Can someone please advise me how to grow a healthy pothos with super long vines that doe not get leggy and drop leaves ?? I KNOW its possible as I seem them in the stores and various other places. Thanks for any advice...
Light, nutrients, and a container with a proper mix - not too wet, not too dry (evenly moist). That said, the older leaves will eventually drop from the vines - you've got to keep the plant in optimum health to retain the leaves for as long as possible. It seems counter-intuitive, of course, but pruning the plant helps keep it full and bushy. Training a number of vines is how I would do it, and every once in a while I would prune an old vine and then let a new vine take its place. My own plant scrambles where it will, and I chop it back a couple times a year.
A neat thing to do is when they scramble(as Josh so aptly put it),secure a bit of fishing line to the container and pushpin the other end of the line to the wall(or whatever creative endeavor occurs to you here),so the vine can be wound around the line as it grows. Last year I had some all over my ceiling...the effect was pretty cool.
I have friends who are professional plantsmen. It's worth knowing (if you don't know this already), that often times commercial spaces & large atriums have their plants traded in & out every couple of months to make sure things stay looking so well grown. I once worked in a fancy bldg w/ a HUGE tropical atrium & saw how frequently plants were traded in & out to keep things looking as pristine as possible.
Pls. know that while it's a laudable goal, it's not so easy to grow Pothos so long & unblemished in home settings (which tend to be quite dry). So while what you're asking is a great idea, it's not terribly realistic in a home setting, just so you know.
What are you seeing at stores? Plants on a pole? Aside from keeping the number of vines to a maximum by following Josh's advice about occasional pruning, vines can be wound up, then back down, then back up, etc... I wasn't sure from reading your post if you just want a column of foliage type appearance, or a hanging/dangling plant? Hanging plants often decline because of the design of the pot. Most of them allow for 1/2" of water to pool at the bottom. Fixing the pot can drastically increase the longevity of the pleasing appearance/health.
Aside from proper care, increased humidity and fresh, circulating air.
Pothos do well in bright, indirect summer sun..during winter, direct south or west exposure is sufficient.
Soil should never stay soaking wet. Ever.
I'm unsure about pruning/pinching. Pruning vines thicken plants, but I believe you're interested growing long, healthy vines.
So, imo, humidity, fresh, circulating air, bright light, hosing/showering foliage and fertilizer....you might get your wish.
Variety matters, too. Toni
i once grew pothos up and along the pergola like structure. indoors in a room with east/west exposure: sunroom with very large windows..practically 2 adjacent walls. it climbed up about 4 ' and then along the beams - for about 8' towards the southern window. it was very healthy, i did not repot for 4-5 years (it would be impossible with vines jumbled all over in the air and pots at 5' high on the ledge). the vines were getting longer and longer with healthy variegated leaves (that did not get bigger, just reg. size). so the length of vines was close to 12'? when they out grew the beams, i'd cut them down by half may be. but they did loose leaves on the bottom slowly. so the bottom 3-4' on each vine were bare.
i've seen them outdoors climbing on trees - they also loose bottom leaves as they get very long.