How to Care for a Dracaena Lucky Bamboo Plant


Lucky bamboo, also referred to as curly bamboo and sometimes known by its scientific name, Dracaena sanderiana, requires very little care to thrive. Popular as an indoor houseplant in the United States, lucky bamboo symbolizes good fortune in the Chinese practice of feng shui. Gardeners value members of the Dracaena family, particularly lucky bamboo plants, for their adaptability and tolerance of conditions that would kill other plants. Provided with proper care, lucky bamboo can reach several feet in height and survive for years with only minimal care and maintenance.

Step 1

Plant lucky bamboo in a small vase with 1 to 3 inches of distilled water. Keep the plant in a location that receives partial, indirect sunlight throughout the day. Maintain a temperature of 60 to 70 degrees F for optimal growth.

Step 2

Change the plant's water once every two to three weeks to reduce the risk of disease. Dump out all of the old water and refill the vase with fresh distilled water. Complete this step as quickly as possible to minimize shock.

Step 3

Feed the lucky bamboo plant once every three to four months using a liquid houseplant fertilizer. Add one drop of fertilizer to the vase at each application. Do not over-fertilize the plant or the roots may burn.

Step 4

Add small pebbles to the vase to provide support for your lucky bamboo plant. Place just enough pebbles in the vase to make the plant stand up straight. Clean the pebbles when the water is changed every two to three weeks.

Step 5

Control the direction of growth by placing a bright light on one side of the plant, and blocking all light from the other three sides. Allow the plant to grow and it eventually will make its way towards the light. Rotate the light to change direction of growth.

Tips and Warnings

  • Never use tap water, as it contains fluorides which can damage the plant. If no distilled water is available, allow water from the tap to sit uncovered overnight before using.

Things You'll Need

  • Vase
  • Distilled water
  • Liquid houseplant fertilizer
  • Pebbles


  • University of Wisconsin Master Gardener: Lucky or Curly Bamboo
  • Flower Shop Network: Caring for Lucky Bamboo
  • Emily Compost Article Archives: Dracaena Sanderiana, Lucky Bamboo
Keywords: Dracaena lucky bamboo, lucky bamboo, curly bamboo

About this Author

Willow Sidhe is a freelance writer living in the beautiful Hot Springs, AR. She is a certified aromatherapist with a background in herbalism. She has extensive experience gardening, with a specialty in indoor plants and herbs. Sidhe's work has been published on numerous Web sites, including