How To Train Pothos To Climb

Your Pothos could be more than just a potted plant; it can climb walls. 

As someone who’s spent years helping plants and homes flourish together, I know this trick can change your space. 

If you’re struggling with a Pothos that just spreads out, not up, this guide is for you. I’ll share how to train Devil’s Ivy to climb, turning it into a stunning, living wall feature. 


  • Make Your Pothos Climb: Pick the right plant, set up hooks or poles, and place it near light. It’s that simple to get started.
  • Help Your Plant Grow Up: To train your pothos, understand how it climbs, use things like trellises, and guide it towards the light. 
  • Keep Your Walls Safe: Use gentle supports and know about the plant’s roots.

Does pothos climb? 

Indeed, Pothos plants are natural climbers, readily growing long vines with aerial roots. If you want your Pothos to climb, provide it with support like a trellis, Coir pole, or wall-mounted hooks. They thrive in these setups and will enhance your indoor greenery.

Pothos, or “Devil’s Ivy,” are tropical plants from French Polynesia and Southeast Asia. Now, they grow all over the world. 

They’re pretty cool because they start on the ground in forests and climb trees to get more sunlight. These plants love the shade and dampness of rainforests. 

In warm cities, you’ll see them climbing outside buildings. They do this with their roots and little tendrils. 

And guess what? They can do the same thing in your house, turning a plain wall into a beautiful green one.

How Pothos Climb Walls?

Pothos plants have these little roots that stick to almost anything. They also grow these special roots that can grab onto stuff and get water from the air. 

These roots help the plant to climb, especially inside your house. Pothos use these roots to go up your walls if they have something to hold onto. 

And don’t worry, these roots are gentle. They won’t dig into or damage your walls. 

When Should You Start Training Pothos To Climb

Start training your Pothos to climb when it’s about one or two years old. The right time depends on where it’s growing. 

In wet places, wait for two years. But in dry soil, start when you see the main stem growing. This helps the Pothos grow upwards neatly without getting all tangled.

Before you begin, check the plant. The leaves at the tip of each branch should be smaller than those at the base. 

This means your Pothos is ready to be trained to climb up poles and walls. It’s all about timing and looking at the plant’s growth to get it right.

What Are Some Creative Pothos Climbing Ideas

When it comes to training your pothos to climb, there are numerous creative ideas to consider. 

These can add a touch of greenery and beauty to your living space. Here are some inspiring pothos climbing ideas to explore:

1. Pothos trellis ideas

Trellis and moss poles are common and effective methods, providing excellent support for your pothos to climb while creating an attractive vertical garden. 

You have various indoor pothos trellis designs to choose from, including wooden and metal options, allowing customization to match your decor. 

These trellises not only offer practical support but also add timeless charm to your indoor space. 

Whether it’s a classic wooden trellis, a modern metal design, or even a DIY trellis, you’ll enhance your pothos display while ensuring its growth thrives.

2. Wall-Mounted Grids

Install wall-mounted grids or frames to encourage your pothos to climb vertically. These grids not only serve as a support system but also add a decorative element to your walls. 

You can find various grid designs, from simple to intricate, to suit your style. Wall-mounted grids provide an elegant solution for showcasing your pothos while allowing it to thrive in a vertical space.

3. Hanging Baskets

 Consider placing your pothos in hanging baskets or macramé plant hangers. As the vines grow, they will naturally cascade down, creating a beautiful hanging garden effect. 

This is an excellent choice for those who prefer a more relaxed and bohemian look. Hanging baskets provide a whimsical touch to your indoor decor and let your pothos flourish as it gracefully trails downward.

4. Indoor Ladders

Repurpose wooden ladders as unique climbing structures for your pothos. Simply lean the ladder against a wall and allow the vines to wrap around the rungs. 

This adds a rustic and charming touch to your indoor space. Indoor ladders offer a creative and eco-friendly way to support your pothos while adding character to your interior.

Before You Get Started

To train Pothos to climb, you will need the following materials:

  1. Moss Pole or Bamboo Canes: To provide sturdy support for the Pothos to climb.
  2. Command Hooks: These are useful for guiding the plant along a wall or desired path without damaging surfaces.
  3. Garden Twine or Soft Plant Ties: To gently secure the Pothos vines to the support structure.
  4. Scissors or Pruning Shears: For trimming and shaping the plant.
  5. Watering Can: To maintain consistent moisture levels
  6. Gloves (Optional): Protect your hands during pruning and training.
  7. Measuring Tape (Optional): For precise placement of hooks or supports, especially if creating a specific design.

How To Train Pothos To Climb Indoors

Here’s how to make pothos climb and grow upwards; 

Step 1: Set Up Your Space

First, let’s find the perfect spot for your Pothos. If you’re using a pothos moss pole or bamboo cane, push it gently into the pot’s soil next to your plant. 

For wall climbers, stick command hooks where you want your Pothos to travel. 

Pro Tip: Pothos love indirect light, so placing them near a window, but not directly in the sun, works wonders.

Step 2: Begin the Climb

Now, it’s time to guide your Pothos. Carefully wrap a vine around the pole or towards a hook. Secure it loosely with garden twine or plant ties. 

First Steps with Climbing Vines

Getting your plant to climb right starts with strong support for the first vines. 

Just lift these vines up to your trellis. Make sure they have plenty of support at the start. Tying them with a light string sometimes helps, especially with metal trellises.

As your vine gets longer, it’s easier to guide it how you like. The stems bend easily and adapt well. Just be careful not to bend them too much, or they’ll snap.

What to Do If a Vine Breaks

If you break a vine, don’t worry. You can use the broken piece to grow a new plant. This might even make your plant grow bushier. And remember, you’ll have more vines to work with later on.

Step 3: Water Wisely

Watering is key. Keep the soil moist but not soggy. Stick your finger in the soil; if it’s dry a couple of inches down, it’s watering time. 

Tip: Pothos leaves droop when thirsty, so watch for those subtle signs.

Step 4: Pruning and Shaping

As your Pothos grows, you might see leggy, leafless vines. 

Trim these with scissors to encourage fuller growth. 

Cutting just above a leaf node (small bump on the stem) stimulates new branches.

Step 5: Adjust as it Grows

Your Pothos will grow and might need more room. Loosen ties as needed and add more support. 

Step 6: Patience is a Virtue

Finally, remember plants grow at their own pace. Enjoy watching your Pothos climb and transform your space. 

Talk to your plant! It sounds quirky, but plants respond positively to human voices, and it’s a great way to bond with your green buddy.

What to Avoid When Training Your Pothos to Climb

Avoid placing your pothos in areas with poor lighting. 

Ensure your pothos aren’t in dimly lit areas. Naturally, these plants ascend trees in search of light. A lack of light will discourage them from climbing.

Remember, pothos flourish in bright but not direct sunlight. Keep them away from shadowy spots and distant from windows. 

Opt for places near a skylight, beside a large window, or under a grow light to motivate them to climb. 

Yellowing leaves signal a need for more light. So, the light source is key in deciding your plant’s location.

Using the wrong Trellis

When using a trellis, pick the right kind. Moss or wooden poles are best for bushy growth. They help the plant’s roots grab on better.

Be gentle when you’re guiding the vines up the pole. You don’t need metal pins or hooks for bushier growth.

 A simple twist, like turning a knob to the left, is usually enough. Let the plant do its thing and grab onto the pole by itself. Don’t force it; let it climb naturally.

Pruning Too Late

When training your pothos to be bushier, avoid letting the vines just grow without pruning. 

Regularly cutting the tips once they reach the top of the pole is key. This means cutting off the apical meristem, the part that grows. This signals the plant to grow bigger leaves and become bushier.

You might miss having beautiful, lush pothos with large leaves covering the moss pole if you don’t prune. 

And if the leaves aren’t growing right, it’s a sign to check and change your plant care routine

How to Prevent Problems When Training Your Pothos to Climb

Transplant with Care: If your pothos has been growing on a trellis for a while and starts to outgrow its planter, the best approach is to transplant the entire plant, including the trellis, when moving to a larger pot. 

Trying to untangle the vines from the moss pole or trellis can lead to vine breakage or harm the plant. Instead, during transplantation, remember that the plant’s roots have likely wrapped around the pole for support. 

To prevent problems, transplant the entire plant with the trellis attached. When transferring the pothos to a larger pot, ensure the trellis and vines stay in place while preserving the root ball.

If needed, consider adding a taller trellis pole to accommodate new growth without causing harm to your climbing pothos


In the world of indoor gardening, training pothos to climb is your ticket to a stunning vertical masterpiece. 

Remember, gentle guidance is the name of the game. These adaptable vines respond to your touch and trellis support with grace. 

But the real star of the show is the light – bright, indirect sunlight is the secret sauce. So, as you embark on your pothos climbing journey, let nature’s design and light be your allies. Your lush, climbing pothos will be a testament to patience and the artistry of indoor gardening. 


Can Pothos Climb A Moss Pole?

Yes,  Pothos, with their natural climbing tendencies, can elegantly ascend a moss pole. These houseplants thrive when given a mossy support system. Their aerial roots readily cling to the pole, creating a lush and vertical green display.

How Long Will It Take For Your Pothos To Climb

The plant will naturally vine upwards towards the direction from which light is coming. Typically, it may take between 1 and 2 years before it starts climbing. Thus, if you are training a mature plant, it takes 4-8 weeks to begin climbing. It will do this by attaching itself to the moss pole in the first 4 weeks and start climbing by the eighth week.

Does golden Pothos climb?

Yes! Golden Pothos, including varieties like Marble Queen Pothos and Neon Pothos, with their lush green and cream-speckled leaves, are climbing plants. In their natural habitat, they ascend tree trunks using aerial roots and can even trail along the ground, with some vines extending up to an impressive 70 feet in length.

Will Pothos damage walls?

Pothos roots will not cause damage to walls or surfaces. They are non-invasive and won’t harm your walls. If the vines become unruly, simply trim or prune them to maintain their appearance and prevent any potential issues.

Do Pothos climb or hang up

Pothos are climbing plants. However, they can hang depending on how you position them. The plant’s foliage will grow and become robust if allowed to climb. When Pothos climb, they get exposed to more light hence more growth.

Which are the best trellis for pothos plants

Moss poles are a top choice, emulating their natural habitat and aiding growth. They offer stability and moisture retention. You can opt for bendable or rigid moss poles, with the latter being a common recommendation.

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