After five plus years of growing Hoya sp. MT-02 without getting a peduncle, I started watering the plant with reverse osmosis water, which takes out all of the water hardness, and makes it as close to rain water as you can get. One day while tending the plants in the grow-tent I moved a vine and looked at Hoya sp. MT-02, and I almost fell over when I noticed a peduncle that was not only growing, but budding up. At first I did not believe that the peduncle even belonged to the plant as I was resigned to never flowering this Hoya, but after following the vine 3 times, I finally realized it really belonged to MT-02!
I tried various fertilizing regimes over the years, moved the plant from place to place giving it variously different micro climates. I had it outside in the greenhouse and directly outdoors, but nothing would induce this plant to form a peduncle. Tomorrow I tell what I think finally did the trick.
Like I said in an earlier post, Hoya sp. MT-02 was not a hard Hoya to grow. I potted it up in my regular mix back 2013, and transplanted it a few times over time. The mystifying part of the plant is why year after year it would never put on a peduncle. Below the flowers of Hoya sp. MT-02:
Hoya sp. MT-02 is endemic to the Philippines. I Knew nothing about this plant until it flowered and I asked Julie Kennedy if she could tell me anything. She contacted Torill Nyhuus who supplied her with the plant. She said that it was given to Nathalie Simonsson by May Tolentino in the Philippines, hence the MT in the accession number. Below the plant in all of its glory:
Hoya sp. MT-02 came to me as a cutting from Julie Kennedy in the UK. It seems that so many of my most prized Hoyas came from her. I can’t say enough good things about her, but I digress. This was a easy to grow plant that was a bear to flower. Below a typical Leaf from this plant:
The leaves of Hoya soligamiana turned intensely red under a strong LED light. I don’t believe that it is necessarily good for a plant to have this happen, but it has not hindered its flowering too much.
All good things must come to an end and Hoya thailandica is no exception. This is a plant that is difficult to obtain as most of the Thai vendors can’t grow it, because their conditions are too warm for it. Floridians who can grow most everything better than I can, will not do well with this plant because of the heat. I believe this might be a good species for those northern gardeners that have good windows that get some sun with adequate humidity. I’ve seen some of these plants grown very well online in semi-hydro, which I might experiment with in the future. For now, I’m just going to bask in the glory of finally flowering one of my toughest Hoyas!
The flowers of this plant smell not altogether pleasant and can best be described as musty lemon. The fragrance is not overwhelming and the flowers last a long time. They fell off between 2 and 3 weeks after opening. I believe that they are among the most photogenic blooms in the Hoya world.
“Dr. Thaithong collected Hoya thailandica in northern Thailand at 2,000 meters above sea level in the Doi Inthanon mountain range. She described and illustrated it and published it in the Nordic Journal of Botany 19th January 2001″. (from P.S. The Hoyan Vol. 5 #2 written by Christine Burton) This plant belongs to the Hoya albiflora complex and is closely related to Hoya australis ssp. tenuipes.
In early 2019, I looked closely at the peduncles of Hoya thailandica, and I thought I could almost see that tiny buds were trying to form on one of them. I was unsure if it was just wishful thinking, but in another week the beginnings of buds were unmistakable. Only one peduncle out of 12 or so was budding up, but I was ecstatic; now would they make it to term?
At the end of January of 2019, I finally got my wish and the rather large buds began to slowly open!