6 Steps: How to Propagate a Pothos Plant

how to propagate pothos plants

Pothos plants are beautiful, easy-to-care-for additions to any home. So if you’re looking for a way to add more greenery to your living space without wasting your time and energy, propagating pothos plants is the answer! 

We’ll show you how to propagate pothos plants so that you can create more plants and enjoy their beauty for many years to come.

Understand the Basics of Pothos Propagation

Propagating pothos plants is a great way to increase the size of your indoor garden with minimal effort. All you need is some cuttings, soil, and water to start.

The first step in propagating pothos is to take cuttings from an existing plant. Choose stems at least 6 inches long with several leaves on them. 

Remove the leaves from the bottom half of the cutting, as these will be planted in soil.

Once you have your cuttings ready, fill a pot about 2/3 full with fresh potting soil and start placing the cuttings around the edges of the pot, adding soil as necessary to keep them firmly in place. 

Water the soil, so it’s moist but not soggy, and place it in indirect sunlight or a bright window sill.

Keep an eye on your cuttings for signs of root development over time. When roots begin to form, you can transplant them into individual pots or mix them into other containers with similar-sized plants. 

Make sure to keep the soil moist but not soggy at all times while they’re growing! With a bit of patience and care, propagating pothos plants can be an easy and rewarding experience!

Choose a Healthy Pothos Plant

Choosing a healthy pothos plant for propagation is essential in growing new plants. 

When selecting, it is crucial to look for stems that have at least three leaves and are free from disease or stress. 

Cut the stem just below the roots using a clean and sterile cutting tool. Once you have your healthy cutting, you can propagate it in water or soil. 

Place the cutting into a jar of water for water propagation and wait until roots form. For soil propagation, prepare a pot with houseplant soil mix and insert the cutting so that only two-thirds of it is below the surface of the soil. 

Make sure to keep both methods consistently moist and in indirect sunlight while they root. With enough patience and care, you will soon see your pothos plant start to thrive!

Tip: Use Sharp Pruning Shears

Using a sharp pair of pruning shears is essential. Pruning shears help you shape your plant and keep it neat while allowing you to propagate new plants from the cuttings. 

Pruning shears should be sharp enough to make clean cuts on the stem but not too sharp so that they can damage the leaves or cause any harm to the plant. 

It’s vital to use disinfected pruning shears before each use to ensure that no disease or pests are spread during pruning. More on that is below.

Once you have your supplies ready, trim off any excess vines or stems with your pruning shears, making sure to make clean cuts close to the nodes so you can propagate easily.

Before Starting: Clean Your Tools with Rubbing Alcohol

Rubbing alcohol is an essential tool when it comes to cleaning your gardening tools. Not only does it help kill off any fungal spores that may have found their way onto your tools, but it also ensures that you’re not transferring bacteria or other organisms from one plant to another. 

To properly clean your gardening tools with rubbing alcohol, follow these steps:

  1. Mix 1 part rubbing alcohol with 9 parts clean water in a spray bottle.
  2. Thoroughly spray the blade and handle of each tool with the mixture and let sit for at least 3 minutes.
  3. Wipe down the blades and handles with a clean cloth or paper towel to remove any debris or dirt particles that may be present.
  4. Allow the tools to air dry before using them again on plants or pots.

Rubbing alcohol is an excellent choice for cleaning gardening tools because it is non-toxic and has antifungal properties, so you can rest assured that no harm will come to your plants.

1.) Cut Stems at a 45 Degree Angle

Cutting stems at a 45-degree angle is crucial in propagating pothos plants. Using sharp and sanitized scissors, cut the stem just below a node. 

A node is a spot where a stem is connected and looks like tiny bumps on the vine. 

Cutting at an angle will provide more surface area for rooting hormone and water, which will help promote healthy root growth for your new pothos plant cutting. 

When taking cuttings from the parent plant, choose a 3- to a 6-inch-long piece from a healthy portion of the stem. This will help ensure that your new cutting has all the necessary components to thrive and grow.

2.) Place Cuttings in Water Immediately

If you’re looking for an easy and fast way to propagate your pothos plant, cuttings in water is the way to go. This propagation method is simple, fast, and can be done with just a few supplies.

To start:

  1. Gather your supplies. You’ll need a sharp pair of scissors or pruners, an old glass or jelly jar, and some tap water (preferably room temperature).
  2. Once you have these items ready, determine where to make the cut on the main plant.
  3. Make sure it’s a healthy stem with at least two leaves.
  4. Cut the stem below the second set of leaves, ensuring each cutting has at least two leaves attached.

Once you’ve snipped off all your cuttings, fill your jar with water and place them inside, resting them on the side of the jar if needed. 

Place this jar out of direct sunlight and watch as new roots form over time! If you have a heating mat available, it will help speed up root formation for your pothos plant

3.) Change Water Regularly

Water is essential for keeping plants healthy, and it’s essential for pothos plants. Pothos are easy to propagate in water, but they need to have the water changed regularly to stay healthy.

To change the water for your pothos plant, first, gather the supplies you need:

  • A healthy pothos plant.
  • A pair of sterile scissors or gardening shears.
  • Tap water.
  • A small clear container such as a Mason jar or glass vase.

Then, use the scissors or shears to make several one-inch cuts from the main stem of your pothos plant. 

Place these cuttings into the jar with fresh tap water on its side so it can take root properly. Place the jar in a sunny spot and regularly check to add or replace water.

It’s important to remember that you should change out the water every one to two weeks because oxygen does run out of it over time. If you want your pothos cuttings to keep growing and healthy, give them clean, fresh water regularly!

Rooting Hormone May Help

Rooting hormone is a plant growth regulator that helps stimulate root growth in cuttings. This can be an excellent tool for propagating plants, as it can help increase the success rate of cuttings by providing the necessary nutrients and hormones to promote root formation.

 It’s especially beneficial for more difficult-to-propagate plants like pothos, as it can help speed up the process and increase the chance of success. 

The use of rooting hormone is optional for all plants, however. Easy growers like pothos will often root just fine without it. Dip the cutting ends into a powdered or liquid solution to use rooting hormone before planting in a soil medium or water. 

This will provide extra nutrients and hormones that stimulate root formation and ensure your cuttings take off quickly.

Wait for Roots to Grow Long Enough 

Rooting and propagating pothos plants can seem daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. 

All you need to do is wait for the roots of the cuttings to grow long enough before you can transplant them into soil. This process is usually done by keeping the soil moist and waiting for roots to form, which typically takes just a few weeks. 

If your pothos cuttings are not rooting, it may be due to cold water or incorrect season. 

Remember that warmer water is critical for successful propagation, and wait until the roots are at least 2 inches long before transferring your cutting into the soil. 

With patience and care, you will soon have healthy pothos plants growing in no time.

4.) Plant New Cuttings in Potting Soil   

Newly cut pothos plant cuttings can easily be propagated in potting soil. To get started, fill a pot about two-thirds full with a mix of potting soil, coconut coir, and perlite to ensure good drainage. 

Then, remove the first leaf above the cutting’s end and dip it in the rooting hormone for optimal growth. 

Place the cuttings around the edges of the pot and add more soil as needed to keep them standing upright. 

Water thoroughly and place them in an area with bright indirect light for several weeks until new leaves grow on the stems. 

With patience, you’ll soon have beautiful pothos plants that you can enjoy for years!

5.) Place in Bright, Indirect Sunlight                     

Pothos plants need bright, indirect sunlight to thrive. If you are growing your plant indoors, the best place to put it is near a window that doesn’t get direct sunlight. 

You can also use artificial lighting if necessary. The important thing is that the light should be bright and indirect.

If you are propagating pothos cuttings in water, you should place them in a container and set them in a spot with bright, indirect sunlight. Avoid putting the cuttings too close to the light, which could lead to burned foliage.

If your potted cuttings are planted in soil, ensure they receive plenty of bright, indirect light and water them well. 

Monitor the soil’s moisture levels regularly and keep it evenly moist for optimal growth.

6.) Keep Soil Moist, Not Saturated       

Watering your pothos plant is integral to keeping it healthy and thriving. 

Keeping the soil moist but not saturated is key. The best way to achieve this is to water your pothos when the top inch of soil feels dry. 

It’s also a good idea to poke a few holes in the surface of the potting mix so that excess water can drain out and keep air circulating around the roots. 

Use room temperature or slightly warmer water when watering, as cold water can shock and damage the plant’s delicate roots. 

Finally, never let your pothos sit in standing water, as this can cause root rot. Following these simple steps will ensure that your pothos remains healthy.

  – Consider Using Fertilizer for Growth and Color

Fertilizer can be a great way to help your pothos plants grow and produce vibrant colors. 

When using fertilizer to help your pothos plants reach their full potential, it’s essential to use a high-quality liquid fertilizer that is balanced and applied every 2-3 months. 

Don’t forget to keep pests at bay as well! Once your plant’s roots reach two inches long, you can either place them directly into soil or continue to grow them hydroponically. 

Place the cutting near indirect natural light to stay cool and dry. With proper care and feeding, your pothos will soon be thriving.

  – Avoid Direct Sunlight and Drafts

When caring for pothos plants, avoiding direct sunlight and drafts is best. Instead, pothos should be placed in an area with bright, indirect sunlight and warm temperatures. 

Filtered bright light works best for this plant, as the direct, intense sun can cause damage. 

It is also essential to keep the growing medium well aerated and allow the plants to dry out slightly between waterings. 

The ideal spot for a pothos plant is near a window that receives bright indirect light away from cold drafts.


Propagating pothos is a great way to multiply your single plant and have more beautiful plants in your home. 

There are three main methods for propagating pothos: layering, water propagation, and stem cuttings. 

Layering is the simplest method and requires the least amount of effort. All you need to do is choose an offshoot from the mother plant, lower its aerial roots into a pot filled with soil, and then cover them with soil. 

For water propagation, take 3-4 stem cuttings with at least one node each, put them in a glass jar filled halfway with room temperature water, and keep changing it every few days. 

For stem cuttings, snip off stems at a 45-degree angle below the node so that they contain one or two nodes each. Then, place the cuttings in soil or water and wait for roots to appear before transplanting them into separate pots. 

Experiment to find which method suits you best, and you’ll be a pro in no time!


A Horticulture Information article from the Wisconsin Master Gardener website, posted 15 Jan 2007PDF

Pothos (Epipremnum aureum) Diseases: Identification and Control in Commercial Greenhouse ProductionPDF

Epipremnum aureum – FL – PDF

How to Propagate Pothos – Beginner Guide – Link