Pothos Root Rot | Identify And Treat

Learn how to identify and treat pothos root rot. a common issue in houseplants caused by overwatering and poor soil drainage. Follow our tips to save your pothos and keep it healthy.

Pothos, commonly referred to as devil’s ivy, is a common houseplant prized for its lovely foliage and simplicity of maintenance. However, root rot, a typical problem for pothos, can affect even the toughest of plants. When a plant’s roots become saturated and unable to function correctly, root rot happens. If left untreated, this might result in the plant’s mortality, reduced growth, and yellowing leaves. It’s critical to recognise the symptoms of root rot and take the appropriate precautions to prevent and treat it if you want your pothos to have a long and healthy life. This article will give a general overview of pothos root rot, explain its causes, and explain how to take care of your pothos to prevent it.

How To Identify Pothos Root Rot

For pothos and other indoor plants. root rot is a major problem that must be detected early in order to prevent further damage to the plant. The following are some typical symptoms of pothos root rot:

Black or brown roots are one of the initial symptoms of root rot. This is a sign that the roots are decaying and are no longer healthy.

Yellowing leaves: Yellowing leaves are another early indicator of root rot and may mean that the plant is not receiving the required nutrients from the roots.

Growth stunting: A pothos plant with root rot frequently shows growth stunting and a lack of new leaves or branches.

Odor: If you smell something unpleasant coming from the ground, root rot may be the cause. as decomposing roots give off an awful odour.

It’s crucial to keep in mind that root rot can develop gradually and may not exhibit any evident symptoms until it has advanced. In order to prevent root rot, it’s crucial to monitor the soil and roots on a regular basis.

Overwatering or Underwatering – Major Cause

Root rot in pothos plants is most frequently brought on by overwatering and inadequate drainage.

The roots of pothos plants can become waterlogged and unable to reach the oxygen they require to survive, making them vulnerable to root rot if they are overwatered. The plant’s general health could be harmed as a result of the roots dying and decaying.

Poor Drainage: To thrive, pothos plants need soil that drains efficiently since standing water can cause root rot. Use of the incorrect soil, a lack of drainage holes in the pot, or failing to let the soil dry out between waterings can all result in poor drainage.

The two most typical causes of are excessive irrigation and inadequate drainage.
Because they flourish in moist soil and can attack plant roots, fungi diseases can also cause root rot. To rescue the plant and stop root rot in the future, it’s critical to address the root rot’s underlying causes, whether they be a fungal illness, improper drainage, or overwatering.

How To Prevent Pothos Root Rot

Proper plant maintenance includes guarding against root rot in pothos plants. Here are some recommendations for avoiding root rot:

Use well-draining soil because pothos plants require it to thrive. Use a premium, sterile potting mixture created especially for houseplants.

Make sure the pot has sufficient drainage holes so that any extra water may drain away from the roots. To enhance drainage, add a layer of rocks or gravel to the bottom of the pot.

Allowing the soil to dry out in between waterings is essential since pothos plants do not like to sit in water. Before watering, stick your finger into the soil to feel for wetness.

Avoid overwatering: Overwatering is a typical cause of pothos plants’ root rot, thus it’s crucial to take care not to do so. When the top inch of soil seems dry to the touch, according to popular wisdom, water the plant.

Repot the plant if necessary: It could be time to repot the plant into a larger pot if you see that the roots are beginning to cram themselves into the container. This will allow for greater drainage as well as more room for the roots to expand.

You can lessen the risk of root rot by observing your pothos plant frequently and applying the advice in this article.


Hydrogen Peroxide: A Solution for Root Rot

Root rot in pothos plants can be successfully treated with hydrogen peroxide. A moderate antiseptic and oxidizer, hydrogen peroxide can aid in the destruction of the fungi responsible for root rot.

The following describes how to use hydrogen peroxide to treat pothos plant root rot:

Mix 1 part hydrogen peroxide with 4 parts water to dilute the hydrogen peroxide.

Water the plant with the solution, being sure to completely soak the soil. Water the plant with the diluted hydrogen peroxide solution.

Let the soil drain: After watering, let the soil drain for a few minutes to flush out any extra solution.

Repeat the procedure: Carry out the procedure once per week for three to four weeks, or until you see a change in the plant’s condition.

This disease in plants can be effectively treated using hydrogen peroxide, but it’s crucial to take care not to overwater the plant throughout the procedure as this can cause further root rot. Furthermore, because hydrogen peroxide is a potent oxidizer, it must be handled cautiously and diluted according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

Repotting Your Pothos to Save it from Root Rot

If your pothos plant has developed root rot, repotting it can be a life-saving step. Here’s how to repot a root-rotten pothos plant:

Remove the plant from its container: Carefully remove the plant from its container, taking care not to damage the roots. Remove as much of the affected soil as possible if the roots are mushy or black.

Trim away any damaged, mushy, or black roots with a clean, sharp pair of scissors. Make sure to get rid of any decayed or diseased roots.

Loosen the soil: Allow the soil around the roots to spread out and breathe.

Repot the plant: Place the plant in a new pot filled with clean, sterile potting soil. Check that the soil drains well and that the pot has enough drainage holes.

Water the plant lightly to settle the soil and assist the roots in taking hold. Overwatering can lead to more root rot, so be cautious.

By repotting your pothos plant, you can give it new soil, a larger pot, and better drainage, all of which will help it recover from root rot.


Finally, This is a common issue that affects pothos plants. Overwatering and poor drainage cause it, and symptoms include brown or mushy roots, yellowing leaves, and a sluggish growth habit. To avoid root rot, give your plant proper care, which includes a well-draining pot, a sterile potting mix, and careful watering. If your pothos plant has root rot, repotting it with a fresh, sterile potting mix and treating it with hydrogen peroxide can help save it and promote recovery. Your pothos plant can recover from this and return to its healthy, vibrant self with proper care and attention.

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