What is this monstrosity?

jerzeegirl(9)July 21, 2009

It popped up next to my bamboo plant. It's a big thick stalk but doesn't look like bamboo at all. I am afraid of it.

Here's a picture.

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kudzu9(Zone 8a - PNW)

Don't panic...your bamboo is sending up a new culm. Based on the diameter of the shoot, it looks like you've planted your bamboo in a place that makes it happy!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 2:15PM
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jerzeegirl(9)

lol. Is there any way to make it a little less happy? I was expecting a delicate airy bamboo plant and apparently got the plant that ate Chicago.

OK, I admit I am puzzled. The bamboo got a few new culms last year after we planted it. They were skinny, normal looking culms. Now this. Will all future culms look like this? It's a clumping plant so hopefully it won't invade my garden, but is it normal to have skinny culms next to fat culms?

I am in Florida so plants, like girls, do tend to go wild.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 4:28PM
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kudzu9(Zone 8a - PNW)

jerzeegirl-
What's happening is normal, though I understand your surprise. Typically a bamboo will sit in the ground for a year or two and poke along. Once it gets established (usually about the third year) it starts putting out new, larger growth. All bamboo have a natural size they grow to, and the culms will get fatter and taller each year until they start maxing out at their adult size. Unlike a tree, each culm does its growing over a several month period: the culms come out of the ground at their permanent diameter, and reach their maximum height at the end of the growing season. Next year the culms could be bigger and taller. A lot of us who are bamboo-nuts think bigger is always better, but that may not be your view. If you can tell me the species, I can give you an idea of how big this is going to get.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 5:10PM
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tcstoehr

Seriously, you ain't seen nothin' yet. Look for it to get *much* bigger. It's just getting started. Are there other bamboos nearby? That looks like bamboo leaf litter on the ground, but too much for that one small plant.
Do you have the name of the variety? That would help alot.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 5:12PM
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jerzeegirl(9)

I just got an answer from the nursery where I bought the plant. It's called Bambusa vulgaris Wamin (Dwarf Buddha's Belly).

I actually didn't think the plant would make it because we had a (relatively) cold winter and the leaves dried up a bit. It appears to be none too worse for the wear.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 9:38PM
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kentuck_8b(__)

Definitely looks like my Wamin. Mine only grows to about 10 feet here, but the culms are about 3 inches thick. You're gonna love this bamboo. When the sheaths fall off in a month or so, you'll see the 'bellies'.

You can already see them, slightly, on the thinner culms.

Kt

    Bookmark   July 21, 2009 at 10:54PM
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tcstoehr

OK, you're in luck. It will get bigger, but not seriously big. I was thinking it could have been an oldhami.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2009 at 3:35PM
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mchaggis

I'm jealous, jerzeegirl. I have been wanting to get some wamin to provide a little privacy at the back of my yard. Since we're both in Central FL, would you mind me asking which nursery you got it from?

    Bookmark   July 29, 2009 at 2:10PM
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jerzeegirl(9)

mchaggis: I would be happy to share my source with you. I bought it at Crowley Nursery and Gardens in Sarasota. It's a wonderful nursery and well worth the trip (not just for Bamboo). Here is their web site. I bought a small Wamin - I think we paid $40 - and as you can see, it didn't take long for it to take off! They have other varieties too.

Here is a link that might be useful: Crowley Nursery

    Bookmark   July 29, 2009 at 9:06PM
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mchaggis

Doh! It does look like a nice place and I like Sarasota, but am in Orlando--maybe a bit too far. I hope you post more pics as your Wamin grows. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 30, 2009 at 3:12PM
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kentuck_8b(__)

I think the Crowley Nursery pic of Lako is actually Gigantochloa atroviolacea 'Tropical Black'(which they also have listed as 'Timor" Black). They might need to check into that and correct it.

Tropical Bamboo, Inc. in Loxahatchee, (Palm Beach) Florida has a very nice selection and are very knowledgeable on their bamboos.

Kt

    Bookmark   July 30, 2009 at 11:15PM
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jerzeegirl(9)

I have been to Tropical Bamboo - a very nice place with spectacular bamboo. They will also ship (my sil took advantage of that and had 3 plants shipped to DC). I am going to be moving to closer to that area in a month and so I am sure I will be spending some time there!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2009 at 10:05AM
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wildbillgt(Z8 WA ST)

I see the ebony god of bamboo and my dear friend Kudzu are still at it!! Mr. Kentuck and Mr. Kudzu.. how goes it?

    Bookmark   August 3, 2009 at 9:19PM
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kudzu9(Zone 8a - PNW)

wildbill-
I thought you must have gone into the witness protection program! Great to see you surface after all this time.

It goes well...all of my mature bamboo are giving me a workout since I still hate to install barrier. I have an abundance of divisions. Email me if you'd like me to send you something...

    Bookmark   August 3, 2009 at 10:22PM
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kentuck_8b(__)

Hey Wildbill!

Where have you been hiding? I guess you finally found your way out of your bamboo grove.

Severe drought here...continuing from last year. I spent another whole Summer watering, and can barely keep up. Already lost a couple of boos.

How are things with you and your bamboo?

Kt

    Bookmark   August 4, 2009 at 11:11PM
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