Can You Put Pothos in a Terrarium? Expert Tips & Guide

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Pothos, also known as Epipremnum aureum, is a popular and hardy houseplant known for its air-purifying properties and stunning cascading vines. Many plant enthusiasts have wondered whether it’s possible to include pothos in a terrarium. The good news is that pothos can indeed be incorporated into terrariums, although there are some considerations to keep in mind.

When deciding to incorporate pothos into a terrarium, it’s essential to understand the plant’s natural growing conditions and requirements. Pothos is a tropical plant that prefers a warm, humid, and well-draining environment. In the right conditions, the plant’s vines grow quickly and vigorously. However, there are concerns, such as keeping the plant pruned to prevent overcrowding and ensuring the enclosed space of a terrarium can accommodate pothos’ size.

Moreover, while some sources suggest that growing pothos in closed terrariums is possible, other experts might discourage it due to the plant’s rapid growth. Ultimately, it’s a matter of personal preference and how well you’re able to maintain the plant and the terrarium’s balance.

What Is Pothos

Pothos, also known as Epipremnum aureum, is a popular and versatile houseplant known for its easy care and adaptability to various environments. Native to French Polynesia, it has become a prominent feature in many households as it can thrive in various conditions, including low light and minimal upkeep.

This trailing vine plant is famous for its heart-shaped leaves that exhibit a range of colors, such as green, yellow, and white variegations. Pothos is a fantastic choice for both indoor gardens and aquariums, as it can grow well in either soil or water. Moreover, it is an excellent air purifier, effectively removing harmful chemicals from the air to improve indoor air quality.

One of the reasons for its popularity is its ability to grow in a wide array of habitats, including hanging baskets, tabletops, and even closed terrariums. When grown in terrariums, pothos plants appreciate the controlled environment, where they can continue to purify the air and beautify the space with their lush foliage. However, it is essential to prune the pothos regularly to prevent it from becoming unruly in such an enclosed space.

Given its beginner-friendly nature, adaptability, and attractive appearance, pothos is an ideal plant for various settings, including terrariums. Offering benefits such as air purification and visual appeal, it proves to be a valuable addition to any indoor garden or terrarium.

Understanding Terrariums

Terrariums are miniature ecosystems that provide a controlled environment for plants to thrive. They can be a decorative and low-maintenance way to bring nature indoors. There are two main types of terrariums: closed and open.

Closed Terrariums

Closed terrariums are enclosed glass containers with a lid or seal that create a high humidity environment. This is ideal for plants that thrive in damp, tropical conditions. One of the most well-suited plants for closed terrariums is the Button Fern. Other great options for closed terrariums include:

  • Lemon Button Fern
  • Fluffy Ruffles Fern
  • Silver Ribbon Fern
  • Peacock Fern
  • Creeping Fig
  • String of Turtles

These plants can thrive in the high humidity and limited airflow found in closed environments. They also typically require minimal maintenance.

Open Terrariums

Open terrariums, on the other hand, have no lid or seal and allow for better airflow. This type of terrarium is more suitable for plants that require moderate moisture and humidity. One of the popular plants for open terrariums is the Pearls and Jade Pothos.

The Pearls and Jade Pothos can grow quite large, making it an excellent choice for open terrariums. This plant, like other open terrarium-friendly plants, thrives in 60% to 90% humidity and benefits from moderate watering.

Some other plants that work well in open terrariums include:

  • Fern
  • Ivy
  • Irish moss
  • Swedish ivy
  • Croton
  • Nerve plant
  • Baby’s tears

Remember, it’s essential to choose plants with similar needs for light, humidity, and watering when assembling your terrarium for both types. By understanding the differences between closed and open terrariums, you can select the most suitable plants, such as the Pothos, and create a beautiful, thriving ecosystem inside your home.

Benefits of Pothos in a Terrarium

Pothos, also known as Epipremnum aureum, is a popular choice for terrariums due to its numerous beneficial qualities. One of the main advantages is its ability to tolerate a wide range of conditions, making it an excellent plant for beginners.

Not only is pothos an easy-to-care-for plant, but it also has a rapid growth rate. This means that, even if it gets damaged, it can quickly regenerate and keep your terrarium looking lush and green. Its trailing vines add a sense of depth and dimension to your terrarium, making it visually appealing.

Another significant benefit of having pothos in a terrarium is its ability to remove harmful chemicals from the air. In closed terrariums, pothos can help maintain a cleaner and healthier air quality for the organisms living within. This feature also makes it an excellent choice for those looking to improve the air quality in their homes.

In reptile and amphibian terrariums, pothos has the added benefit of being non-toxic. This aspect is crucial when selecting plants to ensure the safety of the terrarium’s inhabitants.

Furthermore, pothos can help in waste management for some terrarium settings. By absorbing nitrogen waste from the environment, it plays a role in maintaining a healthy balance for the resident creatures.

In summary, incorporating pothos plant in your terrarium has numerous benefits, such as:

  • Thriving in various conditions, making it suitable for beginners
  • Rapid growth and regeneration, ensuring a lush appearance
  • Removing harmful chemicals from the air
  • Being non-toxic to reptiles and amphibians
  • Aiding in waste management

With all these advantages in mind, adding pothos to your terrarium can contribute to a healthy, visually appealing, and easy-to-maintain environment.

Selecting the Right Pothos Variety

When choosing a pothos variety for your terrarium, consider the size, color, and preferred growing conditions. We’ll be discussing a few common pothos varieties that are suitable for terrariums:

Golden Pothos

Golden pothos, known for its well-deserved reputation as an indestructible houseplant, is perfect for terrariums. With its yellow and green variegated leaves, golden pothos will add a vibrant splash to your terrarium. It thrives in a controlled environment and can tolerate low light conditions.

Jade Pothos

Jade pothos is another excellent choice for terrariums. Jade pothos has solid green leaves, and it is a hardy plant that does well in medium to bright indirect light. It’s perfect for those who prefer a more uniform green color in their terrariums.

Neon Pothos

If you’re looking for a pop of color, the Neon Pothos is the one for you. Its striking neon green leaves are sure to stand out in any terrarium. This pothos variety prefers medium light conditions and adds a fun, vibrant touch to your terrarium.

When deciding on the right pothos variety for your terrarium, consider the size of your terrarium, the desired color scheme, and the amount of light it will receive. Choosing the appropriate pothos variety will ensure both the health of the plant and a visually appealing terrarium.

Creating a Pothos Terrarium

Choosing a Container

When creating a pothos terrarium, the first step is selecting the appropriate container. For pothos plants, consider an open terrarium, as these plants thrive in well-ventilated environments. Open terrariums can be made from various glass containers such as fish tanks, jars, or even large glass bowls.


In a pothos terrarium, proper layering is essential. Start with a layer of small pebbles or gravel at the bottom to allow for adequate drainage. Then, place a layer of activated charcoal to help remove toxins and odors. The next layer should be comprised of a mix of potting soil and peat moss, which provides necessary nourishment for the pothos plant.

Planting Tips

When planting your pothos, start by gently loosening the soil around its roots. Place the plant into the terrarium’s soil, securing it in position without compacting the dirt around it. Keep in mind that pothos can grow quite large – you may want to provide support for its climbing vines by adding moss poles or branches.

Here are a few more tips for planting:

  • Ensure ample room for growth by not overcrowding the plants.
  • Arrange the plants in a way that allows their leaves to cascade over the container’s edge.
  • Prune excess vines as needed to maintain the terrarium’s shape and balance.

Maintenance and Care

Caring for a pothos terrarium is relatively simple. Golden pothos, for example, is known for its indestructible nature in a closed terrarium setting. Follow these guidelines to keep your pothos terrarium healthy:

  • Water: Pothos plants require moderate watering and moisture. Ensure the soil is evenly moist but avoid over-watering, as that can lead to root rot.
  • Humidity: Maintain a humidity level between 60-90% for optimal growth.
  • Light: Pothos prefers bright, indirect sunlight. Excessive direct sunlight can lead to leaf burn, while insufficient light causes slow growth and smaller leaves.
  • Pruning: Regularly prune your pothos plant to maintain its shape and redirect its growth.

By following these tips, you’ll create a stunning and low-maintenance pothos terrarium that flourishes in its controlled environment.

Potential Problems and Solutions

Pothos plants (Epipremnum aureum) are popular for their low-maintenance care and versatile use in different environments. However, there can still be some potential problems when putting pothos in a terrarium. Let’s explore these issues and their corresponding solutions.

Problem 1: Overgrowth

Pothos is known for its fast growth rate, which can sometimes lead to overgrowth in a terrarium. This can cause the plant to compete with other terrarium plants for space, nutrients, and light.

Solution: Regularly trim and prune the pothos plant to keep it under control. To propagate it, cut beneath the leaf nodes and place them in water until roots form ^(Marble Queen Pothos: A Care Guide Fit For Royalty).

Problem 2: Algae Growth

Algae can be a problem in a terrarium setup, fueled by excess nutrients and lighting. Since pothos plants are efficient in removing nitrates, they can also help in controlling algae growth.

Solution: Incorporate pothos into your terrarium and maintain a balance in lighting, feeding the fish, and maintaining water quality. Should I use a pothos plant in my aquarium?

Problem 3: Mismatched Environment

Terrariums can have varying humidity, water levels, temperature, and lighting conditions. Some plants thrive in dry, healthy environments, while others prefer humid, moist, and shady ones.

Solution: Ensure that the pothos plant receives suitable environmental conditions, such as moderate humidity and indirect sunlight. Don’t place it in an extreme environment where it could struggle to survive. Can You Put Any Plant In A Terrarium?

By addressing these challenges, you can successfully incorporate pothos into your terrarium and enjoy its benefits. Regularly monitor your terrarium and adjust its conditions as needed to promote the health and well-being of both pothos and any other plants present.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you put pothos in a terrarium?

Yes, you can put pothos in a terrarium. Pothos plants are known for their versatility, hardiness, and low-maintenance nature, which makes them an excellent choice for terrariums. However, it is important to provide the appropriate lighting and humidity conditions for the particular pothos variety you choose. For example, Manjula Pothos and Marble Queen Pothos are two popular options for terrariums.

What kind of light do pothos plants require in a terrarium?

Pothos plants do well in low to medium light conditions, making them suitable for most terrarium setups. However, if you have a variegated pothos variety like the Marble Queen, it may need more light to maintain its vibrant colors. In such cases, try moving your terrarium to a brighter location to retain the variegation.

How do I care for a pothos plant in a terrarium?

Caring for a pothos plant in a terrarium is quite simple. Here are a few key guidelines:

  • Ensure appropriate lighting as mentioned above.
  • Maintain consistent humidity levels within the terrarium.
  • Avoid overwatering; pothos plants are prone to root rot if continually exposed to wet conditions.
  • Trim the plant regularly to manage growth and maintain the appearance of your terrarium.

Can pothos plants grow too large for a terrarium?

Pothos plants can grow quite large, but regular trimming can help keep them within an appropriate size for your terrarium. If your pothos starts to outgrow the terrarium space, consider transplanting it to a larger environment or cutting it back more aggressively.

What types of pothos plants are suitable for terrariums?

Several pothos varieties are suitable for terrariums. Some popular options include:

  • Manjula Pothos
  • Marble Queen Pothos
  • Golden Pothos
  • Neon Pothos
  • Pearls and Jade Pothos

Each of these varieties brings unique colors and patterns, allowing you to customize your terrarium to your personal preferences.

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