Can You Plant Lucky Bamboo In An Aquarium?

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To brighten up space in their tanks, many aquarium owners want to have the addition of plants in their tanks. Even though there are so many types available in the market, they happen to give the same outcome. To be way different than others, some aquarium owners start thinking about inserting a lucky bamboo in their aquarium. Since this isn’t a plant you will usually think of planting lucky bamboo in aquarium, the question is left behind. 

So, can you plant lucky bamboo or any type of bamboo in an aquarium? Now the answer to this question has two sides: a negative one and the other a positive one. The negative side is that True Bamboo, a part of the sub-family of Bambusoideae is not an aquatic plant so if you add it to your aquarium it will instantly begin to rot and ruin the tank environment. 

The positive side is more of a solution. Dracaena sanderiana is possible to be grown in an aquarium. The common name of Dracaena Sanderiana is Lucky bamboo. 

Further, you will learn how you can grow bamboo successfully in your aquariums. 

Difference Between True Bamboo And Lucky Bamboo?

You must be wondering how exactly does lucky bamboo differs from true bamboo, right? Well, the most significant difference between true bamboo and lucky bamboo is that the moment you insert true bamboo in your aquarium it will begin to decay and rot. This breakdown produces ammonia in your aquarium water which is toxic to your fish. True bamboos are relatives of the grass family. 

But when it comes to lucky bamboo, it’s similar to regular bamboo but the part where it is different from regular bamboo is the way it grows and behaves in your aquarium. Lucky bamboo can survive in just a few inches of water or even when completely submerged in water. Lucky bamboo is a kind of flowering lily. 

So, which is the best way to add lucky bamboo to your aquarium? You can either leave the top few inches of the plant outside the water or you can completely submerge the plant in water. It will survive either way. 

Benefits of Having Lucky Bamboo in Your Aquarium

Before you make the decision to grow plants in your aquarium it is important for you to know that you have to filter your water so your fish can stay healthy and so can your aquarium. Other than providing a decent and pretty-looking background to your aquarium, Lucky Bamboo has various other benefits. 

Even if you may have a filter that works really well for your aquarium, you will still benefit from the presence of a lucky bamboo plant in your tank. How? 

  • The plant absorbs nitrites as well as prohibits the accumulation of ammonia in your tank. 
  • The roots of the lucky bamboo plant provide a home for the good aquatic bacteria. 
  • The root tips that grow from the stalks of the plant are what fishes love nibbling on a lot. 
  • They also release oxygen. 

How To Grow Lucky Bamboo In An Aquarium?

The lucky bamboo plants are underwater plants that can survive if they’re completely submerged in the water or even if the top few inches of the plant are left outside the level of your tank water. It can be fitted into any tank of any size. These plants can be easily maintained and are flexible when it comes to habits. 

There are some easy things you need to keep in mind to make sure your plants grow healthily. 

Starting with making sure that the roots are under the substrate and also seeing to that you place a few pebbles around the plant base in order to help it stay stable in the water. 

Substrate 

Can you let lucky bamboo be submerged entirely in water, or can the leaves be left outside of the water level in your tank? You can sink the lucky bamboo plant completely in water or you can let the stems of the bamboo plant rise above the water level in your fish aquarium. Either way, the plant will thrive since the roots are submerged in both cases. 

However, here are a few things for you to be extra careful of:

  • Sink at least around two or three inches of the root ends of the bamboo stalk and make sure it’s covered under the water. 
  • These lucky bamboo plants can be planted four inches deep in your substrate as well in order to anchor it sternly in one place.
  • Use a soil substrate to make the plan much more comfortable. If you use a soil substrate it will give away more nutrients to the roots of the bamboo you use. 

What type of water is best for lucky bamboo?

Lucky bamboo is mainly a freshwater plant. It is not suitable for brackish water aquariums or even marine water aquariums. The pH of Lucky bamboos is 6.0 to 6.5. 

Water hardness is not really a problem for lucky bamboo plants. You can use tap water but remember it will still create problems like: 

  • The roots of the plants can be stressed with the presence of chlorine in the water and long-term exposure to chlorine can slow down their growth. 
  • Just like Chlorine, even fluoride is toxic to the growth of Lucky Bamboos. If your tap water does contain fluoride you cannot use it, you have to use filtered water bottles instead. 

Supplements

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Carbon dioxide being present in the water can be beneficial to bamboo plants. In fact, carbon dioxide holds advantages for any underwater plant. If you want to introduce carbon dioxide in your tank, a cupful of Seachem Flourish is what you need to use. 

Lighting Needs

Lucky bamboo plants just need some hours of bright and indirect light every day and they will grow well. They don’t need too much light. These plants cannot be exposed to too much light or even direct sunlight. If they do, the leaves can burn which is obviously not good for your aquarium. All you need to do is provide the bamboo plant in your aquarium with low to medium levels of light. 

Fertilizer

Lucky Bamboo plants are not big feeders. There is no need to insert specific things in order to grow the bamboo plant. A big source of nutrients for your lucky bamboo plant is the waste from the fish itself.

Aeration

All plants underwater require oxygen to thrive. Remember, plants carry out aerobic respiration. 

Myths About Lucky Bamboo In Aquariums? 

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There is a lot of misinformation out there regarding the usage and growth of Lucky bamboo plants in an aquarium. Let’s take a look at some of the main myths about lucky bamboo in aquariums: 

  1. Lucky bamboos give out toxins in an aquarium. This myth is clearly not true since the lucky bamboo does not belong to the Dracaena family and hence they won’t rot or decay in water. Lucky bamboos are covered in resin which prohibits them from rotting. 
  2. You cannot manage to fertilize lucky bamboo. With the help of an aquarium-safe liquid fertilizer, you can absolutely fertilize your lucky bamboo plant. You can also use tablets in the substrate in order to feed your lucky bamboo plant. The beneficial bacteria in the water can easily convert ammonia into nitrites if you have a properly cycled aquarium.
  3. The lucky bamboo leaves need to grow above the water level of your aquarium. This myth has been proven wrong since now you know that lucky bamboo plants can be either grown when entirely submerged in the water or even when you keep the leaves out of the waterline. As long as the roots of the plant are submerged entirely in water the plant will continue to grow well. 
  4. You can grow lucky bamboo in your filter. Yes, you can with the help of a HOB filter. 

Conclusion

There are two types of bamboo: true bamboo or lucky bamboo. Lucky bamboos are the ones that can be planted in an aquarium. They will continue to thrive for about one or two years after they are planted. This factor also depends on the environmental conditions of your aquarium. A lucky bamboo is a good option if you want to insert a plant in your aquarium. It will not only add a lovely backdrop to your aquarium but also keep your fish healthy. 

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