Why Are My Hoya Curtisii Leaves Yellowing? (Causes and Solutions)

Hoya plants are known for growing beautiful green wax leaves. The Hoya curtisii is a species of Hoya with deep dark leaves that are smaller than those of a typical Hoya.

The hanging plant is relatively easy to care for since it holds water in its leaves and is drought-tolerant. However, there are still times when your Hoya curtisii might run into some trouble.

Why Are My Hoya Curtisii Leaves Yellowing?
Photo by Scott Zona, CC BY-NC 2.0, via Flickr

If you notice your Hoya curtisii has yellowing leaves, your plant might be encountering some issues. This may be due to too much water or not enough water, too much light, or even too much fertilizer.

In this article, we’ll go over the common problems that cause yellowing leaves in a Hoya curtisii and how to solve them.


If you find yourself watering your Hoya multiple times a week or even every two weeks, you may be overwatering it.

The soil should be completely dry before you water your Hoya. If the soil is damp or soggy, wait a couple more days before watering it again.

The waterlogged soil can stop oxygen from reaching the plant’s roots and cause even more severe issues like root rot.

If you notice yellowing leaves and soggy soil, switch up how you water your Hoya curtisii.

How to Fix Overwatering

If your Hoya is waterlogged, replace the soil with fresh soil to help create an airflow to the roots.

When you do this, if you notice some of the roots are facing root rot, you should prune back the diseased roots.

Once you have repotted your Hoya with fresh soil, you should only water it lightly and wait until the soil is completely dry to water it again. It would be best to prune the yellow leaves to encourage new growth.


Hoyas are very good at tolerating drought. However, there comes a point where you are not watering the plant at all. When this happens, the leaves turn yellow and look burnt or dry.

If your Hoya is dehydrated with bone-dry soil, it is time to water your plant.

When you water your wax plant, you should prune the yellow or burnt leaves to encourage new growth. After a few days, your plant should perk back up and start to look like it usually should.

Too Much Lighting

Hoyas enjoy bright, indirect sunlight. If you put them in a place where they are getting bright direct sunlight directly through a window or porch, this will scorch the leaves and turn them yellow and brown.

Move Your Plant

It is best to place your plant in a south-facing window but not directly on the windowsill if it is spring or summer when it is getting more light.

The Hoya can only tolerate so much before it starts to deteriorate in color and nutrition.

It is best to place the plant in a spot that gets just enough sun but not sun all day long.

Low Humidity or Cold Temperatures

Hoyas do best in high heat and high humidity since they are succulent-like and from warm climates. It is best to simulate this environment in your home or around the plant.

This means misting the plant to create humidity or moving it away from any air vents or drafts.

If your Hoya is directly under an air vent and you see yellow leaves, you should find a new place for your plant. Occasionally, it would help if you misted the leaves or even added a humidifier to the room where your Hoya is.

If your home is too cold, your Hoya curtisii will be yellow. Your home should be above 50 degrees Fahrenheit and nothing colder. It will stress the plant and cause discoloration if it goes below that temperature.

Any discolored leaves should be pruned back so your Hoya can grow new and bright green leaves.

Nutrient Deficiency

The Hoya curtisii commonly faces nitrogen and potassium deficiencies. When this happens, you will see discoloration and yellowing in the leaves.

This may be due to old soil, waterlogged soil, or too much or too little fertilizer.

It is important to fertilize your plant with houseplant fertilizer only during peak growing and blooming seasons, like spring and summer. You should also completely dilute the fertilizer.

The fertilizer will be able to give your Hoya the nitrogen and potassium it needs.

If your soil is old, and you have yet to repot your Hoya after a year or two of growth, you need fresh soil and a new pot. The tightness of the pot can stop airflow to the roots, and the old soil will most likely lack any nutrients.

Repotting your Hoya with fresh, nutritious soil at least once a year is important.


Hoyas typically do not get pests. However, if they do, the pests will stop nutrients from getting to your plant. When this happens, you will notice yellow leaves and other signs of pests.

If your plant is too dry or dry and wet, this creates a perfect environment for pests like spider mites, mealybugs, and scales. These bugs can turn into an infestation if you do not catch them quickly enough.

When you are inspecting your plant, you should look out for the following:

  • Scales. Scales are immobile black dots that will line the stem of your Hoya. They range in size and will show up in large clumps.
  • Mealybugs. Mealybugs look like cotton and can spread quickly. They can travel from plant to plant and breed quite quickly. They can lay almost 600 eggs at once, causing a fast and strong infestation among your houseplants.
  •  Spider mitesSpider mites are tiny spiders that can infect your plants. They will have webs under your plant’s leaves, and you will notice small red and brown spiders crawling around your plant.

Treating for Pests

If you need to treat your Hoya for insects, you should first isolate the infected plant or, in the worst-case scenario, isolate each infected plant in your home.

You should then spray the plant with mild soap and water. Wipe down what you can. Afterward, you should spray the plant with insecticide and ensure you have killed and removed all insects.

You should replace the soil with new, fresh, clean soil. Once you have thoroughly cleaned the plant, you should prune back any yellowed or discolored leaves.

Related: Hoya Kerrii Turning Yellow, Hoya Benefits

Author: Stanislav Lem


Stanislav Lem is the founder of Big Time Living, where he provides tips for gardening, traveling and lifestyle. Stan is an entrepreneur, journalist and traveler.
His mission is to provide information to help people become better planters, travel more and live a happy life. His blog has been featured on Huffpost, Yahoo and MSN.