Can Yellow Bamboo Turn Green Again?

Can Yellow Bamboo Turn Green Again? Bamboo turning yellow is a rather common issue with many causes.

The overriding issue for most plant parents when it pops up is if it’s a problem requiring instant attention or not.  Most often, yellowing bamboo signifies a problem and the level of severity can range from mild to dangerous.

The good news is that the plant can be saved if remedial actions are taken as quickly as possible.

But can yellow bamboo turn green again? This seems like one of the most important questions when trying to save the plant. After all, the normal desire is to expect the bamboo to revert to the all-green beauty it once was.

In this article, the big question is if you can reverse a yellowing bamboo back to its green color.

We would also touch on some related issues like why bamboo plants turn yellow and ways you can quickly get ahead of the problem when it crops up.

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Can Yellow Bamboo Turn Green Again?

Easily adding floral beauty to any home or office, hardy bamboos are a delight to grow. They are famous for being great air purifiers notable for efficiently removing harmful microorganisms and substances from the air.

No matter the bamboo cultivar you are growing (and there are over 1000, all with tropical origins), making them green again after turning yellow is generally impossible.

The only caveat is that some bamboo species can be nurtured to turn green again if you catch the problem early and in this instance, it’s a result of insufficient nutrients in the soil.

To be clear though, if the whole plant has turned yellow without smithereens of green anywhere, your bamboo is as good as dead.

The best option is to remove the plant from the soil and dispose of it.

However, there are certain instances where you can save your bamboo from dying. This is mostly at the initial stage when only parts of the stem, or stalk, or some leaves are affected.

Keep in mind that when bamboo turns yellow, it is just the symptoms of some underlying problem or problems.

Bamboo discoloration is the most common symptom linked to improper care or weather-related issues.

Basically, no matter how good your bamboo growing skills are, yellowing (the whole plant or some parts) is something you’ll encounter sooner or later.

This makes effectively dealing with the issue more important than whether it would occur or not.

The key to handling the problem rests in getting the correct answers to questions like, ‘Why is my bamboo turning yellow?’

The subsequent sections are all about getting the answers and how you can revive your bamboo if it is not too late.

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Why Bamboo Turns Yellow

Most cases of yellowing in bamboo plants are directly linked to improper care. What this means is that the problem can be prevented by ensuring the bamboo is properly maintained and taken care of.

Your bamboo would turn yellow due to any of the factors below or a combination of factors

Normal aging – Like most evergreen plants, an established bamboo plant would lose some of its leaves, especially at the beginning of the spring growing season.

The yellowing usually affects the older leaves lower down the stem.

Some stems might also turn yellow. The leaves would fall off naturally and the stem’s color can be returned to its green color with proper care.

What isn’t normal is when most of the leaves and the stem turn yellow.

Watering with tap water – If you use tap water to irrigate your bamboo, The source of the problem could be down to the presence of chlorine or fluoride in the water. these are toxic to bamboo and can turn the plant, especially the leaves yellow.

In such instances, rainwater, spring water, or distilled water are your best options when it comes to watering bamboo.

Over-fertilization – One of the side effects of feeding bamboos with fertilizer is the yellowing of the plant.

When it comes to bamboos, even moderate fertilization can easily become too much.

To save your bamboo, simply quit the practice because the plants don’t require fertilizers to grow.

And even if you must, apply a product specifically formulated for bamboos about once a year.

Long exposure to direct sunlight – Though bamboos are tropical plants, they are love indirect light best.

You want to relocate the plant to a bright but shaded area if your bamboo receives too much direct sunlight. You could also use a screen to protect the plant if moving it is not an option.

The screen though must allow light to pass through it.

Temperature issues – The ideal temperature range for bamboo growth is between 60 – 90°F. This range is the normal room temperature except in winter and hot summer days.

Areas close to air conditioners and heating vents can also lower or raise the temperature around the bamboo outside the range respectively.

This causes stem, stalk, and leaf yellowing.

It is best to keep the plants away from heat sources, air conditioners, and areas that are windy on cold days.

Humidity – Bamboos thrive best when the humidity is high. Low humidity or drier air promotes rapid loss of plant moisture through the leaves. The plant, starting from the leaves, begins to turn yellow in response.

If the humidity is too low, you can use a humidifier or mist the plants gently with a sprayer. Make sure you don’t leave water droplets on the leaves as this can encourage the growth of harmful fungi.

Fungi and algae attack – This is an often-overlooked factor when it comes to reasons bamboo plants turn yellow.

Harmful microbes, for several reasons, can grow in the roots of the plant, disrupting the normal function of the roots leading to yellow stems and leaves.

If the attack is restricted to the roots, gently uproot all the plants and rinse the roots with clean water.

Then transfer the plants to a new container filled with fresh potting soil and pebbles. The pebbles help to stabilize and keep the plant upright.

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What To do If Your bamboo Turns Yellow

Because the issue can occur at different times to different parts of the bamboo, dealing with the problem requires different measures depending on the plant part affected.

To be clear, the measures can only be applied if the bamboo is not dead.

Dealing with yellow bamboo leaves – If only the leaves are affected, you could start by pruning affected leaves with a sharp, sterilized pruner.

Then check that the right growing conditions, as discussed in the previous section, are provided.

In addition to that, water the plant regularly and eliminate all sources of harmful chemicals like pesticides, fungicides, synthetic fertilizers, and herbicides.

Yellow stalks – You can use similar actions applied for leaves. But if the proportion of yellow stalks to green healthy stalks is overwhelmingly in favor of the yellow stalks, you might have to take a different approach.

Consider salvaging the few healthy stalks by propagating them in water.

Simply cut the stalk a few inches below a node and put it in a jar of distilled water. If the growth conditions are right, the stalk would sprout new roots after a few weeks.

You can then transplant the rooted stalk to a pot and with proper care, you’d get a new bamboo plant.

Yellow stems – When it comes to yellow bamboo stems, the odds in favor of saving the plant are slim. It can be done, but to better simply cut the stem out to contain the problem and protect other plants.

But you can salvage the stem if the base is not yellow. Cut out the yellow part using a sharp pruner.

Cut as close to the soil as possible. Then simply follow the standard bamboo care instructions and keep your fingers crossed that the plant comes back to life.

If you feel up to it, though, simply propagate the unaffected part of the bamboo stem in fresh potting soil. But this is only necessary if most stems in the bunch have turned so completely yellow that pruning and disposal seem like the best option.

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Wrapping up

A yellow bamboo is usually a sign that something is wrong with the evergreen, tropical plant.

If the problem is restricted to just the leaves and stems, it can be fixed by properly addressing care and maintenance issues. These are linked primarily to watering, lighting, temperature, and humidity levels.

But can the yellow bamboo turn yellow again after applying the solutions? Unfortunately, the symptom is irreversible.

In extreme cases, your best bet is to cut out the affected area. You could also propagate the stalk to get a new bamboo plant in a couple of months if only a few stalks/stems are unaffected.

But you’d have to cut out and dispose of all the affected parts though.