A fast-growing bamboo producing thick, rigid stems (2 inches across at the base.) Makes a dense tall screen, excellent for privacy or single plant for an Asian garden. Evergreen.
Follow a regular watering schedule during the first growing season to establish a deep, extensive root system. Watering can be reduced after establishment. Feed with a general purpose fertilizer before new growth begins in spring.
Bamboo is among the primary signature plant of Asian inspired garden. It is also equally at home in tropical island design themes. In the landscape it can be used as a clump of vertical poles for a columnar element. It has long been choice for creating fast growing barriers, screens and privacy hedges between properties. This has led to some problems with invasiveness. Bamboo also makes a fine background foliage plant to provide a lush character. Pruned properly these plants make fine subjects for night lighting, their canes casting exotic striped shadows. Bamboo is quite adaptable to containers provided it is given adequate water and nitrogen to sustain vigorous growth and overall lush appearance.
For Asian garden themes, combine bamboo with Getsutoku Azalea, (Azalea satsuki 'Getsutoku'), Seiryu Japanese Maple, (Acer palmatum 'Seiryu'), Cheal's Weeping Cherry, (Prunus serrulata 'Kiku-shidare-zakura') and Dwarf Mugo Pine, (Pinus mugo pumilio). For bold looks in modern gardens, group with Bauer's Dracaena, (Cordyline 'Baueri'), Hardy Japanese Fiber Banana, (Musa basjoo) and Giant Bird of Paradise, (Strelitzia nicolai).
Bamboo plants are in fact grasses and fall into this family along with wheat and turf species. Classification is difficult because bamboos flower so rarely, so many of these plants share a convoluted ancestry in the botanical references. The genus is a large one, classified by German botanist Johan von Schreber around 1800. About 100 species are spread through tropical and subtropical regions of Asia anywhere it is a commercial crop. This species is native to China and Taiwan where it is cultivated for timber. Plants have also naturalized in Brazil. Its common name refers to the ideal size and length of the canes for use as poles for pushing canal boats.
Bamboo is a valuable natural resource in Asia where almost everything from hair pins to houses are created from its wood. The new shoots of bamboo before they emerge from the ground are soft in the center and edible, harvested for use in many traditional dishes.