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DRACAENA sanderiana

Image of Dracaena sanderiana

Gerald L. Klingaman

Family

Agavaceae

Botanical Name

DRACAENA sanderiana

Plant Common Name

Lucky Bamboo

General Description

Lucky bamboo is not a bamboo but a Dracaena just like the popular houseplant called a corn plant. It is native to the rainforest of Cameroon in Africa and is an evergreen shrub with upright cane-like stems. The canes hold widely spaced, wavy, lance-shaped leaves with white strips and margins. Many cultivars have green leaves or other colors and patterns of variegation.

Dracaena sanderiana has been used as an interior foliage plant for decades, most often in combinations with other plants in dish gardens and other containers. It is tolerant of many interior conditions from low to bright light and varying amounts of humidity. It does grow outside in frost-free zones in well-drained soil and partial shade.

Lucky bamboo has become somewhat of a novelty plant grown in twisting shapes and hydroponically – in water. The slender canes are caused to grow in twisted shape by variously exposing the plant to gravity at differing angles and directed light sources. Eventually lucky bamboo should be planted in soil. If left in water, change it often. Use water which is free of fluoride and salt as lucky bamboo is sensitive to both and the leaves will turn yellow or brown on the margins if exposed. Fertilize the water carefully, lightly and infrequently. Use a product specifically formulated for hydroponic use, it should be free or have low levels of salt and fluoride. Lucky bamboo may be short-lived when grown in water.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    12 - 10

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    11 - 15

  • Sunset Zone

    H2, 21, 23, 24

  • Plant Type

    Shrub

  • Sun Exposure

    Partial Sun, Partial Shade, Full Shade

  • Height

    6"-70" / 15.2cm - 177.8cm (18)

  • Width

    6"-24" / 15.2cm - 61.0cm

  • Native To

    Western Africa

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Neutral

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Growth Rate

    Slow

  • Water Requirements

    Average Water, Ample Water

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    None

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    White, Green

  • Foliage Color (Spring) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    White, Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Foliage Color (Fall)

    White, Green

  • Foliage Color (Fall) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Foliage Color (Winter)

    White, Green

  • Foliage Color (Winter) Modifier

    Striped/Striated

  • Bark Color

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Coarse

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    Yes

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Bark Texture

    Smooth

  • Usage

    Container, Feature Plant, Houseplant, Topiary / Bonsai / Espalier, Tropical

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Self-Sowing

    No