Pothos Vs Philodendron | Difference Between Pothos and Philodendron

Ralph Astley is a retired gardener from Philadelphia who specializes in outdoor plants and trees. With years of hands-on experience, Ralph not only cares for a diverse range of outdoor flora but also shares his extensive knowledge through well-written articles and social media posts. A trusted authority in arboriculture, he's committed to helping the community grow healthier, more robust gardens.
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Settling Pothos vs Philodendron once and for all to clear out every confusion you might have between these beauties!

Pothos Vs Philodendron has always been a hot topic of discussion, and we are going to list out all the pointers that set these plants apart!

How to Recognize a Pothos?

Botanically popular as Epipremnum aureum, pothos has heart like leaves that can have yellow, white, or pale green variegations. It has a trailing or climbing growth pattern, and comes in many varieties.

How to Recognize a Philodendron?

Botanically famous as philodendron, it, too, has heart-like leaves, that are broader and wider than pothos. Its stems are slightly thicker and sturdier, and comes in varieties that can be either climbing or non-climbing.

Difference Between Pothos and Philodendron

Pothos Vs Philodendron 2
Neon Pothos & Brasil Philodendron together

1. Appearance

Pothos vs Philodendron leaves tell all about them!

Pothos have heart-like leaves that are elongated and are slightly on the narrower side. Philodendrons have a broader foliage that’s also a tad bit wider in relation to the length.  The leaves of philo are also are thicker, less waxy, and more matte as compared to pothos.

2. Growth Habit

Pothos are champion climbers and fast growing, which makes them a go to choice for hanging baskets, or any place where you might need a trailing plant.

Another thing, pothos, given the right growing enviroment, can reach upto 80-100 feet in height/spread. Philodendrons simply can’t achieve that, and they can be trained to be good creepers.

Philodendrons also have varieties that can grow without any support.

3. Growing Requirements

Pothos are more resilient as compared to philodendrons. While climbing, they also grow much bigger and thicker arial roots to latch onto nearby plants and walls.

Pothos also have a deeper and stronger root system and are also more drought tolerant than philos.

4. Leaf Structure

Philodendrons have cataphyll that protects the leaves when they are young. Pothos lacks this, and has no protective covering for the foliage.

Well, that’s pretty much it. These plants don’t have much of a difference when it comes to anything else, and that’s precisely the reason why you see so much debate around them, which also makes people confuse a lot between these two!

If you are newbie gardener who wants a no nonsense plant that’s really easy to propagate from cuttings, does well in indirect light, and survives for years without any fuss, you can pick any one of these two, and call it a day!

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