How Much Sun Does Pothos Need?

The pothos plant is one of the most common houseplants, and for a good reason. It’s easy to grow, extremely low maintenance and it can thrive in low light conditions.

The pothos plant will need sunlight just like any other plant, but if you want to keep your plant healthy and green, you’ll need to know how much sun pothos need.

How Much Sun Does Pothos Need?

Pothos plants are native to tropical regions in Asia and Africa, so they don’t require direct sunlight. In fact, too much sun will burn your plant’s leaves. Instead, Pothos plants prefer indirect sunlight or partial shade. This means that they’ll do best in a room with lots of windows or near an east-facing window.

The amount of sun pothos need to thrive is 12 hours or more of indirect sunlight each day.

Does Pothos Prefer Full Sun?

Although pothos thrives in bright light, it’s best to put them in a shady area. Pothos plants will grow in full sun, but they may not look as healthy or colorful, and the leaves will be small.

You can keep your pothos in a window that faces south or west for the best light exposure possible without sacrificing health.

The leaf colors of your plant will remain more vibrant if you provide enough light for the plant to grow and produce new leaves from its center (rather than from its edges). If you’re having trouble getting your pothos to grow new leaves from its center, try moving it closer to an east-facing window or increasing the brightness of its existing spot by adding artificial lighting or moving closer to a natural source of bright light such as a skylight or large window with no shade covering it.

Signs Your Pothos Is Getting Too Much Sun

Pothos grows well in low light, but it will thrive in bright light, too. It can even tolerate full sun for a few hours each day if you move it to a shadier spot during the hottest part of the day.

When pothos gets too much sun, they can become discolored or damaged. Here are some signs your pothos is getting too much sun:

  • Leaves shrivel up and fall off
  • Dark brown leaves
  • Leaves that are turning yellow or pale green
  • Stems that are splitting open

If you see one or more of these symptoms, it’s time to move your plant into a shadier location.

Where Does Pothos Grow Best?

Pothos likes high humidity, so it does well in the bathroom, kitchen, or other areas of your home where you have circulating air. You can also grow pothos outdoors in shady areas with dappled sunlight.

If you live in an area that gets less than 10 hours of daylight each day, you should plant pothos outside during the summer months and bring them inside before the first frost of the fall.

What Happens if Pothos Doesn’t Get Enough Sun?

If your pothos plant doesn’t get enough sun, it will grow tall and lanky and have a weak root system. It may also show signs of browning or yellowing leaves. If your pothos isn’t getting enough light, consider moving it to another location that gets more sunlight, or changing its pot size to one that has more drainage holes to allow for better water drainage.

If you have a pothos that is growing in an area of your home where there is not much natural light, you may notice that the plant begins to stretch out in an attempt for more light. This stretching can cause the plant to become leggy and thin out as it grows toward light sources like windows or skylights.

Pothos plants are climbers and will tend to climb on everything if they are able; however, they can also grow as ground covers if needed. Because pothos does not need a lot of water and thrive on neglect (as long as they are getting adequate sunlight), they can be used in areas where other plants might die from too much moisture or lack thereof.


Pothos is a great houseplant to keep on hand. The plant is easy to grow, it’s pretty and it has a nice scent. Pothos needs bright light but not direct sunlight to thrive indoors or outdoors. It should be placed in an area where at least some sunlight will reach it during the day for the best growth and health of leaves and stems. The amount of sunlight pothos should receive is 12 or more indirect light each day.

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