Celebrate the Year of the Rabbit with Lucky Chinese New Year Plants

The lunar Chinese New Year 2023 is just around the corner, and it’s time to get ready to celebrate the Year of the Rabbit. As we welcome this festive season, why not add a touch of luck and fortune to your celebrations with some special lucky plants? In this article, we present a new list of top Chinese New Year plants that are sure to bring joy and prosperity to your home.

What Countries Join in the Celebration?

Chinese New Year is not confined to China alone; it is celebrated in many other countries as well. Japan, Indonesia, South Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Vietnam, and the Philippines all partake in this auspicious occasion. Interestingly, each country has its own unique name for the holiday. In Japan, it is known as “Shogatsu,” while in Vietnam, it is referred to as “Tết.”

The Most Popular Plant for Chinese New Year

When we think of China, one plant that instantly comes to mind is bamboo. Lucky Bamboo, to be precise, is the most popular good-luck plant in China. Despite its name, Lucky Bamboo isn’t actually a bamboo; it is a type of Dracaena. This beautiful green plant is often used in Chinese New Year decorations, especially when combined with paper charms. It is believed to attract wealth and can be given as a gift to symbolize friendship or kept at home to promote positive Feng Shui energies.

Here’s an interesting fact: the number of stalks in Lucky Bamboo holds significance. Each number represents a specific positive effect. For example, three stalks are associated with happiness, while 888 is considered extremely lucky, bringing ultimate fortune.

Flowers for a Prosperous New Year

Flowers are always a welcome addition to Chinese New Year celebrations. In Japan, plum flowers are preferred, while jasmine holds a special place in Thailand. However, the truly iconic flower of the Chinese New Year festivities is the Chrysanthemum. These vibrant blossoms, particularly in shades of purple and gold, are associated with wealth and longevity, making them a must-have for an extra dose of luck.

Further reading:  The Hidden Marvels of Strawberry Leaf Tea

Popular Chinese New Year Plants and Flowers

Now, let’s take a look at our carefully curated list of the most popular flowering and non-flowering plants for the Chinese New Year holiday season.

Flowering Plants

In keeping with the festive spirit, let’s start with some beautiful flowering plants that are bound to bring good fortune.

Chrysanthemum

  • Latin Name: Chrysanthemum spp.
  • Description: Chrysanthemums are synonymous with the New Year celebrations in China. With a variety of colors available, golden and purple hues are particularly favored. This flower holds great significance and is widely used in Chinese flower decorations.
  • Benefits: Chrysanthemums symbolize longevity, a core value in Chinese culture.
  • Best Place: If kept indoors, place Chrysanthemums near a window (but away from direct sunlight). However, outdoor mums thrive with more sun exposure, as long as they receive adequate watering.
  • Maintenance: Medium

Chrysanthemums in Different Colors

Yellow Mai Flower

  • Latin Name: Ochna integerrima
  • Description: Yellow Mai holds a special place in Vietnamese New Year celebrations. Legend has it that this flower represents the Mai girl who protected her village from an evil serpent. The golden hue of the flower is said to come from the girl’s shirt. Each New Year, Yellow Mai returns to Earth to protect her people from evil spirits once again.
  • Benefits: Yellow Mai is believed to protect households from negative energies and ward off ghosts.
  • Best Place: Yellow Mai is a tree that thrives best outdoors, preferably in zones 10-11. It requires ample sunlight to flourish.
  • Maintenance: High

Yellow Mai Flowers in the Garden

Orchid

  • Latin Name: Cymbidium
  • Description: Orchids are highly popular as decorations and gifts throughout Asia. Cymbidium orchids, in particular, are a favored choice in China, with white being the most common color.
  • Benefits: Orchids are a symbol of vitality and indicate the importance of the relationship when given as a gift.
  • Best Place: Orchids thrive indoors with partial sun exposure, provided the temperature is moderate.
  • Maintenance: Low

Cymbidium Suigai in Bloom

Ornamental Cabbage

  • Latin Name: Brassica oleracea var.acephala
  • Description: Yes, you read it right – cabbage! The flowering cabbage is a popular choice for New Year celebrations in Japan. Cultivated for its white, purple, or pink rosettes, it adds a unique touch to festive decorations.
  • Benefits: While you can eat this cabbage, it is traditionally considered a lucky symbol for Chinese New Year due to its bitter taste.
  • Best Place: Ornamental cabbage can be grown outdoors and indoors, provided you find a pot large enough to accommodate it. It thrives in bright light and mild to cool temperatures.
  • Maintenance: High

Pink Rosette of Brassica Oleracea

Peony

  • Latin Name: Paeonia
  • Description: Since the Tang Dynasty, Peonies have been revered as the “king of flowers.” With their vibrant colors and fragrant scent, they truly embody royal elegance.
  • Benefits: Peonies are not only admired for their beauty but are also used in medicine. They symbolize beauty, wealth, and peace in Asian culture.
  • Best Place: Peonies can be grown both indoors and outdoors, requiring proper watering and 6-8 hours of full sun exposure.
  • Maintenance: Medium
Further reading:  The Rise of Plant-Based Packaging: A Sustainable Solution for a Greener Future

A Peony Flower

From Thailand to Vietnam, the love for flowers brings together many Asian countries during the celebration of the Lunar New Year. Even if you consider yourself fortunate and don’t necessarily need a lucky charm, there is always room for the beauty of a pretty flower.

Non-flowering Plants

Now, let’s explore some plants that don’t rely on flowers to make a statement. While these plants may technically produce flowers, they are valued for other reasons, such as their elegant stalks or vibrant fruit.

Lucky Bamboo

  • Latin Name: Dracaena sanderiana
  • Description: Lucky Bamboo is one of the most popular Chinese New Year plants, known for its elegance and charm. Add a lucky charm to the stalk, and this green beauty is sure to brighten up any room.
  • Benefits: Lucky Bamboo is believed to bring fortune and prosperity, with the number of stalks determining the specific luck it brings.
  • Best Place: Lucky Bamboo is commonly grown indoors and thrives in bright sunlight.
  • Maintenance: Low

Lucky Bamboo Plants in Glass Pots

Bone-Knitted Lotus

  • Latin Name: Sarcandra glabra
  • Description: This rare and beautiful green plant, known as Bone-Knitted Lotus, is a prized inclusion in Japanese New Year decorations. With its ovate leaves and stunning red berries, it adds a touch of elegance to any setting.
  • Benefits: Sarcandra glabra is highly regarded for its antioxidant and antibacterial properties and is used in traditional folk medicine across South Asia.
  • Best Place: Bone-Knitted Lotus can be grown both outdoors and indoors, depending on the climate. It thrives best in partial sun.
  • Maintenance: Medium

Sarcandra Glabra Grown Outdoors

Round Kumquat

  • Latin Name: Citrus japonica
  • Description: If you’re in the mood for a fruity touch, look no further than Round Kumquat. This evergreen tree is famous for its golden citrus fruit, which resembles joyful paper lanterns. The tree also produces elegant white flowers, adding to its allure.
  • Benefits: Round Kumquat is considered a symbol of prosperity and is often included in marmalades, jams, and delicious fruit salads.
  • Best Place: Round Kumquat is cold-resistant and can be grown outdoors. The dwarf version makes an excellent houseplant, requiring minimal space for a tree.
  • Maintenance: Medium

Round Kumquat in the Greenhouse

Jade Plant

  • Latin Name: Crassula ovata
  • Description: The Jade plant is a fan-favorite for Chinese New Year. The shiny, ovate leaves add an irresistible charm to any living space.
  • Benefits: The Jade plant is often referred to as the “money plant” and “lucky plant” because it is believed to bring wealth and prosperity.
  • Best Place: Jade plants thrive with plenty of bright sunlight, both indoors and outdoors. A south-facing window would be an ideal spot.
  • Maintenance: Low
Further reading:  The Invasion of Ice Plant: A Threat to California's Dune Ecosystems

Jade Plant Indoors

Chinese Money Plant

  • Latin Name: Pilea peperomioides
  • Description: This striking green plant, with its coin-shaped leaves, is one of the most popular houseplants. Originating from China, it perfectly symbolizes the Chinese New Year celebrations.
  • Benefits: Not only is the Chinese Money Plant considered a lucky charm, but it also acts as an excellent air purifier, filtering formaldehyde gas.
  • Best Place: Chinese Money Plants are typically grown indoors and thrive next to a north-facing window.
  • Maintenance: Low

Pilea in a Pot

Congratulations! You’ve made it to the end of our list. Armed with this knowledge, you can now find your perfect lucky charm. So, as you celebrate the Happy Chinese New Year, make sure to surround yourself with these lucky leafy friends!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What Tree Is Associated with Chinese New Year?

The ultimate symbol of the Chinese New Year is the Round Kumquat (Citrus japonica). The bright orange fruit evokes images of joyful paper lanterns, while the lush green leaves create a pleasing visual experience. In the league of trees, Round Kumquat takes the crown!

What Is the Luckiest Plant and (or) Flower of the Year 2023?

If we were to choose the luckiest plant, Lucky Bamboo would undoubtedly claim the top spot. As for flowers, the majestic Chrysanthemum takes the cake. However, it’s important to remember that the luck of these plants ultimately depends on how you make them feel. Take care of your green companions, and they will bring you good fortune.

What Is the Luckiest Chinese Indoor Plant?

The title of luckiest Chinese indoor plant would likely go to the Jade plant. Although not steeped in cultural symbolism like some other plants on the list, it is beloved for its popularity, ease of maintenance, and undeniable charm.

What Chinese Plants Bring Happiness, Wealth, and Longevity?

Jade plants and Lucky Bamboo are known to attract wealth to their owners. Beautiful Chrysanthemums are associated with longevity. As for happiness, any green companion can bring you joy – just give it some attention and care.

Can We Give an Orchid for the Chinese New Year?

Absolutely! Orchids are one of the most popular choices as Chinese New Year lucky plants. In China, white Cymbidiums are particularly cherished.

What could be better than one New Year? Celebrate two New Years in a row, and let this list inspire you to find your perfect lucky charm. With the knowledge of your options, it’s time to celebrate the Happy Chinese New Year in the company of your fortunate leafy friends.

Ames Farm Center