General Question

Anatelostaxus's avatar

How can I restore health to my lucky bamboo?

Asked by Anatelostaxus (1418 points ) April 15th, 2012

A typical problem:
yellowing of leaves and of the stem. That’s how it started with one of them. Then the stem started to go off as well. Now it’s reduced to a ΒΌ yellow, dried and shrivelled carcass with blackened areas and a hollow tip above a still “healthily” green and firm stem.
And now the other bamboo sprout also started to wither similarly to the other, presenting a hollowing, yellowing segment of the curve at the tip (but still one fully green young leaf sprouting out from amidst the surrounding dried ones).
I was wondering: should I clip off the ill part? If so with what should I paste the newly exposed tip?
I’ll change it’s position in the room giving it more (indirect) sunlight, give it more fresh tap water (which in my area contains a fair degree of limestone sediment). But I’ll let it sit for a day before pouring it in.
What else? Want to save the lovely lads. Please share some wisdom.

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6 Answers

jrpowell's avatar

How long have you had it in the same pot?

Coloma's avatar

Hmmm…I have outdoor bamboo and they are quite hardy but I don’t know much about the lucky bamboo that grows in water. I would cut back the dead growth and maybe try switching to distilled water. Your tap water may also be high in chlorine which is not good for plants.
Good light is also important, and should probably be an exposure of at least 6 hours a day or so for maximum effect. My bamboos can take cold temps and very hot temps as well, one variety did die back in a heavy snow/freeze a few years ago but came back just fine after being trimmed. Is it very rooty? It may need a larger container too and you can cut back the roots to encourage new top growth. Bamboo is in the grass family and it’s new growth comes from new shoots shooting up from the base of the plant.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it sounds as if it may be reaching a point where it is not salvageable. This may be a silly question, but does the bamboo have roots? I recently took one out of a floral arrangement (no roots) and it took two months for it to do the things you describe.

If it does have roots, here is a website about Lucky Bamboo. It provides tips on what to do when in a problematic situation.

wundayatta's avatar

What you want to do is bottle whatever it is that is killing the bamboo and sell it to people like my neighbor, whose yard is being overrun by bamboo that has escaped from his neighbor’s yard. People are very irresponsible about bamboo and as far as I know, it is impossible to kill. So if you’ve found a way to kill it, you could do the world a big favor.

dogkittycat's avatar

I have had bamboo for years one thing about lucky bamboo is that the roots can’t be out of water for any length of time. My mom had to put her bamboo in a larger container and then it began to improve. Only cut dead growth sometimes yellowed leaves can come back if nurtured appropriately.

ISmart's avatar

decrease water and give shade with light

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