You don’t need a green thumb
Most of us work in an office of some sort, be that in a cubicle or home office. Wherever you work it should be a pleasant space with sufficient light, air and decor. A live plant brings the outdoors in and provides some balance to the work space. It can serve as a focus for a meditation moment that allows us to continue working with greater efficiency and comfort. The so called “Lucky Bamboo” is one plant that thrives indoors whether or not you have a green thumb.
Bring qi into your home and office
Lucky bamboo has become very popular and more widely available in the past few years. You can now find it at most supermarkets, as well as floral shops and online. Not really a bamboo, this intriguing plant is actually a member of the Dracaena family, Dracaena Sanderiana. A healthy, green plant brings a lively qi into the home and this little plant adds a lot without asking much of you.
Lucky bamboo is easy to grow
One of the reasons it has become popular is that it is so easy to grow. It does not require a great deal of sunlight. In fact you should keep it out of direct sunlight. It can be grown in water or in soil, and requires little care. Most often you will find it “planted” in a small pot filled with pebbles and water. Some people feel the water should be changed every week and others simply replenish the water as it evaporates. As long as the water is clean and clear, simply refilling the container will keep your lucky bamboo happy. Add a dilute fertilizer every now and then to give it a boost. If you have chlorinated or fluoridated water you can use spring, or distilled water to keep your plant healthy. Or simply leave your tap water exposed to the air overnight in a bowl to rid it of these chemicals.
A word of caution
Many plants in the dracaena family are known to have toxic properties that can be dangerous to pets and small children. To be safe it is best to keep them out of reach of tiny fingers and paws. For more information on toxic plants visit the ASPCA web site.
Grow your own curly lucky bamboo
Lucky bamboo can be found as single stalks, bundled together with red string, in fantastic woven pieces that resemble vases and other shapes, and in curly and straight forms. You can create your own curly version if you have the patience. Place your bamboo in a room where there is a single source of light. In a few days the bamboo will start to bend towards the light. Turn the plant slightly away from the light source and it will again bend towards the light. Continue this process until you get the desired curve. If you are curling a number of stalks it might be easier to control if you have each one potted separately until the process is complete.
Keep your lucky bamboo happy
Where should you place your lucky bamboo plant? Their natural home would be in the east or southeast. Both of these areas symbolize wood and they provide a gentler quality of light your plant will appreciate. How many stalks should you use? The east is associated with the number 3 and the southeast with the number 4. The number 8 is an auspicious number in feng shui and if you want a more dramatic display this could work for you.
Now that you know a little more about lucky bamboo, even if you have a black thumb, why not give it a try.
©Diane Kern 2010