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Satin Pothos (Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’)

With bright silver splashes peppered throughout dark green leaves, Satin Pothos is sure to be the center of attention in any vivarium. Its unique foliage makes it quite hard to overlook. For this reason, it slowly becoming a very popular plant to have in an enclosure.

Not only will it add life to an enclosure, but it is also extremely easy to care for. Nonetheless, there are a few guidelines that must be followed in order to guarantee a vibrant and healthy plant. This article will provide an in-depth care guide on all you need to know to grow this vine inside a tank.

Quick Stats:

Scientific Name: Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’

Family: Araceae

Common Names: Satin Pothos, Silver Philodendron, Silver Vine, Silk Pothos, Pothos Silver Splash, Silver Satin Pothos

Habitat: Tropical

Height: 10ft

PH Range: 5.1 to 6.5

Temperature: 65°F to 85°F

Lighting: Bright

What Is Satin Pothos?

Satin Pothos are slow-growing, tropical evergreen climbing plants. It is part of the Araceae family and falls under the Scindapsus genus. The genus name comes from the Greek term skindapsos, which is said to have a few meanings.

The most known definition of the word is “upon tree trunks”, in reference to the plant’s growth patterns.  Meanwhile, the specific Latin epithet ‘Argyraeus’ means silvery. Both of which describe this vine perfectly.

Satin Pothos is known to have 3 very similar, but slightly different cultivated varieties. Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’ is one of the three varieties and can be described as a hybrid species of the mother plant.

Satin Pothos (Scindapsus Pictus 'Argyraeu') Care Guide

Satin Pothos Facts

Satin Pothos are scientifically referred to as Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’. Common names include Silver Philodendron, Silver Vine, Silk Pothos, Pothos Silver Splash, and Argyraeu. Despite some of its common names, this vine is not a type of Pothos or Philodendron.

The confusing names have led to it being misidentified for quite some time now. Even though it does not fall under the same category, S. pictus ‘Argyraeu’ is just as hardy and easy to take care of as most Photos.

Description

One of the best characteristics of the Satin Pothos is its foliage. Aside from their low maintenance, it is the number one reason that hobbyists use it so much. The leaves of this plant come in two different forms: juvenile and mature.

Juvenile leaves are oval in shape and have smooth margins. Mature leaves, on the other hand, will be pinnately lobed and heart-shaped. This means that the lobes will be displayed on either side of the center of the leaf. Sometimes mature leaves will be both pinnate and lobed at the same time.

Each leaf will be a hue of matte green to dark green and have splashes of silver on top. None of the silver blotches will be exactly the same. Although all three varieties of Satin Pothos are extremely similar, they do have a small differentiating factor.

Compared to its sister plants, ‘Silvery Anne’ and ‘Exotica’, the ‘Argyraeu’ species has slightly smaller leaves that lay flat, with much less of it covered in silver marks. In the wild, Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’ can grow up to 10 feet in length, while indoors it will usually only reach about 3 ft.

However, the overall size of the vine will depend on the environment that it is growing.

Like many other vines, the Satin Pathos has aerial roots and is epiphytic in nature. As an epiphyte, the plant can attach itself to other plants and uses its surroundings to gather food without becoming parasitic. The aerial roots grow at intervals in clusters along the stems.

The main function of these roots is to help the plant latch onto the surface it is climbing. They will also absorb water and nutrients when growing epiphytically.

Habitat

Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’ is a species of plant native to warm and humid regions of Sumatra, Sulawesi, the Philippines, Bangladesh, Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Borneo, and Java. The natural habitats of this plant are known for their tropical temperatures, moisture, and bright yet shaded sunlight.

For this reason, Satin Pothos can usually be seen in areas filled with trees. The vine will use the trees to support itself by growing along its trunks. If it is not able to attach itself, it will tumble along the ground.

As a true tropical plant, ‘Argyraeu’ prefers a warm environment for good growth. The ideal temperature for optimal growth falls anywhere between 65 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit.

Even when grown indoors, this vine will not tolerate very cold temperatures. Anything below 60°F will damage the foliage and potentially kill the plant.

PH Preference

Satin Pothos tend to thrive with a slightly acidic PH. A PH of 7 is considered neutral. A PH below 7 is acidic and a PH above 7 is alkaline. Trailing Jade is no exception. With that in mind, the ideal PH for the Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’ will range anywhere between 5.1 and 6.5.

Vivarium Type

When trying to decide what type of enclosure to grow S. Pictus ‘Argyraeu’ in, the best advice that can be given is to keep in mind its natural habitat. It is a plant that will do well in a variety of vivarium types.

However, the proper setup and theme of the enclosure can make a big difference to the overall look and health of the plant. Be sure to go with setups that have tropical, but well-drained terrestrial areas. Here are recommended vivariums it will do well in:

 

    • Paludariums – Half aquatic/ half terrain-based enclosure.

    • Terrariums – Fully terrain-based enclosures with little to no aquatic features.

Vivarium Placement

Satin Pothos is a versatile plant that can be placed in different places within a vivarium. Since it is classified as a vining plant, any place higher in the enclosure is typically preferred. The way that it tends to cascade down makes the perfect accentuating tool for decorating the tank.

Due to Satin Pothos’ full look, hobbyists will use this plant to cover up the backgrounds and walls of a tank in order to hide unattractive equipment. S. Pictus ‘Argyraeu’ is a terrestrial-based plant.

Therefore, it should not be placed fully submerged in water. It is important to keep this in mind when using the vine in an enclosure with aquatic features.

Substrate

Philodendron Brasil prefers well-drained, loose terrarium soil that is high in organic matter. The plant’s subterranean roots need to be able to dig their way into the soil in order to do their job. A mix that is too compact and tight will make it hard for them to do so, eventually affecting the plant’s health.

As long as those few needs are met, Philodendrons will not be very picky with the substrate provided. For instance, they will grow quite well in 100% sphagnum peat moss. If for any reason the soil is not a possibility with the setup of the vivarium, mixtures like peat-perlite or peat-vermiculite will do just fine.

Lighting

Satin Pathos is very similar to most rainforest plants when it comes to lighting. It thrives best in bright indirect light. It should not be placed under direct sunlight, or the leaves will be scorched.

This makes sense since in its natural habitat tree canopies drown out most light far before it could reach the vine’s leaves. However, keep in mind that if S. Pictus ‘Argyraeu’ does not receive enough light, its leaves will lose their beautiful variegation.

When setting up lighting inside of a vivarium, LED lights will work extremely well. Try to go for cooler colors that resemble a bright, but shaded day. This will make sure the plant is getting all the light it needs, without being harmed.

Avoid any type of light that has high levels of UV rays. This will be like placing the fern under direct sunlight.

Buy Satin Pothos

When it comes to buying a Satin Pothos, there are a few things to keep in mind. Making sure that the plant being bought is healthy is essential for its success in a vivarium. Vegetation that is already in poor conditions, will have a very hard time adjusting to new environments.

Always make sure to buy from a reliable and honest establishment. Whether it is an online store or a physical location should not matter. However, online stores might need to be researched a little bit harder to make sure that they are legitimate and are sending the correct plants.

Remember that there are a few varieties of this plant, so be very specific with names. In addition, always check the foliage closely for yellowing, wilting, black spots, or any signs of damage.

Pay close attention and look for any pests or fungal diseases. Inspect both sides of the leaves to avoid missing any red flags.  Click the image below to find out more about the current price and other relative info about this plant:

Satin Pothos Care and Propagation

Satin Pothos are known for being quite hardy plants. The specific species of ‘Argyraeu’ follows the same criteria. It is pretty straightforward and simple when it comes to its care and maintenance requirements.

As long as it is receiving the right amount of lighting, and water, and has sufficient drainage, successful growth should be expected. Periodically pruning the vine and removing dead foliage will also promote the health and growth of the plant.

How to grow

There are a few ways that S. Pictus ‘Argyraeu’ can be propagated. However, the easiest and most successful one is through the use of stem cuttings. Start by picking out a healthy adult plant. Then cut about 2-4 inches off the top of the stem.

A piece of stem with a few leaves will regrow just fine as long as there are root nodes included. The cuttings can either be re-planted in soil or placed in water.

When using soil, make sure it is moist and the temperature warm. Placing the new plant in water usually accelerates the process a little bit, but there is a possibility of it not surviving.

Transferring the cutting from water to soil can shock the plant and damage it. Either way, make sure to also provide enough bright light to promote new growth.

Watering

Satin Pothos is actually quite a drought-tolerant plant. Due to this quality, it tends to be more forgiving towards a missed watering, than if it’s overwatered. Too much water will lead to unhealthy growth and ultimately the plant’s death. The substrate of this vine should be allowed to dry out before it is watered again.

An easy way to make sure the right amount of water is provided is by using your bare hands to check the soil. Dip a finger into the top 1 to 2 inches of the substrate. If it is dry to the touch, then you can proceed with watering, and if it still feels moist, then you can wait a few days before checking again.

There are a few key signs that there is an issue with the amount of water the plant is receiving. For example, yellowing leaves usually indicate that the Satin Pothos is getting too much water. Meanwhile, if the foliage begins to curl, it needs a drink of water.

Plants Similar To Satin Pothos

Adding diversity to an enclosure is key to an aesthetically pleasing setup. Try mixing up the look of your vivarium with different flora that can easily co-exist in the same types of environment.

Furthermore, if for some reason you find plants hard to acquire or would like to consider something similar to this plant… Here are some other vine plants you might find may do well with or in place of Scindapsus pictus ‘argyraeu’:

Lipstick Plant (Aeschynanthus Radicans)
Baby Tears Plant (Soleirolia Soleirolii)
Sphagneticola Trilobata "Trailing Daisy" Care Guide | Vivarium Plants

Conclusion

By now you should have almost, if not all, the knowledge needed to grow a stunning, healthy, and vibrant Satin Pothos plant. As long as the basics of this plant are met, it should be an easy and very rewarding plant to grow inside a vivarium.

It is a great alternative to similar-looking vine plants if you are one for diversity. What do you think about the idea of this vine in a terrarium?

Frequently Asked Questions

Yes! Satin pothos is a beautiful houseplant and is very easy to care for. They thrive in bright, indirect sunlight and average humidity, and only need to be watered once or twice a week. They are also very tolerant of lower light conditions, making them a great option for indoor living.

Satin Pothos typically need bright, indirect light. Some direct sunlight can be beneficial, but too much direct light can cause burnt leaves or cause the leaves to fade. It‘s best to find a spot that‘s bright but not in direct sunlight.

Satin pothos should be watered approximately once a week, allowing the soil to dry out completely in between. The frequency may vary depending on light and humidity levels, so check the soil regularly for moisture.

No, Silver Satin Pothos is not a rare houseplant. It is a common houseplant, known for its attractive, silvergreen foliage. Silver Satin Pothos is easy to find and readily available in most local nurseries and garden centers.

It is recommended to water your satin pothos weekly, making sure to let the soil dry out between waterings. When needed, increase watering slightly, especially during the summer months. Be sure not to let the soil become overly soggy, as this can cause root rot and other issues.

Yes, satin pothos enjoys being misted regularly. They prefer humidity and a light misting will help keep their foliage vibrant. To ensure proper care, mist 23 times per week.

Yes, satin pothos needs misting. The plant prefers high levels of humidity, so misting regularly with lukewarm water is recommended in order to prevent the leaves from drying out. Allow the soil to dry out to the touch between waterings. Misting should be done 12 times per week and more frequently in dry environments.

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