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How To Grow And Care For The Neon Pothos
In landscaping and indoor planting, the neon pothos is one of the simplest yet most attractive plants. Although it does not have fragrances and prominent flowers, its bright colors make it a beautiful decoration. It is popular in Australia, Oceania, and East Asia. Some people might know it as the devil’s ivy and money plant.
This plant deserves every care and growth it can get. If you own a pot of neon pothos, this article is for you! Here, you will learn how to make this plant healthy, strong, and safe from pests.
How can I control the size of the neon pothos?
The neon pothos naturally grows in tropical climates. Hence, it can adapt in humid, public areas like malls and indoor spaces. It can become higher than twenty feet (or six meters) and spread into the ground. Hence, it is suitable as a hanging plant. But if you want to keep it from extending inside your home or building, you can trim it regularly. You may maintain its size at one to two feet.
How much light does the neon pothos need?
The neon pothos does not demand too much light. Because of this, you do not need to get frequently exposed to the sun. It can survive in bathrooms, office spaces, and rooms with fluorescent light. However, it might die if the room is pitch dark for days.
Be careful, however. If you leave it under the sun for many days or place it under direct sunlight, its color will become pale. Furthermore, its soil and leaves will quickly dry up in those circumstances, especially if they are damp.
How much heat should the neon pothos receive?
Since the neon pothos grows in tropical regions, this plant will thrive in areas with temperatures between 18°C and 26°C (or 65°F– 80°F). If you want to keep it short, you may place your neon pothos in colder places. But remember that the neon pothos cannot survive in winter climates.
How should I water and feed my neon pothos?
The neon pothos can live with little moisture or water. Likewise, it can live for months without soil if you cut and place it in a vase of water. You should water this plant sparingly; once a week will do. You can wait for the soil to turn dry before feeding the plant. But when you water it, make sure it becomes damp.
The neon pothos does not need fertilizers to grow. It is resilient enough that overusing plant food can even kill it. These chemicals can choke the plant with minerals and salts, so be careful.
What should I consider in taking care of my indoor neon pothos?
What you should remember while watering it. Houseplants need special care since they grow outside their natural habitat. To keep your indoor neon pothos healthy, make sure that these factors get met whenever you water your plant:
- You should only water your neon pothos if the layer of soil an inch deeper from the surface is already dry.
- The whole root ball must have sufficient water.
- Remove excess standing water so that your plant will not drown or rot.
Moisture. Although you may water this plant weekly, the neon pothos requires high humidity. Make sure that the plant receives moisture for it to grow healthily.
The plant’s pot and soil. Consider the soil components your neon pothos has. Ensure that your plant pot has a suitable soil mix and drainage holes. Once the plant grows, its roots can also become crowded, keeping it from absorbing water. So buy a larger pot once your plant has grown so much.
The kind and quality of water. Feed your neon pothos with pure water to nourish the plant. You may use distilled water and rainwater for the best results. Horticulturalists recommend that you should mix two teaspoons of hydrogen peroxide (35% concentration) in each gallon (4.5 liters) of tap water. This combination will provide your plant with nutrients and fortify it against pests.
Placing enough water into the pot. Watering houseplants is one of the most delicate parts of horticulture. Doing it too much can leave standing water, making the roots of the neon pothos rot. But watering it less can leave the plant dry. Here are the tips you can use to water your plants:
- The container or pot of the neon pothos must be two inches wider than the plant’s root ball. There should be enough drainage holes too.
- The soil must be porous.
- The water around the plant’s base until the water starts to drain out of the pot’s holes. Avoid dampening the leaves.
- You may move the pot around to let any extra water leak out.
- Wait for the first inch of the soil to dry up before watering the plant again.
What are the signs that I incorrectly water my neon pothos?
If you see these symptoms in your houseplant, you need to change your watering habits:
- The roots begin to look unhealthy and rotten.
- Mealybugs and pests start to appear on your plant. (This is a sign that you overwater your neon pothos.)
- Its leaves turn brown or yellow.
- The neon pothos starts to droop and get shriveled.
What should I add to the soil to make my neon pothos healthy?
Instead of chemical fertilizers, you can add organic substances into your neon pothos pot. These components include coconut coir and peaty moss. Ingredients like this help the soil filter water, become more porous and gain more nutrition.
How can I groom my neon pothos plant?
Since the neon pothos can spread and grow tall, you need to control their direction. If you want it to hang down on a wall, you may plant it into an elevated pot and leave it to trail down.
But if you only want your neon pothos on your cabinet or table, remove the stems without leaves and the extended tips. You may use these to grow new neon pothos.
How can I grow new neon pothos plants?
To propagate this plant, get its root nodes with a branch with several leaves. Then, stick the roots into purified water. The stem will develop a new root after a month. Then, you may plant it into potting soil. Avoid exposing it to chemicals.
How can I protect my neon pothos from pests and illnesses?
Many horticulturalists and interior designers praise the neon pothos for their strength and long life. But it can still be prone to parasites and plant diseases, gradually killing the plant. Overwatering can harbor fungi and bugs that attack the roots and the leaves.
Here are the substances and techniques that you can use to kill pests:
- Ladybugs. If you grow your neon pothos in your garden or background, you may use insets to kill pests. Ladybugs eat mealybugs, mites, and other tiny parasites. Stores offer sacks of ladybugs; you need to determine the coverage area in choosing how many ladybugs to purchase. For example, 1,500 ladybugs can protect your 70 square-meter (750 square-feet) garden.
- Isopropyl alcohol. You may apply diluted rubbing alcohol to kill indoor plant pests and other germs on your plant. If you see mealybugs crawling on your neon pothos, dab them with a cotton swab with alcohol. Alcohol can permeate their soft tissues and poison them. However, make sure that you use less than 70% alcohol concentration. Frequently exposing your plant to rubbing alcohol can burn its leaves and tissues.
- Natural insecticides. As mentioned earlier, you should avoid applying chemicals to your plants to make them healthy. So alternatives can help kill pets without placing toxins on your neon pothos. These mixtures are your options:
- Soap mixture. Water diluted with dish soap can penetrate the bugs’ skin and suffocate them.
- Horticultural oil. You can buy this treatment to suffocate bugs and destroy their eggs. Spraying this on your neon pothos and the pests’ colony can save your plant from insect invasions.
- Neem oil spray. This substance came from India, where the neem tree grows. Spraying this oil can kill insects by ruining their hormonal and reproductive processes. Since this oil spray is safe and organic, you can apply them on the leaves of your neon pothos. The coating brought by the neem oil spray can make any bug eating your plant die from the oil residues.
What are the diseases and issues with neon pothos plants?
These are the problems you must watch for as you take care of your neon pothos:
- Phytophthora. Water molds can attack your plant’s roots, turning its leaves black. Discard plants with this symptom to prevent others from catching them.
- Ethylene damage. Even if you moisturize your neon pothos, cold temperatures can damage its leaves. This problem makes the plant discolored and wilted.
- Bacterial wilt disease. Bacterial invasion can stop your plant from growing. Hence, ensure to sanitize your gardening tools when you take care of your plants.
Now, enjoy growing and caring for your neon pothos!