Golden pothos, or Epipremnum aureum, is a fantastic plant for beginning houseplant parents and experienced indoor gardeners alike! With its stunning green and yellow variegated leaves and easygoing nature, this plant is a winner for nearly any personality or environment.

And if you’re like me, this might be your gateway plant to a lifelong obsession with variegated foliage!

Also called Devil’s Ivy (named because it is apparently impossible to kill), golden pothos is a member of the Aracae family, or aroids, and native to French Polynesia. 

Pothos plants are often mislabeled as philodendron, another evergreen vine in the aroid family. You can tell the difference by the leaves: philodendron leaves are thinner and more heart-shaped while pothos leaves tend to be more arrow-shaped, thicker, and waxier.

This is the only member of the Aracae family that doesn’t flower! But no worries, golden pothos are absolutely beautiful on all their own and make a great, low-maintenance statement piece in any home. It’s also great for improving indoor air quality!

This beginner’s classic is very easy to find in garden stores and online. Here’s how to care for your own golden pothos.

 

The Complete Golden Pothos Care Guide

 

Soil and potting 

 

The Complete Golden Pothos Care Guide

 

Choose a light, well-draining soil like cactus mix and plant your golden pothos in a planter with drainage holes. Pothos is a fast-growing trailing plant, so they also look beautiful tumbling over a shelf or cascading from a hanging planter. You can also train this plant to climb up a trellis or other support. Get creative!

 

Light

Pothos plants, especially golden pothos, appreciate plenty of indirect sunlight, but if your home is on the dark side, no problem! Golden pothos can handle just about any light conditions, though you may not see as much variegation in lower light.

These plants are tougher than they look!

 

Water

If you tend to forget to water your plants or go on vacation without leaving a plant sitter, you’ll love golden pothos! Let the soil dry out completely in between waterings, which means you’ll only be watering ever 1-2 weeks. When it’s time to give your plant a drink, just water until it starts to drain from the pot, then empty the drainage tray or put the whole pot in the sink to drain.

 

Fertilizer

Golden pothos appreciates a mild fertilizer during the spring and summer. I just add a little Indoor Plant Food to my watering can each week when I water my golden pothos and other plants. They love it!

 

Temperature and humidity

 

The Complete Golden Pothos Care Guide

 

Golden pothos thrive in typical room temperatures and don’t require much humidity. It will be happy whether you live in the desert or the tropics!

 

Pruning 

Pothos plants, including golden pothos, tend to grow quickly, so you may find yourself pruning at some point to keep it under control. The vines can grow up to 10 feet long! If your golden pothos is getting a little big for your space, just trim the vines with clean scissors. Your plant won’t mind!

And if you ever see brown or crispy dead leaves, just trim them off. Easy peasy!

 

Propagation

Golden pothos are easy to propagate! Just find a healthy-looking vine and cut a 4-6 inch section with 2 or 3 leaves on it. Make sure to include a node, which is a little bump on the vine where aerial roots grow or will grow. 

Then, place the cutting in a glass or water or even directly into potting soil, and add a little Houseplant Propagation Promoter to help the cutting root and protect it from infection. 

Read our full guide on propagating houseplants here!

 

Troubleshooting

Yellow leaves – your plant is overwatered

Soft, dark brown stems – your plant is overwatered and probably suffering from root rot

Drooping or wilting – if the soil is dry, your plant needs a drink!

All pothos varieties are toxic to cats and dogs, so keep this out of reach or try another plant altogether if your pets are likely to nibble.

Golden pothos is one of my favorite houseplants of all time! No matter how many houseplants you’ve killed in the past, golden pothos will make you feel like you have a green thumb!