Tall, reliable, and fast-growing are some of the reasons people love this perennial plant – bamboo. Yes, bamboo is not a tree. It is classified in the grass family Poaceae. The bamboo plant is said to be the fastest-growing plant in the world. It grows an astonishing 3.8 – 5.0 min an hour.
Its astonishing growth rate can become an issue,though,if the right type is not planted. The bamboo plant can be invasive and hard to control. That is why I’ve put this list together to show you the kind of bamboo plants you can grow.
Its height and growth speed makes it the go-to option for gardeners looking for quick privacy screens, a centerpiece in their garden, or looking to raise the landscape of their otherwise low garden—also a great addition to your Arizona backyard garden idea.
There are two species of the bamboo plant. The clumping and running species. As the name implies, the clumping bamboo grows in clumps just as you planted it, while the running bamboo propagates with its roots moving up to 100 m under the ground and shooting up somewhere else. The running species is challenging to contain and should be avoided if you have no experience dealing with them. Check out some of the different types of bamboo.
This is the largest Neotropical bamboo type in the world. It is common in Uruguay and surrounding areas and serves as food to the Atlantic bamboo and Amazon rats. The guadua bamboo grows predominantly in lower altitudes of about 1500m and below. Since this is a clumping bamboo, it can easily be managed. Over exploitation for use as a construction material has caused a significant reduction in the numbers of this species.
This is a cold-hardy, running bamboo species with a tall upright yellow stem. Its initial color is bright yellow, which then matures to a deep golden color.
Exposed or cold areas are ideal for this bamboo, and it loves the sun or partial shade. Optimum conditions can make this native Chinese bamboo invasive. It is an excellent privacy screen for your modern backyard idea.
Black Bamboo is a running species that can become highly invasive if not monitored. Hardy and elegant are some qualities that can be attributed to this bamboo species.
Its unique black color makes it a bamboo in demand; you, however, have to wait for about three years for it to change from green to this black beauty. Isn’t it worth the wait? Black bamboo can also thrive in partial shade.
If it isn’t obvious already, this is another native Chinese bamboo. This type is a clumping species that grows within its space. Easy to maintain and grow, including its height of over 3 m, has made it a widely used windbreaker for decades.
If you have a low landscape, you can decide to add this Chinese mountain bamboo to help reduce the wind speed on your property and raise the landscape.
Are you looking for bamboo that’ll fit nicely among your deck garden? The umbrella bamboo is the one for you. This running species is less hardy than the rest, and at just 4 inches, it wouldn’t look out of place on your deck.
This cold-tolerant, leafy bamboo with a slender stem will sway during high winds but will not break. Who wouldn’t want to have these free-spirited plants in their garden? Right?
Multiplex Hedge Bamboo
The hedge bamboo is a clumping type making it easy to grow and maintain. Its deep green color, and tiny leaves make it an ideal front yard landscaping plant.
You can use it to beautify your driveway. An exciting fact about the hedge bamboo is that it stops growing in height and just spreads its branches wider once its culm is cut.
Because of its height (quite short for bamboos), it is a good hedge plant. You can use it as a barrier to keep animals like dogs out of your garden.
Fern leaf Bamboo
The fern leaf bamboo is a clumping type with a tender stem growing up to 4 m in height. The fern leaf is very diverse and can serve numerous purposes in different environments.
It can be used as a screening plant when placed under full sunlight. It doesn’t grow as tall when placed under partial shade, meaning it can be used as a hedge. Its compact nature makes it a good erosion stopping plant.
Red margin is a running bamboo that may be a little invasive if not managed. It produces a soft, red culm sheath and a colorful shoot. It is an excellent erosion control plant when placed in full sunlight and a landslide control when in partial shade. The red margin is tolerant to strong wind, drought, and can be a good screen for your landscape.
Even though this bamboo is challenging to manage, its vast uses make it a popular choice among gardeners.
Buddha Belly Bamboo
What better way to create a tropical garden than by adding this tropical bamboo plant. Its bulgy inter-nodes make it unique and beautiful when used as an ornamental plant. It got its name from the resemblance its lumpy inter-nodes have with the belly of Buddha.
However, if you want its bulgy inter-nodes to be more prominent, you have to keep it in dry soil without fertilizer. It is a clumping bamboo, so it shouldn’t be a problem to grow.
Fish Pole Bamboo
Smooth, tall and upright, that’s what describes this running bamboo type. Growing up to 25 m high, this is a very tall bamboo species. With its leaves spreading at the top, it creates a canopy for the area beneath. You can grow shade-loving plants under it and include some furniture where you can relax and enjoy the cool breeze.
This bamboo is heat and drought resistant but loves moist soil. You should know, in moist soil, it becomes invasive and wild while it stays in a clump when in dry-land or during drought.
As I’ve shown, not all bamboos are invasive and challenging to manage. You can grow different types that are drought, heat, or cold resistant.
Even if you decide to grow an invasive bamboo type, it can be managed by using a bamboo root barrier or by killing the new shoots whenever they appear.
New shoots only appear in a particular period once a year, so wouldn’t be too much of a hassle to handle.