The jade pothos is one of the most common pothos varieties you’ll find in nurseries alongside the golden pothos, marble queen pothos and neon pothos. However, they all look different.
Curiously, 2 of the 4 have little or no variegations (Jade and Neon) whereas the other two are known for splotches (Golden and Marble Queen).
Similarly, two (Golden and Neon) feature no-so-green colors whereas the other two come with more traditional green foliage (Jade and Marble Queen).
In any case the jade pothos is a very popular houseplant because it not only looks good but is also very easy to care for. It can take a bit of neglect and abuse which makes it ideal for beginners or plant owners who don’t have a lot of time on their hands.
Like all pothos plants, its foliage is its main attraction. The jade pothos features heart-shaped leaves that are dark green in color with very little variegation. Because it is a trailing vine, it needs a good amount of space to extend itself.
Read more about the jade pohtos and how to care for it below.
Jade Pothos Plant Care
Jade Pothos Light
One of the things that makes the jade pothos an easy houseplant to care for is that it thrives in different light conditions. While it does best given bright, indirect light, it doesn’t mind low light conditions. And, it will likewise do well with fluorescent lighting.
The one thing it cannot take it direct sunlight which will scorch its leaves. Thus, you can place in in any room your home as long as it is not dark or under the sun’s rays. This includes the living room, bathroom, bedroom and hallways.
Similarly, it won’t mind being situated in any window on any side of your home. Both the north and east facing windows are ideal because you can just leave it there to be happy.
In the west and south, you’ll either need to distance it a bit from the window opening or protect it with some kind of shade or filter.
That said, do observe how your jade pothos reacts to its lighting environment.
If its dark green leaves are beginning to become paler, it’s a sign that it is getting too much bright light. On the other hand, slower grown and lack of leaf color vibrancy means it wants more light.
Also keep in mind that the plant grows in the direction of the light. So, it is a good idea to rotate the plant 90 degrees (quarter rotation) every so often. I like to turn it each time I water. That way there’s no need to have a separate schedule. And, you’re able to do it regularly.
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Jade Pothos Temperature & Humidity
Your jade pothos’ ideal temperature is between 65 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, which is what most homes have. Again, this makes it easy to care for the plant without making any drastic changes to your home or lifestyle.
That said, you can expand the range out a bit to between 60 and 85 degrees if you want t little bit more leeway. Beyond these boundaries, your plant will likely start experiencing stress.
This makes the jade pothos feel at home outdoors in USDA zones 10 and 11. So, you can keep it in a garden bed or container outside all year round if you live in these regions. But, always keep it away from direct sunlight or full sun.
It is also very important to remember the plant is not frost hardy. As such, once the temperature drops under 60 degrees, it is time to take it indoors or somewhere more cozy.
Similarly, the plant likes moderate to high humidity. And, because it doesn’t mind low light conditions, the bathroom can be a perfect place for it.
But, from experience, as long as the air in your home isn’t dry, it will be fine. This means keeping it away from air conditioned rooms or those with heaters which will reduce moisture in the air.
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Jade pothos isn’t a very thirsty plant. But, it also doesn’t like being left to dry. This means you’ll likely need to water it about once a week or less depending on the time of year. Again, this brings us back to ease of care and low maintenance.
Because every plant is different based on where you put them, how much sun they received, the climate in your locale, the kind of soil you use and other factors, you need to check the soil before watering each and every time.
This is the only way to ensure that you’re not overwatering. Which, by the way is the easiest way to mess up or even cause your jade pothos to die.
Allowing them to sit in water for long periods of time makes them susceptible to root rot. Initially, overwatering will cause it to walt and have brown leaves. If you see this, it is important to immediately make changes. That’s because they don’t have deep root systems. As such, it is easy to overwater them.
If you don’t scale back on moisture, it will eventually result in root rot which can lead to you having to throw out the plant.
And, excess moisture isn’t just in the roots. If you water from overhead wetting the plant, you want to make sure the liquid dries quickly. If moisture is left in its leaves for long periods of time it will likely lead to fungal disease.
As such, the best way to avoid this is to water directly onto the soil instead of the over the plant.
How to Water Your Jade Pothos
Make sure to allow the soil to dry between waterings. In the winter, you want the soil to completely dry out before you water again. And, you have 2 options to do this.
- Use a moisture meter. This is the easiest way. They are cheap. And, it will immediately tell you how wet the soil is. All you need to do is stick it into the container.
- Stick your finger to test the soil. With your jade pothos, you want to allow the top 3 to 4 inches of soil to dry before watering again.
Both methods work. More importantly, they prevent you form overwatering your plant as well as letting it dry out.
Additionally, it is a good idea to thoroughly water your jade pothos. Instead of quickly dousing it with water, slowly pour the water onto the soil. This allows it to absorb the liquid. It also lets the moisture penetrate down to the soil better.
You can also poke holes into the soil using skewers or something similar. This will aerate the soil. And, it will make it easier for water to reach your plant.
On the other hand, lack of water is likewise a bad idea. When you see leaves droop or start to curl, it is a sign to water. You’ll also notice that the leaves will look dull and dry instead of shiny and vibrant.
What you don’t want to see is dry brown leaf edges. This is a sure sign that the plant has been dehydrated for a long time. If you let this happen too often, your jade pothos will deteriorate and soon die.
Jade pothos do well in standard potting soil. The one thing you need to makes sure of is that they soil drains well. it also likes a good amount of space.
As such, if you notice that the soil stays too moist or does dry well, you can add perlite or pumice to improve drainage. This will reduce the risk of wet feet.
The other thing to keep in mind is that like other pothos plants, it grows trailing vines. As such, you have a few options on what kind of container and where you can put it.
If you want to allow it to grow longer, a hanging basked or a container sitting on a high surface works well
if you want to keep it on a tabletop of shelf, you’ll need to prune it more regularly so it won’t spread out and cover the entire surface.
Fertilizing Jade Pothos
In keeping with its low maintenance nature, the jade pothos isn’t a heavy feeder either. That said, how much fertilizer it needs will depend on the kind of soil you have.
High quality potting mixes come with some kind of fertilizer. If it is slow release, it will be able to sustain your jade pothos for months. Therefore, you don’t need to add plant food.
The only time you will need to is if you see it not growing as much as it should. Or, looking more sluggish that a normal jade plant would.
Otherwise, you can leave it be, give it enough sunlight, temperature, humidity, water and it will be happy. You’ll only need to start feeding once the fertilizer in the potting mix is used up.
On the other hand, some potting soil don’t come with any fertilizer. If this is the case, you’ll want to use a balanced liquid fertilizer once a month during its growing season.
Jade Pothos Pruning
This is the one area where you will need to do some work from time to time. The good news is, how much work will depend on your preference.
The reason for this is that plant has trailing stems that get long over time. And, they get dense. They can likewise look messy as they grow all over the place.
Pruning allows you to control its growth, size and shape. It also lets you “design” your plant for where you want to place it.
Just as importantly, it allows you to remove dead, discolored or damaged leaves. Doing so makes your plant look better. And, it helps promote new growth to make it look fuller as well.
Always remember, when pruning, make sure to use a sterilized pair of scissors or pruning shears. This ensures no bacterial is passed from the blade to the plant.
The best way to propagate jade pothos as home is via stem cuttings. And, you’ll want to do this when pruning since it involves trimming off stems. That way, you get two things done at the same time.
How to Propagate Jade Pothos from Stem Cuttings
- Pick a stem that’s will let you get at least a 4 to 6 inch cutting. You want a healthy stem with a few leaves on it.
- Cut the stem just below a node. A node is the part of the stem where the leaves branch out. You can snip about half an inch to an inch below the node.
- Once you have the cutting, you can dip the cut end into rooting hormone powder. This is optional. But, it helps speed up the rooting process.
- Now you have a choice. Start the cutting in water or directly plant it in soil. The latter skips the extra step of putting it in water. But, rooting in water has a higher success rate. It also takes less time for the cutting to root. And, you can see the roots grow in real time.
- If you decide to start in water, dip the stem end into a jar. It will take a few weeks to see the roots develop.
- And, once they grow 1 to 2 inches, you can move them into a pot with fresh potting soil.
- From here, all you need to do is water the plant to keep the soil moist. And, keep it under medium to bright, indirect sunlight in a warm, humid area.
- After a while, you’ll start seeing it sprout leaves.
Transplanting & Repotting
In addition to pruning the vines on top, at some point you’ll need to give the plant’s roots more space to grow. The best time to do so is when it becomes root bound. This is a sure sign that the plant’s root system has outgrown the container.
Here, your jade pothos will give you a few hints. These include:
- Roots peeking out of the drainage holes. This is the best sign that the plant is getting too big for its pot.
- Water dries faster than normal even if you water with the same amount and frequency.
- The plant grows slower or its growth gets stunted.
- It shows signs of distress. This include drooping leaves. Although, these symptoms could also be sign of other problems. So, you want to check out the other signs above.
How to Repot Jade Pothos
- To repot your jade pothos, you will need a larger container. Something that’s 2 inches larger than its current home will work. You also need fresh potting soil. Again, here opt for high quality potting soil that drains well.
- If you don’t want to feed the plant for a while, go with one that comes with a starter dose of slow release fertilizer. This will last you months before having to feed the plant.
- Now that you have these things ready, it is time to repot.
- Gently take your jade pothos out of its container.
- Dust off any excess soil. And, inspect its roots. You want to trim off any unhealthy roots, including brown, black and mushy ones.
- Add fresh potting mix to the new container up t about a third.
- Insert the plant into the new container. Then backfill with soil. Don’t pack in the soil too tightly. You want it to be loose enough for air and water to easily pass.
- Water the plant and keep the soil moist.
jade pothos contains calcium oxalate crystals. As such, it is poisonous to ingest for humans, dogs, cats and other animals. It can cause mouth irritation, difficulty breathing, vomiting and nausea to name a few unpleasant symptoms.
Pests and Diseases
In general, pothos plants don’t deal with many pest or disease problems. This makes it easy to care for especially if you’re just starting or don’t have a lot of time on your hands.
That said, pests like mealybugs and spider mites can come to visit, although infestations are rare. Thus, it is important to inspect the plants’ leaves every now and then for these critters.
You want to deal with them immediately before they can do a lot of damage.
The easiest way to do so is by using neem oil or insecticidal soap. It will take a while so you need to be patient and consistently apply treatment.
As for diseases, moisture-borne problems like root rot and leaf spot are the most common issues. They are also the easiest to prevent. As long as you don’t overwater your plant or wet it from overheat, the odds of these happening is rare.