Bamboo - how to tell clumping from running & how to transplant? - Knowledgebase Question

Lexington, Ke
Avatar for iamaflybabya
Question by iamaflybabya
February 12, 2011
By looking, how can I tell the difference between clumping & running bamboo? To divide clumping bamboo, how far down do I need to dig to successfully get a start to transplant? How close together can I plant the transplants for privacy?

Answer from NGA
February 12, 2011
It can be difficult to distinguish a clumping from a running bamboo by looking at the canes and foliage but its growth habit should give you some idea as to what type it is. Clumping bamboo will start out just like any ornamental grass - a tuft of foliage. As it matures the clump will get bigger around but the plant won't wander in the garden the way a running bamboo will. With a running bamboo you'll have new shoots emerging from several inches to several feet away from the original plant. I hope you have the clumping kind! It's much easier to control. Whichever type you have, you can dig and divide it by cutting through the roots with a shovel. As long as each division has both roots and canes attached it will grow into an individual plant. Hope this helps you decide what you have and how to divide it.

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