Bamboo Varieties & Plant Information
The growth pattern of Bamboo differs from that of most
woody shrubs. Once per year, usually in spring, new growth occurs as a
bamboo shoot. The shoot emerges from the ground and reaches its full height
in 6-8 weeks. You can literally watch some Bamboos grow up to 3 feet in one
day! The potential growth of Bamboo varies depending on genetics and
variety. Plant growth can be accelerated by providing the optimum growing
conditions each variety prefers. Bamboo prefers well-drained fertile soil
of neutral pH and high organic content. Bamboo does not appreciate planting
where the soil is wet for extended periods of time, however, some varieties
are shown to tolerate moist soil. There use extends to hedges and screens as
well as specimen planting.
Running Bamboos spread by sending out roots into the earth to a depth of
about one foot. Some running bamboos are modest growers, while others can
be extremely vigorous and invasive. “Running” can be controlled by cutting
back the ends of the rhizomes with a spade.
or Giant Bamboo, are the tallest of the species and prefer sun or partial
This type of Bamboo is
The new shoots occur on the outside margin of the parent plant.
the hardiest of all Bamboos, remain evergreen through winter and tolerate
temperatures to –25 degrees. Fargesias are usually used to form a hedge with
a wonderful weeping mass of evergreen foliage. They look great planted near
the edge of a pond where the water will reflect their pendulous silhouette.
Fargesia does best in partial shade.
the hole 2 times the root ball diameter and 1.5 times the depth of the root
ball. Add 6” of well composted manure beneath the root ball as a planting
base to feed the bamboo.
sure the bamboo is at the same planting depth as in the container
2 parts excavated soil, one part well composted manure and one part compost
or sphagnum peat.
a soil water retention ring just outside the planting hole.
planting, water deeply.
with 2-3” of pine bark mulch.
on a weekly basis.
Watering is critical during the first year of growth. When you water, water
deeply! The amount and frequency of watering depends upon exposure to wind
and sun as well as temperature.
Do not let your plants dry out during their first year.
Leaf curling will indicate plant stress and
need for water. Some yellowing or shedding of leaves in late summer or
fall might occur but will not harm the plant.
Commercial fertilizers are not recommended the first year. Well-composted
manure or compost rich in nutrients is the best source of organic matter for
your Bamboo. Do
not use dehydrated manure. After the
first year, once your Bamboos are established, commercial fertilizers can be
used. Bamboo appreciates fertilizers high in nitrogen.
Most bamboos remain evergreen throughout winter. Some bamboos will often
die back to
the ground, but usually are root-hardy and send out culms in May or June.
mulching is most important for winter protection of your plants—a 4-6” layer
is recommended. Anti-desiccant spray (Wilt-Pruf) applied to the foliage is
a good way to prevent damage from drying winter winds.