How to Take Care of Bamboo Good Luck Plants

Overview

A bamboo good luck plant, or lucky bamboo, is not a true bamboo. It is a member of the water lily family, and therefore it requires different care than true bamboo. Most lucky bamboos sold in North America have had the growth node removed and will not grow taller. This is especially true with some of the exotic Feng Shui arrangements where the canes may be interwoven. Clipping growth nodes prevents the plant's growth from changing the shape of the arrangement.

Step 1

Keep your bamboo good luck plant out of direct sun. Lucky bamboo thrives in full shade. Full sun can cause the leaves to turn yellow and can eventually kill the plant. Lucky bamboo is only an indoor plant in North America and will not grow well outdoors.

Step 2

Change the water in your lucky bamboo every two to three weeks. When draining the water, be careful to prevent the sand and rocks at the bottom of the container from flowing out with the water.

Step 3

Rinse the roots of your lucky bamboo under tap water whenever you change the water.

Step 4

Refill your container with bottled or filtered water. Lucky bamboo can be sensitive to the fluoride some municipal water companies add to tap water. Some water filters remove fluoride; water from those filters may work.

Step 5

Every second or third change of water, add half-strength African violet fertilizer. If you want larger leaves, add half-strength African violet fertilizer every time you change your lucky bamboo's water. Follow the directions on the African violet fertilizer packet, but mix at half-strength; different fertilizers have different mixing ratios that will be indicated by the manufacturer.

Step 6

Wipe the leaves down with a damp towel with every water change. Lucky bamboo leaves have a large surface area that can become dusty over time.

Things You'll Need

  • Bottled water
  • African violet fertilizer

References

  • Fast Feng Shui: How to Choose and Care for Lucky Bamboo
  • Chiff: Lucky Bamboo
  • Esprit de Isle: Care of Lucky Bamboo
Keywords: lucky bamboo cultivation, lucky bamboo care, lucky bamboo indoors

About this Author

Although he grew up in Latin America, Mr. Ma is a writer based in Denver. He has been writing since 1987 and has written for NPR, AP, Boeing, Ford New Holland, Microsoft, RAHCO International, Umax Data Systems and other manufacturers in Taiwan. He studied creative writing at Mankato State University in Minnesota. He speaks fluent Mandarin Chinese, English and reads Spanish.