dying / dead Bambusa oldhamii in los angeles

bigmoof(9 CA, Sunset zone 15)October 30, 2013

hello, i'm visiting a friend in los angeles and his Bambusa oldhamii (i believe that is what it is) appears to be dying. i can tell it was quite healthy at one time: some of the dead canes are 3 inches across. surrounded on four sides with cement, my guess is that it has completely filled the space allotted to it? there doesn't appears to be any soil left either: the ground is almost solid corms. any new shoots are very thin and don't grow very high.

what has happened, and what steps should he take to get his little bamboo forest back again? the photograph shows 1/2 of the stand. the other half is to the right.

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It's hard to tell if that actually is Oldhamii, but it does resemble it.

My Oldhamii has roots that extend several feet beyond the clump in all directions. It may be rootbound if it IS actually surrounded on all sides by concrete and it is deep enough down.

The roots need plenty of room to spread. From what you explained, it probably is rootbound and needs 'food' which means it need more room to grow.

I've had some luck(short-term) in topping the ground with fertile soil but that will help the plant only for a short while.

I would clear out all of the old dead culms and see what is left. It may never recover without replacing the existing plant and soil, but since you already have the bamboo, you could take a few divisions and keep it in pots, then replace the soil and replant the new plant in the new soil.


    Bookmark   October 30, 2013 at 9:59PM
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