How To Control Bamboo in Your Yard

Bamboo is a beautiful grass that adds plenty of shade, offers privacy and ambiance to any garden. It lends an Asian feel to a garden space. It is very easy to grow. However, if you have bamboo, you may find that it tends to grow faster and more abundantly than you would prefer.

If your bamboo plants are taking over your garden, lending it a jungle-like atmosphere instead of the serene Zen garden you envisioned, don’t fret. There are ways to control bamboo in your yard. It will take some work, but it can be done.

Here’s how to control bamboo in your yard.

  1. Before planting, choose a variety that grows in clumps rather than the kind that spreads as it grows. Also, it is best you plant bamboo in a pot instead of straight into the ground. A pot will serve to contain its roots whereas planting it directly on the ground will allow it to spread as long as it gets enough sun and water. However, if your garden already has an existing bamboo spread, you will need to take other measures to limit it.
  2. Control the environment where bamboo grows. Water only the areas you want your bamboo and keep the surrounding perimeter dry. It is good to have clear lawn space surrounding the bamboo so you can easily mow down the area. If you find that it is starting to spread new rhizomes in unwanted areas, mow the area down immediately. You will have to repeat this process diligently until you find that the bamboo no longer grows in unwanted parts.
  3. Define the space for your bamboo. Place barriers where you do not want the bamboo to grow. You will need to construct a barrier that extends at least two feet into the ground and protrudes at least half a foot up. It is best to use concrete or metal to really contain the bamboo. However, you will still need to occasionally check for any unwanted growth since bamboo may penetrate your artificial barrier.
  4. If you do not want to install a concrete barrier, consider digging a trench surrounding your bamboo plants. When you bamboo is isolated, it will be easier for you to notice any new shoots or rhizomes surrounding it.
  5. Install a bamboo rhizome barrier. You can purchase this in a garden supply store or hardware store. Get a thick high density polyethylene barrier and make sure it is installed properly.
  6. Pull out the roots. This will take a lot of hard work but if you want to remove any unwanted spreads, this is the way to go. If you cannot do it yourself, hire a professional gardener to do it for you.
  7. Pour hot water on new bamboo shoots. This is a natural method of killing the new bamboo shoots.
  8. If you find that hot water doesn’t work for your bamboo spread, opt for chemical control. Use the strongest herbicides you can find and spread to roots and shoots adequately. Use a sprayer to ensure proper dispersal.

Be diligent about controlling the growth of unwanted bamboo. If you do not have the time to control it, just cut if off completely and remove from your garden.


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