Pothos rank among the most popular houseplants because they are easy to care for have look beautiful when allowed to sprawl or trail from pots and hanging baskets. As a plant owner, you probably want to know the growth potential of your plant.
How fast do Pothos grow? Pothos care fast, aggressive growers. They can grow between 12 to 18 inches per month during their growing season.
And in order to do is it important to give it proper care. Since pothos are tropical plants keep it is important to give it sufficient light and a warm environment (between 70-90 degrees Fahrenheit) to grow optimally.
In this article, I’ll explain the things that can affect how fast your pothos can grow in including whether it is better to grow your pothos in soil or in water.
How Fast Does Pothos Grow?
Pothos are fast growing plants. More importantly, they don’t require a lot in order to grow. This makes them popular houseplants because they are fairly low maintenance and you see lots of results in a short period of time.
With proper care, Pothos can grow about 12 inches per month during their growing season.
This allows them to grow to between 20 to 40 feet long when left alone and not pruned.
Note that they are tropical plants so they will grow fastest during the warmer months.
As such, if you live in a tropical region, you’ll see the plant keep growing all year round which even speeds up the process.
This is why they can become a hassle to some houseplant owners because the longer they get, the more pruning you’ll need to do.
On the other hand, if you live the areas with four seasons, you’ll likely see the plant grow fastest during spring and summer. It will slow down during the cold weather.
Another thing to consider is the variety of pothos you have. Not all pothos grow at the same rate. And some grow faster than others.
One example is variegated pothos varieties tend to grow slower than those with solid green leaves. As such, you should not compare or group all pothos together since some will grow faster than others.
Finally, how you can for the plant will likewise affect how quickly it grows.
In most cases, the more light it receives the faster it will grow provided that it is not exposed to direct sunlight or very strong, harsh light.
Does Pothos Grow Faster in Soil or Water?
It depends. Given similar living conditions, pothos will grow faster in soil than in water. That’s because potting mixes contain nutrients that will help the roots get stronger.
The nutrients will also help the plant grow faster as well.
That said, when propagating pothos, the cuttings will root faster in water.
However, once the plant develops enough roots, it is a good idea to transfer them to potting soil as this will speed up their growth.
I’ve found that the longer your leaves pothos in water, the slower their growth will be compared to being in soil.
How Fast Does Pothos Grow in Water?
Pothos cuttings that are submerged in water will grow new roots as quickly as 7 to 14 days. However, you’ll want to wait until the roots grow to at least 1-2 inches long before moving it to soil.
It usually takes between 3 to 4 weeks before the pothos’ roots get to this length.
That said, I do know some growers who keep their pothos in water longer.
Keeping pothos in water usually means it will grow as fast as it would in soil. Therefore, if you choose to go this route, I suggest using a good quality liquid fertilizer to help it out.
How Fast Do Pothos Grow in Soil?
If you decide to directly plant your pothos cuttings in soil, it will usually take about a month or a little more for its to root.
As such, the difference between rooting your pothos in water and soil is about 7 to 12 or so days, with propagating in water being the faster one of the two methods.
However, I’ve notice that pothos that have been rooted in soil, albeit slower, tend to have stronger roots and establish a better foundation onto the soil compared to those what were rooted in water then transferred to soil.
Why Is My Pothos Not Growing?
Pothos will grow in just about anywhere. They will also climb onto whatever they can find near them.
This is why you’ll sometimes see pothos growing on walls even if there are kept in a pot.
However, there may be instances when you notice that your pothos is not growing. This can either be because it is growing slowly or it has completely stopped growing altogether.
In most cases, this has something to do with its care and living conditions. Thus, if your pothos stops growing or experiences stunted growth, review your care routine and see if there is something you can optimize.
Here are the things to check when you notice your Pothos is not growing.
- Overwatering – overwatering is something you should always watch out for with houseplants in including pothos. It will cause the plant to struggle and affect its growth. Even worse, it can lead to root rot
- Incorrect lighting – light is another important factor. Low light causes slow growth. Meanwhile too much light can burn its leaves and stress the plant.
- Low humidity – pothos grow the fastest and produce more leaves when kept in humid conditions. If humidity consistently stays in the 30s or lower, it will slow down the plant’s growth.
- Underwatering – pothos, like other houseplants, need water for sustenance. Without it, the plant will wilt and droop. If dehydrated, its growth will slow down then stop.
- Temperature issues – the ideal temperature range for pothos is between 70 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Keeping it in colder or hotter conditions will slow down its growth. And the farther off you go the slower growth gets.
- Too much fertilizer – overfeeding can damage the roots which will eventually reduce their ability to absorb moisture and nutrients from the soil. Thus, affecting its growth.
- Lack of nutrients – lack of nutrients slow down growth because it does not get all the minerals it needs.
How to Make Pothos Faster
Now that you know what can cause your pothos to stop growing or its growth to slow, here’s how to make it grow faster.
As mentioned, pothos are fast growers and can grow between 12 to 18 inches a month during its growing season. They also tend to keep growing which allows their vines to reach anywhere between 20 to 40 feet long.
The difference in how fast or slow your pothos grows is largely affected by two things:
- The care you give it
- The environmental conditions surrounding it
Therefore, you can optimize its growth by making sure you cover these two aspects. Here are the most important things to consider.
- How to Make Pothos Grow Faster?
- How To Propagate a Satin Pothos Plant
- Pothos Leaves Turning Brown: Causes & Treatments
- Pothos Root Rot
- Why are My Pothos Leaves Curling?
- Why are My Pothos Leaves Turning Yellow?
Supply Enough Bright, Indirect Light
For pothos to grow fast, they need sunlight. If you have a variegated pothos, it will need more light than varieties with solid green leaves.
That ‘s because the variegated sections of the leaves, albeit beautiful to look at, don’t absorb sunlight Therefore, only the remaining green sections of the leaves are what do the work.
So, compensate for this, you’ll want to supply it with more light to grow optimally.
That said, pothos need a good balance of light.
- Too much light is harmful to the plant because it can burn its leaves and cause discoloration.
- Too little light will slow down its growth and can make it spindly.
Thus, even if pothos can tolerate low light, it is not a good idea to keep them in this environment if you want the plant to grow faster.
Instead, keep it in bright, indirect light indoors. Outdoors, it will grow fastest in partial shade.
Use a Suitable Growing Medium
Above, I’ve mentioned that pothos can grow both in soil and water.
However, if you’re looking to help it grow faster, your best bet is to keep it in soil. I’ve found that pothos grow faster in soil compared to water assuming their living conditions are the same.
This is partially because soil contains nutrients.
Therefore, if you want to keep pothos in water make sure to supply it with liquid fertilizer.
The best kind of soil to use for pothos is well-draining soil with pH between 6.1 to 6.5. This will give the plant enough moisture to sustain its growth with less risk of waterlogging.
Similarly, the soil pH will allow its roots to absorb more nutrients.
Finally, it is a good idea to add organic matter to the soil. You can get soil with the nutrients already added in or if you’re making your own potting mix add compost to achiever this.
Rich, fertile soil will a good amount of organic matter will help your pothos grow faster.
Maintain Ideal Temperature Levels
Pothos are native to tropical regions. This means it is accustomed to warm, sunny weather the entire year.
Due to their proximity to the equator, the tropics don’t experience snow and winter. Instead, the weather stays somewhat steady and consistent with mild fluctuations throughout the year.
This is why pothos have an ideal temperature range between 70 and 90 degrees. And within this range, it will grow the fastest.
While it can tolerate conditions above and below this range, the farther off you veer from its sweet spot, the slower the plant will grow.
Additionally, you want to avoid extremes.
If kept in temperatures above 100 degrees Fahrenheit on a consistent basis, your pothos will experience heat stress which will slow its growth. It will also increase the risk of dehydration.
More importantly, the plant cannot take the cold. Therefore, avoid keeping it in temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Here, your pothos will struggle and slow down in growth.
The cold is more dangerous for this plant that heat. And it can eventually damage its tissues.
Therefore, you can keep it outdoors all year round if you live in USDA Hardiness Zones 10 to 12. But if you live somewhere colder, make sure to bring it back indoors once the temperature drops to 55 degrees.
Overwatering is another serious issue for your pothos. In fact, this one can eventually kill the plant.
Too much water affects its roots because it deprives them of oxygen.
When this happens, you’ll see its leaves turn yellow and the plant start to wilt. This is a sign that it is struggling.
And because overwatering is the most serious problem your pothos will face, it is always worth checking the roots for rotting.
Root rot is a result of overwatering. This happens because the roots cannot breathe air when they’re drowning in water.
So, it this lasts for a long time, the roots will suffocate and rot.
That said, you also don’t want to let the soil get completely dry as dehydration also negatively affects it growth.
Therefore, regularly check the soil to know when to water your plant.
Once the top 2 inches of soil has dried, you can water the plant. But avoid doing so before then.
Feed Your Pothos
Pothos don’t necessarily need fertilizer. But it will benefit from it since the added nutrients will let the plant grow faster.
So, if your goal is optimal growth, it is important to feed your pothos plant food.
Note that while the plant does benefit from fertilizer, it does not need a lot. Therefore, overfeeding will cause more problems.
To achieve optimum growth, feed your pothos a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 2 to 3 months during its growing season.
Avoid giving it more than it needs. And avoid feeding it at other times of the year when it is not growing much.
Check for Pests and Get Rid of Them as Soon as You Spot them
Keeping your pothos pest-free also helps it grow quickly.
That’s because its growth is unhindered.
The problem with pests is that they suck on the plant’s sap. This robs your pothos of valuable moisture and nutrients. Both of which it needs to grow optimally.
More importantly, pests tend to multiply fast. So, if left untreated a few bugs can turn into a pest infestation in just a matter of days.
And the more pests there are, the more damage to the plant.
Also, the bigger the pest problem, the longer it will take to treat it. This means that your plant’s growth will suffer throughout the time the pests appear all the way until they’re eradicated.
This usually takes several weeks.