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What Does Lucky Bamboo Root Rot Look Like

What Does Lucky Bamboo Root Rot Look Like?

Lucky bamboo root rot is a common problem that these popular houseplants face in their growth journey.

Lucky bamboo is a popular houseplant that is not real bamboo. It has beautiful leaves and stems and tolerates neglect. Lucky bamboo typically comes in a vase-like container with its roots growing in water. It produces new shoots, which grow out of the top of the plant, and sometimes small white flowers that produce seeds.

What Does Lucky Bamboo Root Rot Look Like?
How To Fix Root Rot Hydroponics x
How To Fix Root Rot Hydroponics

Lucky bamboo is trendy!  They are known to bring good fortune, but these plants have their problems too. Lucky Bamboo commonly develops a condition known as lucky bamboo root rot. This happens if the potting soil they grow in becomes too damp.

A plant with lucky bamboo root rot will show symptoms of wilting leaves, lesions or browning on the leaves that spread towards the stem, and moldy growing tips. The stems will become mushy and slimy with time. When experiencing root rot, the lucky bamboo plant will not be able to absorb nutrients properly, making the leaves turn yellow and fall off.

Lucky Bamboo Root Rot

If left untreated, these potted plants can die within weeks due to growth stunting & lack of new growth emerging from the base of older stalks. As the plant continues to die, the plant’s new shoots may also wilt or curve upwards.

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What Causes Root Rot In Lucky Bamboo

Lucky bamboo root rot occurs when you overwater your lucky bamboo houseplant. Overwatering leads to overly moist conditions in the soil, which provides the perfect environment for fungal spores to germinate and infect your bamboo plant roots through their simple pores.

Lucky Bamboo receives ample watering once every one or two weeks; however, allowing them to sit in stagnant water for a prolonged period will encourage root rot. Lucky bamboo enjoys room temperature water – not too cold or too hot. The root rot can set in within a few days if your plant sits in cold or hot water as this disrupts the balance between soil and roots.

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How To Deal With Lucky Bamboo Plant Rot

So how do you fix root rot in lucky bamboo? To ensure that your plant does not suffer from this common lucky bamboo root rot condition or to save it if it’s already showing signs of root rot, there are certain steps you need to take.

Soil Mixture for Lucky Bamboo Plants, Specialized Soil Mix

Stop Overwatering Your Plant

Overwatering is the main reason for the lucky bamboo root rot. It should be watered once or twice a week with room temperature water. Leave it in the same container as long as possible without allowing it to sit in stagnant water for extended periods.

The soil should be allowed to dry out slightly between watering – this will encourage growth and prevent disease by discouraging fungal spores from growing on the roots of the plant where they may cause damage. If you have multiple lucky bamboos, separate them into individual pots so that each one can have its own space and standing water to grow in, and not in one big pot together.

Replace The Water

Every once a week, replace your lucky bamboo plant’s water. This allows it to go through a proper cycle of drain and re-watering to ensure fresh, clean water is taken up by the plant’s roots.

Do Not Overfertilize Your Plant

Refrain from adding any fertilizer before knowing your plant’s needs. Excess amounts of fertilizer can also encourage overgrowth and root rot in lucky bamboo. If you suspect your plant is suffering from lucky bamboo root rot, avoid fertilizing it.

Repot Your Plant

If your Lucky bamboo starts developing root rot, then repotting into a fresh sterile planting mix will help inhibit the spread of disease and allow new healthy growth to emerge. Ensure drainage holes in the bottom of the pot are open so excess water can quickly flow out of the pot to prevent any standing water.

Clean Up The Plant

Lucky bamboo root rot is not often experienced in the roots of the plant before moving to other parts of the plant, so removing affected areas will help your plant combat this condition with its natural defenses. Cut the damaged roots away; these contain most of the pathogen that causes lucky bamboo root rot.

Dispose off these roots or stems to reduce the risk of spreading them across your other plants. Repot the plant with a fresh sterile planting mix after cutting off affected stalks to encourage new healthy growth.

Change The Soil

Lucky bamboo root rot is caused by the roots of the plant sitting in water for too long so ensure you don’t do this with newly repotted plants. You can change the soil of your lucky bamboo every 3 months to keep them healthy & avoid root rot.

Change The Soil

Change The Regular Potting Mix

To encourage healthy root growth, change your potting mix to a slightly coarse, fast-draining mix that will encourage healthy root growth and reduce the risk of lucky bamboo root rot.

These are our tips on how to deal with lucky bamboo plant root rot. If we have missed any, please feel free to add your comments below.

Final Thoughts On Lucky Bamboo Root Rot

If your plant develops lucky bamboo root rot, you should treat it immediately to prevent it from spreading up the stem. To fully recover from lucky bamboo root rot, it needs to be treated quickly and properly.

If you catch this problem early on, your potted lucky bamboo will bounce back and resume healthy growth and the beautiful appearance that we love about these plants.  Additionally, because over-watering is the main cause of lucky bamboo root rot, all you need to do is reduce watering to allow your houseplant’s soil to dry out slightly before watering.


How do I save my dying lucky bamboo?

Lucky bamboo will die if overwatered so ensure you only water once or twice a week. Ensure there are adequate drainage holes open in its container for excess water to run out of its container and remove the water that sits at the bottom of the saucepan holding the pot.

Can lucky bamboo regrow roots?

Lucky Bamboo does not regrow roots when the lower part of the Lucky Bamboo stem dies. You must therefore save it before the rotting goes up the stem.

How do I stop my Lucky Bamboo from growing black algae?

Lucky bamboo loves bright light and lots of sunshine; therefore keep them in an area with bright filtered natural light so algae don't form on their leaves during summer months when lucky bamboo are kept outdoors. Keep your Lucky Bamboo inside during winter months when algae may form on the leaves.