursery I could find, hoping to expand my collection. As a rule I came up empty handed or only found just one more variation of Hoya carnosa.  Don’t get me wrong, carnosas are beautiful and easy to grow but I wanted some species I had never heard of and that posed a challenge to grow and bloom.  My biggest question was and still is today, “Why is it rare to find someone who actually knows what as hoya is?”  From my experience which takes me up to present day, about one out of every 20 people has even heard of a Hoya Plant let alone know what they look like or where to purchase one locally.  As I made a return trip to Hawaii in June of 2008 I too decided to continue my search in every nursery I could find on Oahu.  I was only successful at the second nursery I visited where I found and purchased about 10 species.  The plants were not labeled but they were very easily identified. I felt that I had hit the jackpot and I could hardly contain myself.  The had to be many more places around the island that too had hoya plants.  After two days of visits and many of the same conversations beginning with, “Do you sell hoya plants?” I came up with the same blank look each time.
Since the purpose of my trip was to visit and meet with Carol Noel and Ted Green, I knew hoyas were indeed in my future as far as my trek across the Pacific. The trip was a success since I brought home with me many new species that I purchased or had been generously gifted.
When I returned home to Sarasota, Florida the excitement to grow out these cuttings as well as continue to grow full sized plants purchased prior to my trip was building.  These plants had been a passion of mine for many years and now I was determined to turn this into a real business in hopes of at least sustaining, since I doubted then and still do today that anyone gets wealthy selling hoya plants. As soon as the plants were in their growing space and they adapted to what nature had to offer them here on my property I came up with the name, purchased the domain for a website and struggled as I began the daunting task of composing a website that was beautiful, informative and functional.
Many many long hours of photographing the plants, blooms and surroundings filled my days. I propagated what I could from the new growth but did not know how I would ever grow enough plants to fill the requests of my growing customer list.  Knowing that I must find many more species of hoya plants online to buy meant I also must obtain import permits to ensure they arrive safely.  The orders came in from Australia, Philippines, Thailand and Hawaii as unrooted cuttings. Some traveled well and arrived unscathed but of course the thin leafed species suffered, struggled but some actually survived.  I gained confidence and learned the less I did for the struggling cuttings the more successful I was going to be.  I still find this attitude to be true, provide humidity, light and warmth and ignore them.
The toughest part of sustaining SRQHoyas was learning how to transition from summer to winter since we rarely have a spring or autumn in this tropical state.  After many hours of building, buying, rearranging and stressing, I put the finishing touches on their summer home, which is the lanai and the garage/greenhouse, where the hoya plants reside during the cooler months.  Surprisingly enough some of the species prefer to be in under the artifical lighting and conditions and some thrive outside in nature and most enjoy both seasons equally.
The look and feel of SRQHoyas has gone evolved since 2008 but the integrity and goals have remained the same.  The number one goal is the raise awareness of this unique and versatile species of plants.  Spreading the word of how rewarding these hoya plants are to collect, grow, share and enjoy has always been my priority.  Secondly, I would like everyone to realize the role I play in accomplishing this goal.  I import cuttings and occasionally purchase plants from around the world.  The names and numbers of these hoyas remain constant and they are also given a succession number prefaced by SRQ for my record keeping and yours too.  I grow everything I sell so when you notice that inventory has been added it means that the plant has put out new growth and I deem it stable enough to offer it to my customers.  The identification guarantee that I offer is, ‘The name it arrived with is the name it departs with’, I mean that with all sincerity.  I am not in a place where I have time to be formally trained to identify and verify similarities and differences. I have left that to the experts who have been doing this for many years.  Someday I hope to gain the knowledge to distinguish between the many similar species of hoyas but I do not have or pretend to have to know-how required.  When I have conducted a co-op or group order, I am simply the machine that takes responsibility for importing and distributing the cuttings to the participants. No more and no less…the labels are that of the grower and I never remove and replace with the SRQHoyas labels since they are not plants grown by SRQHoyas.
The intent of my website and the thousands of photos is to show the collector exactly what the plant looks like. From the mother plant to the leaf close-ups to the reverse of the leaves to the blooms in the entire cluster to the single close up views to even the rear of the blooms. I describe the fragrant which is only my opinion and document the sizes from actual specimens.  I try to provide any and all bits of information so the customer has no questions as to what I am offering. If you have any questions please contact me prior to placing your order.
Growing hoyas is a healthy, exciting, fun, gratifying and time consuming addiction for me and many others. Let’s keep it that way!

Posted in Hoya Chat.