Can I control running bamboo without a barrier by cutting
the shoots as they emerge. I would like to plant Golden
Bamboo (Phyllostachys Aurea)
It would be best to do a rhizome trimming a couple of times each year.
Just cutting the newly emrging shoots will not keep the underground rhizomes from spreading, but I know some people who keep their grove in check this way, but they now wish they had installed some type of barrier or dug a trecnch around the designated area for ease of rhizome trimming.
Is your grove going to be near other plants or close to buildings, etc? If not, you may be able to cut newly emerging shoots and keep the grove neat, since the rhizomes will only grow so far from the 'mother' plant.
Believe me, I has very reluctant to plant my P. aurea and other varieties in the ground, having had an experience with an out of control grove. In my current location, I planted a row of aurea at the edge of a wooded area--it won't grow into the back because bamboo will not spread into dense shade. Then I dug a trench around the grove essentially creating an island (or a peninsula rather). The reason for the trench is that you can much more easily cut the rhizomes. I check it and prune if necessary in Spring and the Autumn.