Lucky bamboo isn't a true bamboo. While genuine bamboo can grow up to 3 feet within 24 hours and belongs to the grass family (Poaceae), lucky bamboo is a member of the asparagus family (Asparagaceae). Its growth rate is moderate, especially when compared to real bamboo.
|Growth Stage||Growth Rate|
|Young||Up to 19 inches in six months|
|Average Annual||6 to 12 inches per year|
|Mature Height (Max)||5 feet|
Lucky Bamboo’s Growth Rate
- In Its Prime: A young lucky bamboo can sprout up to 19 inches within six months, making it a fast grower in its early stages.
- Annual Growth: On average, this plant grows between 6 and 12 inches every year.
- Mature Height: Typically, an indoor lucky bamboo reaches a height of about 3 feet. However, in optimal conditions, it can grow up to 5 feet.
Factors Influencing Growth
Lighting: Lucky bamboo thrives in bright, indirect sunlight. If the leaves develop brown patches, they might be getting too much direct sunlight. Conversely, thin stalks suggest it needs more light.
Watering: This plant is versatile. It can grow in water or soil. If growing in water, make sure to refresh the distilled water regularly. In soil, it needs consistent moisture.
Temperature: Ensure the environment is above 65 degrees Fahrenheit, and keep it away from drafts for best growth.
Trimming and Pruning: Regular pruning can stimulate its growth. By trimming offshoots and saving them for propagation, you can manage their shape and encourage a fuller, healthier appearance.
Water vs. soil: Which is Better?
While many adore the aesthetics of a lucky bamboo plant thriving in a clear container filled with pebbles and water, there's a catch. Water doesn't provide the necessary nutrients for prolonged growth, which often limits the plant's lifespan to around a year. On the other hand, those grown in soil can outlive their water counterparts by years, given the right care.
Misconceptions and Clarifications
There's a common misunderstanding because of its name that lucky bamboo grows as fast as real bamboo. However, as established, lucky bamboo is slow to moderate in its growth. Its resemblance to bamboo is primarily in its canes.
Does lucky bamboo grow fast?
Yes, lucky bamboo has a moderate growth rate. In its early stages, a young lucky bamboo can sprout up to 19 inches within six months. On average, this plant grows between 6 and 12 inches every year.
How do I grow a lucky bamboo plant fast?
- Ensure it receives bright, indirect sunlight.
- If growing in water, refresh the distilled water regularly. If in soil, maintain consistent moisture.
- Keep the environment's temperature above 65 degrees Fahrenheit and protect it from drafts.
- Regular pruning can stimulate its growth, so trim offshoots to manage its shape and encourage a fuller appearance.
- Growing it in soil provides essential nutrients for prolonged growth, making it preferable over water for a longer lifespan.
The Key Takeaway
Lucky bamboo is an elegant, low-maintenance addition to homes and offices. Its growth rate is moderate and can be influenced by various factors, from the type of medium it grows into the care it receives.
While it doesn't shoot up as rapidly as genuine bamboo, with proper care, it can remain a long-lasting symbol of prosperity in your space.
Hi there, I’m Sam Billings, and I’m all about sustainability. Running a printing business is my thing, but my real passion is preserving nature. That’s why I run the Live Health blog, where I focus on Bamboo plants and their eco-friendly goodness.