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This post is all about Golden Pothos Care. If you’ve recently purchased a Golden Pothos plant, then you’re probably wondering what to do with it now. This plant guide will not only help you keep your Golden Pothos alive, but thriving, as well.
Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum), also known as Devil’s Ivy, is a very common houseplant that many people find at big box retailers and supermarkets.
It’s the quintessential houseplant because it has coloring that can brighten any room and is also so easy to care for in many growing conditions. It’s the ideal houseplant for any beginner plant parent.
If you’ve recently purchased a Golden Pothos plant, your probably did so because of it’s glossy, variegated leaves of yellow and green, and for it’s cascading stems that have alternating leaves.
You made the right choice. It’s a cheerful houseplant and looks best in hanging baskets and vertical spaces. It’s trailing vines can actually grow as long as 40 feet!
Now it’s time to learn how to keep your beauty alive and get it to grow big and lush with this Golden Pothos Care guide.
Golden Pothos Care: Quick Guide
Light: Moderate to bright indirect sunlight or fluorescent light.
Soil: Well-draining soil mix.
Watering: Let soil completely dry out before watering again.
Humidity: 50% or more
Temperature: 60-80ºF or 16-27ºC
Fertilizing: Fish emulsion diluted to 1/4 to 1/2 strength or top dressing of worm castings
Golden Pothos Description
Golden Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) is in a perennial evergreen in the Araceae family, making it an aroid.
It originated in the Society Islands, which is part of French Polynesia and includes the islands of Tahiti and Bora Bora.
Pothos plants love to climb up the trunks of trees or spread and crawl as groundcover.
Golden Pothos’ heart-shaped leaves have a bright and cheery aesthetic. That’s because they are variegated with green and yellow – and sometimes even white.
In addition, the leaves are glossy – sometimes leathery and sometimes smooth.
It’s alternating leaf arrangement is beautiful and their vines have the potential to grow really long! The tips within this Golden Pothos Care guide will help your plant get there.
Golden Pothos Care: How Much Light Does My Plant Need?
Golden Pothos plants can tolerate a range of light conditions. That’s why it makes the perfect houseplant, as every home and every room offers varying levels of light suitable for plants.
The best light condition for Golden Pothos is bright, indirect sunlight. This can be dappled sunlight, deep shade, or partial shade.
This means that your Golden Pothos will thrive outdoors in a container or hanging basket that is under the shade all day with no direct sunlight or only in direct sunlight in the early morning.
It will also thrive indoors near a window, as long as it does not receive direct sunlight.
If you notice that the sun shines on your Golden Pothos, simply put up a sheer curtain over your window to dapple the sunlight for your plant.
Although bright, indirect sunlight is best for your Golden Pothos, it can also survive under bright fluorescent light.
Not many plants can tolerate only fluorescent light, but your Golden Pothos can. That means it makes for a great office plant and ideal for someone who has little to no experience caring for plants.
Can My Golden Pothos Revert to Green?
Yes, depending on the amount of light it receives, the variegated leaves on your Golden Pothos can revert back to green to look like its parent plant, the Jade Pothos.
This happens because in low light settings, the leaves will try to produce more chlorophyll in order to make up for the energy deficit it’s under when in low light.
If you want to keep or increase the variegation on your Golden Pothos, place your plant in a location with lots of bright indirect sunlight.
If your Golden Pothos reverts to green, remove the green foliage to help ensure the green doesn’t become the dominant color for future growth.
What Kind of Soil Does My Golden Pothos Need?
Your Golden Pothos needs well-draining soil. Compact soil or soil without sufficient air pockets can cause water to stay in contact with the roots too long. And this will eventually lead to root rot.
You can purchase well-draining, highly aerated soil for your Golden Pothos, or you can make a mixture of your own.
If you decide to go the DIY route, be sure to check out our aroid soil mix recipe, which is the perfect medium for your Pothos.
Golden Pothos Care: Watering Requirements
Water your Golden Pothos thoroughly once it has completely dried out.
This is the key to a healthy Golden Pothos – let the soil dry out completely before watering it again.
When your plant’s root system becomes larger, it will use up the water in the soil more rapidly and will therefore require more frequent watering.
Your plant will also require more frequent watering depending on the temperature of its environment. The hotter it is, the more water your plant will need.
There are many common methods you can use to tell when the soil has dried out and it is time to water.
You can use a moisture meter and water when the meter reads “dry”.
Alternatively, you can insert your finger into the soil up to your second knuckle. If you feel any moisture at all, then wait to water.
Another important part of watering your Golden Pothos is the time of day. It’s best to water it first thing in the morning or before lunch, at the very least.
Daytime is best for watering your plant because it gives your Pothos the opportunity to absorb and drink the water. It also prevents infection on the leaves.
The reason why is because if water sits on the surface of the leaves at night while the plant is transpiring, this can cause bacterial and fungal infections on your leaves.
Golden Pothos Care: Humidity Requirements
Although your Golden Pothos can survive in low humidity, it will undoubtedly thrive if you provide it with at least 50% humidity. It is a tropical plant and loves that extra moisture in the air.
A couple ways to increase humidity for your plant is to either use a humidifier or to place your plant on top of a tray filled with gravel and water.
The first option is to use a humidifier. Follow your humidifier’s directions carefully and fill your humidifier with distilled water. Properly using a humidifier can give your plants the moisture that they crave.
The second option is to fill a tray with pebbles or gravel. Then fill that tray with water. Place your plant on top of this tray or around it. This will increase the humidity for your Pothos.
Should I Mist My Golden Pothos on a Regular Basis?
No. Golden Pothos do not need misting. They will enjoy the occasional misting and the increased humidity, but they do not need to be misted on a regular basis.
The ideal temperature range for Golden Pothos is between 60-80ºF or 16-27ºC.
As mentioned in the Water Requirements section, if the temperature where you Pothos is located is warm or hot, your plant will require more frequent watering.
So if you keep your plant in the patio and the weather is around 80ºF or 27ºC, then check the soil moisture more often.
Golden Pothos needs extra nutrients to grow lush and big. It also needs fertilizer in order to maintain it variegation and not revert back to green.
We fertilize our pothos plants with fish emulsion diluted to 1/4 to 1/2 strength, and they just love it! During the growing months of Spring and Summer, fertilize at 1/2 strength and then lower it down to 1/4 strength during the Fall and Winter.
You can also add a top dressing of worm castings. Simply pour worm castings over the top of the soil and mix it in just slightly. This top dressing works by providing the roots with nutrients every time you water the plant.
Fungus gnats. Allow the soil to dry out before watering again in order to avoid those pesky little fungus gnats inside your home. They are annoying to say the least! Letting the soil dry out will also help you avoid fungus on the plant.
Spider mites. Look for tiny webs underneath the leaves and where the leaf meets the petiole. If you see some, then you may have spider mites. You can also gently wipe a white paper towel across the underside of a few leaves. If you see reddish-brown streaks on the paper towel, then your plant likely has spider mites. Use this article to get rid of spider mites in 5 simple steps.
Mealy bugs. If you see fuzzy oval-shaped bugs just parked on the leaves, then your Pothos likely has mealy bugs. Use neem oil or a horticultural pest spray to help you get rid of them.
How to Propagate Golden Pothos
Propagating in soil is the recommended method for Golden Pothos.
First start by putting soil into a pot with drainage holes. Fill up the pot until the soil reaches an inch from the top and moisten the soil with water.
If you are wondering what kind of soil to use to propagate your Golden Pothos, take a look at this article: How to Make the Best Propagation Soil.
Next, select a long vine or two on your Golden Pothos that you could like to trim. With clean, sterilized scissors, cut the vine where you desire. Ideally it should be between the nodes of two leaves.
Take the part that you cut off and cut a quarter of the way above one node, and then cut again a quarter of the way below that same node. Do this for most of the leaves you have.
If you have some younger leaves on the end of the vine that haven’t harden off yet, then just discard those.
You should aim for cutting off at least 6 leaves with nodes if you want a your new plant to look nice and full. The more cuttings the better!
Finally, position the leaf to face up to the sky and insert the node that’s pointing downward into the moist propagation soil. Do this for all of your cuttings.
Keep your propagation soil moist for 4 weeks while the roots are developing.
After 4 weeks, you should notice new growth from your cuttings. So exciting!
Propagation Tip: You can help your propagations grow faster if you give them more humidity. A humidity dome works great for helping your propagations grow quickly.
Tips on How to Grow a Lush and Full Pothos
Tip #1: When you are purchasing a Golden Pothos, look for one with at least 12-15 plants inside the pot. This helps you get to a full and large plant quicker than if your pot only had one or two plants in it. So, when you propagate your Golden Pothos, try to add up to 15-20 cuttings to the soil so that the resulting plant will be full and lush.
Trip #2: Trim back your vines when they get long. Trimming your plants back somehow encourages new growth elsewhere on the plant, resulting in a fuller effect. Take advantage of this moment. Use the parts your trimmed off to propagate new Golden Pothos plants.
Tip #3: Stake up your Golden Pothos. Pothos are epiphytic and grow up tree trunks and vertical spaces. They can actually get quite larger when given the opportunity to climb up on a stake, totem or moss pole.
So now that you’ve made it through this Golden Pothos Care guide, you are closer to growing some gorgeous, lush and full plants with these tips. Just because its a common house plant doesn’t mean you can’t grow one that others will rave about.