Can You Put Pothos in a Fish Tank? Explore the Possibilities

Can You Put Pothos in a Fish Tank? Do you know that pothos plants can make fish tanks look better and clean the water? You might wonder if pothos can live in water since they grow so well on land. The good news is they do well in water.

Aquarists love to make their tanks beautiful. Pothos plants are perfect for this. They don’t just look good. They also clean the water1. Anyone, from beginners to experts, can add pothos to their tank. With their strong roots and pretty leaves, pothos is an excellent choice for your tank.

Why is Pothos so good for tanks?

They can live fully or partly in water and help keep it clean.

Pothos also gets along with many fish types. This means your fish and plants will be happy together. Are you ready to make your fish tank better?

Can You Put Pothos in a Fish Tank?

Can You Put Pothos in a Fish Tank?

Key Takeaways

  • Pothos plants enhance the aesthetic appeal of fish tanks.
  • They contribute to water cleanliness by absorbing nitrates1.
  • Pothos are suitable for both novice and professional aquarists1.
  • The plant is compatible with various fish species, promoting a healthier aquatic ecosystem1.
  • Regular pruning and care are essential for maintaining pothos in a fish tank1.

Benefits of Adding Pothos to Your Aquarium

Adding pothos to your aquarium isn’t just for looks. This plant helps keep the water clean and looks great. It’s good for everyone who has fish.

Natural Filtration

Pothos plants are great at cleaning the water.

They take in harmful stuff from fish waste, improving the water for the fish and preventing too much algae2. Because of this, you won’t need to change the water as often. It’s a simple way to keep your fish happy without much work1.

Enhancing Aesthetic Appeal

Pothos makes your tank look better, too. Its pretty leaves and vines can cover the tank’s walls, making it a beautiful place for your fish and you1. Adding pothos can turn any tank into a stunning underwater world. It benefits the fish and you, making it a win-win.

Providing Hiding Places for Fish

Pothos roots offer hiding spots for your fish. They make the fish feel safe, like they’re in the wild2. These places help the fish stay calm and healthy. So, besides looking pretty, pothos make your aquarium a happy home for the fish.

Understanding Pothos Plant Characteristics

We’re going to look at why people love the Pothos plant, also known as Epipremnum aureum. This plant is a popular houseplant for those who garden indoors and those with home aquariums. 

Scientific Classification

The Pothos belongs to the Araceae family, which includes more than 3,500 kinds of flower plants. Its ability to adapt to different environments and ease of care make it very popular. 

Growth Habit and Foliage

The Pothos grows well, its vines can even reach ten feet inside3. In the wild tropics, the vines can stretch over 65 feet, with leaves that can get 30 inches long3. The plant is known for its big, glossy, heart-shaped leaves with green and yellow spots. Its quick growth and beautiful leaves are why many people like it. 

Light and Water Requirements

The Pothos does well in different light, from shaded sunlight to artificial light4. This makes it great for fish tanks that are not near direct sun. It can handle water with a pH from 5.0 to 8.0 and a temperature from 63°-86°F (17°-30°C)4. Water it well, then let it dry before watering again, like in the tropics3. Just be sure the leaves don’t touch the water to avoid damage. 

Can You Put Pothos in a Fish Tank?

Yes, you can add golden pothos to your fish tank. It works well in water and reduces nitrates. This helps control algae and brings beauty to your tank2Golden pothos grows well with its roots in water and leaves out. It makes for a great plant in your tank2. It takes nutrients from the water, keeping your tank healthy and pretty2.

Many who keep fish tanks like using pothos. They say it grows fast and helps keep nitrate levels down5. This is especially useful for big tanks with a lot of fish. Tanks like a 55-gallon one with mbuna cichlids can have high nitrates. Pothos cuttings lower these levels, making the tank better for the fish5.

Golden Pothos is excellent for your tank’s looks and health. It makes the tank look better and cleans the water using nitrates1. It does well in freshwater, where it can grow big. Keeping it pruned helps it keep looking good, making it an easy and smart choice for any fish tank owner1.

Step-by-Step Guide to Adding Pothos in Your Aquarium

Adding pothos to your aquarium doesn’t just look good but also helps. This guide is all about making sure your pothos grows well. We’ll cover how to pick, place, and care for your pothos cuttings.

Propagating and Preparing Pothos Cuttings

First, pick a healthy stem from the pothos plant. Take off the bottom leaves of the stem for growing. Put the cuttings in water with some sunlight but not direct sun. In a few weeks, roots about 4 inches long should grow6. This makes the cuttings ready for your aquarium.

Placing Pothos in the Tank

You can put the pothos in your tank when the roots are long enough. Make sure only the roots and stems are underwater. Keep the leaves above water to stop rot and keep the plant healthy. If there’s not much room in your tank, use a separate container for the pothos7. This also protects the plant from curious fish.

Can You Put Pothos in an aquarium?

Maintaining Healthy Pothos Growth

Taking care of your pothos is important. Change the water often to keep it fresh. Pothos like indirect sunlight, so watch the light. Sometimes, give the plant some special water plant food6.

Trim any vines or roots that get too big to keep the plant healthy2. Doing these things keeps your pothos and aquarium in great shape.

Effects of Pothos on Water Quality and Fish Health

Adding pothos to your fish tank can make water and fish healthier. It cuts down nitrates and other nutrients, making the water cleaner. This reduces the chance of algae growing.1

This makes pothos great for cleaning fish tank water naturally.

Nitrate Reduction

Pothos plants absorb nitrates from the water, which makes the water better for fish.1

Their roots are good at cleaning the water this way. So, it’s a great natural method for keeping your fish healthy.8

This helps by lowering the nutrients algae need to grow8. But, watch out for too much growth. Too many roots can mess up your fish tank.1.

When adding plants to your fish aquarium, the fish waste/nitrogen cycle is something that you should learn about. You can find out more about that here.

Potential Risks and Precautions

While pothos are good for water, they have some risks. Too much pothos can stop light and lower oxygen, which isn’t good for fish.1If their leaves decay in the water, more algae might grow.

To stop this, trim the pothos and check the water often.1Always pull out the bad leaves quickly to keep everything balanced.18

Pothos plants are great for your fish tank, but you must take care of them. With proper care, your fish and water will be happy and clean.

Pothos Compatibility with Different Aquarium Setups

Pothos plants are great for many aquariums and are loved by many. They grow well in all sorts of water, from fresh to salty1. But they do best with some types of fish and tanks. This makes the whole setup look good and the fish happy.

Freshwater Tanks

Pothos plants shine in fresh water. They clean the water by reducing high nitrate levels, which helps keep the fish happy and healthy7. Plus, they give out oxygen, which is great for aquarium fish like African cichlids.

Just trim them often to control their size, and they’ll make your tank look green and lovely1.

Saltwater and Brackish Tanks

In salty water, pothos grows a bit slower but can still make the water cleaner1. You need to watch the water and trim the roots to keep the plants in shape7.

Even though they don’t grow as fast, they still do some good jobs, like cleaning and reducing waste2. Making sure the water moves well and the roots don’t get too wet are vital to keeping them going in these tanks1.

Tank Mates and Fish Species

They match well with fish that don’t eat plants, like African cichlids2. Pothos is a good choice because it helps clean the water. It lowers the level of nitrates from fish waste, keeping a good balance in the tank7.

It’s smart to protect pothos from fish that do eat plants. You can use special filters or keep the plant’s leaves out of the water2. This way, pothos can be part of a nice aquarium for all the fish to enjoy together.

Common Challenges and Solutions

Growing pothos in an aquarium can be tricky. People often do it because they forget to water other plants often4. Pothos can grow really fast, which means the tank needs a lot of pruning. But if you keep up with caring for the pothos, the water stays in good condition.

Algae is another problem. It grows because of too many nutrients and waste9. If the water doesn’t move enough, pothos can get root rot. Changing the water every few days can stop this from happening.

It’s essential to change the water and clean it often for a healthy tank.

Testing the water and adjusting as needed is key. Make sure the temperature and nutrients are right. Many use water-soluble fertilizers to help their plants grow4. But too much fertilizer can lead to more algae.

Be careful not to give too much. Also, be mindful of how much light the tank gets. Too much direct sun can make the tank too hot, harming the plants and the small creatures living there9.

By managing all these things, my aquarium thrives. It looks good and stays healthy. This makes it a great place for pothos and a small, balanced ecosystem.

Alternative Aquatic Plants for Your Aquarium

Pothos plants are super popular, but finding new aquatic plants is a good idea. There are great choices like Java fern, peace lily,  jade pothos, and neon pothos. These plants add different looks and needs to your tank.

They do well, just like pothos, which is great.

Java fern is tough and doesn’t need much care. It grows fine in low light. It also sticks to things like driftwood and rocks. Peace lilies can handle many water conditions.

They don’t just look pretty. They also clean the water by using up extra nutrients. Neon pothos has bright leaves that look cool. It helps keep the water clean too.

It’s essential to think about how these plants mix with your fish. Some plant-eating fish make a lot of waste. People talk on forums about plants that work with tough conditions.

They mention plants like Philodendron, mini Anthurium, and Oxalis10. They also talk about Pothos and big-leaved plants that eat a lot and grow fast10.

Adding these new plants to your tank makes it look better and helps the ecosystem. Whether it’s Java fern, peace lilies, or neon pothos, it’s key to look after them. This keeps your tank healthy and looking good.


Q: Can You Put Pothos in a Fish Tank?

A: Yes, pothos works well in fish tanks. The roots of pothos in water and the leaves of the pothos plants above the water surface make the tank prettier and absorb bad nutrients, making for cleaner water.

Q: What are the Benefits of Adding Pothos to Your Aquarium?

A: Adding pothos to your aquarium does a lot. It cleans the water, looks nice, and gives fish places to hide. Their leaves are green and heart-shaped, and their roots are great for hiding.

Q: What is the Scientific Classification of Pothos?

A: Pothos is scientifically called Epipremnum aureum. It belongs to the Araceae family. Some other names for it are devil’s ivy, golden pothos, money plants, and taro vine.

Q: What are the Light and Water Requirements for Pothos?

A: Pothos likes indirect sunlight or artificial light. It does well in water with a pH of 5.0-8.0 and temps from 63°-86°F (17°-30°C). Keep their leaves out of the water to avoid them rotting.

Q: How Do You Propagate and Prepare Pothos Cuttings for Your Aquarium?

A: First, pick a strong stem and cut off the bottom leaves. Put it in water with light until roots are 4 inches long. After, put it in your tank with only the roots and stem in water to prevent rot.

Q: How Does Pothos Affect Water Quality and Fish Health?

A: Pothos cleans water by lowering nitrates and reducing algae. But, you must keep it from growing too much or rotting. Cut it often and keep the tank clean for the fish’s health.

Q: Is Pothos Compatible with Different Aquarium Setups?

A: Pothos works in most tanks, even some with salt. But, it likes fresh water best. Don’t put it with fish that eat plants to keep it safe.

Q: What are Common Challenges When Adding Pothos to an Aquarium?

A: The key issues are fast growth, algae, and root rot. Keep the water right and trim the plant to avoid these problems. This helps your tank and your fish stay healthy.

Q: What are Some Alternative Aquatic Plants for Aquariums?

A: Other good plants include java fern, peace lily, and neon pothos. Pick plants that fit the light and water needs of your tank. This keeps your aquarium a great place for life to thrive.

Source Links

  1. https://www.uwphotoring.com/pathos-plant-in-fish-tank-grow/
  2. https://www.aquariumcoop.com/blogs/aquarium/pothos
  3. https://www.epicgardening.com/pothos-flower/
  4. https://www.thespruce.com/can-you-grow-and-keep-a-pothos-in-water-6501145
  5. https://www.plantedtank.net/threads/pothos-with-aquatic-plants.1277563/
  6. https://bonjourgreen.com/aquarium/
  7. https://aquariumfishblog.com/aquarium-plants/how-to-plant-pothos-in-aquarium/
  8. https://bettafishbay.com/pothos-in-betta-tank/
  9. https://buceplant.com/blogs/aquascaping-guides-and-tips/how-to-keep-an-aquarium-next-to-a-window-algae-free
  10. https://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/threads/pothos-as-an-alternative-to-floating-plants.146843/

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