Updated May 6, 2022 by Mark Marino
If you’re wondering how to grow a bamboo plant indoors, consider the lucky bamboo plant. Known botanically as Dracaena sanderiana, lucky bamboo plants technically are not actually bamboo plants; that is, they’re not a true species of bamboo. They have fleshy stems, unlike actual bamboo plants, and they’re able to grow in water. All species of bamboo need soil to grow.
In any case, lucky bamboo plants are popular houseplants and often presented as gifts because of their association with good feng shui. Some people believe that lucky bamboo plants can dispel bad luck and support a home’s positive feng shui energy. Growing lucky bamboo is easy with these lucky bamboo care tips. You can purchase lucky bamboo at your local garden center and grow several stalks of this plant in the same container.
Description of Lucky Bamboo Plants
Lucky bamboo features fleshy stalks that are not unlike asparagus stalks. While they also resemble real bamboo, they do not harden like actual bamboo stalks do. Lucky bamboo may grow straight but many growers enjoy training the stems to twist. They may even braid the stalks to create interesting sculptural shapes.
For these reasons, lucky bamboo plants are prizes as gifts. The number of stalks the plant has is associated with a special meaning. An auspicious gift, a bamboo plant with eight stalks represents growth and prosperity. A bamboo plant with three stalks represents happiness, wealth, and long life.
Growing Lucky Bamboo Plants Indoors
While actual bamboo species are fast growing, lucky bamboo plants do not typically grow more quickly than most houseplants. However, with the right growing conditions and care, you can ensure that your lucky bamboo plants thrive.
When growing indoor bamboo plants, choose a glass vase or container so that you can show off the plant’s unique stalks, which are just as attractive as the plant’s vibrant green foliage. Keep in mind that you may need a larger pot for your bamboo plant as it grows.
Lucky bamboo requires bright, indirect sunlight. Direct sunlight or too much sun can scorch the plant’s leaves. If you notice that your bamboo plant turns yellow or its vibrant green foliage fades, expose it to more sunlight. Just take care to avoid too much direct sunlight or its leaves could turn brown.
A bamboo plant prefers rich soil with good drainage. However, you can also grow lucky bamboo in a vase filled with pebbles and water; however, it’s important to change the sitting water and replace it with fresh water every three to four days to prevent any bacteria growing in the water and producing unpleasant odors.
When you water your lucky bamboo plant or grow it in water, avoid using tap water. Tap water contains chlorine and other elements that can impact your bamboo plant. Instead, use distilled water to care for your lucky bamboo. You can also use a spray bottle to mist your lucky bamboo plant. If you do use tap water, leave it out for a day to allow the chlorine in the water to evaporate.
Lucky bamboo loves a warm setting. It thrives in warm temperatures between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit but it will tolerate temperatures as low as 65 degrees F. This is not a hardy plant, however, so be sure to keep it away from air conditioning vents or cold, drafty windows. Even so, ensure that your bamboo plant has good air circulation.
If you grow your lucky bamboo plant in soil, you should plan to fertilize it each month with a liquid fertilizer. If you grow your plant in water, you can fertilize it every other month. Avoid using too much fertilizer on your lucky bamboo. One drop per month is typically enough food for this plant.
How to Care for Indoor Bamboo Plants
To care for your bamboo plant and maintain its health, be sure to inspect it for signs of distress. For instance, most bamboo grown indoors are susceptible to the same common pests that plague other indoor plants; check your lucky bamboo plants for insect pests such as mites and aphids.
Also remember to use filtered water or bottled water when watering your bamboo plant. Don’t keep its soil dry, but be sure you don’t maintain soggy soil either. If your lucky bamboo outgrows its pot, be sure to repot it in a bigger container to ensure its root ball has space for growth. Additionally, check your lucky bamboo for signs of fungus and disease. If its stalks turn black, it is probably beyond saving.
Lucky Bamboo Care Tips FAQs
Can you grow bamboo indoors?
There are roughly 1,000 bamboo varieties. Some bamboo varieties grow well indoors. Lucky bamboo grows very well indoors. Grow bamboo with well-draining soil. Follow the bamboo care tips outlined above.
How much sunlight does bamboo need?
Lucky bamboo plants prefer bright indirect light. While these plants may need less light than many other tropical plants, they will grow better when grown in optimal light conditions.
What is the best way to grow lucky bamboo indoors?
Indoor bamboo prefers indirect sunlight, moist soil, a large pot with sizeable holes for drainage, and ample watering with distilled filtered water. Avoid excessive direct light when growing your lucky bamboo.
Can lucky bamboo grow in pots indoors?
The lucky bamboo plant is an easy going plant that grows well in nearly any container. Dracaena sanderiana grows well indoors with proper care. Bamboo can grow successfully as an indoor plant; it;s less likely to grow well in your garden where it is not a hardy plant.