New yard/cold climate bamboo

jaynejMarch 20, 2007

As we have designed our new yard (a daunting, but exciting prospect at our advanced age) we decided that for screening a neighbors unsightly outbuilding banboo might be just the thing. We have read and studied a ton and were surprised to find that even among the best nurseries we know - experts here seem very uninformed about bamboo. We have been offered several species that turned out to be grasses, not bamboo, and many excellent gardeners just dismiss it when we ask. We are thinking of going to a nursery in Oregon to buy what we need and get some experience with it. We did find one nursery here which will carry Yellow Groove. Would that be our best bet, or does a rod trip make sense?

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kudzu9(Zone 8a - PNW)

Yellow groove would not be a bad choice for you. It's fairly hardy and will survive in the ground down to about -10F, although you will get some leaf loss above that temperature and possibly some culms killed if you have an extended cold snap near those temperatures. There are a few other bamboo that are hardier (down to -20F), such as some of the fargesias and Ph. nuda, but you probably wouldn't need that margin of safety. What is the nursery you were considering visiting in Oregon?

I've included a link below that provides info on the many bamboo that are available from nurseries in the U.S.; if you click on a thumbnail for any of the species, it will list growth and hardiness info.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   March 20, 2007 at 9:06PM
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Thank you! I think that we should be safe with that safety margin, even temperatures at 0 are not common and don't last long if they do happen. We have been reading in the Lewis Bamboo Groves in Alabama and Bamboo Garden in Oregon sites, which have a lot of information and what seem to be good choices. Oregon is doable in a long weekend and we're thinking we need to see some plants and get a feel for the bamboo. That's a very helpful link, thank you again.
JayneJ (hard to believe there's another Jayne on this forum - and with an October birthday!)

    Bookmark   March 21, 2007 at 4:52PM
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Where about in Utah do you live? I also live in Utah and have been doing bamboo here for the last 3 years. One of my favorite bamboos for our area has been Fargesia rufa

My yellow groove has done quite well also. If you have any questions feel free to ask.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2007 at 5:44PM
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kudzu9(Zone 8a - PNW)

A trip to Bamboo Garden in Oregon would be a great idea. The owner, Ned Jaquith. has decades of experience and is highly respected by bamboo aficionados. He has a much larger selection than many bamboo nurseries, and it would be very educational to visit. In my own experience I've found that some bamboo look very different in person than they do in pictures and it's really good if you can see what you're getting.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2007 at 9:18PM
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How helpful! We are practically packing for a drive to Oregon. We live in Kaysville, just north of Salt Lake. Our soil is pretty clay-ey, but we have time to augment it considerably. I've been reading about that on another thread. Yellow Groove is sounding really good, but I will also check out Fargesia rufa. We'd like to try a few. Does the clumping Mexican Weeping bamboo work here?

    Bookmark   March 22, 2007 at 1:29PM
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I don't think that the mexican weeping will work at all. I have a few Fagesia nitida seedlings that I will be planting out this year to see how well they do here. I have a pretty shady spot and from what I hear they do better in shady spots. I have several Fargesia rufa divisions that I am wanting to trade so if you happen upon some good deal or something unique that you would like to trade for let me know.

    Bookmark   March 22, 2007 at 1:51PM
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I will, I looked it up and it does look like something we'd like in addition to the larger running Yellow Groove. It sure to helps to hear from experienced Bamboo geeks (that's what my 15 year old has taken to calling us).


    Bookmark   March 22, 2007 at 2:07PM
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kudzu9(Zone 8a - PNW)

Tell your teenager that you are bambuseros, not bamboo geeks!

    Bookmark   March 22, 2007 at 5:48PM
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