Pothos like humidity to a certain level as they are tropical plants. Much as they can thrive even at low humidity, they display their vibrance and stay robust in health when there is moisture in the air.
It is a tropical plant and moisture between an ideal range of 50 percent to 60 percent is required. In this article, we give you a close and upfront look at why you may be having issues with humidity for your pothos plant.
We also give you tips and tricks to tackle the problem and maintain just the right levels of moisture, either increasing or decreasing it around the plant.
- What Are the Low Humidity Issues in Pothos?
- How to Fix the Right Humidity for Pothos?
- – Change Your Potting Soil
- – Provide Proper Ventilation
- – Use Grow Lights
- – Poke Holes in the Soil
- – Avoid Over-watering the Plant
- – Grouping Plants Together
- – Mist Your Plant
- – Use A Pebble Tray
- – Use a Humidifier
- – Place the Plant in the Bathroom
- – Keep a Few Bowls of Water Around
- – Rinse the Plant
- – Add a Moss Pole
- – Dry Your Clothes in the Same Room
- – Use a Plastic Sheet With Holes
What Are the Low Humidity Issues in Pothos?
When pathos are in an environment with low humidity, their leaves will wilt, drop and turn brown or yellow, the growth will stop, and the soil will be dry, in addition, they will develop a smell at the base, and brow circles will appear on the leaves.
Its variants such as golden pothos, neon pothos, satin pothos or the marble queen transpire a lot and even the leaves and stem draw in water and nutrients, so in a dry environment, it will be in a stress condition and won’t be able to let the moisture out.
– Wilting Leaves
Wilting or leaves curling is a classic example of a lack of moisture in the plant. Because of moisture, the plant stands itself, and the same for the leaves, as they would look tired and lumpy.
If the otherwise vibrant green pothos looks weak then be sure you have to set straight the humidity around it. This plant may thrive in a stressed way in low humidity conditions to a certain extent, however, prolonged periods of dry air can drastically hamper the health of the plant, as long as the humidity rate is at 50 percent, lower than that will be harmful.
– Dropping Leaves
Leaf drop is yet another sign that the plant has been exposed to stress conditions relating to humidity. It is a classic reaction of the plant and the dry conditions around make the leaves drop. The plant seldom can keep itself nourished with low humidity, thus it sheds way too many leaves before they mature.
The low percent in humidity would causes the leaves to have lack in nutrients and proper amount of nitrogen so they drop, as the stems turn mushy and bear a weak look.
– Dry Soil
The low in humidity would cause soil to get bone dry. The plant may vigorously lose the variegation in its leaves if subject to dry soil. If you notice cracks over the topsoil, it is a clear condition that the pothos are being deprived of humidity and it is time to work on bettering the levels.
– Brown Leaf Tips
Pothos varieties come from warm and humid regions thriving in moist jungles. Thus it is natural for the plant to be adaptive in such climates. When placed in a dry environment the plant may be distressed and may react by developing browning leaves. You will typically notice it in winter when heaters tend to dry the air, stripping it off all moisture.
– Brown Dry Circles
Do you notice dark brown spots on the leaves and stems and are wondering what is wrong with your plant? These can be due to multiple reasons, however, the most common one is lack of humidity. As the plant has not been provided with the ideal levels of moisture and you will see these circles appear benign away from their vibrant and green color.
– Yellow or Brown Foliage
Moisture stress causes the pothos foliage to turn yellow. If there isn’t enough humidity around the plant, you will find leaves turning yellow and dropping well before time to conserve water.
It is the pothos plant’s way to prevent transpiration and the only way to tackle this is to kick in some moisture. Additionally, just like how low humidity causes browning, even excessive humidity will result in the foliage turning brown and its leaves will also bear a faded look.
– Crispy and Brittle Leaves
If you find the leaves of your plant turning brittle, it could be because of insufficient hydration by way of low humidity around it. This is a clear-cut warning sign as a plant owner that the pothos is struggling to cope under the dry circumstance.
– Slow of Stunted Growth
If the growth of your photos is stifled and stunted you may have overwatered or the humidity around is high. The plant will not grow and produce fresh foliage under excessive moisture. You won’t see much blooms in the plant or new buds growing.
– Foul Odor at the Base of the Plant
If you smell a foul odor at the base of the plant, it could be because of root rot, caused due to excessive moisture. Often when the roots have been sitting in excess water it throws the humidity around the plant out of balance and hence the roots rot or develop fungal diseases.
How to Fix the Right Humidity for Pothos?
You can fix the pothos with and provide the right humidity level 50 to 60 percent by changing the soil, allowing ventilation, using grow lights, avoiding over watering, misting it, placing a pebble tray or a humidifier, keeping bowls of water next to it, and grouping plants next to it.
– Change Your Potting Soil
Your potting soil is an important aspect that will help to maintain the right levels of humidity for your pothos. Use well-draining and light potting soil that will prevent water retention at the roots. Moreover, having soil that is aerated helps the roots to dry out faster. For an ideal pot mix, add a mix of perlite and peat to the soil to better the drainage.
You could also opt to throw in some orchid bark or worm castings that further enhance the lightness of the soil. Additionally, grow your pothos in a pot that has well-defined drainage holes. The holes must not be blocked by debris or tiny gravel and must permit free flow out of water.
– Provide Proper Ventilation
Place the pothos in a spot where there is adequate ventilation. Avoid damp and dingy corners that are dark and the sunlight seldom reaches. The pothos grows best where there is adequate air circulation together with the warmth of the sun and adequate morning light. This will not only keep the plant healthy, but it also reduces the chances of bacterial and fungal infection as well.
Proper ventilation will help the humidity to stay balanced for the benefit of the plant. Open out the windows if you are growing it indoors and place it near an east-facing one where it could also receive ample morning sun.
– Use Grow Lights
If you suspect excessive humidity around the plant you could temporarily move it under artificial grow lights. The warmth of the direct light has the capability of producing more heat, hence helping in faster evaporation of the moisture from the soil. However, you must note that the excess of it would keep the air around the plant dry, so you must keep the light balanced.
– Poke Holes in the Soil
If you notice that the humidity level is very high, another interesting way to tackle excess humidity is to poke tiny holes in the soil. This will permit air to flow in thereby helping in the evaporation of water faster from the soil. It also benefits the roots as oxygen can penetrate through.
– Avoid Over-watering the Plant
The pothos plant requires just about the right amount of water so avoid overwatering. You wouldn’t want to create an area that is high in humidity, because excess moisture increases humidity and thereby puts the plant at risk of developing fungal diseases. Water the plant lightly to keep the soil moist.
You can do a simple finger test to check the level of moisture in the soil. Press your finger in by at least an inch and feel for moisture. Water the plant only if your finger comes out completely dry. This will prevent overwatering thereby controlling the humidity level of the plant.
– Grouping Plants Together
An easy and effective way to create a humid environment around your plants, especially if you have several plants in your garden is to group plants and place your pothos amongst them.
As mentioned earlier, the plant is used to thriving amongst several other plants in tropical forests. So grouping in a similar fashion kicks in humidity due to collective transpiration.
It’s a way to create a micro-humid climate in a small area that will mutually benefit all plants in the group requiring similar humidity levels. The transpiration of tall plants together increases, thereby improving the humidity levels significantly.
– Mist Your Plant
An easy and quick way is to mist your pothos to increase the humidity around your plants. Get a simple spray bottle and spray the area around the plant and also firstly on the foliage.
The moisture that you kick in will vaporize increasing humidity. Spraying on the foliage leaves moisture on the surface around the plant as well, which when slowly evaporated adds to the humidity for several hours.
Misting the plant is a sure shot way to improve humidity, however, do note it is temporary and the moisture in the air will last just for a few hours. Thus, you will have to repeat the process daily, especially if the air around is aroid in a dry zone.
Care to be taken not to overdo the misting as excess moisture makes the pothos susceptible to fungal and bacterial diseases. The right time to mist the plant is in the morning hours which will give the plant time throughout the day to evaporate in the warmth reducing any infection risk and creating a humid atmosphere for it.
– Use A Pebble Tray
Pebble or gravel trays are a simple and practical way to better the humidity around the plant. With just a simple drip tray and some pebbles, you can successfully have moisture around the plant, irrespective of the climate of the zone. Take a dish or tray at least an inch deep and scatter pebbles in it. Add water to just cover these pebbles and place the pot over them.
You must make sure that it rests securely over the pebbles taking care the base of the pot is not excessively in water. This is to guarantee that the soil does not absorb way too much water and the roots don’t stay continuously in water.
As the water in the tray evaporates the air around the plant will have more humidity. As simple as it is, care is to be taken not to have too much water in the tray as a large pool of standing water at the roots can increase the risk of bacterial and fungal infections.
– Use a Humidifier
If you are growing your plant indoors or in semi-closed spaces such as patios or balconies, then you could use a humidifier. This is a no-fuss option and you can turn it on or off depending on how much moisture you require for the plant, so the risk of fungal diseases is minimized.
However, you have to be mindful that at the same time, when the humidity is above 70 percent it can put the plant under stress conditions and the leaves can wilt. To keep your plant robust and green, the pothos humidity has to be within the ideal range.
– Place the Plant in the Bathroom
If you have space and a well-lit bathroom, having the pothos in your bathroom is an ideal way to keep it in a humid spot as it would even receive light. The wet and warm environment will keep the foliage thriving and you will never see it show stress signs due to lack of moisture.
– Keep a Few Bowls of Water Around
Here is another interesting option to increase the humidity around pothos growing indoors. Keep a few bowls of water around it in the room, which will kick in some moisture naturally as it evaporates. This one won’t give you excess humidity of more than 60 percent.
– Rinse the Plant
Occasionally rinse the plant in a bath or shower. This will drench the soil and the foliage, keeping the leaves clean and evaporation of this moisture will retain humidity around the plant for a few days.
– Add a Moss Pole
Amoss pole along with the pothos helps to increase the humidity. So stick one into the same pot or container you are growing the plant in. This method also additionally, gives support and aids in the overall development of the plant.
– Dry Your Clothes in the Same Room
Another interesting way to increase the humidity, especially if you are growing your plants indoors, is to dry your clothes in the same room as the plants. It’s an easy and effective way and your plants will love you for doing this.
Set up your laundry rack close to your houseplants and the water from the wet clothes evaporates the air around the plants and will get some moisture, beneficial to the pothos.
– Use a Plastic Sheet With Holes
This method is not attractive and thus can be just a temporary setup to increase humidity especially if indoors. Take clear plastic bags with tiny holes and place them over the plant. You could use garden stakes to prop it up around the plant.
What you must do is take plant care not to allow excessive condensation as this can be hazardous, so remove the bags from over the plant when you notice this to eliminate the probability of excess moisture around the plant.
After which remember to scale back on the watering, move the plant to a well-ventilated spot and let the soil dry out completely to aid it in picking up health.
You have now read all about the humidity requirements of the pothos in detail.
Let us recapitulate our learning from this article.
- The pothos plant likes to thrive in a humidity range between 50 percent to sixty percent, under which it easily displays its vibrance and green shade. The plant seldom thrives in a dry environment.
- At the same time, excessive humidity above the normal range is hazardous to the plant as it can put it at risk of developing fungal and bacterial diseases.
- The most common signs your pothos need more humidity are wilting of leaves, droop and limp foliage, browning leaves, dry circles on stems, and other forms of discoloration.
- If you spot any one of these symptoms, increase the humidity by misting the plant often, grouping it with other plants, and using a pebble tray or a humidifier. In case you subject the plant to excess humidity you will notice a foul odor at the base of the plant, discoloration, and slow and stunted growth.
- Balance the humidity levels, by using a light and well-draining potting mix, placing the plant in a well-ventilated area, and ensuring there is adequate light and warmth.
Having understood the ideal humidity requirements of the pothos, you can now properly care for them. So wait no longer, and grow this attractive tropical plant in a healthy and thriving manner.