Bamboo Taking Over - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Sharyl Markham
Russellville, KY
Question by sharylorfred
July 22, 2000
My husband and I planted bamboo around our water garden. Unfortunately, the label from the nursery didn't warn us that the plant is very invasive. In the three years that we have had this plant, it has grown beyond the pond, and is now spreading under our deck. We buried a piece of fiberglass around the pond, but that hasn't stopped it. I truly love this plant! It looks great around the pond, but, we are afraid that this plant is getting out of hand. Can you suggest any way to keep it under check?


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Answer from NGA
July 22, 2000

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A professional landscaper or landscape architect may be able obtain a professional-grade deep underground bamboo barrier to stop the plant from running. However, some varieties of bamboo seem to escape even those heavy-duty barriers. In some cases, allowing it a "patch" and mowing around it regularly will keep it within a given area. In other cases it can be grown in an above ground container and root pruned regularly. Additionally, if it is marginally hardy in your area then a hard winter might set it back from time to time. Unfortunately, some of the running bamboos are just plain invasive and are extremely difficult to control, let alone eradicate. Finally, you might consider using a slower-growing, better-mannered clumping bamboo instead.

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