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House Plants/Pothos house plant is dying


I've recently started having trouble with a Pothos Plant that I've had for 19 years.  I think this is the right name, she has long vines with green heart shaped leaves) Her name is Annabelle.  The trouble started after one night that I was cleaning my carpet and I moved her.  She's been in the same spot for about 4 years and she'd started attaching herself to a picture on my wall.  When I moved her I gently detached her.  I noticed the very next day that her leaves had started wilting so I gave her some water.  The problem didn't get better after a few more days so I watered her again.  Then I found that her pot had a crack going up the side so I figured maybe her water was draining out, so I went and bought her a new, larger pot and began to change her over to it.  When I changed the pot, her water/dirt had a STRONG ammonia smell.  I went online and found that this is caused by overwatering.  I proceeded to change her into her new pot with fresh Miracle grow potting soil and I also clipped her ends that looked dead and removed the dead leaves.  After about 3 days of looking revived, I've noticed that she's starting to die again.  Some of her leaves are turning yellow and brown and all of them are wilting.  I've watered her but, don't want to over do it (again).  Also, every time I go over to touch her or untangle her vines I get this really horrible bitter taste in my mouth and can even taste it when I'm breathing.
I feel like I'm watching a family "member" pass away right before my eyes.  That may sound dramatic, but I really want to save my plant.  Please help!

Sounds like you have a watering and fertilizing problem...
Pothos proper watering care is similar to most indoor potted plants (excluding Orchids, cacti and a few other special type plants). Water your plant based on how much it weighs when thoroughly watered VS when they are ready to be watered again. Plants die from too frequent waterings (or going too long in between waterings), not from how much water you give them at one time. Pick the pot up and feel how heavy it is after watering it thoroughly. Don't water it again until it feels considerably lighter and the top of the soil is light in color. Depending on plant types, sunlight exposure and pot size plants will need water at many different rates from once a day to once a month or more.
Get to a local garden center and buy a good indoor plant fertilizer (like Miracle Grow - indoor or what ever they recommend)and read the directions before applying it...Plants do need to be fertilized every month or so to stay healthy...
Start watering properly (especially since you fixed the crack in the pot problem) and Annabelle should recover quickly...
Good luck
Rick in southern NJ

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Richard Hern


I can answer many common garden center/greenhouse houseplant questions such as , proper care, propagation of, pest problems, identification, growing mediums, construction, etc. & many more..


I currently manage a private 16 acre estate. i am in charge of the general maintenance of buildings and i supervise the landscape maintenance staff. i teach landscape/horticulture evening classes for a community college in NJ. I taught landscape/horticultural classes for a NJ vocational high school for 5 years. prior to that I owned & operated a landscape/garden center facility for 20 + years. My experience is in commercial & residential sales & care of houseplants as well as landscaping.


BS degree in Zoology (Entomology)
Certified landscape/horticulture teacher NJ

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