Why Is My Pothos Dying in Water? Top Reasons Explained

Disclosure: As Amazon Associates we earn from qualifying purchases. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.

Please note that while we always strive to provide 100% up to date and accurate information, there is always the small possibility of error. Therefore, we advise conducting further research and due diligence before consuming any plants or exposing pets to anything mentioned on this site. Kindly refer to the full disclaimer for more details here.

Pothos is a relatively easy plant to care for, making it a popular choice for indoor gardeners. One of the simplest ways to care for your pothos is to grow it in water, but what do you do when your plant starts to look like it’s struggling? In this article, we’ll explore some of the most common reasons why pothos plants might start to die in water, including issues with lighting, nutrient imbalances, and water quality. We’ll also share some tips on how to troubleshoot and revive your struggling pothos.

Identifying Pothos Dying Symptoms

Yellowing Leaves

One common symptom of a pothos plant dying in water is yellowing leaves. This condition can occur due to various factors, such as too much direct sunlight, overwatering, or nutrient deficiencies. To address yellowing leaves, adjust the plant’s environment by providing indirect sunlight, monitoring water levels, and considering the use of nutrient supplements.

Browning Edges

Browning edges on pothos leaves may be an indication of problems. This symptom can be related to inadequate humidity, as pothos plants naturally thrive in more humid environments. To increase humidity, consider placing a tray of water with pebbles nearby to create a more humid microclimate. Also, make sure to avoid exposing the plant to any drafts or extreme temperatures since these conditions can cause leaf browning as well. You’ll find more information on resolving humidity issues here.

Root Rot

Root rot is a serious issue that requires immediate attention. This problem typically stems from poor water quality or overwatering. If the water appears cloudy or has a foul odor, it is necessary to change it immediately. To prevent further rot, it’s essential to:

  • Remove any dead or decayed roots
  • Clean the remaining roots with a gentle stream of water
  • Treat root wounds with a diluted hydrogen peroxide solution
  • Allow the plant to dry for a few hours before returning it to clean water

Proper care can help revive a dying pothos plant in water and encourage healthy growth. By identifying symptoms like yellowing leaves, browning edges, and root rot, you can take the necessary steps to address these issues and promote the overall health of your pothos plant.

Common Causes of Pothos Dying in Water

Poor Water Quality

One of the primary reasons for pothos dying in water is poor water quality. Tap water contains chemicals, such as chlorine and fluoride, which can be detrimental to your plant’s health. Additionally, stagnant water can develop bacteria, mold, and algae growth, which harm the plant’s roots. To avoid this issue, use filtered or distilled water and change the water in your pothos container at least once a week.

Insufficient Light

Another cause of pothos dying in water is insufficient light. Pothos plants thrive in bright, indirect light, which supports their growth and overall health. Placing your pothos in a low-light area can lead to weak, leggy growth and yellowing leaves. To provide adequate lighting for your plant, place it near a window with filtered sunlight or use artificial grow lights. Ensure your pothos receives at least six hours of indirect, bright light daily.

Excessive Heat

Pothos plants are sensitive to excessive heat, which can cause them to wilt, lose leaves, or develop burnt appearance. High temperatures, such as those above 90°F (32°C), can be harmful to the plant. It’s essential to keep your pothos in a location with consistent, moderate temperatures, ideally between 65-80°F (18-27°C). Monitor the temperature near your plant and avoid placing it near heat sources or drafty areas to maintain its health.

By addressing these three common causes, you can significantly improve the health of your pothos planted in water and prevent it from dying.

How to Revive Your Pothos in Water

Changing Water Regularly

One of the essential steps in reviving your pothos in water is to ensure that you change the water regularly. Stagnant water can lead to bacterial and fungal growth, which can harm the plant. Make sure to replace the water at least once every week to maintain cleanliness and provide the plant with fresh, oxygen-rich water. You can also add a small amount of liquid fertilizer to the water every few weeks to supply necessary nutrients.

Adjusting Light Exposure

Another important factor in helping your pothos recover in water is providing the right amount of light exposure. Pothos plants prefer medium-light conditions, so placing them near a window with indirect sunlight is ideal. Too much direct sunlight can cause the leaves to turn yellow and burn, while too little light will result in slow growth and weak leaves. Adjust the plant’s location if needed, but avoid extreme changes in light exposure, as this could cause further stress.

Maintaining Optimal Temperature

Pothos plants thrive in temperatures ranging from 65-85°F (18-29°C). To help your pothos recover in water, ensure that the temperature around the plant remains consistent and within this range. Sudden temperature fluctuations, such as exposure to cold drafts or placing them near heating vents, can stress the plant and hinder their recovery. If necessary, move the plant to a location with more stable temperatures to promote healing and growth.

In summary, to revive a pothos dying in water, it’s crucial to change the water regularly, adjust the light exposure, and maintain optimal temperature conditions. These steps will help you create a suitable environment for your pothos to recover and flourish.

Preventing Future Pothos Problems

Monitoring Water Conditions

To maintain the health of your pothos plant in water, it is essential to monitor the water conditions regularly. Change the water every 1-2 weeks to provide a fresh environment for the plant. Make sure the water level remains consistent, as fluctuations can lead to stress on the roots. Additionally, using distilled or filtered water can prevent the buildup of harmful minerals that may damage the roots. Remember to check the water’s temperature, as extreme temperatures can negatively affect the plant’s growth.

Proper Plant Care

Proper plant care plays a vital role in preventing pothos problems. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Light: Pothos plants require medium to low light conditions. Keep the plant away from direct sunlight as it may scorch the leaves. Maintain an ambient light level to encourage healthy growth.
  • Humidity: Pothos enjoy a moderate humidity level. Placing the plant in a room with an environment similar to its natural habitat can contribute to its overall health.
  • Nutrition: Although pothos plants are relatively low-maintenance, they still require nutrients. Adding liquid fertilizer to the water once a month can provide the necessary nourishment for the plant.
  • Pruning: Regularly prune your pothos to maintain its shape and encourage new growth. Remove any yellow or brown leaves, as they indicate poor health and could spread issues to other parts of the plant.

By keeping an eye on water conditions and providing proper care, you can avoid common pothos problems and ensure your plant thrives in its aquatic environment.

Helpful Video