How to Care for Pothos Plant
Known for being one of the easiest plants to care for, The Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) or Devils Ivy is a great choice for the beginner plant owner or for someone who is looking for an easy to care for plant. This trailing vine is native to the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific. So, placing them in an environment that is similar to its natural habit ensures that you give your Pothos what it’s looking for.
Pothos has pointed and heart shaped green leaves that sometimes are variegated with yellow, white, or light green striations along its leaves. Pothos grow quickly for an indoor houseplant and can often add 12 – 18 inches of length per month. At its peak maturity, Pothos can reach up to 40 feet in length and 3 – 6 feet wide.
Prepare to have to place this plant in a hanging basket if its vines start to cascade further than you expect.
While Pothos plants prefer bright indirect light it can also tolerate low light environments or areas that have mostly florescent lighting. Making this an excellent plant for dorms, tight office spaces and lower light environments.
Sometimes variegated Pothos plants can lose their leaf patterns and turn to all one solid green colour if they aren’t receiving enough light. If you catch this in time and move them somewhere where they can get the bright in-direct sunlight, they need – their variegation patterns can return to its original state. If your plants leaves start to look pale or washed out in colour than this is a good indicator that it may be receiving a little bit too much light.
Pothos plants aren’t too picky when it comes to the soil that they live in. They can thrive in ordinary well-draining potting soil. Their ideal PH range is from 6.1 to 6.8. It can tolerate a range of conditions from neutral PH levels to slightly acidic levels.
Pothos plants do best when you let your plants soil dry out between watering's. If left in very saturated soil for long periods of time, your Pothos will develop root rot and can lead quickly to its death. Over watering is the main cause for the death of a Pothos plant.
Pothos get their energy from sunlight, but they must absorb essential nutrients from the soil they live in. Most potting mixes have fertilizer pellets mixed in but most plants will use up all these available nutrients within the first few months of their growth. That’s why even though the Pothos is a resilient plant it can still benefit from fertilization.
Different types of fertilizer require different frequencies of fertilization. It is best to follow the instructions on the one you choose but as a rule of thumb Pothos plants can be fertilized every 4-6 weeks during their growing season. If you are using a liquid fertilizer, be sure to dilute this to half of its regular dosing as strong concentration of fertilizer can damage its roots.
Temperature & Humidity
Since Pothos plants are from a Tropical climate, they should be kept at temperatures that are consistently above 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 Degrees Celsius). However, they are most comfortable in temperatures between 65 and 75 Degrees Fahrenheit (18 – 23 C).
Just like many other tropicals, Pothos plants like High Humidity. You can increase the humidity around your plant by keeping them in a humid area of your house/office. Such as a kitchen or bathroom.
Since Pothos plants are quite resilient – they can survive in a low humidity environment. So humidity is not highly important for a Pothos plants survival.
Propagating a Pothos can be just as easy as caring for it! These plants like to be propagated in water first before being transplanted to a soil mix. Follow these basic steps to ensure a successful propagation.
1. Look for a healthy stem on your Pothos plant (one with at least 3 leaves). Cut about a half inch or inch below the lowest leaf and ensure to use a clean and sterile cutting tool.
2. Remove the lowest leaf on your stem and place into a jar or pot of water and ensure that only the tip of the cutting is in the water and that the leaves are above water.
3. Once your cutting has sprouted new roots that stem several inches long – transplant this cutting into a potting soil as soon as possible so it can develop a strong root system. Note: This can take up to a few weeks before seeing roots so be patient!
4. Once your cutting has been transplanted into its new soil mix – place it in a spot that receives bright in-direct sunlight and keep the soil moist but not overly saturated.
Potting & Repotting
Due to Pothos being a fast-growing indoor plant, re potting can be very beneficial for its growth or to solve any problems you are having with its growth. It is best to repot your Pothos during it growing season as this is when your plant is at its strongest and can handle the stress and environment changes from re potting.
If you notice your plants leaves start to droop or roots growing out of the top of its soil then you know its time to repot your Pothos!
Follow these steps to ensure you properly re pot your Pothos.
1. Remove your plant from its current pot. To do this safely – turn your plant on its side and gently slide the plant out from its growing pot.
2. Prepare your new pot – Ensure that this new pot is clean and ready to have a new plant placed into it. Fill the bottom of your pot with an inch of soil before placing your plant in as this acts as a buffer/spacer between the pot and your root system of your Pothos
3. When you place your plant into its new pot, ensure that it is centered then add some more potting mix around the sides to fill the gaps. Be sure to not pack down your soil too firm as the roots need room to breathe during this time.
4. Water your newly transplanted Pothos – Ensure to give this a thorough watering until water runs out of the draining holes on the growing pot. Once the water stops dripping from the drainage hole you can place your plant somewhere that receives bright in-direct sunlight.
Are Pothos Pet Friendly?
Unfortunately, the Pothos plant is considered toxic to cats and dogs.
What’s the difference between a Pothos and Philodendron?
Pothos and Philodendron both look very similar to each other. The easiest way to tell them apart is by looking at their leaves. Pothos plants have heart shaped leaves that are larger, thicker and have a waxier appearance than the Philodendron. Philodendron plants have thinner leaves that are softer and smoother but are also heart shaped.