Can Dracaena Grow In Water? Learn The Truth Here

Dracaenas thrive in humid environments and require regular watering, but can Dracaena grow in water?

Dracaenas can grow in water, and this is usually done by taking a small cutting from the stem and growing it in a clear container. Larger Dracaenas are not suited for this type of growth, however, and most people choose to grow their Dracaenas in soil instead.

In this guide, we’ll explore precisely why propagation in water is preferred to keeping mature Dracaenas in water long term, as well as how to propagate cuttings and what to do with them after they root.

Let’s get straight into it.

Growing Dracaenas In Water: 2 Ways

Here are the two most common ways Dracaenas are grown in water.


Propagating Dracaena cuttings in water is a great way to create more plants from a mature Dracaena.

New leaf growth on a corn plant
Leaves on my Dracaena Marginata grown in soil

This is done by taking a cutting of the stem with several leaf nodes. This cutting is then placed into water with ideal growth conditions and left until the roots start to grow.

Propagating via water is quite intense on the main plant as you have to take a cutting of the stem rather than a leaf like in air layering. I’ve only done this once before with my Dracaena Marginata, and it took a while for the main plant to recover.

Long Term

You could technically grow a Dracaena in water over a long period of time, although this isn’t something I would recommend to everybody.

Here are some important things to keep in mind with growing Dracaenas in water:

  • Size – Dracaenas grown in water tend to stay smaller as it’s hard to find a container that can support a large plant and root system.
  • More Work – You’ll need to completely replace the water every week as algae will grow quickly. You’ll also need to supplement with liquid fertilizer and ensure your water doesn’t contain harsh chemicals.

Dracaenas grown in water are usually kept to a very small size and kept in clear containers.

I do have to admit that they have a very nice aesthetic, and it is something that I have experimented with before, but it isn’t for everybody.

Types Of Dracaena Grown In Water

Certain types of Dracaena are grown in water more often than others.

Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana) is the most common Dracaena that is grown in water.

How To Set Up A Dracaena In Water

Growing a Dracaena in water is actually very simple but requires more effort in maintaining the water and nutrient levels.

Start by taking a cutting of the main stem of your Dracaena plant, which has several leaf nodes and is at least 3-4 inches long. Lucky Bamboo (Dracaena sanderiana) is one of the best options for growing a Dracaena long-term in water.

Wash away any soil from the bottom and place it into a container filled about halfway with water so that the bottom is fully submerged.

Depending on the size of the cutting, you may need to use pebbles to secure the bottom in place, and this will become more important as the root system develops.

At this stage, you can decide whether to keep your plant in water for the long term or transplant it into soil once the roots have developed. It takes around 60 days for a full root system to develop.

Caring For Dracaena In Water

If you want to experiment with growing a Dracaena cutting in water, then here are my top tips to help it go as smoothly as possible.

Just make sure you are prepared for the extra effort that it will require, as well as the higher risk of failure.

Watering And Nutrients

To keep your Dracaena growing healthily in water, make sure to use clean water, preferably distilled water or rainwater.

This will help prevent any buildup of chemicals or minerals that could harm your plant.

Change the water once a week to prevent algae growth.

Add a water-soluble fertilizer every couple of weeks to provide essential nutrients to support the growth of your Dracaena. This will vary depending on the conditions where you live.

For example, I fertilized my Dracaena cutting in water once every two weeks during the summer and once a month during the winter.

Preventing Algae And Mold

Changing the water weekly will have the biggest impact on keeping algae away.

It’s also important to make sure you are providing bright, indirect sunlight rather than direct sunlight. Direct sunlight will not only scorch the leaves, but it will speed up algal growth as well.

Apart from that, you can also opt to grow your Dracaena in an opaque container, as this will also slow down algal growth.

Most people don’t do that, however, as it is nice to see the roots grow in clear containers.

Monitoring Pests And Diseases

Another thing to be wary of with growing Dracaenas in water is pests and disease.

Pests like fungus gnats will be attracted to the water, so it’s important to monitor the plant to check for them.

If pests infest your plant, you can rinse them off with water and prune affected leaves. For large infestations, you will need to use an insecticide.

Lots of diseases also thrive in humid environments, and if water splashes onto the leaves, this can also cause mold to grow quickly.

Ensure good circulation around the plant to prevent diseases, and prune any affected leaves quickly if you notice signs of mold.

Optimal Environment For Growing Dracaena In Water

In order for your dracaena plant to thrive in water, it’s crucial to provide an optimal environment.


Bright, indirect sunlight is ideal for Dracaenas.

Too much sunlight can scorch the leaves and promote excessive algae growth, which will mean changing the water more frequently.

Monitoring Humidity

Growing a Dracaena in water is like using a pebble tray; as the water evaporates, it increases the humidity right above.

Luckily Dracaenas thrive in humid environments with humidity of at least 60%, so it actually works well in this case.

Good air circulation is important, however, as the humidity can sometimes become excessive and promote the growth of mold on the leaves, especially if water splashes onto the leaves when you change it.


Temperature is an important factor to consider as well.

If the temperature is too low, then the growth rate will suffer, but if the temperature is too high, it may cause too much water to evaporate and increase the humidity too much.

Keep the temperature between 65 and 75º F and avoid big temperature fluctuations for ideal growth.

In Summary

So, it is possible to grow Dracaenas in water, and there’s a good chance that you may have seen this being done with transparent containers and small cuttings taken from the stem of mature Dracaenas.

It requires a lot more work, however, and there is a much higher risk of diseases and pests. It’s also very difficult to do with a mature Dracaena and should only really be done with cuttings instead.

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About Me

Hi, I'm Joe! I'm the head of SEO and content management at Bloom and Bumble. I'm a huge plant lover and over the years my home has become more like an indoor rainforest. It has taken a lot of trial and error to keep my plants healthy and so I'm here to share my knowledge to the rest of the world.

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