Sumo Gardener

How to Propagate Pothos

Pothos, or Golden Pothos as it is often known, is a fantastic houseplant because it is easy to grow, is happy in low light and doesn’t require a lot in terms of fertilizer or water.

Pothos is also really easy and simple to propagate. In this article, we will guide you on how to propagate pothos both in water and in soil so read on. 

What are Pothos Plants?

What are Pothos Plants

Pothos are also known as money plant or devil’s ivy because it is so hard to kill and can even stay green and live in almost darkness.

Pothos are great for homes, offices, and even in the bathroom since they don’t need much sunlight or maintenance. The leaves can be paler green, yellow, white or bright green.

This beautiful jungle vine that originates from the Society Islands of French Polynesia is low-maintenance, unfussy and looks great in any home or office, making them a rewarding option even if you don’t have green fingers!

When is the Right Time for Pothos Propagation?

Propagating pothos is a fairly easy process, allowing you to transform your one plant into many. It’s a good idea to propagate your pothos when it starts ageing, becoming very leggy and unruly, or getting pot bound, in order to give your plant a fresh start.

Eventually, any pothos in a pot will become pot bound, which means that it’s used up all the space and soil available in the pot. If your pothos is starting to droop after being in your care a long time, lift it gently out of the pot.

If there are a lot more roots than soil, it’s time to think about pothos plant propagation.

How to Propagate Pothos

How to Propagate Pothos in Soil

Check the Health of Your Pothos Plant

Successful pothos propagation starts with a healthy piece of your vine. Start by visually inspecting your vine. Avoid choosing any piece of the vine that has a dead or decaying tip, black or dried leaves, or where the vine is turning yellow or decaying. 

You want a strong and healthy piece that is deep green and thriving, with a strong stem and healthy leaves.

Cutting a Healthy Piece from the Vine

Once you’ve found a healthy section of your vine that’s perfect for pothos propagation, select a piece that is approximately 6 inches in length with around 5 or so healthy leaves.

Look for the root nodes (brown stubs) just below the leaves on opposite sides of the vine, cutting close to the nodes without damaging them. This is where your new roots will start sprouting from.

Now, we move onto two different methods of propagating pothos – the first, propagating it in water with no rooting hormone, and second, propagating pothos in soil.

How to Propagate Pothos Plants in Water Without Rooting Hormone

How to Propagate Pothos Plants in Water Without Rooting Hormone

Step One – Remove Lower Leaves

Remove the set of leaves closest to the root nodes at the end of the vine. This is to prevent the leaves from sitting in the water and decaying while you wait for the new roots to sprout.

Step Two - Place the Pothos Cutting in Water

Select a small but sturdy container like a clean glass jar and place the base of the cutting inside, filling the container with water until it covers the nodes well.

You can also add a small amount liquid fertilizer to the water if you like, although it is not strictly necessary and can be bad for the vine if you put in too much.

If you are unsure, it is better to simply skip the fertilizer and leave the vine in water.

Step Three – Position the Container

Place the container in an area where it gets good light but not direct sunlight, as this helps speed up and support pathos propagation.

Remember to top up the container with fresh water on a regular basis to keep the nodes covered.

Step Four - Selecting a Container

About a month after the first new roots begin to show, it’s time to plant your newly propagated pothos plant. Do not leave it in water too much longer than this, as plants that have lived in water for longer periods tend to struggle to adapt to soil.

Choose a pot that can drain water well and offers at least 6 inches of soil depth. Remember to place a tray underneath the pot to catch excess water, especially if this is to be an indoor plant.

Step Five – Covering the Vine

After filling the pot with potting soil, use your finger to create a hole in the centre of the soil. This hole needs to be deep enough to cover at least one inch of the stem above the node and new roots.

Gently take the vine out of the water and plant it in the hole, filling the hole and ensuring the roots are fully covered. Avoid packing the soil down too tightly around the roots.

How to Propagate Pothos in Soil

One of the questions we often get asked is, “Can you propagate pothos in soil?” and the answer is yes, propagating pothos in soil is easy! Here’s how.

Step One – Apply Rooting Hormone

Once you have your piece of vine, dip the end with the root nodes into rooting hormone, making sure you properly cover the nodes as per the instructions. This will trigger the growth of roots and speed up the process of propagating pothos in soil. Check out our best rooting hormones guide.

Step Two – Growing New Roots

Select a container that offers good drainage and has 6 inches of soil depth. Fill this container with potting mixture and make a hole in the centre with your finger, ensuring that at least one inch of the vine above the root nodes will be covered.

Place the vine cutting in the hole and cover with soil, being sure not to pack the soil down too tightly. You can also use a mix of half peat moss and half perlite instead of potting soil.

Step Three – Position the Container

Place the container in a location that gets lots of indirect light but no direct sunlight. Keep the soil moist, but do not soak the soil or over-water, as this will damage the vine. It should take around one month for the new roots to develop.

Caring for Your Pothos Plant

Place the container in a location that gets lots of indirect light but no direct sunlight. Keep the soil moist, but do not soak the soil or over-water, as this will damage the vine. It should take around one month for the new roots to develop.

Fertilizing Your Pothos

These plants require little in the way of fertilizer, but you can boost their health and growth by applying a balanced liquid or granular fertilizer (20-20-20) on a bi-monthly basis.

A healthy pothos can grow to 30 feet long, but if you want to keep it more contained, then simply prune it on a regular basis. This will help keep the foliage full and prevent the vine from becoming leggy.

Where to Position Your Pothos Plants

Pothos plants like Golden Pothos don’t need a lot of light and can be damaged by direct sunlight, so it’s important to position your plant pot correctly.

Choose a spot indoors where it gets lots of indirect light and place a climbing trellis against the pot to allow the vine to climb.

When you see new tendrils appear, gently wind some of them around the trellis to start it off. Alternatively, you can place it on a shelf so that it grows downwards and forms a curtain.

Golden Pothos Propagation

Watering Your New Pothos Correcty

The right way to water your new pothos plant is to sprinkle the soil rather than watering the plant and leaves itself. Water it gently, ensuring that the top inch of soil is moist.

Don’t soak the soil or water too frequently, as this can harm your plant. Satin pothos are sometimes mistaken as pothos. To learn more about this plant see our Scindapsus pictus growing guide here

Pothos Propagation FAQs

How often do you water a pothos plant?

Depending on your environment an indoor pothos plant needs to be watered between every 4-7 days. If your soil is still moist, you can water it less. Outdoor plants can be watered a little more often.

How to do you prune a pothos plant?

Using clean scissors or knife Cut the stem 1/4 inch above a leaf scar. New stems will grow at scars below the cutting point. This is how to grow a fuller, shorter plant.

Cut back the stems as much as necessary to keep the plant your desired size.

Why are the leaves on my pothos plant turning yellow? 

Yellowing leaves on a pothos plant can signal a serious problem like root rot, fungal disease or bacteria leaf spot. Learn how to treat and prevent yellowing of pothos leaves here.

Do pothos plants clean the air?

They are able to remove VOCs (volatile organic compounds) and toxins from the surrounding air. They can remove pollutants such as toluen, carbon monoxide, benzene, zylene and formaldehyde from the air.

Pothos plants can even help you sleep better which is why it is included in our list of 25 plants that can help you sleep better than ever

Check Out this Cool Time Lapse of a Pothos Propagate Root Development

Now You Know How To Propagate and Maintain Your Pothos

These are the tips on how to propagate pothos so you can start planting them anywhere in your house. Of course, for your plant to grow healthily, caring for them is an essential thing for you to do.

Fortunately for you, pothos have the ability to enjoy different types of environments. They can thrive in low light and in indirect light, so you don’t have to worry about not placing it under the sun.

When choosing a soil, you need to make sure that they are nutritious enough for the vine to grow. 

Lastly, it can also help your eyes to feel relaxed, especially if you feel congested or irritated. Some of the other problems that can be prevented or treated are glaucoma, cataracts, and hypertension.

Now it's time to start propagating your pothos  to experience all of it's benefits. Just don’t forget to follow the tips above on how to propagate them depending on your preferences, for you to ensure that they will grow exactly the way they should be.

As you can see, golden pothos propagation and maintenance is easy! Now that you know how to propagate pothos in soil or water, you have a rewarding way to refresh your houseplants and enjoy them for many years to come.

About the Author Ann Katelyn

I'm Ann Katelyn, Creator and Chief Author of Sumo Gardener. Since I was a child I've always been fascinated with plants and gardens, and as an adult this has developed into my most loved hobby. I have dedicated most of my life to gardening and started Sumo Gardener as a way to express my knowledge about gardening with the hope of helping other people's gardens thrive.

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