Experts share their best tips to get your prized plant looking happy and healthy.

By LaShea DeLaney
February 19, 2021
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The pothos plant is considered one of the best low-maintenance houseplants to brighten up your space. But if your pothos leaves are turning yellow, quickly figuring out what to do is key to keeping it alive. Pothos plants will do as well in the sun-drenched rooms of your home as they will in spaces with no natural light at all, and it will flourish in soil or live happily in a vase of water. You can even forget to water your pathos plant for months and it still will grow bigger. All that being said, your plant still needs love and care, even if it is minimal. If you start to notice that your pothos is changing color that may be a natural phase of its growth, but if your plant turns from a vibrant green to a drooping yellow, then it may be time to give your plant some extra attention. Luckily, it's possible to bring them back from the brink.

Credit: getty images

You May Be Overwatering

One of the biggest reasons your pothos may be turning yellow has to do with water. Unlike most plants that crave H2O on a regular basis, the pothos plant likes having its soil dry out completely before it becomes thirsty again. To see if overwatering is the issue, Faunie Szeloczei of Flora and Faunie recommends taking a watering break and assessing the situation. "Go longer periods without watering it and see if that helps," she explains. Letting the pothos dry out will also prevent root rot, a common cause of plant malnourishment.

If your pothos is still looking more lemon than lime, it may be the quality of the water you're using to quench its thirst. The chemicals and bacteria that live in water can be detrimental to a plant's growth. Marina Olshasky of Vesca Botanicals suggests, "Run water through a filter and let it sit in an open container for 48 hours," which will rid the water of anything that may be harmful to the plant and ensure that the water will nourish the roots and keep your pothos happy.

Finding the Right Habitat Is Key

The pothos will adapt to almost any environment, but some spaces are better than others. Very direct sunlight or heated vents may be a bit too dry for your pothos, and no sun at all makes it tough for a plant grow, even one this independent. So, if you want to cure your plant's yellowing problem, it's best to keep it in a shady area with beams of light coming through. Humidity is also the pothos plant's best friend, so if you have a kitchen or bathroom with a window, you've found the natural habitat for your plant.

Don't Overthink It

Finding that your pothos plant is turning yellow may feel like the beginning of the end, but that doesn't have to be the case. Your pothos wants to live and thrive, you just have to listen to what it wants. Melanie Emmen, of Mellynne Design, uses plants in many of her décor projects. "Pothos plants are smart," she says, adding that they will show you what they need. And because these plants are also resilient, with a little TLC, they will blossom.

Comments (1)

Anonymous
February 21, 2021
Thank you for sharing this article. I have been looking for information on this very subject. My pothos plant has begun to have leaves that are turning yellow. It’s very possible I water it too much. I will have to try letting up on so much watering.