Why Is Pothos Called Devil’s Ivy? All You Need To Know

When you hear the word devil’s ivy, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind?

I doubt it’s pothos—the hardy, pretty plant that has found a place for itself in many houses. Rather, you’d think of poison ivy or something unpleasant. At least that’s what I originally did!

The name is a bit odd, so why is pothos called devil’s ivy? Well, pothos gained its unique nick name due to its unrivaled hardiness. It can survive almost anything! Read this article to find out more about this amazing plant.

Why Is Pothos Called Devil’s Ivy?

Pothos is called devil’s ivy because it’s virtually immortal. You’ll have to make a whole lot of effort if you want to kill it, and you’ll probably fail. Pothos can grow anywhere and under any conditions.

That’s why it’s one of the most popular house plants. With house plants, the less you need to care for them, the better. So, most green lovers go for pothos because it doesn’t die easily, and that’s also why it’s called devil’s ivy.

Why Is Pothos Called Money Plant?

pothos, also called devil's ivy

Pothos has a lot of nicknames, including devil’s ivy and money plant. While it’s called devil’s ivy for its hardness, it’s called money plant because its round leaves are flat and plump, supposedly resembling coins.

Other theories say it’s called that way because it thrives and grows rapidly, so anyone who grows it will always have money.

I like to believe that we don’t know the real reason behind the naming. Because let’s face it, pothos leaves don’t exactly look like coins, but the nickname is interesting indeed.

The Popular Traits of Devil’s Ivy Plant

The devil’s ivy is unique in so many ways. For starters, it seldom dies because of low maintenance unless you leave it unattended for years. On top of that, its vines grow rapidly. If you provide a place outdoors for the plant to climb, it can reach up to 40 feet tall. It can also reach up to 10 feet if you keep it indoors, which is still more than I can say for most house plants.

You’d be surprised to know that the fast growth of pothos actually makes it dangerous for some areas. In the Udawattakele Forest Reserve, the devil’s ivy is officially considered a risk for the trees in the area—due to its rapid growth that’s preventing the sunlight from reaching through.

Aside from all that, the most prominent trait of pothos is hardiness. The plant can survive in most light conditions as long as it’s not exposed to direct sunlight. It can live in low or moderate light, and it can survive under partial shade.

In addition to that, pothos only needs watering once a week in the summer and once each two weeks in the winter. The plant actually thrives when you leave its soil to dry in between watering.

As for the temperature, the pothos can survive in any temperature between 55–85 F, but it prefers hotter climates because it’s a tropical plant.

7 Reasons You Should Get Pothos as a House Plant

If you’re a beginner to the plant world and you want to fill your house with green fellows, pothos may be the best place to start. It’s easy to take care of, beautiful, and incredibly hardy. Here are seven reasons it may be your best option for a house plant.

1. Easy to Find

One of the best things about pothos is that it’s too easy to find. If you’re a beginner and you don’t know the best places to get plants yet, you can get it anywhere. For one, you can get it online on Amazon. Or, you can get it at Home Depot or at local farmers’ markets.

Even better, you can ask someone who already has pothos to give you a couple of stems for propagation. Pothos is very easy to propagate, so you won’t face any issues growing it yourself.

2. Easy to Take Care Of

Although it has soft leaves, pothos is incredibly hardy. If it’s grown outdoors and under good conditions, it may reach up to 50 feet high, and it gets hard to control pretty fast.

Pothos also doesn’t like direct sunlight, so it thrives indoors even if it’s in low light. Not only that, but the plant also survives in poor air circulation.

You’ll only need to water your pothos once every week or ten days, depending on the soil. In fact, too much water can kill the plant, and that says a lot for a plant that virtually doesn’t die.

3. A Lot of Variations

potted pothos from above

Aside from its affordability and ease of maintenance, pothos has a lot of beautiful colors you can grow. For example, there’s the golden pothos, which is called devil’s ivy. It has green leaves with yellow and gold variegation.

Meanwhile, the Neon, another variation of pothos, is yellow with no variegations. And the Pearls and Jades are mostly white or silver-grey with green patches.

What I’m trying to say is, you’ll never get bored with pothos. You can decorate your house with different varieties of it, so you enjoy their different shapes and colors.

4. Budget-Friendly

Some house plants are ridiculously expensive. For example, a fiddle leaf fig tree may cost up to $300, and variegated monstera starts at $600, going up to $4000 on some occasions. That makes pothos one of the most affordable plants for indoor use. You can get a pretty, already-growing plant with its pot and soil for less than $50.

If you want to get stems and propagate them yourself, you can probably get all you need for less than $10.

5. Bad Light Tolerance

Pothos can handle any light conditions, as long as there isn’t direct sunlight. If your house isn’t well-lit, the plant will be able to survive just well. The leaves may turn into a solid green color, and the plant may not grow as fast as it should, but it’ll live nevertheless.

Aside from the high tolerance for the bad lighting, pothos can survive in poor air circulation. That’s why pothos is an ideal plant for hospitals, offices, hotels, malls, and even airports.

6. Fast Growth

The fast growth of pothos can be a double-edged sword. If you have enough space for the vines to climb, you’ll enjoy the beautiful scenery of green on your windows and walls.

You can even create a green wall using a single pothos plant if you provide enough room for it to climb.

On the other hand, the fast growth may be too much to handle if your room is tight. Additionally, if you have other plants in the room, the vines may grow more than intended, shielding the sunlight from reaching the other plant.

Generally, fast growth can be of multiple benefits if you manage to find a suitable place for it.

7. Highly Versatile

pothos on a table in a house

The great thing about pothos is the fact that it’s a highly versatile plant. You can use it to decorate your rooms in multiple different ways, thanks to its unique formation.

For one, you can keep the pothos hanging. It’ll keep the air pure from toxins, and it’ll add a tropical touch to your house. Alternatively, you can place the pothos on a shelf if it’s small or even on a tabletop.

If you’re willing to go the extra mile, you can always provide a piece of bark for the vines to grow on. You can also use bamboo hoops instead, so you have a climbing plant right in the middle of your house.

Even better, you can hang Kokedama balls in your living room and use pothos for it.

As you can see, there are endless ways to use the plant for decoration.

Some Care Tips for Devil’s Ivy

If you like what you just read about devil’s ivy, you may want to know some care tips as well. That way, you’re ready to buy a new pot for your house instantly!

  • The leaves turn white if the light is too bright for the plant. This is an indication that they’re starting to get burnt, and you need to move the pot out of the light.
  • The leaves turn brown when the humidity is too low. If your house is void of humidity, you can always mist the plant regularly.
  • The leaves turn yellow when you’re overwatering the soil. This is an indication that they’re about to fall off, and you need to leave the soil for a couple of weeks until it completely dries. With pothos, no water is better than too much water because it’s a drought-tolerant plant.

To Wrap Up

Next time someone asks the question “why is pothos called devil’s ivy?” you’d know exactly what to say. To recap, it’s basically because pothos is a hardy plant that’s hard to kill. It’s drought-tolerant, and it can live in bad light and air conditions just fine. Generally, it’s one of the best house plants you can get.

Remember that you’ll need to leave it enough room to grow. Then, you’ll enjoy its green, tropical vines climbing up your walls.