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Pothos vine as food?


Nhewyt
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OK, this question came up because I was just looking at my HUGE pothos and thinking "that's going to have to get trimmed" - so, of course, the next thing to pop into my head was "I wonder if I can feed the trimmings to my roaches?".

So, anyone ever done this? Pothos is a tropical vine from the Solomon islands, it's non-toxic to cats and dogs and grows literally, like a weed.

Nhewyt

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I let it grow in some of my enclosures that are a little more "naturalistic" and it does fine/roaches do fine. In some cases a leaf may occasionally get a nibble, but no real damage. The exception is both of my Lucihormetica sp. seem to eat a whole leaf once in a while, removing leaves just slightly faster than the ivy can grow new ones.

Pothos sp. and Philodendron sp. can be found growing wild in Costa Rica, too. I have seen a few species in CR feeding at night particularly on yellowing or decaying leaves of these plants. Near one water source, it was a guarantee to find multiple species at a Philo., and most common a swimming (semi-aquatic) roach.

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  • 7 months later...
I've read in several places that it IS toxic to cats and dogs.

Well, I can confirm that it is not toxic to cats as I still have a cat, now 10 years old, who completely destroyed a large pothos as a kitten, but eating it and digging in it. He never got sick at all.

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  • 5 months later...

Pothos IS toxic and so are most if not all of the Ficus sp. You can find this in multiple places for pets on the web and in books. Or call up a local vet and ask them. I know this because I have tortoises and have done a lot of research on edible and toxic plants and weeds for them. I do not know the degree of toxicity or how toxic it is for roaches, but you are not supposed to let mammals or reptiles eat it. I also had a Chameleo calyptratus who lived on a ficus tree for years. This is the only chameleon species that I know of that actually eats some plant material some of the time. Every once in while there would be a chameleon-mouth shaped bite out of one of the ficus leaves. Before I knew they were somewhat of an omnivore I found this interesting, but never actually fed him any vegetables. At about nine months old, he started eating more leaves than usual and then suddenly stop eating all together. Nothing else had changed. He had a wide variety of food insects to choose from( I worked in a pet store ). After several weeks of wanting to pull my hair out, I found a small reference in a new chameleon book saying that this sp. only eats some veggie matter in the wild. I started hanging leafy greens in the cage daily and after afew weeks of force feeding he pulled out of it and was fine. He only occasionally nibbled on the veggies, but I removed the ficus when I found out it was toxic and he was fine from then on. I can't prove the ficus made him sick, but it is know to be toxic. As far as Nhewyt's cat is concerned: two things. As an animal trainer I can tell you that most dogs and cats tear things like house plants up, but don't actually ingest it. Second, toxicity can be a funny thing. You could eat a small amount of arsenic or cyanide and it wouldn't hurt you, but eat enough and...

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  • 1 month later...

i had alot of animals get into pothos, and some with philidendron, with varied results. i think most of the confusion on this seems to be calling one plant another, where most labs, schools, and texts label/refer to pothos as philidendron. they both are toxic, with pothos only to the degree as to how it is fertilized (as most know they can live with nothing but sterile water and even not so much of that), were the other is horribly toxic in most cases, but have seen old ones that are hardy were they were never given even decent soil, and were eatin with no ill results. so its better safe than sorry anyway. i just think its odd how most experts confuse the two plant all the time, but have had many types of animals including iguanas eat actual pothos and been fine (and theyd eat pounds of it), so if they get a little and you dont use commercial fertilizers you shouldnt worry.

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Intersting note about the Ficus sp. in aforementioned post.

This may apply to live Ficus leaves...I feed dead Ficus leaves to alot of roaches and they consume them without issues...

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