Houseplants provide many benefits to those who have them. They can produce oxygen, boost your mood, bring color and texture to your décor, and they are also natural air purifiers. It’s easy to see why pothos plants are among the most popular plants in the United States.
They are easy to grow, difficult to destroy, and versatile enough to thrive in different environmental conditions. This makes them appealing to both experienced plant owners and those who are just getting started with houseplants.
What is a Pothos?
Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) are some of the most common houseplants, and there are dozens of species. While they make great indoor plants, they are tropical plants that are native to several areas, including China, Australia, parts of Southeast Asia, and islands in the Pacific.
There are several different types of pothos. Some common names for pothos are Devil’s Ivy, Silver Vine, Taro Vine, and Money Plant, and they are all known by the botanical name Epipremnum aureum. Pothos are often planted in hanging baskets or planters indoors, but they can also be used as ground cover. Pothos plants vary in color and variegation. For example, Golden pothos have heart-shaped leaves with medium green and gold colors. Marble queen pothos have heart-shaped leaves with green and white streaks. And Jade pothos have dark green leaves with streaks of white, cream, or yellow.
Neon pothos (Epipremnum aureum neon) are vining plants with vibrant, distinct, chartreuse-colored leaves and stems that look almost neon green and have no variegation. Neon pothos are sometimes sold as Epipremnum pinnatum. Younger leaves are very bright, and they become darker with age.
Neon pothos can grow in almost any type of light conditions, but you will have different results, depending on how bright the light is. They don’t do well in direct sunlight or total darkness. Placing plants in bright indirect light can encourage faster growth and provide more vibrant chartreuse-green leaves while placing them in shady or low-light areas will result in a deeper, less vibrant color.
Neon pothos should be watered about every one to two weeks when the soil feels dry or the leaves start to droop. It’s best to allow the soil to dry out before watering the plants. After watering, the droopy leaves will perk up quickly. Yellow leaves can be an indication that you are watering too much, which could lead to root rot.
The amount and frequency of water depends on several factors, including the temperature, humidity, quality of the root system, pot size, the makeup and quality of the soil, and the amount of light the plant is receiving
Neon pothos are humidity-tolerant and drought-tolerant. Since neon pothos are tropical plants, they thrive in high-humidity environments. They prefer an environment with humidity between 50% and 70%.
The ideal temperature for neon pothos is 70º – 90º year-round, but they can tolerate moderate temperatures of 55º – 85º. They can handle occasional cold snaps but rarely survive temperatures below 50º.
You can feed your neon pothos monthly or bi-monthly with an all-purpose houseplant fertilizer. While fertilizing is not required, it will help provide extra nutrients not found in the potting soil.
Neon pothos are easy to propagate with water or rooting hormone.
Pothos are easy to propagate because of their soft stems that root easily in water. Use a clean knife or sharp scissors to cut a few pieces of stem 3” – 6” long, making sure to cut below a leaf node. Remove the leaves from the lower portions of the stem cuttings, and place them in a small glass of water. Make sure that any remaining leaves are not immersed. Replace the water every few days, and roots will begin to grow within a couple of weeks. When the roots reach about one inch – after about 4 – 6 weeks – you can transplant your cuttings into potting soil.
Rooting Hormone Propagation
If you prefer, you can dip the bottom of the cuttings into a rooting hormone, lightly coating the ends. Then place the cuttings into a small pot that contains a thoroughly-watered potting mix of one part peat moss and one part perlite. Place in indirect light, and after about a month, there should be enough roots to transplant the cuttings.
All parts of pothos plants are toxic if ingested and can cause vomiting, especially in children and pets. They contain calcium oxalates, which may also cause skin irritation and difficulty swallowing.
Since these plants are vines, they will need trimming or vertical structural support, such as a trellis, to control the size and shape of the plants. Placing your pothos on a shelf or ledge, or planting it in a hanging basket will give the vines space to cascade down below the bottom of the pot.
While neon pothos plants are typically easy-care and pest-free, they can become infested with mealy bugs. If you notice an infestation, you can use insecticidal soap to eliminate them.
Pothos plants are commonly mistaken as philodendron plants. While they do look similar, pothos have thicker leaves with more texture, and philodendrons have darker, smoother leaves that are often less variegated than many types of pothos plants.
Extra Love (Additional Care)
While pothos are low-maintenance plants, their leaves can collect dust quickly, which can interfere with photosynthesis. It’s a good idea to occasionally dust your pothos and wipe the leaves with a damp cloth.
With their beauty and versatility, Pothos are excellent plants to have in your home. If you are a first-time houseplant owner, pothos plants are a great place to start because they are virtually indestructible. With a little attention and care, your pothos will thrive and be a beautiful addition to any room in your home.