15 Fun Facts about Pothos

Pothos or Epipermum aureum and related species is now in demand. This a member of the of Aracea family that includes Caladiums, Colocasia, Xanthosoma which originates from Central and South America.

This highly ornamental plant is making a comeback, with dozens of new hybrids and variegated ones in the market.

Epipermum aureum or golden pothos at a plant stall within Goodwill Homes 1, Barangay San Bartolome, Novaliches, Quezon City

Prices used to be in between Php 25 to Php 75 for small hanging basket in Tabang-Guiguinto plant stalls in Bulacan. Almost the same price in Silang, Cavite few years ago, until the demand for indoor plant skyrocketed last year.

Some plant center in the province would give cuttings as freebies whenever one will bring large purchases. Plant enthusiasts sometimes called plantiquarians, plantitos, plantitas,halamanmoms, plantaddicts whatever would you prefer calling them, would swear that having pothos is on their bucket list of plants.

15 Fun Facts about Pothos

Pothos grown in large cement vat within Goodwill Homes 1, Barangay San Bartolome, Novaliches, Quezon City

15.) It is called “money plant ” by people living in the Indian subcontinent, Chinese, Taiwanese, Thai and some Southeast Asian countries. People believe that having one potted pothos can brings good luck, money or attracts positive chi inside one’s premises. This is also good in offices, condominiums and apartments which have minimal spaces.

14.) One can grow pothos indoors, preferably with bright indirect light, although it also will tolerate low-light conditions. Pale leaves means too much sun, and loss of variegation means too little.

13.) Pothos likes to have its soil dry out between watering. For potted plants dislikes soggy condition.

Epipermum aureum or golden pothos cling on branches on an acacia tree

12.) One can fertilize pothos on weekly basis with water soluble fertilizer brand that is available in the market preferably 1/4 to 1/2 the strength diluted. This is done after watering the plant. One can also apply Naturamin which is distributed by Harbest Agricultural Business Corporation based in Pasig. Another way to apply small amount of slow release fertilizer that is commercially available.

11.) This had various common names like golden pothos, hunter’s robe, ivy arum, money plant, taro vine, Ceylon creeper, silver vine, Solomon Islands ivy, marble queen, water vine among others.

10.) It is also referred to as devil’s vine because it is quite impossible to kill the vine. This plant can tolerate low light levels. Some areas like in Florida, Hawaii, Southeast Asia,Tropical America, India, Sri Lanka the Epipermum aureum completely overgrows the forest floor as well as the trunks of trees and block the natural vegetation.

9.) Epipermum aureum, the golden form of the species use to be native over Mo’orea in the territory of French Polynesia. Epipermun pinnatum is native to many parts of the country and south This is under the family of Araceae.

8.) This is now one of the most common house plant and was introduced in many parts of the world due to human activity. The plant became naturalized in many tropical,sub-tropical area all over the world. Among the big farms includes Costa Farm in the United States of America.

Pothos growing on a large tree within Philvirra Homes, Barangay Tandang Sora, along Road 20 Project 8, Quezon City

Locally, one can buy varieties of pothos in several online sites and established farms like Unigreen Farm in Batangas, Bulacan Garden, Tabang-Guiguinto plant stalls, Araneta Farmers Garden, Mindanao Avenue Garden Center, Quezon City Memorial Circle, Cedarhills Garden Center in Mother Ignacia Avenue,White Plains, Cartimar Plant Center, Neopolitan in Fairview, Pasig among others.

7.) NASA and other scientist made studies in the 1980’s on the effects of pothos indoor pollutants such as formaldehyde, trichloroethene, toluene, xylene, benzene, carbon monoxide and dust.

6.) Other genus like Scindapsus pictus commonly called satin pothos/ silver pothos or silver vine are also lump as pothos. This vine is widespread in many southeast asian countries. Some small leaf philodendron are also mistakenly sold as different cultivar variety of pothos.

5.) The vine can be propagated via nodal cutting planted in aquariums, placed on top of the aquarium and allowed to grow roots in the water. The plant roots can filter some nitrate.

For those living in Calumpit, Bulacan One can contact Mrs. Vivian Sumilang (0920-915-8975) or ( 0922-819-6414). She also have other ornamental plants for sale.

4.) It is popular in the Philippines with many schools, make shift altar, cemeteries, family shrines have pothos planted in clear bottles as water plant. According to some old time local horticulturists and backyard hobbyists. They have encountered this vine way back in the early 1950’s and was extensively featured in several magazines.

3.) The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) listed this plant as mildly toxic when ingested to pet dogs, cats and small mammals. Avoid letting your pet animals chew the leaves or any parts of the plant.

2.) Avoid constant touching the leaves and stems of Epipermum pinnatum and Epipermum aureum since parts of the stems and leaves contains calcium oxlate crystal which may cause general skin irritation.

1.) Leaves are used in general flower arrangement, ikenobo arrangement and adds color.

Sources, References, Bibliography, Interview:

Personal interviews – with Ms. Charita Gunao, Mrs. Leticia Cabiao, Mr. Lebon Ong, Mrs. Marilyn Montemayor, Professor Purita Marquez, Mr. Allan Marquez , Mrs. Vivian Sumilang

Royal Horticultural Society

Wolverton, B. C. How To Grow Fresh Air, Penguin Books, New York, 1997.

Wolverton, BC (1996) How to Grow Fresh Air . New York: Penguin Books.

Sawada, Ayako; Oyabu, Takashi (2008). “Purification characteristics of pothos for airborne chemicals in growing conditions and its evaluation”. Atmospheric Environment. 42 (3): 594–602.

Nauheimer, L., Metzler, D. and Renner, S.S. 2012. Global history of the ancient monocot family Araceae inferred with models accounting for past continental positions and previous ranges based on fossils. New Phytologist, vol. 195, p. 938-950.

Missouri Botanical Garden

Madulid, Domingo; Winner, National Book Award, Science, 1995. Revised Edition, 2000 with 388 pages. Araceae Epipermum aureum pages 89 to 90, Bookmark, Makati, A Pictorial Cyclopedia of Philippine Ornamental Plants.

Steiner, Mona Lisa, PHD;Care, M &L Licudine Enterprises, First Edition 1952, Second Edition 1960, Third Edition 1986, Atlag, Malolos , Bulacan. Gabi Family page 142, Philippine Ornamental Plants And Their Care.


8 Practical Tips on How to Take Care of Portulaca Grandiflora hybrids

Portulaca Grandiflora popularly known at a variety of names which includes portulaca, sun rose, sun plant,moss rose, rose moss,moss-rose purslane,alembong,time flower,clock flower,table rose, Japanese rose, Vietnam rose, Mexican rose. Portulaca plants are native to Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay.

In India,Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Philippines growers sometimes call them nine o’ clock flower,ten o’ clock flower or eleven o’ clock flower because the flowers open fully during this time. While in some parts of Latin America and in the country, Backyard hobbyists call this as flores alas diez which refers to the time the flowers open fully.

They have several species and colorful hybrids which looked like miniature roses.


photo courtesy of pixabay:BarBus ( single petal variety)

Portulaca Grandiflora hybrids was introduced into the country in the late 1940’s. About that time there were several venereal diseases which spread in the country. One of which is Syphilis nicknamed (Vietnam Rose). Whether the name is related to this is open for argumentation.

Another story from an old time plant collector said that they acquired cutting which was introduced from Vietnam in the early 1950’s to mid-1960’s thus getting the name. It was common garden plant. The hybrids have single petal or multiple petals varieties.

It is favorite flowering annual plant in many countries in United States, Canada, Southern Asia, Southeast Asia, Taiwan, Latin America and Mediterranean region.

carnation color (multiple petal variety)

8 Practical Tips on How to Take Care of Portulaca Grandiflora hybrids

8.) Propagation – The most common way to propagate Vietnam rose / Mexican rose / Japanese rose/ Sun Rose/ Moss Ross Purslane/ Portulaca is by cuttings and by seeds. Try to remove any buds or developing flower in the stem so that the plant can conserve its energy in producing roots. Seeds can take longer to grow.

7.) Water Requirement-Rose Moss is all time favorite among backyard hobbyists,local landscapers would plant portulaca hybrids in man made grotto,cement containers, terracotta pots, soft-drink plastic containers and as hanging pots. In United States, Canada and Latin America, portulacas are use as hedge plant and planted en masse.

6.) Lots of Sunlight- Vietnam rose needs between six to ten hours of sun to reach their flowering potential. If you try to grow portulaca in a shady area, their growth will be limpy and will have some difficulty in producing flowers. One will also notice that flowers are minimal and close early in late afternoon and on cloudy days.

5.) Soil- The preferred ones are a combination of 30% loam soil with the rest includes combination of compost, sand,pumice,aged cow or carabao dung,aged rice hull, bits of crush charcoal and coco coir.

4.) Temperature and Humidity – A native of Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina, moss rose likes heat and can tolerate dry conditions. It is commonly used for xeriscaping, hanging plant, hedge or as focal point in pocket garden. In the Philippines, This is popular in many community garden, public schools, pocket garden, vertical garden and hedge plant.


pink with shades of magenta ( multiple petal variety)

3.) Fertilizer- One can fertilize using any brand of water soluble fertilize 20N-20P-20K diluted between 1/2 to 1/4 strength sprayed over the foliage after watering on a weekly basis during their growing season. One can also put some slow release fertilize for those who cannot tend their garden in a weekly basis. Small amount of trace elements, calcium nitrate and epsom salt to boost its growth and blooms during rainy season. One can also add compost or vermicast which can also help in retaining soil moisture and nutrients.

Another good option is application of Naturamin which can help the ornamental plant to overcome stress like (sprouting, drought, pests and diseases). Try to dilute 3 grams per liter for matured plants. Once to twice a week spray in leaves and in parts of the plant.

Naturamin is available in Harbest Agricultural Business Corporation in Pasig and also had outlets located in Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao region.

Address: Harbest Main Office – No.5 Rosemarie Lane Brgy. Kapitolyo Pasig City Metro Manila.

Telephone : 6717411 to 14 Fax 671-22-32


dark magenta color (multiple petal variety)

2.) Varieties – There are several hybrids available in the market. Varieties includes Afternoon Delight which flowers stays longer and even blooms up to nigh time, Yubi series, Fairy Tale series among others. A lot of the seeds packs and cutting are sold in several online stores and price ranges from Php 30 ( seeds pack) to Php 200 for several cuttings.

1.) Pests- Try to regularly check for caterpillars, aphids,mealy bugs, slugs and snails. During rainy season, Botrytis blight or gray mold is a fungus disease can kill the plant. The disease can affect leaves, stems, flowers, seeds or any part of the plant except the root. Brown spots and gray spores of dead tissue form on the plant. The best way to avoid getting the disease is by regular inspection of the plant and sterilization of cutting tools before using them.

Sources, References and Bibliography

Personal interview with backyard growers.

Huxley, A., ed. (1992). New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. Macmillan ISBN 0-333-47494-5.

Missouri Botanical Garden: http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org

Madulid, Domingo; Winner, National Book Award, Science, 1995. Revised Edition, 2000 with 388 pages. Portulaceae pages 307 to 308, Bookmark, Makati, A Pictorial Cyclopedia of Philippine Ornamental Plants.

Steiner, Mona Lisa, PHD;Care, M &L Licudine Enterprises, First Edition 1952, Second Edition 1960, Third Edition 1986, Atlag, Malolos , Bulacan. PURSLANE-Portulaca Family (PORTULACA Family) Page 193 to 194, Philippine Ornamental Plants And Their Care.

Kew Gardens: https://www.kew.org/

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