Ornamental bamboo


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This ornamental 'lucky' bamboo is now about two feet tall. Super, but getting top-heavy. I'm thinking to prune the tallest shoot. It would be nice if the pruned tip segment could become a cutting and a new plant – but I seem to recall trying that in the past, just putting it in water, but it didn't grow roots and soon died.

Does anyone know if there's a trick to doing it? Or does it never work at all? Thanks...
 
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Not common. the commonest method is root cuttings, but it can be done. You have to include a nodal part, that is where the root springs from. Either plant in moist earth with the node underground , or bury horizontally. buried horizontally you can have two nodes underground and double the chance. Perlite in your mix and a little bit of damage to the node can both help and it needs to be kept well damp. I am thinking of doing mine. I brought it with me when I moved as a root cutting, it was a good eight or ten foot tall and I took a cutting and put it a bit too near a rather aggressive hedge. It has been there nearly three years and not made more than a couple of feet and I have the feeling digging it out might be a bit much for it.

Mine is a clumping one, not sure if this all applies to the ones that make runners, but I don't see why not. Afterthought, a bit of hormone rooting powder where you damage the node might help, and if it is upright you can fill the hollow top with water.
 

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Oliver,

Thanks so much. When you say "nodal", do you mean a culm node, or can I use a branch, pruned at a branch node?
 
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Not sure how you are differentiating, the original main stem or a branch stem? I think either would work, but don't prune at the node, leave a little stem , then the node. If you are planting horizontally leave a bit of stem each end. If you are putting it in vertically do the same, but leave some leaf and fill the hollow stem above the top node with a little water, which will help stop wilting.
Good luck, do let us know how it goes as I won't be doing mine until the weather improves. we have five inches of snow and down to minus four or five at the moment.
 
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It’s a Dracaena, not a bamboo. What you want to do should work fine. Maybe take longer cuttings and grow in bright light.
Don’t worry about horizontal vs. vertical and nodes.
Hi CPP, and thanks again for your encyclopaedic knowledge. Dracaena, eh? I learn something every day.

Longer cuttings – handy tip and it will suit well, given that the height of the existing plant is the issue. It'll be my Xmas Day houseplant fun. I'll cut below the node and put it in water in bright light. I have just the place.

last question: rooting powder, or no, or it doesn't matter either way? I usually don't use the powder in water, just in soil, but I don't know why... :unsure: :rolleyes:
 

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Thanks, cpp , I would never have spotted that.
Me neither, OB. I've had these little things around the place for decades – always sold as bamboo ans everyone calls 'em that. I live and learn...!
 

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Oliver, cpp and all,

I am delighted to say that the dracaena a.k.a. bamboo cutting has begun to root.

I first noticed what I thought were root buds two days ago, which was, looking at the posts above, 18 days after being put in water – interesting. I gave it a couple of days before taking these photos, just to make sure i wasn't seeing things.

Dracaena-001.jpg


The cutting has been indoors in a jam jar, in reasonable light but not direct – as suggested, thanks.

Dracaena-002.jpg


Given that the parent plant lives not in soil but in water between pebbles, I'm guessing that the cutting could now join the parent, but i might give it a week just out of interest to see how the roots grow and give the thing a bit more surface area from which to drink.

Thank you so much for the advice. I am so happy that, with your help, this worked. The dracaena are just super – well-behaved, undemanding, neat houseplatnts for desktops and limited space that cheer the place up. Now I know how cuttings work, I'll be less upset when one of the stalks dies – which they do from time to time, and fair enough!

Absolutely delighted! Thanks so much.
 
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So here we are after a month, with established roots and ready to rejoin the established little plants in the pebble-pot?

IMG_5910.jpg


Do we reckon that it would encourage this guy to sprout those characteristic side-branches if I topped it? Cut off the top segment or two, with the leaves?

If so, cut off all the leafing segments and leave a bare 'cane', or maybe leave the bottom pair of leaves and prune above that node?
 
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Gottit. Will do. Glad i asked – much appreciated.
 

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