Pothos may be known for being kept indoors, given they are one of the most popular houseplants that you can own today – but what about keeping pothos outside in summer?
Pothos can definitely be kept outside in summer, as long as the conditions outside are suitable for them to survive. You just need to be careful as they are classified as an invasive species in some areas, such as Florida, so you won’t be able to grow pothos outside in such places.
Let’s dive into some things you need to consider when growing pothos outside during the summer months, and the pros and cons of doing so.
Things To Consider When Growing Pothos Outside During Summer
While you want the conditions to be ideal for keeping your pothos outside in the summer months, don’t forget that they are incredibly hardy plants.
I’ve owned a golden pothos for several years and can vouch for this personally – pothos will grow just about anywhere, but much faster if you can optimise the conditions.
The first thing you need to consider when placing a pothos outside during the summer is whether you are allowed to do so in the first place.
At the time of writing this article, pothos is classified as an invasive species in the Galapagos Islands, Tanzania, St. Lucia, Hawaii, French Polynesia and Micronesia. It is listed as an invasive category II specifically in Florida (source).
It’s worth checking this database before you put your pothos outside to ensure that you are complying with the regulations in your specific area.
Pothos are native to southeastern Asia where temperatures hover between 68°F and 95°F.
If you want to keep your pothos outside during the summer, you’ll need the temperature to hover in this range. This is quite realistic for a lot of places around the globe.
Southeastern Asia is also known for high humidity, and if you want your pothos to thrive outside then you need a decent amount of humidity.
I’m not talking about super-high humidities like those in some areas of Asia, as these are quite unrealistic for the rest of the world, but a minimum of 60% will promote growth.
If you’re planting your pothos directly into the ground it’s likely that you won’t run into any problems, assuming you have other plants in the area that have grown successfully.
If you decide to use a pot make sure you use a well-draining soil mix, essentially the same that you would use when your pothos is inside.
Pothos enjoy plenty of bright, indirect sunlight.
In the wild, they’re typically found underneath the jungle canopy climbing up surfaces such as trees and other plants – a behaviour which you can replicate indoors and outdoors.
You’ll want to position your pothos in an area with similar conditions to those found in the wild. Consider planting it underneath a tree, or on a trellis in an area that enjoys a fair bit of shade.
Benefits Of Growing Pothos Outside In Summer Months
If you’re considering placing your pothos outside for the summer then it’s only natural to want to know the benefits – and there are plenty of them.
So many, in fact, that it makes me wish I could put my golden pothos outside for the summer!
If you grow a pothos outside it will require very little maintenance (if any).
You may need to supplement water if you live in a dry place, but most of the time rainfall will do this job for you. Fertilizer is required much less frequently if you plant directly into the ground, and you won’t have to worry about it taking up so much space inside; which means less time spent pruning.
Pothos are classified as an invasive species in a lot of places for good reason.
Placing your pothos outside during the summer will cause them to grow much faster than they would inside. This is due to an abundance of natural sunlight, moisture and humidity as well as nutrient availability if you decide to plant directly into the ground.
This one goes without saying, but it’s worthy of a mention regardless.
Growing a pothos outside in the summer months will introduce it to an abundance of – hopefully – indirect and bright natural light. If you’ve struggled to find the perfect spot for your pothos inside to meet its sunlight requirements you’ll have a much easier time outside.
Drawbacks Of Growing Pothos Outside During Summer
Keeping your pothos outside sounds like a great idea, and in most scenarios it is, but there are a couple of problems you may encounter if you choose to do so.
Pothos are susceptible to a wide variety of pests that can inhabit the plant and cause some serious damage.
Common pests include mealybugs and spider mites, and the likelihood of encountering such pests is greatly increased if your pothos is outdoors.
This can be resolved with insect sprays, and there are several options on the market, but you need to be wary as these pests can cause a significant amount of damage in a short space of time.
Invasive Species In Some Locations
I’ve already mentioned this point, but it really is the biggest hurdle you might come across. If you live in an area where pothos are restricted outdoors, there really is nothing you can do about it.
You should also consider why pothos are restricted in the first place. They will take over your garden if you aren’t careful, which can be seen as both a positive and a negative depending on what aesthetic you’re going for.
Below I’ve listed the other common questions that I get asked about growing pothos outside during the summer months. If you have any other questions feel free to ask below.
Can I Put Pothos In Full Sun?
Pothos should always be placed in indirect light rather than full sun, as this can cause sunburn on the leaves.
You should be very careful of this during the summer months especially as there will be much more sunlight during this time.
How Long Can Pothos Stay Outside?
If the conditions are suited for your pothos year round then they will be able to stay outside all the time.
Just keep in mind that you want high humidity, temperatures between 68°F and 95°F and plenty of indirect sunlight.