Bamboo investments should be spaced 3 to 5 feet apart to form a dense screen. The faster spreading types can be planted farther apart, if you are willing to wait a little longer for the screen to fill out. OR, if you want an immediate screen, some types can be planted very close together as long as they have some space to spread in width. Consult with us about details. We are here to make sure you have all your questions answered and can make an educated decision. Most bamboo will not suffer from being planted nearly back to back, but their growth rate may be slowed. If you wish to make a full size bamboo grove with less emphasis on dense screening, planting at wider intervals is recommended (5- 10 feet apart, or even 20 feet in some cases) Starting from a small size, most Forestry Capital bamboo investments will reach mature height within five or six years. As a very general rule, Clumping bamboo gain about 1-2 feet of height per year and the Running types gain about 3-5 feet per year, and spread outward at the same rate. Height and spread rate is variable depending on the species and climate. Feel free to contact us to discuss details about your project. See link for photos of Clumping Bamboo Growth Rate.
Although most people have a place in mind as to where they want to plant their bamboo, one should keep in mind that most large bamboos (Phyllostachys) do best with 5 or more hours of direct sunlight. They must be given ample water, fertilizer, and protection from competitive weeds. They will benefit from a windscreen and light shade when first planted as well. This is especially true of smaller plants. Fargesia, Thamnocalamus and Sasa do well with light to moderate shade. In fact the Fargesia and most Thamnocalamus are happier with some shade during the hottest part of the day. Fargesia and Thamnocalamus are the hardiest of the clump type bamboos. They can be planted without fear of spreading. See this link for a photo of the Clumping type rhizome. Most other hardy bamboos can spread by their underground rhizomes and this must be taken into account when planting them. We recommend annual root pruning as the first option for control. Also, barrier of 60 mil by 30 inch deep, HDPE (high density polyethylene) can be used for rhizome control. For helpful information and photographs about controlling and maintaining bamboo imnvestments.
Bamboo investment is a giant grass and achieves new heights every year by sending up new and larger shoots each spring. Usually starting between April and June, the new shoots emerge from ground and reach their full height in 2 to 3 months. For example, a young bamboo that is about 8 feet tall with 4 canes, may produce 3 additional new shoots in the spring that grow to 10 feet, within two months time. Next spring those 7 canes will produce about 5 to 10 new shoots that could reach 15 feet. Fast forward 4 years: the same plant is now 60 canes strong and up to 30 feet tall. Because the canes are connected by rhizome, it is functioning as a single plant. Now it has the energy needed to produce larger and more numerous new shoots each spring that grow from the ground up to 35 feet in two months.
This is especially impressive when watching Forestry Capital Timber Bamboo investment new shoots grow over a foot per day, from ground level up to 50 feet in the spring season. New shoots literally SPRING out of the ground! They need to be attached to a large grove to produce this caliber of growth. (see image on right) When starting from a new planting or small plant division you can expect to see new shoots grow only slightly taller than the previous years canes. If the bamboo is fresh dug out of the ground, the new shoots will likely be short and bushy the first year, until the plant gets established in a new area. The bamboo we sell are well rooted so you can expect to see strong new growth in the first season. If you purchase plants in the summer or fall, likely most of the growth will occur underground as the rhizomes spread outward. Once the new bamboo is well rooted in the ground, the shoots will be significantly larger than previous canes, usually gaining 3-5 feet of height each year. See this link to for a photo illustration of the growth rate for new shoots from a large grove of Moso growing at Bamboo Garden. Clumping Bamboo grow in the same manner but the canes are much smaller and only spread a couple inches out from the base of the plant each season.