Devil’s Ivy, Pothos

Photo © Bulleen Art & Garden

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Epipremnum aureum

How to keep them thriving indoors in Melbourne!

Please Note: The information below is specific to this particular variety. For more detailed notes on the general growing conditions required for all Indoor Plants, check out our ‘Growing Indoor Plants Successfully’ factsheet.

Easy to grow cheerful houseplant with glossy heart-shaped leaves. If you are a novice, this wash and wear, drip dry plant is a good place to start. Very rewarding. Also very simple to take cuttings and propagate more plants. You will feel like an expert in no time!

Devil’s Ivy is also well known as an air-cleaning plant, removing formaldehyde from the air (NASA study, 1989).

Watering

In the warmer months, water after the top of the potting mix has dried out. In the cooler months, or in cool air-conditioned environment, water less often. Water until water runs out of the base, then make sure all water has drained away and the pot is not sitting in water. Over watering will make it rot.

Light

No direct light. Will be denser in bright indirect light but will survive in low light conditions. Grows well under fluorescent lighting.

Temperature and humidity

Ideally keep between 12C and 30C. Can cope with higher temperatures, but make sure not in direct light.

Fertilising

Fertilise fortnightly in spring and summer with half strength liquid fertiliser. Fertilise twice in winter and autumn.

Maintenance

Cut back a couple of times a year to keep bushy. Cut directly above a leave node to encourage branching. Can leave uncut and will trail up to 3m.

Use the cuttings to make new plants: you want each cutting to be around 15cm, give or take, with at least 4 leaves. Remove the bottom leaf and dip the end in rooting hormone, plant into propagating sand ensuring the bottom node is buried. Keep moist, but not wet. Depending on temperature the cutting should be ready to plant in 2 – 4 months. Alternatively, just place cuttings in water – again removing the bottom leaf and keeping bottom node below water.

Repotting

Being pot bound suits it, so avoid repotting for as long as possible. If you do re-pot it will almost certainly sulk, drop leaves and turn all temperamental. It will come good, be patient, trim branches back by one third to a half and wait it out.

Problems

Problems with these are nearly always due to overwatering.

Losing variegation

This can happen if too dark, move into a brighter position.

Mealy bugs

Spray with white or pest oil.