A Seedling Update and Discussion

I started seven seeds from a seed pod that I harvested on my Hoya pubicalyx ‘Purple Hybrid’ back in October 2011.  Of those seven seeds, 100% germinated; of those, one died outright, 2 now look like they are going to die, two look only OK; one looks good, and one plant looks outstanding.  This is the third time that I have tried growing Hoyas out from seed.  My first attempt was with Hoya australis back in 2006; they all eventually died.  My second attempt was in 2009 with Hoya cumingiana, and I started with 25 seeds and ended up with six good plants.

Growing Hoyas out from seeds is very challenging for a few reasons, and unless you have a lot of time to devote to it, I would have to discourage the attempt .  Germinating the seed is the easy part, after that, the next few months are critical with one little mistake meaning in all likelihood death for the developing plant.  Also, not every seed has the genetic material to develop into a strong plant.  It is easy to prove this theory out.  When each seedling is treated exactly the same, you will see large differences in vigor.  You should only keep the best of the best when growing out from seed.  Below you will see my pubicalyx at three different stages of growth.  Picture three is the one seedling that I would call outstanding and will be a keeper.  Click on any photo to enlarge it.