How to Repot Pothos in Water: Quick & Easy Guide

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If you’ve been growing your pothos in water and notice that it’s outgrown its current container, it’s time to repot. Repotting your pothos in water is a straightforward process, but there are some important things to keep in mind to ensure your plant stays healthy and happy. In this article, we’ll walk you through the steps of repotting your pothos in water, including how to choose the right container, how to prepare the new container, and how to transfer your plant without damaging the roots.

Why Repot Pothos in Water

Repotting pothos in water is an excellent way to provide your plant with a fresh environment and encourage healthy growth. There are several reasons why you might consider repotting your pothos in water, such as:

  • Transplanting a new plant from the nursery
  • Up-potting to a larger container
  • The foliage has overgrown the current pot
  • The plant has become rootbound and/or roots are poking out of the soil
  • Replacing a poor soil mix
  • Replanting into a more aesthetically-pleasing pot

One of the main benefits of repotting pothos in water is that it helps ensure your plant receives adequate oxygen and nutrients. Make sure to replace the water every one to two weeks to maintain proper oxygen levels. Additionally, using a liquid fertilizer can further promote strong growth.

Another advantage is that pothos plants can easily adapt to different growing environments, making them ideal candidates for growing in water. The transition is quite simple – just take a healthy cutting from an existing plant with at least three nodes and remove all leaves below the node.

Once you’ve prepped your pothos cutting, place it in a container filled with water ensuring that the node is submerged. The plant will grow roots and can continue thriving in its new environment.

In conclusion, repotting pothos in water offers several benefits to the plant, such as promoting healthy growth, ensuring proper oxygen and nutrient absorption, and providing a fresh, adaptable environment for the pothos to thrive.

When to Repot Pothos in Water

Knowing the optimal time to repot your pothos in water is crucial for its overall health and well-being. Pothos, like other plants, benefit from being repotted as they can outgrow their current containers and may develop root-related issues. Spring and summer are the best months to repot a pothos because these seasons allow the plants to recover from the repotting process with optimal growth conditions, reducing their risk of going into shock.

In addition to choosing the right time, it’s essential to make sure you have the proper equipment and that your pothos is prepared for repotting in water. To promote healthy growth, you’ll need a suitable container, clean water, liquid fertilizer, and scissors or pruning shears to trim any damaged roots.

Before you repot your pothos in water, examine the roots to see if the plant is indeed ready for repotting. When the roots become too cramped in their current container, repotting will provide them with more space to grow and become stronger. Furthermore, repotting helps you address any health problems your pothos may experience, as issues like root rot or pest infestations can be resolved during this process.

Once you decide to repot your pothos in water, follow these steps:

  1. Gently remove the plant from its current pot and trim any damaged or overgrown roots.
  2. Set your pothos in its new water container.
  3. Add liquid fertilizer to ensure the water contains the necessary nutrients for healthy growth.
  4. Refresh the water every one to two weeks to maintain appropriate oxygen levels for the roots.

By understanding when to repot your pothos in water and following these guidelines, you can successfully maintain a healthy, thriving plant.

Choosing the Right Container

Size and Shape

When repotting pothos in water, it’s essential to choose a container that suits the plant’s needs. Opt for a container that is 2 to 3 inches larger than the plant’s previous pot, as this allows the plant to grow without becoming overcrowded 1. Additionally, the container should have adequate drainage holes to prevent waterlogging and promote healthy root growth. Hanging planters or pots with large drainage holes are ideal choices 2.


Different types of materials can be used for pothos containers. Some popular options include ceramic, glazed pottery, clay pots, plastic “self-watering” containers, and decorative pots with a plastic insert 3. While selecting the material, ensure that it has proper drainage, as this is crucial for healthy pothos growth.

Ceramic and glazed pottery pots are durable and provide excellent insulation, preventing root damage from temperature fluctuations. These pots usually feature a large central drainage hole and should be placed on a saucer tray to catch excess water 4.

Plastic “self-watering” containers are a convenient option for busy plant owners, as they have holes in the bottom, allowing for drainage, and a removable catchment tray, making watering hassle-free 5.

When using a decorative pot without drainage holes, simply repot the pothos into a suitable plastic pot with drainage and place it inside the decorative pot. Just remember to remove it when watering to avoid water stagnation 6.

By selecting the right container size, shape, and material, you’ll be well on your way to successfully repotting your pothos in water and promoting healthy growth.

Preparing the Pothos for Repotting

Before repotting your pothos in water, follow these steps to ensure the best results.

Cleaning the Roots

Gently remove the pothos from its current container, being careful not to damage the roots. Once detached, carefully rinse the roots with room temperature water. This will help remove any residual soil or debris. Gently untangle any intertwined roots, allowing them to spread out and better adapt to their new water environment.


Inspect the vines and leaves of your pothos, looking for any signs of damage, disease, or yellowing leaves. Use sterilized pruning shears or scissors to remove the damaged or unhealthy parts, making sure to clean the tool between cuts. Make clean cuts near the base of the vine to promote healthy growth.

Pruning is also a great opportunity to shape the pothos to your preferred aesthetics. If you prefer a bushier plant, simply trim back the longer vines. Doing so will encourage new growth closer to the base of the plant.

When preparing your pothos for repotting in water, it is essential to be gentle with the roots and give attention to pruning. These steps will help ensure a successful transition and continued growth in its new water environment.

Repotting Process

Filling the Container

Before repotting your pothos, select a suitable container with enough space for your plant to grow. Fill the container with clean water, ensuring the water level is high enough to cover the pothos roots but not too high to risk submerging the entire plant. It is essential to use water that is free from harmful chemicals, as these can damage the roots and hinder growth. Some options for water include filtered tap water, rainwater, or distilled water.

Placing the Pothos

Once the container is filled with water, it’s time to place the pothos into its new home. Carefully remove the plant from its previous pot, gently untangling any roots that may be entwined together. Hold the pothos over the water-filled container, allowing excess soil to fall off the roots. Gently lower the plant into the water, ensuring the roots are fully submerged. Avoid burying the vines under the water — only the roots should be in contact with the liquid.

Adding Nutrients

Although pothos can survive in water without added nutrients, it’s a good idea to provide some essential nutrients to help your plant thrive. You can add a liquid houseplant fertilizer to the water, following the manufacturer’s instructions for dilution rates.

Keep in mind that repotting a pothos in water may require some adjustments in care compared to a soil-based environment:

  • Change the water every two to four weeks to prevent stagnation.
  • Keep the plant in a well-lit area but away from direct sunlight, as intense light can scorch the leaves.
  • Monitor for signs of stress or nutrient deficiency, such as yellowing leaves or poor growth, and adjust nutrient levels or water conditions accordingly.

By following these steps and regularly monitoring your pothos, you can ensure a successful transition from soil to water and enjoy a thriving, healthy plant for many years to come.

Post-Repotting Care

Monitoring Water Level and Quality

Once a pothos plant has been repotted in water, it is crucial to keep a close eye on the water level and its quality. Ensure the water is clean and the plant’s roots are always submerged in it. This will help the pothos adapt to its new environment while promoting healthy root growth. It’s helpful to change the water every 1-2 weeks to provide fresh nutrients and prevent bacterial growth.

Furthermore, it’s essential to be mindful of the temperature of the water since pothos plants prefer room-temperature water. Using cold or hot water might cause stress to the plant and affect its growth.

Providing Adequate Light

Pothos plants thrive in locations that receive plenty of indirect sunlight. After repotting, it’s important to place the pothos in a spot that is well-lit but not under direct sunlight. Direct sun exposure can scorch the leaves, whereas inadequate light can cause the plant to grow slower and leggier.

In case of limited natural light, consider using artificial grow lights to supplement the plant’s needs. The optimal option would be to place the pothos near a north or east-facing window, where it can receive bright, indirect light for most of the day.

By carefully monitoring the water level and quality while providing the appropriate lighting conditions, repotted pothos plants in water will stand the best chance of thriving and growing beautifully.

Common Problems and Solutions

When repotting pothos in water, there are some common problems that may occur. In this section, we will discuss two of these issues – root rot and algae growth – and provide solutions to help you maintain a healthy pothos plant.

Root Rot

Root rot is a common problem for pothos plants, especially if the roots are constantly sitting in waterlogged conditions. This issue can cause yellowing leaves and, in the worst case, plant death. To prevent root rot when repotting in water:

  • Ensure that the container is big enough for the plant to allow proper root growth.
  • Change the water regularly to provide fresh nutrients and oxygen for the roots.
  • Add a few drops of liquid fertilizer to the water occasionally to maintain nutrient levels 1.

Algae Growth

Algae growth in the water can lead to poor water quality, affecting the health of your pothos plant. To prevent and control algae growth:

  • Use a container that has a small opening, which limits the amount of light reaching the water.
  • Keep the pothos plant in a spot with indirect sunlight to prevent excessive algae growth.
  • Change the water regularly to maintain a clean environment for your pothos plant 2.

Following these guidelines will help you maintain a healthy pothos plant when repotting in water. Remember to keep an eye on the plant’s overall health and attend to any issues as soon as they arise in order to avoid more significant problems down the line.

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