Is Scindapsus Pictus a Pothos: Unraveling the Mystery

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Scindapsus pictus is a popular plant often mistaken for a Pothos due to its similar appearance and common name, “Silver Satin Pothos.” However, it is not a true Pothos but a distinct species in the same family. In this article, we’ll explore the similarities and differences between Scindapsus pictus and Pothos.

Is Scindapsus Pictus a Pothos?

Scindapsus pictus and pothos (Epipremnum aureum) are both evergreen tropical plants with heart-shaped leaves, originating from rainforest environments in Southeast Asia. They belong to the Arum family, making them botanical cousins, and are hardy in USDA Hardiness Zones 10 to 12. Despite these similarities, there are distinctions between these two popular houseplants.

Scindapsus pictus, also known as satin pothos, is characterized by large, heart-shaped leaves with shimmery silver variegation. The long stems can grow up to 10 feet (3 meters) in length and thrive in bright, indirect light. As a climbing plant, it is often grown indoors due to its lack of cold tolerance.

On the other hand, pothos is an easy-to-grow houseplant with plain green leaves, known for its robust growth and air-purifying abilities. It is not as visually striking as the Scindapsus pictus, but it adapts well to low light conditions, which makes it suitable for a variety of indoor environments.

In summary, while Scindapsus pictus and pothos share some similarities, they are not the same plant. Scindapsus pictus is sometimes referred to as satin pothos or silver pothos, but this is a misnomer, as it is not a true pothos at all. When choosing a houseplant, understanding the differences between these two species will help in making an informed decision based on individual preferences and living conditions.

Comparing Scindapsus Pictus and Pothos


Scindapsus Pictus and Pothos may look similar at first glance; however, some noticeable differences set them apart. Pothos plants have thinner stems and heart-shaped leaves, while Scindapsus plants have thicker stems and leaves (source). Additionally, there are variances in coloration. For example, Scindapsus Pictus ‘Argyraeus’ features smaller, dark green leaves, evenly dispersed silvery markings, and silvery edges (source).

Growth Habit

Both Pothos and Scindapsus Pictus have differing growth habits. Pothos is a faster-growing plant, potentially growing over 10 inches every month and even more during spring and summer (source). On the other hand, Scindapsus Pictus usually grows only a few inches each year. In terms of size, mature Scindapsus Pictus can reach up to 10 feet, whereas Pothos can grow up to 40 feet (source). Another difference is the Silver Satin Pothos, which can reach a staggering 65 feet in its natural habitat, although it can be cultivated to remain smaller indoors (source).

Care Requirements

While these two plants share similarities when it comes to care, there are slight differences in their needs. Scindapsus Pictus thrives best in soil pH levels of 6.1 to 6.5 and should be fertilized once a month (source). Pothos, on the other hand, does well in bi-monthly feedings. Price-wise, Scindapsus Pictus tends to be more expensive than Pothos, with the average price of a potted plant ranging from $24 to $50 (source).

When it comes to care requirements, keep in mind that although there may be differences, both plants are relatively easy to care for and make excellent choices for indoor garden enthusiasts.

Benefits of Scindapsus Pictus and Pothos

Air Purification

Both Scindapsus Pictus and Pothos are known for their air-purifying abilities. They have the capacity to remove harmful pollutants present in the air, such as benzene, formaldehyde, and xylene. Besides improving indoor air quality, these plants also contribute to a healthier living environment.

Aesthetic Appeal

Scindapsus Pictus, often referred to as “Satin Pothos,” has a unique and beautiful appearance. The leaves of the plant are characterized by a mix of dark green and silvery, shiny textures. This distinctive pattern adds a touch of elegance to any space in which it’s placed.

On the other hand, Pothos, also known as “Golden Pothos” or “Devil’s Ivy,” is admired for its fast-growing, trailing vines with vibrant green leaves, often variegated with yellow, white or pale green. The versatility of both plants allows them to be grown in hanging baskets, pots, or as ground covers.

In summary, Scindapsus Pictus and Pothos offer a variety of benefits, making them popular choices for indoor gardening enthusiasts. With their ability to improve air quality and their attractive, eye-catching appearances, they are ideal options for those looking to enhance their indoor spaces.

Common Varieties of Scindapsus Pictus and Pothos

Scindapsus pictus, commonly known as the satin pothos or silk pothos, is a popular houseplant known for its attractive variegated foliage and trailing vine growth. There are several varieties of scindapsus pictus, each with distinct leaf patterns and colors. For instance, Scindapsus pictus ‘Silvery Ann’ features light green, highly variegated heart-shaped leaves, while Scindapsus pictus ‘Argyraeus’ has smaller, dark green leaves with more defined and evenly dispersed silvery markings, as well as silvery edges The Spruce.

On the other hand, pothos, also known as Epipremnum aureum or Devil’s ivy, is another well-loved houseplant that resembles scindapsus pictus in growth habit but has different foliage characteristics. The variegation of pothos can vary greatly, with most cultivars displaying yellow, pale green, or white striations. The majority of pothos varieties have less textured, thinner leaves compared to scindapsus pictus Garden For Indoor.

Some popular varieties of pothos include:

  • Golden Pothos: This variety is characterized by its bright yellow variegation on green leaves, making it a favorite among indoor gardeners.
  • Marble Queen Pothos: Known for its striking white and green marbled leaves, this variety adds a touch of elegance to any indoor space.
  • Neon Pothos: Featuring vibrant, lime-green leaves, the neon pothos brings a pop of color to its surroundings.

In summary, both scindapsus pictus and pothos plants display a range of leaf patterns and colors, making them appealing choices for enhancing indoor spaces. While they share similar growth habits, their foliage characteristics are distinctly different, with scindapsus pictus exhibiting silvery gray variegation and textured leaves, and pothos showcasing a variety of hues such as yellow, pale green, or white.

Propagation and Cultivation

Scindapsus pictus, often referred to as satin pothos, is not actually a true pothos but belongs to a different genus. However, its care and propagation methods are similar to pothos plants, making it easy for plant enthusiasts to cultivate.

When propagating satin pothos, a popular method is using stem cuttings. This can be done both in water and soil. For water propagation, take a four-inch tip cutting from a healthy plant, making sure it has a few leaves and a node. Place the cutting in a container filled with water, ensuring the node is submerged by Brittany Goldwyn. Change the water regularly to keep it clean and prevent bacteria growth. After a few weeks, the cutting will develop roots and be ready to transfer to soil.

On the other hand, propagating directly in soil requires you to take four-inch tip cuttings from a healthy satin pothos plant and plant them in a four-inch pot filled with fresh indoor potting mix and good drainage The Spruce. Keep the soil evenly moist and place it in the same indirect light location as the mother plant.

As for the cultivation, satin pothos enjoys bright indirect light and ambient temperatures ranging between 60-85 degrees Fahrenheit. The soil should be well-draining to prevent root rot, and the plant requires moderate watering. Make sure to let the topsoil dry slightly between waterings. Additionally, a regular application of balanced liquid fertilizer every four to six weeks during the growing season will help the plant thrive.

Satin pothos can experience some common houseplant problems such as leaf yellowing due to overwatering or lack of nutrients, and pests like spider mites, aphids, and mealybugs. Regularly checking your plant and adjusting its care accordingly can mitigate these issues.

In summary, while scindapsus pictus is not a true pothos, its propagation and cultivation methods are quite similar to pothos plants. By following the right care tips and ensuring the plant has ideal conditions, you can easily grow and propagate satin pothos.

Precautions and Potential Problems

Scindapsus pictus, also known as Satin Pothos, is often mistaken for a type of pothos plant. In reality, it belongs to a different genus and has some unique care requirements. Ensuring proper care for Scindapsus pictus can help prevent potential problems.

One key aspect of Satin Pothos care is providing the right amount of light. This plant thrives in medium to bright indirect light but can tolerate low indirect light as well The Sill. Be cautious not to expose your Scindapsus pictus to direct sunlight, as this can cause leaf burn.

Watering is another crucial factor in maintaining a healthy Scindapsus pictus. It is important to water the plant every 1-2 weeks, allowing the soil to dry out a bit between waterings The Spruce. Overwatering can lead to root rot and other issues, so it is best to check the moisture level of the soil before watering.

When it comes to humidity and temperature, Scindapsus pictus is quite adaptable. The plant can tolerate a range of humidity levels but appreciates higher humidity, above 80%, if possible Garden For Indoor. In terms of temperature, Satin Pothos prefers an average indoor temperature of 65°F-75°F (18-24°C) [The Sill](

To avoid potential problems, it is essential to monitor your Scindapsus pictus for signs of pests and disease. Keep an eye out for common issues like mealybugs, spider mites, and fungal infections. Regularly inspect your plant and remove any dead or damaged leaves to maintain good health and appearance The Spruce.

In summary, Scindapsus pictus is not a true pothos plant but instead belongs to a separate genus. Proper care and precautions can help prevent potential problems, ensuring a thriving and attractive addition to any indoor garden.

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