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Do Pothos Need Drainage? (Answered)

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Last updated on September 26th, 2022 at 12:07 pm

An essential element of keeping healthy plants is proper drainage. It doesn’t matter if the plants are indoors or outdoors. The drainage process helps keep water from pooling at the base area of the plants.

Doing otherwise can result in bacteria, root rot, and fungus. So, if you’re growing pothos, you may wonder if it loves the water or needs good drainage.

Pothos require good drainage. If planted on a soil surface that doesn’t allow drainage, the roots will rot, and this causes irreparable damage to the plant.

Can I Plant Pothos without Drainage?

You can plant pothos without drainage only if you water it minimally.

Pothos, Epipremnum aureum, naturally do not need much maintenance and care, and live for many years; growing up to 20 feet in length.

Drainage holes are usually made to allow excess water to drip out of the plant pot. Plants need water to survive, yet overwatering has proved an efficient way of killing an indoor plant.

Pothos can be planted without drainage, only if these rules are applied:

1. Do the watering slowly and only with little water. Remember every little drop of water you add to the plant will be there for a time.

To ensure that the water gets evenly distributed in every part of the soil without pooling at the bottom, water the plant slowly and sparingly.

2. Create a drainage layer by adding stones, pebbles or pumice to the bottom of the soil before adding soil.

Doing this allows excess water to drain out of the soil faster, as the mediums added before the soil have a lot more space between them than the tightly packed soil particles.

3. If you think you overwatered your plant, tip over the pot. Use your hands to hold back the soil to allow excess water to spill out. You can replace any lost soil in the process later.

4. Always use the right pot size. More soil means more retrained moisture.

5. Do not place the plant in a shady spot. For no drainage pots to make plants thrive, it needs to be in a space with optimal bright light.

What Type of Pots are Good for Pothos?

Many pot types work well in growing pothos, so long as at least one drainage hole is created in the bottom. Clay pots absorb so much moisture from the soil, and the plant will require more watering.

On the other hand, plastic pots retain moisture. And requires less watering, but You must regularly monitor the soil moisture.

Because pothos produce long vines, they require support and should be grown in a standard pot. Thus, the best type of pots for planting pothos are hanging baskets.

They provide support for the vines, trail over the edge, and hang down the basket.

A drainage tray should be attached under the basket to prevent water from dripping onto the floor. Plastic hanging baskets do not dry up soil quickly, and this is why it’s best for planting pothos indoors.

The size of the basket also depends on the size of the plant roots. A pot of 10 inches depth gives enough room for the plant to thrive.

Do Pothos Like Shallow Pots?

Pothos don’t grow too tall as they are climbing plants. They would thrive in any pot size that is 2-5cm wider than the roots.

A relatively shallow pot offers your pothos plant the chance to grow thicker; the vines would not grow too long, and it would thrive much fuller and healthier.

When in a shallow pot, water the plant every 7-10 days under an ideal 70-90 degrees temperature.

If you notice the plant is not growing properly in a shallow pot, apply fertilizers once every three months. Pothos rarely require repotting when planted in a shallow pot.

However, have it in mind that pothos exist in different sizes and can increase as they grow.

The pot size should never be finalized on the current size of the plant roots. But if you buy a pot comparatively small, you may need to keep chopping off some of the plant leaves to maintain a fixed length and width.

Do Pothos Like Self-Watering Pots?

Yes, pothos like self-watering pots. For every forgetful gardener, self-watering pots are great. There are many reasons for pothos to thrive well in self-watering pots. This pot is the best to use in planting pothos to avoid a lack of water or overwatering.

When you overwater pothos, it leads to fungal infections. And the plant leaves tend to wither if it lacks water.

Self-watering pots provide a period of drying for the soil before the reservoir is refilled. This helps pothos to acquire nutrients.

It is usually best to assess the plant’s watering needs and check the soil’s moisture level first before watering your plants.

Before the initial watering, consider aerating and compacting the soil to avoid shifting during transit. Aerating the soil allows moisture to be released.

You do not need specific equipment in aerating the soil; use a bamboo stick or pair of scissors. And, of course, you can choose to invest in a mechanical probe that can aerate your pothos plant most effectively.

A pothos plant with more foliage requires more moisture and needs you to adjust your watering level. The self-watering method is also good for people who live a busy life and still intend to house beautiful and healthy plants.

When choosing a self-watering system, remember that you still need to add some water when it is all spent in the reservoir.


Pothos is a species of flowering plant and a common plant for beginners. You can plant it in any climate so long as it is not overwatered and equally doesn’t lack water.

If you are a forgetful or busy gardener, using the self-watering method is best for you and always choose the best pot size to give room for the plant roots to thrive. 

However, for best results, locate the plant pot in bright light. Pothos is very good at removing VOCs and toxins from the air of the surroundings.

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