Drooping is one of the phases every plant faces if we either care too much or neglect it too often. Pothos are often overlooked, and it results in droopy leaves. We can quickly fix the problem of drooping in pothos if we can identify the cause early. So, let’s get right into it.
Excessive watering and high-intensity lighting are two significant causes of droopy leaves in pothos. Apart from that, overfertilization, low humidity, and pests could also lead to droopy leaves in pothos. Make sure your pot has adequate drainage, and the plant is placed at a medium-light spot for healthy growth.
Pothos is a trending plant for interiors at the moment. It has long vines with shiny leaves. Thus keeping the pothos on a bookshelf or hanging pots gives a finesse for an elegant display.
The plant is really easy to grow and propagate for beginners and easy to take care of.
One of the primary causes for the drooping is the watering problems like in any other indoor plant.
Though the pothos is highly tolerable to survive without water for a long time, yet we might want to provide some food for the plant every once in a while.
Light issues are another cause of the dropping of the leaves. So, let’s begin with the causes and the fix for the problems.
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My pothos is drooping
There can be several reasons which can lead to a droopy pothos. Right from water, light, soil to humidity, everything can affect the health of your plant.
So, we will discuss all of these issues in detail so that you can identify the problem with your pothos and fix the issue immediately.
Also read: Why is my pothos dying?
When the pothos is underwatered, it has some signs to show. The leaves will look a bit weak and flaccid. Often, the plant is not taken care of because it is kept for decoration, and we forget about the watering part.
Keeping the pothos in hanging pots is excellent, but we will need to overcome the laziness and take some time to water them as well. This intent causes the plant to receive less light.
The pothos plant likes to dry out a bit in between the watering. While watering the plant, water it with lots of water and let the excess water drain out of the drainage system.
We will need the golden rule of watering the pothos, that is, Feel the Soil. Here, we will need to use a spoon in case of a bigger pot or using your finger to feel the soil.
When the bottom of the soil starts to feel dry, it is time to water the plant.
However, make sure of not committing the rookie mistake of leaving the plant standing on water. If the plant is kept in a pot with drainage holes and has another outside pot with water being collected, there are chances of root rot.
The plant reacts immediately to root rot. There will be brown spots on the leaves, and the leaves will start drooping. The plant will look very dull.
Another issue that comes here with watering is that when to water the pothos plant.
All of this depends on multiple factors such as the plant’s placement in the house, the amount of light that is received by the pothos, and the size of the pot that it is kept in.
Usually, the right time for watering is once a week, but we get back to the golden rule Feel the Soil. When the plant is too dry, the edges of the leaves turn brown.
If the pothos is overwatered, then it might develop root rot. Also, the leaves on your pothos will turn yellow. The older leaves that are closer to the soil start to turn yellow.
Also read: How often should you water your pothos?
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Light needs of pothos
The pothos can be placed almost anywhere in your house. It can be placed in any direction. However, it’s recommended that the plant is kept away from the southern exposure.
It is always suggested to keep the plant away from the direction it gets direct sunlight as the plant loves indirect bright sunlight and thrives in it. This plant proliferates in indirect bright sunlight.
The direct sunlight all day might burn the plant and will turn the color of the leaves to yellow.
To understand it this way, the plant can be kept in direct sunlight, but it is not the perfect plant placement. This plant can also be kept in the middle of the room.
When placed in the middle of the room, the plant should be watered less, and the size of the leaves will be smaller. If this plant is kept in the dark spots, the plant will lose its yellowish variegated color and turn green.
So, your placement of the pothos will result in how your pothos will look like.
Another point to consider for the pothos placement is that when the plant is kept in a bright spot, it will result in larger leaves. However, the internodes will be smaller and vice versa.
What’s an internode? The internode is the distance between the same nodes. Nodes look blackish or brownish and a bit rusty. It is the point where the roots grow.
If the plant is placed in a bright area, there will be smaller internodes, and if kept at darker spots, the internodes will be larger. The plant will develop more great vines if kept in dark places.
Placing the pothos behind a sheer curtain will help the plant stay happy and grow without an issue. The indirect bright light will help the leaves develop the variegated pattern.
Also read: How much light do pothos need?
The effect of humidity
The pothos does not require that high humidity level, as is the case of other plants like a rubber plant, which loves humidity and needs optimum moisture to thrive.
Though the pothos is not affected so much by humidity, there are specific changes that we observe. If there is a high humidity level, then the pothos will grow faster and grow more.
In case there is low humidity, we will observe slow growth on the pothos. There won’t be any such difference in the plants.
The real issue is cold drafts. Yes, you see it right, breezes are the common enemy for the indoor plants, including your pothos as well.
If your pothos is placed near the window and gets draft during the winter, it generally doesn’t react to it unless it is a very cold draft.
If there is a very cold draft, consider changing your pothos’ position to a place where it doesn’t get the draft, or you might consider closing the windows.
Often, we use radiators during the winters. Please avoid placing your pothos right above or near the radiator.
The heat generated from the radiator and the low humidity might cause your pothos’ leaves to droop, and the plant might look dull. So, avoid the placement of the plant near the radiator during the winters.
Also read: Should I mist my pothos plant?
Poorly drained soil can cause your pothos to droop.
The pothos is an easy plant to care for, and one doesn’t require to repot the pothos immediately after purchase.
The pothos is quite a rootbound plant and likes to be rootbound. The root system of the pothos is compact, hence does not require an immediate repot.
However, if you want to repot the plant, we will need to transfer the plant in a bigger pot, with lots of soil around it. The size of the bigger pot is mostly one or two sizes larger.
As stated earlier, the plant is rootbound and likes to remain such; if the plant does not have enough soil around the roots and has grabbed hold of the pot so hard that its difficult to remove the plant, then we might see some issues.
The leaves from the pothos will start to fall off. The plant will look healthy but will shed leaves, and the older leaves first. That’s when we should consider repotting the pothos.
The pothos does not require any particular kind of soil for growth. It works fine in almost any type of soil.
The plant does not want to have too much water on the soil. Hence it’s advisable to purchase a soil that has good drainage.
We can also create good drainage to the soil by mixing it with a bit of pumice or perlite.
The pothos hates to stand in water as the plant is prone to root rot easily. There should be optimum drainage holes in the pot so that the water is drained.
Whenever we choose to water the pothos, we should feel the soil and check if the soil is a bit dry towards the plant’s bottom.
Also read: What kind of soil do pothos need?
Insect infestation can lead to drooping leaves.
Usually, the pothos plant is affected by mealybugs or spider mites, which may harm the plant if proper care is not taken.
Mealybugs can be seen with the naked eye and should be removed immediately. They look like white cotton furry balls, which are feeding on the leaves of the plant.
For the removal of these bugs, we can use pesticides and spray the pesticides on the plants. We need to make sure of the process that is prescribed in the manual of the pesticide.
If you want to remove the bugs and the mites organically, you may use a neem oil solution to spray on the plants.
We may also use lukewarm water to spray on the plants to kill the mites, which is a real help. Make sure that the water is tap water and does not have lots of chlorine in it.
The solution of lukewarm water can be used with salt to spray on the plants.
When these bugs are noticed at an early stage, it is easy to remove the bugs. However, if it’s very late, then it could be a problem.
Keeping the air a bit humid may help the cause, as the spider mites do not like high humidity.
Dusting the plant with a microfiber cloth will also help the plant because the mites are also attracted to dust.
Certain insecticides in the market, such as All-Season Oil spray, can be used for the infestation. This particular type of insecticide is on the lighter side.
The use of fertilizer also helps remove the infestation as they help the plant to get the desired nutrients and allows the plant to stay healthy.
Also read: Do pothos attract bugs?(Gnats, flies, etc)
Change in temperature can lead to drooping leaves.
Pothos can thrive in extreme conditions. It can survive the low light and can go without water for a long time.
That being said, the pothos is tropical plants and can grow best in the temperature ranging from 70 – 90°F. They can go as low as 50°F but try not to get below that.
This plant loves indirect sunlight, and we should make sure it is not placed near direct sunlight. Also, avoid keeping it near the radiators or heating vents.
If we decide to keep the pothos on your bookshelf or a hanging pot, we need to rotate the plant’s placement.
The secret to a healthier and happy pothos is indirect bright sunlight, so we must give the plant adequate sunlight. Though it can thrive in difficult situations, we want to keep the plant happy for the vines’ growth.
When the plant does not get enough sunlight, the leaves will stop its growth. Also, the leaves might get droopy. Hence, we prefer to keep it near the northern window and avoid the southern windows.
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Overfertilization can lead to drooping of pothos.
Sometimes we feel that the given instruction on the fertilizer is not optimum, and we provide the plant a bit extra portion of the fertilizer.
However, doing this might harm your plant. Hence, less is always better in this case.
Pothos plant does not require a lot of fertilizer; hence, we could use a seaweed solution or compost for better growth of the plant.
One should make sure of the fertilizing cycle and choose to fertilize it only when necessary. Pothos plant can grow in the water when propagated.
Using the aquarium water, if you have a fish tank, is helpful for the plant.
When you add the fertilizer to the plant, make sure that the excess amount of fertilizer is oozed out of the drainage holes.
The soil should absorb all the nutrients to keep the plant healthy.
The timing of the fertilization needs to be made sure.
Springs through summers are the best time to fertilize your pothos.
During the winters, we may give longer gaps in between the fertilization.
Another critical point to remember is that if the pothos is kept in an area where it gets little or no sunlight, the plant’s metabolism is reduced. The fertilization requirements of the plant should also be reduced.
Overfertilization may cause the burn in the pothos and will turn the leaves brown. It also leads to a droopy plant. So, pick up your calendar or note so that you keep a tab of fertilization.
Also read: Do pothos need fertilizer? (How much, How often)
- The pothos is an excellent indoor plant and helps in the air purification. It is also a low-maintenance plant and is easy to grow.
- No matter whether you are growing your pothos in water or soil, avoid using plastic containers as it contains harmful chemicals and toxins.
- In case you are growing your money plant in water, please make sure that you change the water two to three times a week. If one does not change the water, we will see algae growth on the container.
- Pruning of the pothos is essential. We should consider removing the yellow or dried leaves for proper and bushier growth of the plant.
- Misting your money plant with lukewarm water to remove the dust will help avoid pests like mealybugs and spider mites, as these insects are prone to dusty environments.
- Finally, keep your pothos away from the reach of your children and pets as these are poisonous.
Also read: How to save a dying pothos?
Sources: University of Florida Research, Effects of Different Pot Mixtures on Pothos, Pothos water need study
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