Answer: If you think of bamboo as a giant grass, you'll understand how it spreads through roots and rhizomes. Not all bamboos are invasive, but the running types of bamboo have root masses that travel 3'-4' deep, and spread 15'-20'. Clumping types such as Black Bamboo (Phyllostachys nigra) are much easier to contain. The clumps will expand over time but it can take a decade before the clump becomes really large. If you place a barrier around it or keep it in a container, you'll have good control.
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