How To Propagate Pothos: A Simple Step-By-Step Guide

Learning how to propagate pothos is a fun and easy way to expand your plant collection. Follow our simple step-by-step guide to discover how to do it yourself.

Pothos cuttings growing in vases
(Image credit: Koonsiri Boonnak / Getty Images)

Whether you’re a brand new plant parent or have years of experience, there are many benefits to learning how to propagate pothos. These classic vining indoor plants are attractive and carefree, and propagating them is a fun way to expand your plant collection for free. You can also share propagated plants with friends or family to help them start their own indoor plant collection. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll discuss the best times and best methods to propagate pothos.

Best Time to Propagate Pothos Plants

The best time to propagate pothos is when plants are just waking up in spring. However, you can propagate a pothos anytime during the growing season, which is spring through early fall. During late fall and winter, pothos plants enter dormancy and their growth slows. This makes it more difficult to propagate plants.

Best Methods for Propagating Pothos

The best ways to propagate pothos plants are by cuttings, division or layering. Let’s take a look at how to grow new plants using these three different methods, starting with the simplest.

Pothos plant and scissors on a desk

(Image credit: Laura Walters / Future)

How to Propagate Pothos by Cutting

Propagating pothos via cuttings is the simplest and most popular method. In addition to giving you more pothos to grow or share, taking cuttings from leggy vining houseplants helps them look fuller and healthier as well. Taking cuttings is easy. Just follow these three steps for cuttings that are ready to root into new plants:

1. Find a node

Close up of hand holding pothos stem and showing nodes

(Image credit: Laura Walters / Future)

For this method of propagation, you need stem cuttings that are 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 cm) long and have two to four leaves. Choose a healthy looking stem and find a node, where the leaf meets the stem.

2. Make the cut

Hand cutting a pothos vine

(Image credit: Laura Walters / Future)

Place a clean pair of scissors or pruners just above the node at a 45 degree angle and cut. Remove any leaves within a few inches of the cut end. This section of stem is where cuttings develop new roots.

3. Prepare cuttings for rooting

Pothos cutting in water in a jar

(Image credit: Laura Walters / Future)

Remove any leaves within a few inches of the cut end. This section of stem is where cuttings will develop new roots. You can dip the cut end with rooting hormone to jumpstart growth, but this step is optional and typically works better when rooting plants in soil. Now that your cuttings are ready to grow, you can place them in either water or soil to start forming roots.

Rooting Pothos in Water

To root pothos in water, place stems in a jar or other vessel filled with room temperature water. The node where you cut should be below the water line. Don’t let leaves dip into the water or they will rot and potentially kill the cutting.

Place your cuttings in a bright location with indirect sun. Change the water every couple of days. When 1 to 2 inches (3 to 5 cm) of roots form, plant pothos cuttings in a container with well-draining potting soil.

Rooting Pothos in Soil

To root cuttings in soil, prepare a clean container with a well-draining, pre-moistened potting mix. Dab a pencil into the soil to create a hole for the cutting. Place the cutting into the hole, and firm the soil around it until the cutting stands upright on its own.

To help cuttings start to form roots faster, increase the humidity around the cutting. You can do this by enclosing the container in a plastic bag or topping it with an inverted glass jar or humidity dome. As moisture collects, open the bag to allow air circulation. Then reclose the bag. Add water if needed to keep the soil moist but not wet.

Pothos cuttings planted in potting soil

(Image credit: Regina Burganova / Getty Images)

When new growth is visible, that means roots have formed. You can check for roots by lightly tugging on the cutting. If it resists, there are roots growing under the soil.

When rooting plants from cuttings you can also use perlite, vermiculite or coarse sand first, then transfer to potting soil when roots have formed.

How to Propagate Pothos by Division

The best time to start a new plant by division is when it is coming out of dormancy in late winter or early spring. Have your new containers and potting soil ready before you begin the division process.

Remove the entire root ball from the pothos current container. Gently separate stems by the roots and repot pothos in the new containers at the same level they were before. Water and continue normal care.

How to Propagate Pothos by Layering

You can also root pothos vines by layering, or laying stems on soil to root and make a new plant. If there is room in your current pothos container you can do it in the same pot. Otherwise, you can place a stem in another container filled with moist potting soil.

Bend part of the stem into the soil and cover with soil, leaving several inches of stem exposed. Once roots form you can cut the stem from the parent plant and grow as usual.

Check Out Our Complete Guide to Propagating Houseplants

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Propagating Pothos Easy?

Yes! Pothos is one of the easiest houseplants to propagate, especially when using the cutting method and rooting water. All you need is water, a jar, your pothos plant, and some scissors.

How Long Does it Take to Propagate Pothos?

It typically takes three to six weeks for pothos cuttings to grow roots.

Laura Walters
Content Editor

Laura Walters is a Content Editor who joined Gardening Know How in 2021. With a BFA in Electronic Media from the University of Cincinnati, a certificate in Writing for Television from UCLA, and a background in documentary filmmaking and local news, Laura loves to provide gardeners with all the know they need to succeed in an easy and entertaining format. She never thought when she was growing vegetables in her college dorm room, that one day she would get paid to read and write about her favorite hobby.