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Fighting To Save Lucky Bamboo

Ask the Expert: Ongoing Fight to Save Lucky Bamboo Stalk

“When I was jogging about 4 years ago, I found this Lucky Bamboo stalk on the top of someone’s trash and took him home. He’s always been in a glass vase with water and sat outside in the enclosed patio in south Florida. I’ve never had a problem until a week ago when the top of the stalk became yellow.

I removed him from the water, trimmed back all of the roots, and cut the stalk about a half-inch below where the yellow stopped. I had to repeat the process a week later and then again, today, but this time, I cut it significantly beneath the yellow and quickly applied cinnamon onto the cut. I also submerged the roots in clean water with some hydrogen peroxide. The thing is that there is a smell about him, but It seems to be coming from the middle of the stalk. It he doomed? Will the yellow continue to grow from the top, seemingly out of nowhere? He did grow brand spanking new, white roots in the last few days so that seems healthy.

Here are some photos: The yellow top I cut off today, the new roots, the freshly cut stalk. (Any brown powder is the cinnamon) Thank you SO MUCH for any advice. I really want to save this guy!” Erika


Plant Expert Reply:

Stalk looks fairly healthy. A couple of questions: Is the brown towards the bottom of the stalk cinnamon? Why did you place cinnamon on the cut and do you always cut straight across?

When cutting lucky bamboo or any other plant, you should make the cut at a 45 degree angle. This allows for the plant to heal properly without creating a dieback situation. The straight cut could be part of your problem.

Are you seeing any lesions on the stalk — see the image in this post Lucky Bamboo With Fungus .

I am also concerned about submerging the roots in hydrogen peroxide. How strong was the solution? Lucky bamboo is [Read more…]

The Meaning of Lucky Bamboo Numbers

Lucky bamboo is a favorite houseplant to give to someone to say “good luck!” It could be just before a test, for a grand opening, or just for fun. These little shoots make fantastic companions because they are so tolerant and easy to care for.

Meanings of Lucky Bamboo Numbers

Use various numbers of bamboo to cause different types of effects. Here are a few popular Multiple Stems of Lucky Bamboogroupings:

  • 1 Stalk – simplicity, meaningful life
  • 2 Stalks – best for luck in love and marriage
  • 3 Stalks – happiness (Most popular)
  • 4 Stalks – almost never given. (Four could draw negative energy, according to Chinese culture)
  • 5 Stalks – academic achievement, creativity
  • 6 Stalks – blessing
  • 7 Stalks – health
  • 8 Stalks – luck in wealth
  • 9 Stalks – good fortune and over all luck
  • 10 Stalks – completion or perfection
  • 21 Stalks – all-purpose blessing

Lucky Bamboo & Feng Shui

[Read more…]

Why Does My Lucky Bamboo Have Brown, Wrinkly Patches?

Ask the Expert: Bamboo rotting?

Hi! So I have been keeping my bamboo on a high shelf in good but indirect light, and feeding it bottled water/water left out for 24hrs. Today I took it down to move it and discovered two brown, wrinkly patches at the top where it curves. I couldn’t see them before, since that part was facing the wall.

My guess is that these patches died and started rotting at some point while on the shelf, but I’m surprised because in my experience when a part of a bamboo stalk starts to die, the whole thing has died within days. It’s also usually a bright yellow, not brown.

Do you have any idea what could have caused this? Is it going to keep spreading? I\’ve successfully removed the shoot from a dying bamboo plant in the past, but is it possible to remove the dead section of the stalk and have the rest of the stalk keep living?

Thanks! Renee

(P.S. Sorry for the bad photo quality. I haven’t got access to a real camera at the moment.)

Lucky Bamboo - Rooting issues & brown wrinkles Lucky Bamboo Infected with Colletotrichum dracaenophilum

[Read more…]

Help! My Lucky Bamboo Roots Are Rotting

Ask the Expert:

Hi, I hope you could help me. The stem near the roots of my plant is starting to rot I guess. What should I do to save the plant and keeping it healthy? I have been watering the plant once a week with distilled water and placing it in indirect sunlight. Thank you. – Regina

Lucky Bamboo Problems Lucky Bamboo Root Problems Lucky Bamboo Root Problems

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:


What is the substance in the glass?  I am a little concerned that this substance maybe causing a problem.  Lucky bamboo is usually placed in a glass container with pebbles or rocks.  If it is something other than that, it maybe releasing a chemical that the lucky bamboo doesn’t like.

Are the roots soft and mushy?  The plant looks fairly healthy.  If the roots are soft and mushy, cut the top off and propagate a new stalk.   If you are not sure how to do that read our blog post We Are Not Always Lucky With Lucky Bamboo.

I hope this information is helpful. Please let me know if I can help with anything else.

Help! I Think I Over-fertilized My Lucky Bamboo

Ask The Plant Expert:

 I over-fertilized my lucky bamboo killing the roots and turning most of the stem yellow, I put it in fresh water, is there anything else I can do? After I put it in fresh water, I looked a couple days later and the water was blue again, I must have really overfertilized it a lot. – Marina

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:

Lucky Bamboo CareBecause they do not require much fertilizer, over-fertilizing is easy to do with lucky bamboo. Unfortunately once the stem has turned yellow, especially from the roots, that part cannot be recovered. However, you might still be able to save your lucky bamboo plant!

If caught early and you notice just a small amount of yellow, change the water (distilled water) and move to a place with a little less light.

If it is worse than that, but there is still green up top, cut off the bottom and place it in a new container with fresh water. Also, stay away from fertilizing it for a while as well.

Hope this helps!

Help! Will My Yellowing Lucky Bamboo Get Better?

Ask The Plant Expert:

Will my lucky bamboo yellowing get better or do i need to cut it as not to kill the entire plant? – Mo

Yellowing Lucky Bamboo

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply:

Mo, yellowing in lucky bamboo happens when stem cells to burst, causing irreparable damage. This can be caused by: over fertilization or chlorine and other chemicals in the water or too much light.

Because your bamboo shoot is still slightly green for now, try changing the water to distilled and making sure it is getting proper lighting. If the plant’s health does not improve in about a week, you will need to remove the shoot. (If it gets worse, go ahead and cut it.)

Removing the shoot: When you cut your bamboo (if necessary) you will cut the lucky bamboo about an inch from the next healthy node. (A node is the brown ring around the stalk) In this case, it would be the node close to the bottom. Your plant may be a little short, but it will make it! Refer to Not Always Lucky With Lucky Bamboo for better examples of cutting off yellow stalks.

Lucky Bamboo Growing Extra Roots

Ask The Plant Expert:

Hi, My lucky bamboo (dracaena sanderiana) stalks started growing roots in the middle of the stems (nodes) where leaves have grown. This is the first time I have encountered this. Would like to know why this happens, and what should I do. I suspect it’s not getting any water and thus the leaves are yellowing…

Thanks in advance for your help! – Meng
[Read more…]

Your Top Questions About Lucky Bamboo Care Answered

Lucky Bamboo’s popularity has significantly grown over the past few years. It is being used as great gift items and part of Feng Shui. However, some don’t know where to begin when taking care of this plant, or what to do if they notice a change. So, we’ve compiled all of your most asked questions and listed them here as a how-to guide on lucky bamboo.

How do I take care of lucky bamboo?

Caring for your lucky bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana) can be an easy. You just need to find the right lighting, figure out a watering schedule, and your plant can pretty much take care of itself.

First off, what did your lucky bamboo come to you in, soil or water? It can grow in either. However, it doesn’t like to be switched around. For example, if you received it in water, leave it in water and add some rocks or pebbles if you like, but not necessary.

How To Water Lucky Bamboo

Multiple Stems of Lucky BambooIf your lucky bamboo is in only water, it should be kept clean and fresh. Keep your water level consistent; it’s a good idea to make a mark on where you like the water to be, which can be different for everyone. Once you have your water level, make sure you keep an eye on it. Whenever it reaches the halfway mark below your level, fill it back up. Every two weeks change the water with fresh, either distilled or tap water, whatever your plant is used to. Let your water sit out overnight in an open container before mixing it to your current water.

However, if your plant is in soil, the soil should always feel slightly damp. Test it with your finger; if it’s not damp, add a little bit more water.

Do you love the idea of having plants in your house but don’t have much time to take care of them?

Lucky bamboo requires a lot of effort and time. There are many low-maintenance plants that are easy to grow and still just as beautiful! Click the button below to order a plant that is easy to care for!

Order a House Plant


Best Lighting For Lucky Bamboo

Your lucky bamboo should be placed in an indoor location with bright, indirect light. They also do well under artificial lighting since too much sun can cause burning.

Remember that there are such things as too much and too little sunlight.

  • If there is too much sun, it can cause your leaves to burn.
  • If it gets too little sun, you will receive weak growth, stretching and poor coloring.

The solution for too much sun is changing out the water and not fertilizing for a couple of months. Move the plant into a bright area without direct sunlight. Too much sun can cause yellowish leaves and splitting, which can be fixed with trimming them off at an angle. [Read more…]

What Is The Proper Care For Small, Twisted Bamboo?

Ask The Expert: What is the proper care for a small bamboo twisted? It is planted in gravel ( or small stones) if I water it the leaves and stems turn yellow.  If I don’t it, starts looking leathery.  I have taken out of the little pot and dried the roots and gravel. Help!! -Mary

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert Reply: Mary, does the container that the lucky bamboo is planted in have a water reservoir? Lucky bamboo that is planted in water should be kept at a constant water level. The leaves don’t need to be watered, although you could mist them. Instead the water reservoir should be kept filled with distilled water.

Response: No it does not have a water reservoir.  Just pebbles in a small container approx 2″ X 3″.  Thanks for answering, Mary.

Watering and Fertilizing Lucky Bamboo

Ask the Expert: Fresh Water and Fertilizer Question.

I have done a lot of reading on-line about how best to care for my lucky bamboo. There is a lot of conflicting information. I tend to change the water in my plants every 10-12 days and fertilize with lucky bamboo fertilizer every 6 months.

I have recently read to add fertilizer once a month and only change the water once a month when you add the fertilizer.

Is one way better than the other? Should I be fertilizing my plants more often? Is it okay to wait a whole month before changing the water? Jennifer

Flower Shop Network Plant Expert reply:

Every environment is different, so each lucky bamboo owner will have to determine what works for them. I tend to believe that lucky bamboo (Dracaena Sanderiana) does better when not heavily fertilized. I personally don’t like to change the water as often as you do, but may be that is because I’m a little lazy. I say, If your stalks are green and healthy proceed with the way you are doing it.

The real key is to whether to change the water is the color. Cloudy water should be changed asap and clear water not for a while.

Fertilizer less is more. Lucky bamboo is sensitive to over fertilization, so error on the side of caution.

This lucky bamboo post was brought to you by the local Nampa Florists. Not in Nampa ID? Find real local florists using Flower Shop Network.