How to Maintain a Bamboo Plant

Overview

Bamboo plants offer a variety of decorative purposes in your home or garden. These tall, stately plants make an excellent barrier or divider. You can also use bamboo to give a space a distinctly Asian feel. Bamboo can be grown both inside and outside. This fast growing plant requires regular care and maintenance, however, or it will quickly overcome your garden or outgrow its pot. With the appropriate attention, you can easily keep your bamboo plant neat and attractive.

Step 1

Place the bamboo plant in an appropriately sized area. Bamboo grown in a container should have at least two inches of space on all sides. Running bamboo does best in short, wide containers, as the roots of this plant grow horizontally. Clumping bamboo require slightly deeper containers. Plan for running bamboo to grow outward at a rate of 3 to 5 feet per year if grown outside. Clumping bamboo will spread about 1 to 2 feet per year.

Step 2

Provide about five hours of direct sunlight each day. If the plant is grown indoors you may need to supplement the available sunlight with a grow lamp.

Step 3

Water the bamboo plant twice a week in mild weather or if kept indoors. Water more frequently in hot, sunny weather. Keep the soil moist but not drenched. Lightly mist bamboo that is kept indoors once or twice a week to keep dust from accumulating.

Step 4

Remove unwanted culms by clipping them off with sharp garden shears at soil level. Trim the tops of bamboo that has grown too tall by cutting the culm directly above a node. The nodes are the thicker areas of the culms from which branches protrude. Branches can be removed at the node as well to thin out or shape your bamboo.

Step 5

Repot bamboo that is kept in a container when it begins to grow beyond the confines of its pot. If you prefer to inhibit the growth of the plant, remove it from the pot, cut away approximately a third of the rhizome growth and replant it.

Things You'll Need

  • Container or garden plot
  • Grow light (optional)
  • Water
  • Garden shears

References

  • Bamboo Garden: Growing and Maintaining Bamboo
  • American Bamboo Society: Graceful Grass or Jungle Giant: Growing Bamboo Indoors
Keywords: bamboo plants, growing bamboo, maintaining bamboo

About this Author

Mandi Rogier is a freelance writer who enjoys writing about a wide range of topics. As a previous employee of Walt Disney World, she enjoys writing travel articles that make use of her extensive knowledge of Orlando theme parks.