Bamboo

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Bamboo

Postby thickstrings » Sat Jan 03, 2015 2:54 pm

Does anyone know anything about growing bamboo? I have been looking at getting some planted here..
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Re: Bamboo

Postby Lollykoko » Sat Jan 03, 2015 4:41 pm

I did a lot of reading on the subject a few years ago. The first thing to determine is where you want to put your crop and which direction you will leave open for growth. It takes a 3 sided underground "dam" to prevent uncontrolled growth. It seems that clumping bamboo spread more slowly than the runner sort.

Bamboo is a very versatile plant and can fill a lot of niches in a homestead, IMO. It's still on my "one of these days" list.
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Re: Bamboo

Postby matt walker » Sat Jan 03, 2015 4:59 pm

I planted some timber bamboo last year. It was still alive last time I checked in October, we'll see this spring if it made it. I found a really interesting page somewhere about controlling it without physical barriers. Basically, if planted on a mound, the rhizomes can only move laterally and not dig down very deep, so you will see them spreading and it's easy enough to go control it every now and then with a shovel. I don't know enough to recommend this somewhere where it may become a problem, but I'm excited about it because I do sorta want it to spread out in a particular area, but not become invasive and take over the wetland. I think I can manage it in this way since it's in a spot I am often hanging out with a shovel. Let's see if I can find that article.....

Here's one, check out the "raised bed" section...

http://www.bamboobotanicals.ca/html/bam ... pread.html
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Re: Bamboo

Postby thickstrings » Sat Jan 03, 2015 6:15 pm

Thanks for the info....I am wondering about which cultivar for my area...I sure like the looks of that timber bamboo..Lolly, yes, I was planning a hill with some old metal roofing sheets around it. As some may know, The philistines are coming in July to put there oil pipe line through my property. In the agreement, I can't plant trees over the 50' wide area,17 rods long, where the pipe is going...so.... I am wondering how I will cover the area after they are through. Bamboo is a grass, so........
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Re: Bamboo

Postby George Collins » Sun Jan 04, 2015 5:32 pm

Geoff Lawton has a really good primer on using bamboo in a permaculture design at his website http://www.geofflawton.com/fe/61148-power-of-bamboo

I have some of the clumping type I will be setting out in the few days. I'd love to aggressively plant several varieties and I would but for one thing - kudzu. That seen mess taught those of us living in the South to be exceptionally careful with the introduction of potentially invasive species.

We have other exceedingly noxious invasives that give us fits, such as trifoliate orange, but even they are mere menaces compared to the monster that is kudzu.

Wisteria is another invasive that I've had particular difficulty with. Without some sort of animal control (not always possible), the chances of eradicating such things seems daunting at best. Prior to learning about permaculture/organic gardening/etc., I lived in a house of a partially wooded three-acre lot where wisteria had escaped. I tried every strategy I could think of, both fair and foul, and if I ever made a dent in that stuff I couldn't tell it.

My advice to anyone thinking about utilizing a potentially invasive plant is this:
1. Think of your neighbors first
2. Proceed only if you KNOW you can keep it contained.

If you want to know the power of invasives, research kudzu. It is only half jokingly referred to as, "The weed that ate the South."
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Re: Bamboo

Postby Lollykoko » Sun Jan 04, 2015 10:07 pm

Thanks for the raised bed article, Matt. The reading I had done suggested that the barrier method required a 3' depth to be effective in restraining bamboo to the desired location. It seems that it would be easier to manage a 1' ~ 2' raised bed. Since I'm thinking about planting bamboo on a property line, I will probably try this method.
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