The Truth about bamboo’s growing patterns

Green bamboo planting

Bamboos are fascinating

It is one of the fastest growing plants on the planet, therefore rapidly renewable and usable as a sustainable building material. It is also used as a food source. But we will focus here on the aesthetic qualities of a plant that is a favorite amongst homeowners and designers.

Black Bamboo Folsom, giant, black culms, 40 feet tall

The Myth: a giant invasive grass

There is a common misconception about bamboos. It is believed to be invasive to the point of taking over your garden, and even possibly your neighbor’s. Although this can happen with running bamboo varieties such as Phyllostachys, it doesn’t have to.

The Truth: non-invasive bamboo plants

Not all bamboos are invasive. The plant comes in two forms, running and clumping. Even the running varieties (invasive) can be contained with little efforts and the right preparation. Remember to bookmark this page because we will discuss how in another article soon. The clumping varieties don’t have invasive properties at all. The spread is only a few inches a year until the plant reaches its mature size.

Alphonse Karr Bamboo plant, non-invasive, yellow culms with green stripes, 18 feet tall

The majority of bamboos offered on GEM’s website are ‘clumpers’ (see plant description on the product page), and can be planted without containment to form an elegant hedge, a privacy screen or an oasis in your garden. Some of the varieties offered are also drought tolerant once established, which make them an ideal choice for hot and dry climates like Southern California.

Mexican Weeping Bamboo, non-invasive, abundant long narrow leaves, obscure culms, 20 feet tall

Posted by Cécile
- Sep 25, 2014
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