How to Prune Pothos and Make Them Fuller

Benefits of Pruning Your Pothos

Pothos plants are beloved by many houseplant enthusiasts for their beauty and ease of care. These trailing popular houseplants are known for their stunning variegated leaves and can be a great addition to any indoor space. However, like all plants, they require some care to stay healthy and vibrant. A critical aspect of caring for pothos plants is pruning. Pruning your pothos helps keep the plant looking tidy, promotes fuller growth, and can help prevent disease. In this article, we’ll explore the benefits of pruning your pothos, everything you need to know about pruning, and step-by-step instructions to make it fuller.

  1. Promotes fuller growth: Pruning encourages the development of new leaves, making your pothos look fuller and lusher. Removing dead or yellowing leaves also redirects the plant’s energy toward new growth.
  2. Prevents disease: Pruning can help prevent the spread of disease by removing any infected or damaged leaves or stems. Removing the affected parts can stop the disease from spreading to the rest of the plant.
  3. Keeps your plant looking tidy: Regular pruning helps maintain the shape of your devil’s ivy, keeping it neat and tidy. This is especially important if you have a vining variety of pothos that can quickly become unruly if left unchecked.
  4. Encourages variegation: Some pothos varieties have variegated leaves that can lose color if the plant is too overgrown. Pruning helps to promote the growth of new leaves with vibrant variegation.

Regularly pruning your pothos can promote healthy growth, prevent disease, maintain its shape, and encourage beautiful variegation. Now that we’ve explored the benefits of pruning, let’s take a closer look at everything you need to know about pruning your pothos.

Everything to Know About Pruning Pothos

How to Prune Pothos

When to Prune Your Pothos

The best time to prune your pothos is in the spring or summer during the growing season when the plant is putting out new leaves.

Tools for Pruning

You will need a pair of scissors or pruning shears when pruning your pothos. It’s important to use clean, sterilized tools to prevent the spread of disease. You can sterilize your tools by wiping them down with rubbing alcohol, putting a lighter to them, or by setting the scissors in boiling water for a few minutes.

Why to Prune Pothos?

As we mentioned earlier, pruning your epipremnum aureum has many benefits, including promoting fuller growth, preventing disease, maintaining the plant’s shape, new stems, healthy vines, and encouraging variegation. Pruning also allows you to control the size of your pothos and keep it from becoming too large for its container or space. Another reason may be because of a single long vine that looks odd – you can snip this where you want.

How to Prune Your Pothos

Sterilize / Clean Your Snippers

Before starting, make sure to clean and sterilize your scissors or pruners to avoid any bacteria transferring from the scissors to the plant. Make sure to have sharp scissors to help with a clean line. This will help prevent the spread of disease from one part of the plant to another.

Inspect the Plant

Look closely at your pothos and identify any dead leaves, yellow leaves, or damaged leaves. These should be the first to be pruned.

Locate the Nodes

Pothos houseplants grow from nodes, which are the small bumps on the stem where the leaves attach. When pruning, make sure to cut just above a node to encourage new growth. Always leave at least 2-4 leaves intact to help aid in growing a healthy, trailing vine.

Make the Cut

Make a clean cut just above the node using your sterilized scissors or pruning shears. Avoid cutting too close to the node, as this can damage the plant.

Propagate the Cuttings

If you want to propagate pothos, you can use the cuttings you’ve just pruned. Propagation is a great way to have more of the same plants! If you are going to propagate, you may need to remove the bottom leaf. Place the pothos cuttings in water or potting soil and wait for them to grow roots before transplanting. Keep away from direct sunlight and always place cuttings in indirect light. You can use a rooting hormone to propagate pothos, but it’s not necessary. Once devil’s ivy has developed new roots, plant it in a pot with drainage holes in a well aerating soil mix.

How to Shape Pothos Plants

Pruning for Vining Plants

If your pothos is in a hanging basket, woven on a trellis, or you want your pothos to trail or climb a wall, pruning isn’t all that necessary to achieve this. But when you do want to give it a haircut and encourage it to grow longer, prune it back to just above a leaf node a few inches away from the end of the vine. This will promote the growth of new leaves and branches, which will help fill out the vine and make it look fuller. Continue pruning back the vines as needed to maintain the desired length and shape.

Pruning for Bushy Plants

If you prefer a bushier appearance for the foliage of your pothos, you can encourage it to grow fuller by pruning the plant near the base or soil. Leave a few leaves intact, but trimming it close to the crown of the plant will give it a smaller, bushier look. This will stimulate the growth of new branches and leaves, which will help create a denser, more compact plant. Make sure to cut just above a node to encourage new growth.

Alternatively, you can pinch off the new growth at the tips of the stems with your fingers instead of scissors. This will promote branching and make the plant look fuller.

Remember that shaping your pothos is an ongoing process that requires regular pruning. You can experiment with different pruning techniques and methods to achieve the desired look for your plant. With some patience, practice, and proper care you can create a beautiful and healthy pothos that will brighten up any space in your home.

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