Why Is My Pothos Not Vining? What Should I Do?

5 August 2020

If there is to be named the best flowering plant to decorate walls with its vines, it has to be pothos.

These vining plants are straightforward to grow and require little attention to thrive.

When they are well pruned, their bright green color is a delight to have hanging in the office or home. Moreover, they are one of the few plants that blossom without direct sunlight. Unfortunately, it becomes unexpected and disappointing when the pothos is not vining.

On these rare occasions, they don’t have climbers as expected.

Have you ever wondered why other people’s pothos plants have pothos vines, and yours don’t?

Maybe you got your plant at the same time with friends and propagated the cuttings at the same time too. On the other hand, their pothos is vining while yours isn’t.

What could be the problem? Why is your pothos not vining?

If you have pothos planted in your home or office and you are wondering why they are not vining, these four reasons will make you know better.

4 Reasons Your Pothos Is Not Vining

1. Pests

Pests on houseplants are a bit upsetting. Its invasion of your houseplant can prevent your pothos from vining.

Mealybugs are common pests that invade plants even if they are planted indoors.

Unfortunately, these insects don’t only feed on the plants but also damage them. Besides, if uncontrolled, they can increase in number and damage your houseplants.

Check the foliage to see if there are mealy bugs on your plant.

Because they are typically whitish-gray and covered in a waxy coating, mealybugs (family Pseudococcidae) are frequently mistaken for symptoms of a fungal disease.

If you find any, the mealybugs are the ones preventing the plant from vining, and you need to control them.

2. Direct Sunlight

Pothos make good houseplants because they thrive in bright light but not under direct sunlight.

Insufficient light results in more subtle symptoms, while too much can burn your plant like a grilled bun.

Therefore, when they receive too much direct sunlight, the foliage will start to burn before it has an opportunity to grow its vines.

However, they don’t also thrive in low light.

When they are placed in a low-light room, they lose their variegation, which is one of the distinctive characteristics of the plant.

Hence, you have to be careful not to deprive the plant of too much light.

3. Too Much Watering

Before you get confused on why your pothos is not vining, ask yourself this question: Am I overwatering?

Here is one fact you may not know: Pothos like their soil dry from time to time. Don’t get it wrong. For them to remain healthy, you need to water them occasionally too.

When a plant’s owners notice that their plant is starting to appear unhappy, the first thought is to give it more water to make it better. However, too much water is frequently the source of unhappiness.

Overwatering can cause their roots to decay, yellowing leaves, and other problems Root rot becomes more likely, and root rot won’t just slow new growth.

Even a strong plant like the Pothos can fall victim to it quickly. Once they have decaying roots, it will be difficult for the plant to grow vines. Of course, the reason is simple.

Every plant gains its nutrients from the soil, and the root is the part that helps to absorb the nutrients from the soil.

Therefore, decaying roots are a sign that the pothos is dying.

4. Late Transfer Into The Soil

Most plant owners love this flowering plant because they are easy to grow. Photos can be propagated in water as much as in soil.

On the other hand, if you propagated them in water for a long time before transferring them to the soil, your pothos growing may find a hard time vining.

That is because the cuttings have gotten used to water as their habitat after being rooted in there. Subsequently, when planted in soil, they begin to have a hard time adjusting to their environment.

Hence, they may not vine as early as expected.

What You Should Do

1. Protect From Mealybugs

The usual method for getting rid of them is to wipe them with a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol. Additionally, neem oil, horticultural oil, and insecticidal sprays could eliminate mealybug.

Apart from spraying the insects, you can also spray the plants so the insects will die when they come in contact with the plant.

Also, you can apply soap on mealybugs to destroy them immediately.

2. Keep Away From Direct Sunlight

The best thing to do is to place the plant in a room with bright light.

Additionally, it is preferable to place them near a shut window without blinded curtains so that bright enough, but not direct daylight can penetrate through the room.

3. Plant In A Well-drained Soil

If your plant is planted in a flowering pot, ensure that there are drainage holes under the pot. However, if you already have drainage holes under the pot, confirm that the holes are not too small.

If they are, you should water them less frequently to avoid soaking your soil. Moreover, doing so will make the soil dry out quickly before the next watering.

4. Avoid Waterlogging The Soil

For plants formerly rooted in water and later transferred into the soil, always keep the soil damp but not drenched. How can you achieve that?

After watering the soil, allow the top three inches to dry before watering again.

A change in the color of leaves from a green shade to a brown shade is a sign that the foliage is not getting enough water.

5. Add Fertilizers

Adding fertilizers is not necessary for the pothos plant. However, adding some to the soil when the vines have refused to grow isn’t a bad idea. Generally, Nitrogen enhances the healthy growth of the plant.

You can add nitrogen-based fertilizer to the soil once in two months while the vines are still struggling to sprout.

Also, adding phosphorus to the soil can help the roots become healthy.

6. Keep Away From Cold Temperature

Keep the plant at a room temperature of 65oF to 75oF. Also, they like high humidity, so until your pothos starts to vine properly, keep the humidity rate high.

The smartest way to do this is to buy a household thermometer so you can determine whether you are succeeding in this or not.

The most precise way to determine the local temperature around your plant, they are also the least expensive.


Most times, pothos do not climb on their own. The reason is; naturally, pothos grows towards the light. Hence, when they live in their natural habitat, they climb on trees providing sufficient bright light. Therefore, when planted indoors, they may refuse to climb the way you want them to.

Hence, you may need to provide support like fishing lines or totems to make them climb the way you want. 

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