Golden Bamboo or Podocarpus G. for screening?

aptruncata(10A)April 24, 2012


I wanted some of your opinions between the two plants listed. I have about 8 clumps of golden bamboo that i have planted along the property line for privacy from the neighbors driveway bordering a 4ft concrete wall last year. Since then, the bamboos have really taken off and there are new shoots sprouting everywhere. While i do like them for their vigor, i have a problem with them leaning and their thirst for water. During winter time, the leaf tips would burn if i skipped a day of watering or if the santa anas blew in. I was considering replacing them with a podocarpus gracilior hedge, since the soil is sandy and drains... well...too fast.

Thanks in advance.

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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

How much pruning would you like to do?
See the link below for people's experiences.

Here is a link that might be useful: Hedgezilla

    Bookmark   April 24, 2012 at 9:59PM
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Thanks for that link, I've checked it out before ordering the podocarpus trees. How much pruning? Between the two, I think they would be equally time consuming.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 12:22AM
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hosenemesis(SoCal Sunset 19 USDA 8b)

I prune my podocarpus at least twice a year. It should be done more often. Benefit: once they are established, they don't require much water at all.

I have Golden Bamboo at the back of my property, contained with buried "Bamboo Guard" barrier. I don't bother trying to keep the tips green- the rainbirds water it twice a week. It does lean, though.

There are many other choices that are less labor intensive. Check out the FAQs for some suggestions.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 12:51AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

I personally like Podocarpus, there are several very nice, well-behaved cultivars, and a very pretty new one that has silvery foliage. 'Icee Blue'. I have a stand of Yellow Bamboo, and while pretty, and very tropical-looking, it does bend as Renee mentions, and it will drop a significant amount of leaf litter if we have a spike in temps. For me that's a pain, as it sits behind two small ponds, so I'm constantly fishing out leaf litter from the pond, as well as sweeping up leaf litter from the patio. If I could get it all out, I'd do it. It's not worth the ambiance at this point. But, it is very established, so it's just not worth the incredible effort it would take to try to get it all cut down and torn out, sigh.

Patty S.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2012 at 10:23PM
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you know that Golden bamboo is a serious runner, don't you? You will not be pruning this one, but chasing it down forever unless you plan ahead and put in a 3' deep, narrow, sturdy rhizome barrier in place before planting the bamboo... it can spread over 10' on a single rhizome, and likes to go EVERYWHERE! Not that good looking a bamboo, either.. better to get a clumping hedge bamboo. I guess it also depends on your hedge height... some bamboo hedges will grow only 10'-20' tall, but some well over 100'.

    Bookmark   May 15, 2012 at 12:50PM
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