How to Divide Bamboo Plants


Bamboo is a type of grass that adds an Asian vibe to any garden. While bamboo can be expensive, it also is a great barrier plant that can provide a lot of privacy. If your bamboo is outgrowing its bounds or you just want to get the most of the new bamboo, dividing it is the way to go. Bamboo is a tough plant and can take quite a bit of abuse, so little care is needed when cutting it apart.

Step 1

Divide your bamboo in the spring before it sends off new shoots.

Step 2

Water the area around the bamboo to be divided until it is saturated, and allow the water to soak into the soil. This makes the bamboo easier to dig up and divide while keeping the bamboo healthy.

Step 3

Cut off the bamboo's top growth until only 1/3 of it remains. This makes the bamboo easier to move.

Step 4

Dig a hole around the bamboo as deep as its rhizomes and 4 to 5 feet wide. This gives you easy access to the bamboo's rhizomes and plenty of room to work.

Step 5

Use a spade to cut the rhizomes into pieces, making sure each piece has a culm on top. Saw through any tough parts of the rhizomes, dividing the bamboo into as many pieces as you desire. Divided bamboo needs a culm and part of a rhizome to grow well as a transplant.

Step 6

Transplant each piece of divided bamboo into the ground or a well-drained pot filled with potting soil.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not allow divided bamboo to dry out.

Things You'll Need

  • Sharpened spade
  • Saw


  • How do I divide off a section of a clumping bamboo?
  • Bamboo
  • Dividing Bamboo

Who Can Help

  • Dividing a Clumping Bamboo
Keywords: dividing bamboo, divide bamboo, bamboo

About this Author

Hollan Johnson is a freelance writer for many online publications including Garden Guides and eHow. She is also a contributing editor for Brighthub. She has been writing freelance for over a year and her focus' are travel, gardening, sewing, and Mac computers. Prior to freelance writing, Hollan taught English in Japan. She has a B.A. in linguistics from the University of Las Vegas, Nevada.