Pothos in Aquarium

Today I am going to share with you what I have learned about the pothos plants. This is one of the hardiest plants I have come across in my life. My experience says that it is one of the plants which is hardest to kill. I have grown it in different media through out my life. I have grown it in water, potting soil, aquaponic system in clay pallets and even submerged in water.

What type of plant is Pothos

As stated in Wikipedia, this plant is a species of flowering plant. Throughout my experience with it, I never once have seen a flower on it. Although it is classified as angiosp, it does not normally flower. The reason for it not to flower is due to genetic impairment of the gibberellin (GA) biosynthetic gene, EaGA3ox1.

Origin and availability of Pothos around the world

This plant is native to Mo’orea in the Society Islands of French Polynesia. it has spread world wide and was available in tropical and subropical areas. Now a days it is avialable worldwide as a common house plant. It is known by different common names such as pothos, Ceylon creeper, hunter’s robe, ivy arum, money plant, silver vine, Solomon Islands ivy, marble queen, and taro vine. It is also called devil’s vine or devil’s ivy because it is almost impossible to kill.

Environment for growing Pothos

This is one of the plants I know that stays green even with insufficient light. It survives well in 17 to 30 °C (63 to 86 °F).

Pothos can be grown into a vine or a bushy cluster in a pot. It grows naturally as a vine and uses aerial roots to climb and adhere to surface on which it climbs. The plant leaves are heart shaped. They grow up to 100 cm (39 in) long and 45 cm (18 in) broad; juvenile leaves are much smaller, typically under 20 cm (8 in) long.

Pothos is a toxic plant

ASPCA has listed this plant as toxic for cats and dogs. Due to existence of Calcium Oxalate in this plant it can be mildly toxic to humans as well.

How to propagate Pothos

This plant is propagated easily from cuttings. Small cutting with one or two leaves and one node for root growth is usually sufficient to get a new plant growing. Usually leaving this cutting in water with the leaves above water will start the root system. Once you have the roots growing, you can move it to where you want to grow the plant.

Pothos in aquariums

There are a lot of videos on internet showing the use and growth of pothos in aquariums. I have personally tried them almost all ways to grow it. My best result until now is when I used it in my small hydroponics system. In this system, I have planted the Pothos in clay pallets and is watered regularly using aquarium water. I have not used any fertilizers or chemicals.

Pothos Aquaponics
Pothos Aquaponics

Still I have this plant growing large leaves of upto 16 cm as you can see it in the picture below.

Pothos Growth
Pothos Growth

I have noticed that the fish is healthy and vibrant in one of the tanks where I have this plant with only roots in the water.

Pothos Roots Underwater
Pothos Roots Underwater

In another tank I have submerged pothos. Both of these methods have helped the water to keep clean of nitrates. The plant uses the nitrates from the aquariums for its own growth. This helps to reduce nitrates from aquariums.

I have tried putting pothos in aquariums and has given excellent results. In aquariums I have planted them with roots only in the water and the plant fully submerged in the water.

Pothos Underwater_1
Pothos Underwater_1

The growth result of these different ways of using pothos in aquarium vary. When you plant it with roots only in the water, the roots will grow fast and thick. The leaves on top will grow at a normal rate. If you submerge the plant completely in the water the growth of the plant is slow. Both the roots and the leaves grow slowly underwater. As I stated above, my best result is for growing pothos is when I planted it in a pot of clay pallets and watering it twice to five times a day using aquarium water.