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How to Care for Lucky Bamboo: 5 Care Tips for Lucky Bamboo

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Sep 16, 2020 • 2 min read

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Ron Finley Teaches Gardening

With its intricate stems and notable resiliency, lucky bamboo makes a perfect indoor plant. Whether you’re a beginner green thumb or an experienced gardener looking to spruce up your indoor greenery, a lucky bamboo plant is a viable option for gardeners of all levels.

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Ron Finley Teaches GardeningRon Finley Teaches Gardening

Community activist and self-taught gardener Ron Finley shows you how to garden in any space, nurture your plants, and grow your own food.

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What Is Lucky Bamboo?

Lucky bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana) is a commonly cultivated houseplant that can be grown hydroponically or in soil. While its stalks resemble those of a true bamboo plant, the lucky bamboo plant is actually a part of the Asparagaceae family. Lucky bamboo has deep roots in feng shui—an ancient Chinese philosophy that dates back to the ninth-century BC—and is thus traditionally given as a gift to promote good luck, good fortune, love, health, and growth.

What Are the Best Growing Conditions for Lucky Bamboo?

The best growing conditions for a lucky bamboo plant is to keep it warm and indoors, preferably in a well-lit room. While it’s possible to plant lucky bamboo in soil outside, cold temperatures or harsh sunlight can harm the plant.

How to Care for Lucky Bamboo

To keep your plant thriving as long as possible, check out these lucky bamboo plant care tips:

  1. Clean the growing container. Clean the container every few months and provide fresh water once a week to prevent algae from forming.
  2. Give it plenty of light. Lucky bamboo makes a great indoor plant because it can tolerate light shade and indirect sunlight. However, your bamboo will grow larger when exposed to bright light. This doesn’t mean you should put your plant in full, direct sunlight, but keeping it in a bright room can increase its longevity.
  3. Filter your water. Lucky bamboo can be grown in soil or water. If you’re growing the plant in water, filtered or distilled water is your best option for keeping your bamboo’s roots moist and healthy. (Tap water may contain chemicals that can burn its stalks). Always use clean water to refresh your plant.
  4. Choose the right container. When you buy or receive a lucky bamboo plant, it usually comes in its own container, often on top of pebbles or beads. If your bamboo outgrows its original container, you may need to transfer it into another container that can sustain it. Gently dig up the bamboo plant, washing the pebbles before transferring over to the new pot. Add the bamboo plant, carefully reburying the roots beneath the pebbles to ensure they’re completely covered. Keep the water level high enough to cover the roots, but not so high that it wets the bamboo stalks.
  5. Have proper drainage. If your lucky bamboo is growing in soil, make sure its container has good drainage. Lucky bamboo prefers moist soil, but adding too much water to the soil can negatively impact the plant’s growth. Water the soil when the top inch of the soil is dry.
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Grow your own food with Ron Finley, the self-described "Gangster Gardener." Get the MasterClass All-Access Pass and learn how to cultivate fresh herbs and vegetables, keep your house plants alive, and use compost to make your community - and the world - a better place.

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