Bamboo has literally thousands of uses, from food to building materials. It is a fast-growing plant, with some species growing up to a meter a day. Residents of Georgia who grow bamboo in their garden will likely want to do so for erosion control, to accent a landscape or as a privacy or wind hedge. The soil conditions and climate in the Peach State are conducive of bamboo growing, so this goal can easily be achieved even for a novice gardener.
Choose a species of bamboo that will grow well in Georgia. Running bamboo will grow in rows and is ideal for erosion control or planting in large open fields. Running bamboo species to consider are Golden Golden, Black Bamboo, Red Margin Bamboo and Arrow Bamboo. Clumping bamboo will remain in large clusters and is ideal for use as a privacy hedge or windbreak. Clumping bamboo species to consider include Green Stripestem, Golden Goddess and Fernleaf.
Install a root barrier around the area in which you would like your bamboo to grow. Dig a trench all the way around the area two feet wide and three feet deep with a shovel. Place a roll of fiberglass or polypropylene vertically in the trench. Allow the barrier material to extend two to three inches over the top of the trench and fill the sides in with dirt to stabilize.
Place three to six inches of compost on top of the soil in the section inside the barrier. Till with a garden tiller to mix the compost and soil to a depth of 12 to 14 inches. Rake the soil with a garden rake after tilling to break up clumps in the dirt and to even mix any clumps of compost material that was not mixed into the soil thoroughly. Pick out any clumps of grass or weeds and discard them.
Plant the bamboo in mid to late April. Dig a hole in the tilled area two feet deep, 18 inches wide and three feet long. Place the bamboo plant into the hole so that the roots are just below the surface. Cover the hole in with dirt. Plant each bamboo plant fifteen feet apart if it is running bamboo and eight to ten feet apart if it is clumping bamboo. Make sure that plants are around five feet from the barrier material.
Water the bamboo thoroughly with a garden hose. Keep the plants watered two to three times a week. Water every other day if drought conditions are present. Add a layer of mulch three inches thick around the base of the bamboo plant to conserve moisture.
Monitor your bamboo plants for signs of unruly growth. Trim with a weed eater or mow down with a lawn mower to keep plants from spreading. Dig out the underground shoots known as rhizomes that extend past your boundary area with a shovel in the fall.