Knowing the steps to growing Satin pothos can help reduce frustration and increase your chances of success.
Just like other pothos cultivars, this type of pothos plants are beautiful additions to any room and are very easy to take care of too.
But navigating the process of growing and caring for them can be intimidating if you don't know exactly what to do.
Breaking it down to manageable steps - from the basics such as general requirements to propagation, planting to common problems, and knowing how to care for your plants - can help you grow very healthy-looking plants.
Here's a complete guide on how to grow and care for your Satin pothos.
How to Grow and Care for Satin Pothos (Summary)
- Satin Pothos is a beautiful houseplant with thick green leaves and silvery variegation. It requires little care and thrives in low-light conditions.
- It also needs to be watered regularly and cut back if it becomes leggy.
- Regular pruning will keep this plant looking its best and help prevent pests and diseases from taking over.
- Like other members of the pothos family, these plants are poisonous if ingested. It's important to take care when using pesticides around these plants as well.
- For best results, place your plant in bright but indirect light and at room temperature. Be careful not to over-water - the soil should dry out between watering.
What’s Scindapsus pictus (Satin Pothos Plant)?
Satin pothos is a highly adaptable and popular houseplant that grows to 4 -10-feet-high and up to 3-4 feet wide. It’s often grown for its bright green leaves which are marked with silver splotches, but low light for prolonged periods can make the markings fade.
The plant has trailing stems that can climb or dangle and therefore grow best in hanging baskets and elevated containers.
For best results, place your pothos near a bright window where it gets about four to six hours of sunlight per day (see light requirements below).
Although it’s easy to grow, Satin is known for its slow growth rate. It can take up to two years for this plant to reach maturity.
Satin Pothos Plant: Quick Facts
Common name(s): Satin Pothos or Silk Pothos
Scientific/Botanical name: Scindapsus pictus
USDA Hardiness zones: 10 -12
Mature Height: 4 – 10 feet long.
Mature Spread: 3 – 4 feet wide.
Growing habit: Broadleaved, evergreen, perennial vine.
Native Area: Bangladesh, Malesia.
Blooming Time: Producing a spadix in Spring
Toxicity: Poisonous to pets
Growth Rate: Slow
According to ASPCA, Satin pothos plants are toxic to cats, dogs, and horses.
This is because their leaves contain insoluble calcium oxalates which may cause oral irritation, pain and swelling of mouth, tongue, and lips, excessive drooling, vomiting (not horses), and difficulty swallowing when ingested.
Satin pothos vs Silver pothos
Both satin pothos and silver pothos belong to the same species Scindapsus pictus.
The difference between them is that satin leaves are not variegated like silver pothos.
Satin vs Devil’s Ivy - Is satin pothos devil’s ivy?
Both are members of the Araceae family. Both are climbing leafy green plants. The major difference between them is that devil's ivy has heart-shaped leaves while satin pothos has oval or arrowhead-shaped leaves with silver splotches.
Satin pothos vs Silvery Ann
Satin pothos is a different plant from silvery ann. Silvery ann is a more-variegated version of silver pothos with leaves splashed with yellow and cream markings while the silver pothos has solid green leaves mottled or veined in white or silver.
How to Propagate Satin Pothos
Satin pothos plants are easy to propagate by stem cuttings and air layering. Here’s how you can grow these pothos from stem cuttings:
Step 1: The cutting should be at least 6 inches long, cut 1-2 inches below a node (or set of leaves).
Step 2: Allow the cut end of your pothos cutting to dry for 24 hours before planting. For best results, place the cuttings in a warm and brightly lit area so they can quickly dry out and callous.
Step 3: Wrap the bottom of your stem cutting with moist potting mix and plant it in a 6-inch pot. The soil should be kept moist but never wet, water only when the top 2 inches are dry.
Step 4: You can also grow them from air layering by pinching off a branch from the parent plant and tying the young shoot to a rock or small pot.
Step 5: After three weeks, when the air roots grow you can cut them out and plant them in their own pot.
How to Plant Satin Pothos indoors
The plants grow best when planted in a peat-based potting mix. It is recommended that you use 2 parts of perlite and 1 part of vermiculite.
Potting soil must be fast draining, aerated, and porous to hold moisture, allowing excess water to drain freely out of the pot.
The container must be approximately 6-10 inches in diameter with at least one drainage hole at the bottom.
Read this article – how to improve pot drainage, promote good aeration, and prevent rot.
Planting the Scindapsus pictus Plants
Fill a pot half-full with moistened potting soil before placing the cutting into it.
Tuck some soil over the end of each stem and water thoroughly until water runs out of holes on the bottom of the pot.
Keep your cuttings in a warm and bright area but out of direct sunlight for a couple of weeks to allow new root growth before moving them to their permanent location.
How to Care for Satin Pothos
Temperature & Humidity
Scindapsus pictus plants like a warm humid environment.
They can be grown in normal room temperature and humidity conditions but grow best when kept around 65 to 75 F (18-24 C) during the day with a slight chill at night (5-10 degrees lower).
As for humidity, these pothos prefer high levels of humidity so mist your leaves with tepid water regularly to increase humidity around your plant.
But misting is only effective late in the morning or early afternoon so that water on the leaves dries out before the night.
You can also use an indoor plant humidifier to raise the relative humidity around your plants
Satin plants can adapt well under moderate light but grow best in bright filtered sunlight or light shade. They will not be able to tolerate full sun, especially if it is unrelentingly hot and dry during summertime.
During the wintertime, they can tolerate lower light conditions before showing signs of etiolation (weak stems and leggy growth).
You can provide more light to your plants by moving them closer to the window or by using grow lights.
Satin pothos plants require watering 2-3 times a week.
Water thoroughly, soaking the potting soil to at least 6 inches deep, ensuring the soil is moist but never wet or soggy.
Allow the top 2-inches of soil to dry out before watering again. Water infrequently during wintertime and whenever the plant starts to wilt.
They tend to be very sensitive to over-watering so only water your plants if the soil is dry.
To water your pothos, simply place the pot in a pan of room temperature water and allow it to soak up moisture. If you pour water on top of the soil more than once a week, chances are you’re over-watering so if you do this try to reduce watering frequency and increase soil drainage.
Fertilizing Satin Pothos
These plants require feeding regularly with a balanced (20-20-20) liquid fertilizer to keep them healthy and growing fast.
You can also feed your satin pothos with a slow-release, high nitrogen fertilizer every 1-2 weeks to promote thicker growth and bigger leaves.
Alternatively, fertilize with a half-strength liquid plant food or compost tea once every 2 months during the growing season.
Whatever you decide, you should only apply fertilizers during the growing season, spring to fall, as your plant usually goes into sleeping mode during wintertime.
Pruning Your Plants
Prune your pothos plants to control the size and encourage bushiness. If you want your plant to grow up, pinch the growing tips when they get 6 inches tall or cut them off completely.
If you want your plant to be full all around instead of just in the center, snip off the growing tips regularly so they have a chance to grow longer.
When you are pruning your plant, always cut just above the surface of the soil so it has a chance to sprout fresh new leaves.
Pinching off growing tips causes your plant to put all its energy into producing strong roots instead of making more growths and in turn, encourages strong and bushy growth.
Don’t be alarmed when you see that your plant has lost a few leaves during pruning; this is normal and the plant will grow new ones before you know it.
How to Repot Your Pothos
Repot your satin pothos every spring into a pot that is at least one size bigger.
Repotting larger plants outside of springtime is fine too but make sure to keep the soil moist and warm during the process.
Before repotting, cut off any dead roots with a clean sharp knife and scrape off any mold or rot from the root surfaces with a clean sharp knife.
After that, hold your plant firmly around its base and gently tease it out of the pot it is growing in.
Place a small amount of new potting soil at the bottom of your new pot and make a hole large enough to accommodate your plant’s new root system.
Put the plant in the hole and fill soil around its base until it is firmly back in place.
Water thoroughly after repotting to settle the soil and make sure there are no air pockets left around your plants’ roots.
Controlling Pests and Diseases
Satin pothos plants are very sensitive to spider mites. So, if you notice fine webbing on your plant leaves, the chances are it has been infested with these small arachnids.
To control spider mites, clean your plant thoroughly with a soft cloth dipped in warm water and soap solution. Remove all dust and debris and take care not to damage your plant’s sensitive leaves in the process.
You should also remove all infested leaves and spray the foliage with a pesticide that is safe for houseplants.
If, however, you notice black dots running along the veins of your plants’ leaves, this usually means it has scale insects.
To control these bugs, use a cotton swab dipped in isopropyl alcohol and carefully clean infected areas by wiping off all of the black dots.
You can also place yellow sticky traps around your plant to remove any flying adults before they lay their eggs.
Last but not least, if you notice rotting leaves and stems, chances are your plant is suffering from crown rot or a bacterial blight.
If this happens, remove all infected leaves and debris at once to prevent the spread of the bacteria.
Carefully spray affected areas with a fungicide containing chlorothalonil and place your pothos in well-ventilated areas away from direct sunlight.
To prevent any of these pest and disease problems, make sure to always use a clean sharp knife to cut your plant’s stems.
Clean your plant thoroughly before bringing it into or out of the home and spray foliage regularly with insecticidal soap or horticultural oil spray mixed with water to keep infestations at bay.
If you are using pesticides, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions on how to apply them. Also, make sure to clean up all the dead leaves and debris that might be harboring pests.
Always make sure air circulates freely around your pothos. Besides, keep the room your plant is in humid but not wet.
Other Common Problems
1. Satin pothos leaves curling
When you notice that your satin pothos leaves are curling, it means that they are getting too much sun or direct light.
If this happens, place your plant in a more shaded area or move it to a room with no direct sunlight.
2. The leaves on Satin plant turning yellow
If your plant’s leaves are turning yellow, this usually means they are lacking iron in their diet.
To control this, you can spray the foliage with a liquid fertilizer containing the micronutrient or mix a teaspoon of Epsom salt into a gallon of water and feed your satin pothos this mixture once a month.
3. The plants becoming leggy
Lastly, if you notice that your plant is becoming leggy, it means that it is not getting enough light.
If this is the case, move your plant to a brighter area or place near windows so that it will grow stronger and more upright.
When you notice problems with your plants, always take steps to correct them right away so that they do not get out of hand.
In today's post, we gave you a thorough introduction to satin plants and went over some of the most common problems associated with this beautiful houseplant.
We also included a helpful troubleshooting guide that you can consult when dealing with your Satin pothos plant at home.
With all that said, we hope you enjoyed the article and learned something new.
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