Bamboo – A Fair Warning

Q: Do you know of any bamboo growers in the Atlanta area? I know there are interesting and non-invasive bamboos but nurseries in this area do not seem to carry any.

A: Most folks have heard tales of gardeners who plant bamboo and find that they can never get rid of it. Indeed, there are species of ^non-invasive^ bamboo, called “clumping” bamboos. “Running” bamboos send out a long stem right at the soil surface which eventually sprouts a new plant several feet away. Before long, the running bamboo has leapt across your yard. Clumping bamboos are more restrained. The plant does send out a horizontal stem but it is only a few inches long. Clumping bamboo will stay in one place for years without causing alarm.

Because bamboo has such a bad reputation, and there is limited customer demand for it, most nurseries avoid the plant.