Epipremnum aureum, also known as the golden pothos, is a low-maintenance plant that is frequently kept as a houseplant nowadays. Pothos is such a hardy plant; as a result, many plant owners may believe that any type of potting soil is suitable for it, but this is not true. Even the most carefree plants have preferences. You must choose the best soil for pothos plants to keep them healthy.
An ideal potting mix for pothos should mimic the natural environment of this rainforest plant. This article will discuss the factors that should be considered when making the best soil for pothos plants. It also reviews two DIY Potting Soil Recipes and some commercially-available soil mixes.
Characteristics of the best soil for pothos plant
Making your own pothos soil mix allows you to manage the quality and ratio of the materials easily, and you can even prepare a batch just for a single plant without having a large bag of leftovers. Here are the four elements of the best potting mix for pothos plant:
When caring for pothos plants, it is essential to place them in a pot with good drainage as well as in a soil that drains well. Always remember to choose a pot with holes on the bottom so that water can drain.
Before adding the grow mix and the pothos plant, it is better to add 1 to 2 inches of gravel or tiny rocks to the bottom of the pot to improve drainage.
Moisture Retention and Aeration
Planting pothos in soil that keeps moisture while also allowing for good drainage may seem paradoxical. Nevertheless, such soil can offer the plant’s roots a perfect environment that resembles their habitat in Southeastern Asia.
Peat moss and coco coir, along with well-draining elements like sand or perlite, enable the water to move through the mixture while holding back enough moister so that the plant’s roots do not dry out between waterings.
The larger size soil components, like orchid barks, keep the soil mixture light and generate air pockets so the roots can also obtain oxygen.
Although some indoor potting mixes include plant food, extra feedings are usually required from one to six months after repotting, based on the plant type. Pothos plants typically perform best during the growing season (spring and summer) when fertilized every 4 to 6 weeks. During the late fall and winter, fertilizing can be decreased by half.
Pothos plants love somewhat acidic soil with a pH between 6.1 and 6.5. Thankfully, the majority of indoor grow mixtures also fit into that range. Yellowing leaves on an unhappy plant could indicate that the soil is too alkaline. In such situations, adding peat moss to the soil’s surface can aid in lowering alkalinity.
Signs of using the wrong potting mix for pothos
When pothos are planted in the incorrect soil, they typically do not completely die. Instead, they often lose their luster and start to grow more slowly and with fewer leaves.
If you routinely water your pothos and yet see a less-than-healthy plant, the problem is probably with the soil. These are the indicators that show when is the time to change the pothos soil mix:
- Brown or Yellow Leaves: A fungal infection that thrives in moist soil, root rot, can be identified by yellowing leaves. Ensure your soil drains adequately, and you are watering at the proper intervals to avoid this problem.
- Slow Growth: You might need to add fertilizers to the soil if the growth of your pothos plant has slowed down. A balanced fertilizer (such as NPK 20-20-20) typically works best to provide your plants with a nutrient-rich environment.
- Drooping leaves: If your pothos plants are wilting, it might indicate that the soil is too dry. Make sure your watering schedule is regular, and always water deeply to a depth of one inch when the soil is dry. Vermiculite or pine bark might help your soil retain more water.
How to make the best soil for pothos plant (DIY Recipes)
Making a potting mix for pothos plant is simple. You only need a few simple supplies available at most gardening supply stores. The best soil for pothos plants can be made by following these recipes:
DIY Recipe 1:
DIY Recipe 2:
- 5 parts orchid bark
- 4 parts coconut coir
- 5 parts perlite
- 2 parts activated charcoal
- 2 parts worm castings
Ready-mixed soil for photos
If you are not a DIY enthusiast or simply do not like to purchase and store a lot of different ingredients, you can purchase high-quality pothos soil mix that is ready to use right out of the bag.
Here are some of the best pre-made potting mixes for pothos plants:
Sphagnum peat moss, coco coir, perlite, fertilizer, and a wetting agent are all included in this potting soil. Although this potting mix is not completely balanced, the fertilizer ratio of 0.25-0.13-0.19 (N-P-K) should still be effective for pothos plants.
It’s a good idea to add some perlite before using Miracle-gro indoor potting mix for pothos plants, as some users have discovered that it holds too much moisture.
One of the most well-known products of the fox farm company is the pre-mixed soil called Ocean Forest, which is made up of old forest products, sphagnum peat moss, earthworm castings, bat guano, fish emulsion, and crab meal.
Pothos plants enjoy the slightly acidic soil pH that it has. Using a fertilizer with a high potassium ratio with this soil is recommended as Its fertilizer ratio is 0.30-0.45-0.05.
This might be the best soil for pothos plants. However, it might be pricey and periodically sells out online as it is made in the US in tiny numbers. This organic, chemical-free potting mix has been designed for pothos plants and similar species. The soil pH is somewhat acidic, and the soil mix has an aerated consistency to prevent root rot.
Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
What is the best potting mix for pothos?
The best soil for pothos plants is one that drains well and, at the same time, maintains just enough moisture to keep the roots of the plant moist between waterings.
What Soil pH is Best for Pothos Plants?
Pothos plants thrive in soil that has a somewhat acidic pH. Remember that a pH of 7.0 is neutral, and anything less is considered acidic. Pothos plants thrive in soil with a pH between 6.0 and 6.5.
How do you mix Pothos soil?
All the Pothos Plant soil mix materials should be combined in a sizable container. Add just enough water to make the mixture moist. After thoroughly combining the ingredients, fill your pots.
Can you use cactus or orchid soil mixtures for Pothos Plants?
Pothos plants often do not thrive in cactus potting mixtures. Orchid potting mixtures typically contain too much bark, making them too light and loose to support mature pothos plants.
Can you use African violet soil for pothos?
African violet soil is a good soil type; however, it is not the best potting mix for pothos since it is light and might not hold enough moisture for your pothos plant.
Moisture retention is the biggest problem with African violet soil. Pothos require soil that drains properly but also can hold moisture.
How can you make the pothos grow faster?
As a regular part of pothos care, consider fertilizing the plant every 4 to 6 weeks with a balanced houseplant fertilizer as directed on the fertilizer’s package. Place it in a spot where it receives filtered—but not direct—sunlight.
Are coffee grounds good for pothos?
Pothos benefit from coffee grounds, but they must be applied carefully. They have high nitrogen content, which pothos want for optimal growth. In addition, as a result of the coffee grounds’ acidity, the soil pH can be improved to suit your plants better.