How to Grow a Pothos Plant in Water

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About: I work at instructables by day, and turn into a stitch witch by night. follow me on instagram @jessyratfink to see what i'm working on! ^_^

As someone a little obsessed with pothos plants, I want to have them all over! Growing pothos in water is a great way to add greenery to small spaces without the mess of soil and repotting.

Last time I decided to trim my golden pothos, I took some of the cuttings and transplanted them into soil, and let the others grow extensive roots in water. They've been growing for a few months now and are just as happy as the pothos I have in soil.

Keep reading to learn how to keep a pothos plant alive and thriving in water!

Step 1: What You'll Need to Grow a Pothos in Water

First all all, you'll need some pothos cuttings! Check out my instructable "How to Propagate a Pothos Plant" for all the details of making and rooting cuttings. In that instructable I say to only make cuttings one node, but for this purpose you can cut lengths of 3-4 nodes and remove some of the lower leaves for longer stems. :)

Tools + Materials:

  • Clean glass containers
  • Water (I use well water)
  • All purpose fertilizer (can be liquid or powder)

I'm using some test tubes I had from another project, mason jars and drinking glasses as "pots" for my pothos at the moment, but I hope to have a hanging system set up soon! I think that will look so much nicer. :D

Regarding water: it's fine to use tap water, but if you do, let a container of it sit out in open air for a day or so to let some of the chlorine evaporate.

Step 2: Choose a Glass Vessel

As long as it's clean, easy to add water to, and allows you to remove the plant for cleaning - it's perfect!

I really love the way test tubes hold the cuttings, but other thin-necked vases or bottles would look great too.

Step 3: How to Keep a Pothos Alive in Water

There are three major things to worry about here:

  1. Change the water every now and then and add new water as needed. Water loses oxygen over time, and roots need oxygen! I recommend changing the water every couple weeks or so.
  2. Feeding your pothos is important! Typically, potting soil contains nutrients your plant needs, but since it's in water you'll need to feed it to keep it growing! I dilute all purpose fertilizer to 1/4 strength and pour a small amount of that into each container. I use this fertilizer-water mix to refill the containers as the water slowly evaporates.
  3. Keep your containers clean! If the glass begins to get cloudy or covered in algae, remove the plant and wash the container.

As long as you check it regularly, a pothos will thrive in water. I've loved being able to watch new roots and leaves forming. :D

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11 Discussions

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Anwar Tadros

4 months ago

I always wanted to know some tricks to grow plants in water, Thank you for the post

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Brian M V

Tip 4 months ago

when living in warmer climates, i recommend you change out you water every 3 days max! unless you're trying your hand at an mosquito-farm!

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beneluxbrBrian M V

Reply 4 months ago

Hi! Here in Brazil we must be very, very careful with mosquitos... So there are those micro jelly balls that grow in water (Chinese origin, I think), restraining mosquito proliferation. Just add it to the water, in the glass jars, so the jelly balls can float a little above the water line (when grown, which happens two or three hours after submersion), and plant the pothos on it. Additionally to protection and improved fixation of the plants, the colorful effect will be great!

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beneluxbr

4 months ago

You can also grow pothos inside fish bowls, together with live fishes, also with leaves fully submerged....But you can't put fertilizer, so to not harm the fishes. Fishes dirt will fertilize the plants!(potho plants are not harmful to fishes, and vice-versa)

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CherElainebeneluxbr

Reply 4 months ago

Adding to a fish bowl is an awesome idea! Remember to leave a space for the little fishies to come up to the surface or they will not survive. Love it!!

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pjerzbeneluxbr

Reply 4 months ago

Yes, I do the same. Also I use the fish tank to propagate pothos with cuttings.

There are special fertilizers for plants in fish tanks which won't do harm to the fish. These provide the substances not contained in fish dirt (for example iron (Fe) ) and add also nitrogen, phosphor and kalium (sp?), which apparently are not as abundant as expected inside a fish tank.

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Brian M V

Tip 4 months ago

use this same way to propogate pineapple! use the crown and/ or the small stubs (small plants around crown) for new plants! remove all (or at least most) of the yellow flesh and i take off at least half of the leaves of the crown, stick in water and wait!

(the ones on my picture are all from 1 pineapple!)

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BarbaraG48

4 months ago

Thanks for the post.

Can they be planted back into soil after they developed roots in the water?

Thanks.

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Brian M VBarbaraG48

Reply 4 months ago

yea, no problem!

just be sure to keep the dirt quite wet for the first week or so. this will help the transition from completly submerged to having "to search" for water!

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billbillt

4 months ago

THANKS FOR POSTING THIS!..