Icon - Arrow LeftAn icon we use to indicate a rightwards action. Icon - Arrow RightAn icon we use to indicate a leftwards action. Icon - External LinkAn icon we use to indicate a button link is external. Icon - MessageThe icon we use to represent an email action. Icon - Down ChevronUsed to indicate a dropdown. Icon - CloseUsed to indicate a close action. Icon - Dropdown ArrowUsed to indicate a dropdown. Icon - Location PinUsed to showcase a location on a map. Icon - Zoom OutUsed to indicate a zoom out action on a map. Icon - Zoom InUsed to indicate a zoom in action on a map. Icon - SearchUsed to indicate a search action. Icon - EmailUsed to indicate an emai action. Icon - FacebookFacebooks brand mark for use in social sharing icons. flipboard Icon - InstagramInstagrams brand mark for use in social sharing icons. Icon - PinterestPinterests brand mark for use in social sharing icons. Icon - TwitterTwitters brand mark for use in social sharing icons. Icon - Check MarkA check mark for checkbox buttons.
You are reading

Gardening 101: Lucky Bamboo

Search

Gardening 101: Lucky Bamboo

January 11, 2017

Lucky Bamboo, Dracaena sanderiana: “Feng Shui Friend”

If you are someone who hopes for peace, prosperity, longevity, luck, beauty, good energy, or graciousness (and most of us probably fall into at least one of those categories), adding a lucky bamboo plant to your home may help. It’s also a fuss-free houseplant that requires virtually no care. Read on for everything you need to know about this feng shui-friendly plant.

Lucky bamboo house plant at Ikea

Above: Lucky bamboo does well in sunny (but not too bright) windows. Ikea sells the plants in selected stores; in UK stores, a Dracaena Spiral is £1.50.

Lucky bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana, also called Dracaena braunii) is not a true bamboo. It’s a member of the Dracaena family (rather than the Poaceae family to which bamboo belongs). Yet it shares physical similarities.

Lucky bamboo at Etsy

Above:  Five bare-root stalks of Lucky Bamboo are $15 from Plantnseeds via Etsy.

Lucky bamboo has red roots; slender, pointed leaves; and cylindrical, hollow green stems that are sometimes curled or encouraged into shapes. It is native to Africa, not Asia.

Lucky Bamboo stalk Photo by Gabriel Caparo

Above: The stalks look strikingly similar to bamboo. Photograph by Gabriel Caparó.

Cheat Sheet

  • When considering a container for your lucky bamboo, stick to glass: Translucent containers prevent excessive algae growth in the pebbles, and allow the full stalks to be seen.
  • According to the tenets of feng shui, it’s important to place your plant in exactly the right spot. For example, for positive energy, choose the Southeast corner; to signify family, place three lucky bamboo stalks in the eastern portion of your home.
  • To encourage lucky bamboo to curl, try rotating the plant slightly every once in a while. The stalk will grow towards the light, resulting in different growth directions.

Keep It Alive

  • Lucky bamboo grows best in pebbles or small stones, not dirt, to keep it upright, and at least an inch of water. Distilled or bottled water, rather than tap, is ideal.
  • Keep your bamboo in a warm, sunny place, ideally one that stays between 60 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. A not-too-bright windowsill is ideal.
  • Bamboo grows quickly; prune excessive growth to keep it trim.

Potted Lucky Bamboo by Grant Guarino

Above: Lucky bamboo grows best in pebbles or rocks to keep it upright and stabilized. Photograph by Grant Guarino.

Lucky bamboo bonsai windowsill

Above: Set on a windowsill with other houseplants (like bonsai), lucky bamboo creates a calming vignette. Photograph by Glasseyes View.

And, when selecting your plant, consider the number of stalks: Feng shui experts say that a grouping of five stalks attracts wealth; seven attracts healthfulness; while just two promote love and relationships.

For more easy-to-care-for, good-vibes houseplants, see our posts:

Finally, get more ideas on how to successfully plant, grow, and care for bamboo with our Bamboo: A Field Guide.

Finally, get more ideas on how to plant, grow, and care for various houseplants with our Houseplants: A Field Guide.

Additionally, get more ideas on how to plant, grow and care for various grasses with our Grasses: A Field Guide.

Product summary  

Have a Question or Comment About This Post?

Join the conversation

From our network