You may already be familiar with lucky bamboo, as it's recently become trendy among home and business owners. That ornate container with twisted stalks of green plants growing out of it? Yep, that's lucky bamboo. One of the most popular plant gifts out there today, the species has a rich and intriguing history.
Some people trace lucky bamboo back to Ancient Chinese culture 4000 years ago, when it was considered a symbol of good fortune. The plant was thought to be a member of the bamboo family, but in reality, it's more closely related to lilies. And while its real botanical name is Dracaena Sanderiana, the name lucky bamboo has stuck because people say it is a fortuitous plant due to its ability to grow quickly with strength and resilience, reports PlantLifeOnline.net. It is considered luckiest when given as housewarming gifts or client gifts.
According to WinnepegFlowers.com, lucky bamboo is often recommended by feng shui masters as an easy way to improve the energy of a space. Feng shui is a Chinese practice in which a home or office is carefully arranged to harmonize with the spiritual forces that inhabit it. Once a space has been rearranged, positive energy, or "chi," is thought to be able to freely travel throughout. This creates harmony with the universe, which allows the "three great blessings" - health, happiness and prosperity - to be achieved.
The number of stalks of lucky bamboo in each container is thought to symbolize different aspects of life and bring resulting factors into your space, according to Nature Perfect. The Chinese believed that three stalks represented happiness, wealth and longevity. Five stalks represent the different parts of life from which wealth stems. Six stalks represent luck, bringing prosperity and fortunate circumstances. Seven stalks of lucky bamboo represent good health, while eight stalks mean positive growth. Ten stalks symbolize completion and perfection, and 21 stalks together represent the most powerful all-purpose blessing.
It turns out that lucky bamboo may be extremely trendy in 2012. In fact, AsiaOne.com reports that the arrival of the new Chinese New Year, the Year of the Dragon, will see the abundance of the green plant in order to mark the celebratory occasion. The worldwide festive event begins on January 23, so feel free to grab yours to join in the fun and good luck.