I woke up this morning thinking about Hoya lauterbachii, and thought I would explain why I don’t grow it. Hoya lauterbachii is in the Eriostemma group of Hoyas that require extremely bright and very warm conditions to begin to grow well – conditions that I simply don’t have. I have also tried a number of Eriostemmas and failed miserably with them. Let us also look at lauterbachii in particular. The average Home Hoya grower stands as much chance of getting this plant to flower as I would trying to grow a cactus in a Koi pond. All reports of this plant blooming that I have seen come from Hawaii where the plants need to get huge in order to bloom. They generally need to grow many meters in length, and when they begin to hang down from a tree, they might bloom given enough time.
If I lived in southern Florida, I might try this plant and even then without the expectations of blooming it. I have never seen a report of anyone blooming this plant in a greenhouse or indoor botanical garden. I guess hope springs eternal, and if any of you think that you can bloom this plant in your home, more power to you! I read on the Hoya forums that many people love growing it for its fuzzy leaves. There are many better candidates that fit this category with similar leaves that you could bloom like H. magnifica. If you want to bloom a large flowered Hoya, where you stand a good chance, I recommend H. imperialis. It is very impressive with flowers up to 3.25 inches across, and I have flowered it in as little as 16 months from cutting.
I hope I have not offended anyone, but with space for growing Hoyas at such a premium in the average home, It might be better to spend one’s time with some of the hundreds of other Hoya choices. If you still think that you can possibly bloom Hoya lauterbachii in your house after reading this post, please send me some of your positive thinking – it would help with the long winter ahead!