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What’s Wrong with My Pothos? Identifying and Fixing Common Plant Issues

Are you looking for some information on optimal care for your Pothos plant? Pothos is a popular houseplant known for its bright and waxy leaves and resilient nature. With a little bit of knowledge and effort, you’ll be able to keep your Pothos healthy and thriving. Today, we’ll discuss all the different factors that go into taking care of a Pothos, from optimal temperatures and sunlight exposure to water and pest management. Keep reading to learn all about how to take care of your Pothos!

Causes for Yellow Leaves on Your Pothos Plant

If you notice water-drenched spots with yellow halos on the leaves of your pothos, it is likely that your plant is diseased. Under wet conditions, the centers of these spots will fall out quickly and can spread to other parts of the plant. To prevent further damage, avoid overhead watering and discard any infected plants immediately.

On the other hand, overwatering or underwatering can also cause yellowing of the leaves. Overwatering may result in a combination of yellow and brown on the same leaf, while underwatering may lead to yellow leaves with some brown spots. It is important to ensure that your pothos receives enough water for its needs, but not too much. Monitor your plant’s soil moisture regularly and adjust accordingly.

But if you’re sure that your pothos is not suffering from either overwatering or underwatering, then it may be getting too much light. The leaves will compensate for the lack of light by turning green since only the green parts of the leaves can make energy. Your plant is getting too much light by the pale leaves that turn yellow. To fix this, place your pothos in a shadier spot and avoid direct sunlight.

Characteristics of Healthy Pothos Leaves

  • Bright and waxy
  • Pointed heart shape
  • Range in color from green to yellow to pale green

Though it is rare for them to flower or produce berries indoors, some varieties may have small white flowers that feature small berries.

Repotting Your Pothos to Restore Health

Repotting is the resolution in both cases. Whether you’re dealing with an unhealthy pothos or one that has been overexposed to direct sunlight, repotting can help to restore its health.

Steps for Repotting Your Pothos

  1. Put your pothos in a pot filled with a light and well-draining mix.
  2. If you want to make your own houseplant mix, you can amend the soil with coconut coir and perlite for better drainage and aeration.
  3. Make sure not to overpot as this may lead to root rot or nutrient deficiency due to lack of oxygen reaching the roots.
  4. Choose a pot that is at least 2 inches wider than the current one so it will have plenty of room for growth.

When it comes to watering, a consistently moist soil is what your pothos likes. Don’t be over or underwatering your plant. Water when the top 2” to 3” of the soil is dry. If you let your plant’s soil dry out completely, you may see leaves go limp, droop, and start to brown.

Dealing with Mealybugs and Scale Infestations

Unfortunately, pothos plants are prone to mealybugs and scale infestations. Mealybugs look like small balls of cotton while scale are dark colored bumps on leaves. As a result of their feeding activity, plant sap is reduced and nutrients are redirected from leaves. If the infestation is high, the leaves will become distorted and stunted.

Can Pothos Recover from Overwatering?

The answer is yes. The most important thing to do with an overwatered pothos is to start watering the plant. Two of the most effective ways of doing this are using a water tray and watering the pothos from above.

Too Much Sun Bad for Pothos?

Yes, too much direct sunlight can cause sunburns on the leaves of your pothos. When exposed to direct sunlight for long periods of time, the variegated parts of the leaves will get sunburned, which is unfortunately permanent and won’t heal. If you want to get rid of these blemishes, you can trim off the affected parts.

To prevent this from happening in the future, here are some tips:

  • Move your pothos to a shadier spot where it won’t be receiving as much light.
  • Make sure that it’s not placed in an area with intense heat as this could still cause damage even if there isn’t any direct sunlight present.

It’s important to take care of your pothos to keep it healthy and looking its best. Remember to give it the right amount of light and water, and it will thrive!

Temperature Requirements for Keeping Pothos Plants Healthy

Another important factor in the health of your pothos is temperature. Different plant types have different answers to the question of what temperature kills pothos. It should be noted that Sanseveria, for example, is a fairly tough plant species, able to withstand temperatures as low as 40°F. Conversely, a Pothos plant does not do well at temperatures below 65°F.

To avoid any further damage from cold weather, keep the soil moist but not soggy and never let your pothos stay wet for too long if the room temperature drops below 65°F as this could cause root rot or fungal diseases like Phytophthora Root Rot which can kill off entire plants overnight if left untreated.

Tips for Keeping Pothos Plants Healthy in Cold Climates

Here are some tips for keeping your pothos plants healthy in cold climates:

TemperaturePothos Plant
Below 65°FNot recommended
Above 65°FIdeal
  • If you’re living in an area with an especially cold climate and experience frequent frosts or snow during winter months, it’s best to bring your pothos indoors where it can be kept warm and safe from freezing temperatures outside.
  • Keep the soil moist but not soggy.
  • Never let your pothos stay wet for too long if the room temperature drops below 65°F.
  • Watch out for signs of root rot or fungal diseases like Phytophthora Root Rot.


In conclusion, the pothos plant is a beautiful and hardy houseplant that can handle a wide range of temperatures and conditions. However, it is important to be aware of the potential issues that can arise with overwatering, underwatering, sunburns, mealybugs, scale, and lack of light. If you take the time to properly care for your pothos plant, it will reward you with lush, vibrant foliage.