Chinese Bamboo Plant
The Amazing Chinese Bamboo Plant
A Chinese bamboo plant could be any variety of bamboo growing in China, the variety that the panda prefers to feed on for example. When the discussion turns to a specific variety however, the plant in question is generally Dracaena sanderiana, a very popular and attractive plant for the home or office.
Although it looks for all the world like a bamboo, the Chinese bamboo plant, Dracaena sanderiana , is not a bamboo it all. It is a member of the lily family, which just happens to look in most respects like a bamboo. The plant is one of the easiest indoor plants you could wish for to care for. In most cases it is grown hydro phonically. No soil, just water, and some stones or marbles to support the stalks. One should change out the water every week or so to avoid problems, and tap water may not be good for the Chinese bamboo plant if the water comes from a public water supply, and likely contains chlorine. If that is the only practical source of water, a tub full can be set aside overnight to let the chlorine dissipate before exposing the plant to it. Whether or not Chinese bamboo suffers any ill effects from fluoride in the water supply hasn't been well documented, but there are some that believe that constant exposure to fluoride is not particularly good for the plant.
Not A Heavy Feeder - Even though it isn't a bamboo, Chinese bamboo will almost thrive on neglect, as long as it gets fresh water periodically. Some plant owners add a bit of fertilizer to the water on occasion, and the plants do respond. Too much fertilizer may cause the plants to respond dramatically, growing faster and taller than you might really want, and possibly presenting problems if in too small of a container to begin with. Over time one can learn just the right of fertilizer to use to keep a plant healthy and at a reasonable height. Aquarium plant food is the choice of some, soluble African violet food is a choice of others. Too much of a dosage, besides encouraging growth, could potentially harm the plant, another reason to keep the feedings light.
Four Is A No No -When planted in a container, Chinese bamboo is seldom grown as a single stalk, several stalks being much more attractive. If you want to get into the meaning of numbers, a given number of stalks convey a certain meaning. Two stalks signifies luck, three - happiness, 5 signifies health, and so on. The number four is usually discouraged as it signifying bad luck. From a purely aesthetic sense, an odd number of stalks is often more attractive anyway. If you want to go all out, consider the 21-gun salute. Twenty one stalks symbolize blessing, and the need for a good sized container!
Slow And Steady Wins The Race - The plant is usually purchased and grown from cuttings. It can be grown from seed, but you have to have plenty of patience. By the time you are convinced the plant is not ever going to do anything, which may be several years after you've planted the seed, it will suddenly start growing like gangbusters. This is because for all the time you've been convinced nothing was happening, the plant was slowly growing a strong root system. Once the root system was firmly established, the Chinese bamboo plant was ready to do its thing. The Chinese have several parables in this regard, about nurturing growth in people, and how at times it takes a long time to observe any change, but eventually the persons "root system" matures and the person blooms.
The Chinese bamboo plant is also very popular with those who practice the principles of feng shui. The shape and color of the plant, its location in a room and the lighting, and of course the number of stalks, all play a role in a feng shui inspired environment.