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Hoya kerrii

Family Name: Apocynaceae
Synonyms: Acokanthera obovata var. kerrii
Common Name: Sweetheart Hoya, Heart-shaped Hoya, Heart Leaf, Valentine Hoya, Valentine Wax Plant, Wax Hearts, 凹叶球兰
Semi-Shade Little Water Hanging Basket Interiorscape / Indoor Plant Fragrant Ornamental Flowers Ornamental Foliage Climber, Vine and Liana Epiphyte


Family Name
Genus Epithet
Species Epithet
Name Status (botanical)
Common Names

Classifications and Characteristics

Plant Growth Form Climber, Vine & Liana, Epiphyte
Lifespan (in Singapore) Perennial
Mode of Nutrition Autotrophic
Maximum Height 2.4 m to 3 m


Native Distribution Thailand, Laos & Cambodia
Preferred Climate Zone Tropical

Description and Ethnobotany

Others - Plant Morphology Growth Form: Tropical epiphyte with succulent leaves and woody stem. It attaches itself to the host tree with aerial roots and a twining growth habit. Habitat: Occurs in tropical forests. Foliage: Leaves are thick and heart-shaped with opposite leaf arrangement (5 - 15 cm long). The petiole (1 - 2.5 cm long, 0.3 cm wide) is connected to the pointed part of the heart shape. Flowers: Flowers are small, waxy and arranged in inflorescences classifed as umbels (4 - 5 cm wide). An umbel consists of several flowers with floral stalks (called pedicels) that are united at the base to a single stem known as the peduncle. They consist of 2 stacked, star-shaped structures known as the corona and corolla. The corona is on top, smaller than the corolla and is pinkish-brown to purplish-brown. The corolla is mostly white. Flowers are long-lasting and release their fragrance at night. Landscaping: This slow-growing species is a popular indoor plant. It is placed on window sills, in hanging baskets or trained against small trellises. Children may enjoy growing this species, because it has heart-shaped leaves and is easy to grow. In addition, the green leaves may be decorated by painting designs on the leaf surface. Cultivation: This species grows slowly. Plant in well-drained, slightly acidic to neutral soil of 1/3 orchid soil mix and 2/3 potting mix (pH 6 - 7.5). Space individuals 7 - 15 cm apart. This species is intolerant of waterlogging, so allow the soil to stay slightly dry. For potted plants, water when the top 3 cm of soil becomes dry. Lightly feed plants every month with a half-diluted general fertilizer. This species will grow and flower best if kept rootbound. Avoid moving the plant when flower buds have formed. Do not remove old floral stalks, as new buds will form from it. They are usually resistant to pests, but monitor them for scale insects and mealy bugs. Propagation: Propagate by seed, leaf cuttings or herbaceous / woody stem cuttings. Seeds do not store well, so sow them soon after harvesting. Take care that cutting the plant will cause a toxic latex sap to leak from the wound. Etymology: The genus "Hoya" was named after Thomas Hoy, an English gardener of the early 1800s.
Ethnobotanical Uses [Others]: It is used to treat pus-producing skin ulcers and reduce swelling.

Landscaping Features

Desirable Plant Features Ornamental Flowers, Fragrant (Flowers) (Day), Ornamental Foliage
Landscape Uses Hanging Basket, Interiorscape/ Indoor Plant

Fauna, Pollination and Dispersal

Pollination Method(s) Biotic (Fauna)

Plant Care and Propagation

Light Preference Semi-Shade
Water Preference Little Water


Mature Foliage Colour(s) Green

Floral (Angiosperm)

Flower Colour(s) Brown, White
Flower Texture(s) Velvety / Furry / Tomentose
Flower Grouping Cluster / Inflorescence

Image Repository



Master ID 118
Species ID 1414
Flora Disclaimer The information in this website has been compiled from reliable sources, such as reference works on medicinal plants. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment and NParks does not purport to provide any medical advice. Readers should always consult his/her physician before using or consuming a plant for medicinal purposes.
Species record last updated on: 13 September 2021.