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Any bamboo experts in Philadelphia?

Posted by rossman PA (My Page) on
Wed, May 21, 08 at 14:03

We live in Philadelphia, PA, and have black bamboo in our small backyard. We have been trying to find someone who has real experience and expertise in bamboo to help us, on a regular basis, to prune, maintain, and care for it. Does anyone know of any gardener or landscape company in the Philadelphia area who has this expertise? Or, if anyone reading this post does this kind of work themselves, please feel free to email me directly.


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RE: Any bamboo experts in Philadelphia?

  • Posted by kudzu9 Zone 8b, WA (My Page) on
    Wed, May 21, 08 at 18:55

You don't need to pay someone to do this. Bamboo is a grass and just needs water and maybe a little fertilizer in the spring. There's nothing to prune because bamboo culms do not continue to increase in size each year...each culm reaches its full size and number of branches in 1-2 months when they come out of the ground. If you want to cut off branches with a pruning shears or cut out entire old culms, you can do it at any time of the year without hurting the bamboo in the least.

The only thing you need to be concerned about is that Black bamboo, like most bamboo species in the U.S., is a running bamboo and you will need to chop down into the ground each fall to sever any runners that are getting further away than you want. If that's too much trouble for you, pay someone to put in a material called "bamboo barrier," which will involve digging down about 2-1/2'-3' and installing a thick, hard plastic material as a perimeter that will prevent roots from growing beyond the area you want.

RE: Any bamboo experts in Philadelphia?

Thanks for the response. We actually do need someone to help, either by pruning the roots on a regular basis, or installing a barrier, as you suggest. Also, since we have let the bamboo grow too much in the past seasons (and we are true novices), we need someone to help prune the high growths. So...if anyone knows of someone, please send the name along. Thanks again.

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