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Old 2021-05-18, 19:07   #79
xilman's Avatar
May 2003
Down not across

11,027 Posts

Originally Posted by jvang View Post
In the spirit of the revival of this thread, I come bearing bamboo-related questions! I've just cleared out some dying rose bushes on the side of our house and Mike wants me to put something there to replace them; he mentioned bamboo and now I've gone on a spree of research.

It seems that a running bamboo isn't out of the question if we put a liner in place as xilman mentioned, but a clumping variety would likely be the most convenient as far as maintenance. River cane (Arundinaria gigantea) is native to this general area which would be cool but I don't think the conditions are wet enough for it or its smaller sibling to grow properly (Arkansas Delta but not near a body of water, USDA Zone 7-8). Some kind of Fargesia would be perfect but I think it's too hot and wet for those species. I think the conditions here are similar to where many species of Phyllostachys are native to/thrive in, but they'd probably get too big.

I'll be planting along the south side of the house which always gets lots of sun (very hot in summer), the drainage here is poor so whenever it rains the ground is soggy for days afterwards, and I believe our soil around here has a lot of clay in it. My mom would prefer it stay on the short side, so maybe no more than 15-20 feet tall (I don't know if there's a way to limit vertical height)? She does eat bamboo shoots sometimes so a tasty variety would be a plus. Are there any bamboos that sound perfect for this environment/situation?
I need to research the matter more before commenting further. Prior to that, Phyllostachis species sound like a good bet but, as you mention, you will need to find a way of keeping them under control.

AFAIK most clumping versions are not worth eating.

Limiting vertical height is utterly trivial, but you have to wait until the desired height is reached by any particular culm. Hint: secateurs.
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