Hoya Krimson Queen vs. Princess: Which Hoya Plant Is Right for You?

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Written by Rebecca Mathews

Published: July 28, 2023

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Beautiful easy-care houseplants don’t come better than hoyas. These regal, lush green plants turn homes into leafy tropical spaces, but which one is top of the purchase list? Two hoyas stand out. They’re Hoya Krimson Queen and Hoya Krimson Princess. These beauties are cultivars of the Hoya carnosa and are rightly popular for their good looks and low maintenance requirements. This article compares them and helps decide which hoya plant is right for you – Hoya Krimson Queen vs. Princess.

What Is a Hoya?

Hoya sits in the Apocynaceae family. Over 500 species of this tropical plant exist. They’re native to Asia and Australia, but grown and cultivated all over the world where their common names include waxflower, waxvine, and waxplant after their waxy-to-the-touch foliage.

Discovered for the Western world by botanist Robert Brown in the 1840s, these evergreen creeping, vining, or shrubby plants were named after Brown’s botanist friend Thomas Hoy. In the wild, hoyas climb through tropical rainforests and reach an epic 59 feet.

Tropical hoyas are native to Asian and Australian rainforests.

©Stephane Bidouze/Shutterstock.com

Krimson Queen vs. Princess: Appearance

Both hoyas are vining plants with handsome green and cream variated foliage with splashes of pink, hence the name “krimson.” They’re equally good-looking, but a few differences stand out.

Eventual Height

Krimson Queen is taller. It reaches up to seven feet long indoors, but outside climbs an impressive 25 feet. Krimson Princess is compacter at four feet indoors and 18 feet outside.

The Queen is growing faster, so although it’s a taller vine, it takes the same time to reach its maximum growth as Krimson Princess.

Color

Krimson Queen’s dark green leaves have creamy-white margins, whereas Princess’s foliage is the opposite. Princess has creamy-white leaves with dark green centers! Occasionally Krimson Queen throws up a white leaf, but Princess doesn’t do this. Their stems differ as well. Princess’s stem is pinky-red, but the Queen’s is brown.

Both plants have waxy foliage, but Krimson Queen’s thinner leaves feel rougher and less waxy than the Krimson Princess. Princess’s shorter, thicker leaves resemble a succulent.

Krimson Queen foliage

Krimson Queen’s foliage is longer and thinner than Hoya Princess.

©Jus_Ol/Shutterstock.com

Krimson Queen vs. Princess: Growing Conditions and Care

In general, hoyas’ easy care nature makes them a cinch to keep. There’s no great difference in care requirements between Krimson Queen vs. Princess. Both tropical beauties need the same and grow together nicely, but one or two differences might enhance the Princess’s growth.

Light

Tropical native Krimson Queen and Princess both require bright indirect light to thrive. Either placed in direct sunlight will result in a nasty burn on their lush green leaves. Near a south or west-facing window is best.

However, due to the extra cream coloration, Krimson Princess needs a little more light. It’s because green leaves produce chlorophyll that aids their growth. Krimson Princess has a less green surface area, so it requires more light. This means Krimson Princess may favor an east-facing window, so she can catch the morning rays.

Outside, both need a bright sunny spot that’s shaded from direct sunlight. Beneath trees is best because this replicates their natural rainforest habitat.

Water

Krimson Queen and Krimson Princess need almost the same watering regime.

The number one houseplant killer is overwatering. Container plants are prone to sitting in a puddle of water that can’t escape into the surrounding earth as it would outside. This stagnant, consistently damp compost rots their roots.

You should only water these tropical hoyas when the soil has dried out on top and down to an inch. Push a finger into the soil to test it. If it’s still damp, leave it for a few days, then test it again.

The best way to water both cultivars is to place their liner pot in a sink of water, let them soak up what they need, then let them drain for a few hours. This routine means that no excess water sits in the display pot, quietly rotting their roots from below.

Large hoyas that can’t move to a sink should be given cups of water until it emerges from the base.

One small difference is Krimson’s Queen’s slightly thirstier nature. She has thinner leaves than Krimson Princess, and they don’t hold liquid as efficiently. You may find she sucks up water at a faster rate.

Hoya Carnosa Krimson Princess  close up

Krimson Princess’s foliage is thicker and more succulent-like than Krimson Queen.

©KOMAR_STUDIOS/Shutterstock.com

Soil

Krimson Queen and Krimson Princess require the same aerated, well-draining soil. An orchid potting mix or houseplant compost mixed 50/50 with perlite works for both cultivars.

Temperature

Tropical hoyas enjoy warmth thanks to their native rainforest habitats. In rainforests, the temperature rarely drops below 65 degrees Fahrenheit, so most centrally heated houses feel warm enough to hoyas.

However, centrally heated homes do not have the high humidity of a rainforest, so it’s important to mist hoyas regularly or grow yours in the shower room.

Fertilizer

Neither Hoya Krimson Queen nor Princess needs a great deal of fertilizer, but both benefit from a weak feed in their spring and summer growing seasons. Fertilizer is not required during winter.

Read instructions very carefully when feeding a hoya because they’re sensitive to excess minerals.

Krimson Queen vs. Princess: Flowers

They don’t tend to flower indoors, but outdoor hoyas in a tropical climate freely flower. Krimson Queen and Princess’s star-shaped flowers look virtually identical; however, Krimson Queen’s appear completely pink, whereas the Princess offers up pink blooms with a redder center.

Krimson Queen vs. Princess: Propagation

Propagating these tropical beauties is easy.

During the spring or summer growing season, simply cut a piece just below a node with a sharp knife. A node is where leaves emerge from the stem. Cuttings grow best with three to four leaves on board.

You can either place the cutting in water to root or push it into damp gritty compost. Within a few weeks, tiny white roots start to grow.

Common Uses and Benefits: Krimson Queen vs. Princess

Krimson Queen and Krimson Princess’s striking foliage and vining habit mean owners use them in the same ways:

  • Trailing from a hanging basket
  • Cascading from a tall bookcase
  • Climbing up a mossy pole or trellis

Their leafy green foliage and pretty star-shaped flowers make both cultivars prime choices for biophilic design. If you’ve not heard of it, biophilic design simply refers to how using plants in our living and working spaces makes us feel good. Humans feel better when they’re surrounded by greenery. It’s in our DNA!

And we mustn’t forget that plants help purify indoor air. NASA tests suggest that some indoor plants may remove volatile organic pollutants from our homes.

Hoya Carnosa 'Krimson Queen' plant in a blue vintage pot, at a natural wood deck vs black vintage door.

Hoya Krimson Queen cascades from a tall shelf or climbs a mossy pole.

©Nash 9owrrah/Shutterstock.com

Hoya Pests and Diseases: Troubleshooting

These two cultivars are generally healthy but may develop a few problems due to pests or disease. The same treatments will help save them.

Yellow Leaves

Under or over-watering is usually the root (quite literally!) cause of yellow leaves. Test the soil and fix it either way.

Brown Tips

Chiefly caused by too little water and not enough humidity. Keep a closer eye on the soil dampness and mist your hoyas more frequently.

Brown Patches

Sunburn is usually the cause of brown patches on leafy tropical plants. Try moving your Queen or Princess away from the light source.

Leggy Growth

If there’s lots of space between each leaf, it usually means your hoya isn’t getting enough light. Try moving it closer to the window.

Pests

Both hoya cultivars can pick up mealybugs, spider mites, and fungus gnats. Treat mealybugs and spider mites with rubbing alcohol or neem oil, and banish fungus gnats by allowing the top inch of compost to dry out between waterings. They lay eggs on damp soil surfaces, so letting it dry out effectively evicts fungus gnats.

Dark-winged fungus gnat, Sciaridae on a green leaf, these insects are often found inside homes

Fungus gnats lay their eggs in damp soil. Get rid of them by allowing soil to dry out on top.

©Tomasz Klejdysz/Shutterstock.com

Hoya Krimson Queen vs. Princess: Which Suits You?

So, we’ve seen these two gorgeous tropical hoyas have a lot of similarities. They both vine, need free draining soil and contribute to a healthy biophilic household, but a few differences hold them apart.

Chiefly, it’s their size, leaf thickness, and foliage patterns.

  • Krimson Queen is a taller (or longer depending on how you display it) vine that can reach seven feet indoors whereas Krimson Princess reaches four feet.
  • A second difference is their variegation. Krimson Queen has greener foliage and Krimson Princess displays more cream variegation.
  • Finally, the Princess has shorter, thicker leaves that resemble succulent leaves compared to the Queen’s larger but thinner foliage.

Both cultivars make excellent easy-care houseplants and glorious outdoor vines in a tropical zone. It’s very difficult to choose between them.

Hoya Carnosa Krimson Princess  close up

Hoya Krimson Queen and Princess are easy-care houseplants.

©KOMAR_STUDIOS/Shutterstock.com


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About the Author

Rebecca is a writer at A-Z Animals where her primary focus is on plants and geography. Rebecca has been writing and researching the environment for over 10 years and holds a Master’s Degree from Reading University in Archaeology, which she earned in 2005. A resident of England’s south coast, Rebecca enjoys rehabilitating injured wildlife and visiting Greek islands to support the stray cat population.

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