Monday, March 21, 2011

Bamboo goes formal

There is still a lot of fear about planting Bamboo because of its reputation as an invasive plant with a terrible root system which can lift up buildings. However if a bit of thought goes into planting it properly such as using root barrier material for the running kind or planting the clumping varieties within well made garden planter boxes, there is little to worry about. Bamboo lends itself to quite formal pruning such as hedge shapes or rounded shrubs such as pictured below. The spears of new growth need to be cut off at the desired height as the flush of leaves below the growing point usually occurs sometime after this has been done. From time to time old canes may need to be removed from the base of the plant to keep the overall appearance looking fresh. I have been watching my 'Timor Black' bamboo over the last couple of weeks sending up huge new canes to at least 8 metres tall. These are just spears or canes without any leaves as yet. What is incredible is that I did not expect this kind of growth from a bamboo which is supposed to be quite tropical in origin. I will take a photo of the clump once the leaves have filled out.

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