The Neon Pothos, or Epipremnum aureum ‘Neon’, is an easy-to-manage houseplant that puts out potentially huge leaves depending on conditions. These leaves are heart-shaped and are colored incredibly bright green. In environments with many other plants with darker leaves, the Neon pothos can break up the uniformity and add eye-catching flair. The bright green borders on chartreuse, and are often much easier to grow than many other types of plants.
Plant Care Guide of Neon Pothos
Having the right type of soil can be vital to the success of a plant, and it is even more important when dealing with a plant like the Neon pothos from the Solomon Islands being kept in a pot in your home. This planting mix must facilitate moisture retention, without holding water. Somewhat confusingly, however, they can often be grown in water jars for years.
The soil must be well-draining, with a pH between 6.1 and 6.5 for optimal health. Other than those requirements, the soil can be any readily available potting mix.
The Neon pothos is really versatile when it comes to lighting conditions. It prefers bright but indirect light for the full year. Bright or intense light, like sunlight, will damage and even burn the leaves. Sunlight that is inadequate can cause other symptoms like smaller leaves or paler colors.
The optimal placement for a Neon pothos is near a southern-facing window where it can get indirect sunlight. Darker corners or regularly unlit rooms will see the Neon pothos begin to lose their leaves and vegetation. While the Neon pothos can adapt to lower light levels for short periods, over long periods the health and overall development of the plant will be diminished.
Watering the Neon pothos can be tricky for those who tend to micromanage their plants’ moisture levels. The Neon pothos enjoys moist, but not wet or saturated soil. The Neon pothos can benefit greatly from a formal, organized watering schedule. This not only helps prevent underwatering but overwatering as well. Both can be equally damaging to your neon.
Overwatering the Neon pothos can lead to waterlogged soil and roots, leading to wilting. When this advances, the leaves will turn yellow as well, and will eventually result in the death of the plant. Roots should be damp most of the time, however, they should not be allowed to flood or remain sitting in stagnant water.
To help reduce the ability of water to remain in the pot, make sure there are adequate drainage holes in the bottom of the pot. Place some coarse gravel in the bottom of the pot as well, with a drip tray underneath. After the plant has been watered, allow a short time for the water to be absorbed, then set the pot to drain, along with the tray.
Watering too little can be detrimental as well, but it is harder to do unintentionally. By watering too little the Neon pothos will show stunted growth, often having smaller leaves that will eventually curl and become necrotic.
Since the Neon pothos is native to the Solomon Islands, it is ideally kept between 70 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit, in an environment of high humidity. For optimal health and growth, they should be kept in this range for most of their lives. This means They can live comfortably in most home and office situations where the thermostat is set to 70 or higher.
In some cases, however, the Neon pothos is capable of tolerating temperatures that drop as low as 55 for short periods. If the temperature plummets any lower though, you may find that your Neon pothos has leaves that have started to blacken, as well as stunted growth.
As mentioned, the Neon pothos is from the Solomon Islands, and so it naturally enjoys a more tropical humidity level, often well above 50% relative humidity. These plants may find a nice humid home in a frequently used kitchen or bathroom.
Indications that your Neon pothos is having trouble with low humidity can include the tips of the plant turning brown and becoming dry. They will survive for quite some time in low humidity environments, but it will not be a nourishing environment.
If you notice some signs of low moisture, drying out, or lack of humidity, there may be some action you can take to help improve the life of your plant. In some cases, the tray underneath the pot can be filled with water and enough rocks to keep the pot out of the water. This will help create a more humid zone around the plant.
Misting your plant periodically can also help with providing additional moisture to the Neon pothos. This is as simple a grabbing a spray bottle and some dechlorinated tap water, and giving the plant a few pumps from the sprayer once a week, with a maximum of twice.
With the right type of soil, the Neon pothos can grow and develop just fine without any supplemental feedings. Although, providing a healthy feeding for your Neon 4-6 times a year will allow your Neon pothos to maximize their growth potential.
General use fertilizer for houseplants will provide everything your Neon needs and more, particularly if the soil quality is relatively poor. There are also kits available to test your soil ahead of time so that you know exactly where you stand and what needs to be done to prepare the best substrate for your Neon pothos.
Most plants will need an assortment of sixteen different nutrients, and most of the respectable fertilizer brands out here will contain all of these in a relatively easy-to-use formulation. The easiest fertilizers will be organic ones that are locally available. Organic fertilizers will often have an easy to manage balance of nutrients that feed your Neon pothos over time and pose a lower risk of potentially burning the plant.
There are inorganic fertilizers that can offer nearly instant nourishment and will boost the growth of your Neon pothos almost as soon as they hit the soil. The downsides to these will be their potential to burn the plant or make the soil “hot” and cause damage to the plant or its roots.
Propagation of the Neon pothos is possible via relatively conventional cutting means, though there are some additional considerations that need to be overserved. When rotting the cuttings, each section must have both a bare node and a leaf in order to begin to create roots.
Since the Neon pothos is a wild species of blossoming angiosperm, so it can and will flower. The only catch is, you will need to create the seemingly perfect environment once it has reached maturity. This means that just becuse you have one, doesn’t necessarily mean you will see it flower. When it does, you may also find yoursel underwhelmed at the fairly plain fower that is produced.
Neon pothos grows at a moderate rate, though under the right conditions they can grow to be quite large. The leaves can approach 20”, with the plant itself reaching 60” with the ability to climb trees in its native region.
When you are anticipating having to repot your Neon pothos, make sure you water it for a few days ahead of time to make the root ball easier to transfer between pots. The Neon pothos is highly susceptible to transplant stress.
You should have the new pot ready, so fill it with enough of the potting mixture to elevate the top of the root ball to the level of the top of the new pot. The Neon pothos should only need repotting every 2-3 years or so unless kept in prime conditions, fertilized, and kept in optimal growth.
Neon Pothos Propagation
- Cut a vine into sections to become cuttings. Each section must have at least two leaves.
- For each section, cut off one leaf, leaving at least one on the stem. The node exposed by the leaf removal will be the rooting portion.
- Place the stem in water with the exposed node submerged, and one or two intact leaves remaining above water. These will grow roots and when the roots are about 1” long the cuttings can be transplanted into their soil mix.
Types and Varieties of Neon Pothos
Pothos is a very popular type of houseplant because of how easy they are to maintain. There are numerous varieties, including the Neon Pothos. The Neon variety is known for its bright chartreuse leaves. The leaves start out very bright and darken as the plant gets older, but it still remains beautiful. There is also the Variegated Neon Pothos, which has some lighter and darker shades of green marbled throughout the leaves.
Some other popular varieties of Pothos are:
- Golden Pothos: This is the most commonly found Pothos and has been a popular plant for beginners to start with on their houseplant or gardening journey. The leaves are heart-shaped and they are green with yellow variegation streaked throughout.
- Marble Queen Pothos: This gorgeous plant has moss green stems and leaves that have white streaks. Keep in mind that variegated plants tend to grow at a slower rate and that they need to have access to adequate amounts of light.
- Jessenia Pothos: Similar to the Golden Pothos, this Costa Farms variety is a slow-growing plant that has beautiful yellow streaks on the leaves.
- Manjula Pothos: This Pothos is a unique plant. The leaves are more round and wide than many other varieties of Pothos. They also have a wide range of colors, including yellowish green, cream, silver, and white green.
- Pearls and Jade Pothos: The Pearls and Jade variety of Pothos has smaller leaves with variegation mainly on the edges rather than across the whole leaf. Even though this is a less variegated variety, it is still a slow grower.
- Jade Pothos: For those looking for a Pothos that grows a bit more quickly and requires less light, the Jade Pothos would be a good choice. It has solid leaves and tolerates more shade.
- Snow Queen Pothos: This variety of Pothos gets its name from the heavy white variegation that appears on the leaves of the Snow Queen Pothos. Due to the lack of chlorophyll in the leaves, growth will be slow.
- Global Green Pothos: This plant has leaves mottled with both dark and light green. This is a unique variety. It grows at an average rate.
Common Problems with Neon Pothos
The most common issue that people run into with their Neon Pothos is Phytophthora root rot. This disease will cause the leaves to turn black or dark brown. Some other common issues include:
- Ethylene damage
- Bacterial wilt disease
- Southern blight
- Manganese toxicity
Tips to healing the problems of Neon Pothos plant
If you notice your Neon Pothos start to have discoloration, you may need to adjust the amount of water you’re giving it. If the leaves are yellow, it is likely underwatered. If they are dark or have spots, your plant is either overwatered or experiencing root rot. If root rot is the culprit, the roots will be soft, dark, and maybe even smelly. Rinse the roots and trim away any rotten areas.
Pests, disease, and toxicity in plant
Luckily, Neon Pothos doesn’t generally have many problems. One of the more common issues is root rot, which can be cured when caught early. Occasionally, you’ll notice spider mites or mealy bugs. Rinsing the plant gets rid of spider mites, mealybugs can be removed with a cotton swab and rubbing alcohol.
How it look alike and its Origin
The Neon pothos is native to the Solomon Islands and it resembles many other similar aureums. The differences often lie in the shape and color of the leaves, and whether the variety is vining or not.
The Neon pothos is an enjoyable houseplant for novices who are ready for a little more challenge. They give a bright and eye-catching flair to any room that can help it flourish.