How to Plant Bamboo Rhizomes


Bamboo is a beautiful ornamental grass that tends to be invasive without an adequate barrier. Different types of bamboo grow in different climate zones. It is a good idea to talk with your local nursery or county agricultural extension office before deciding on a bamboo variety. Your bamboo should be planted after the last hard frost. Bamboo naturally grows in forests under tall canopies and prefers shade to partial sun.

Step 1

Define the desired boundaries of your bamboo grove. String and some nails can be a good way to define the edges. Tap the nails into the ground with a hammer, and then run the string around them to form a perimeter.

Step 2

Dig the soil out of the growth area, making your hole about 30 inches deep. Bamboo can be invasive, so you should place a plastic barrier in your hole.

Step 3

Line the area where you will plant bamboo with the plastic barrier. The plastic should be at least 6 mil thick. Make sure you overlap any seams by at least 3 inches.

Step 4

Backfill over the barrier with about 1 foot of soil. Pack this soil tightly to discourage rhizome penetration.

Step 5

Continue backfilling until the hole is only about 1 foot deep. Although you packed down the foot of soil that contacts the barrier, it is also important to compact this second layer as much as possible.

Step 6

Backfill the remaining foot with 6 inches of soil. Don't compact this soil because this is the portion of the soil where the rhizomes will grow.

Step 7

Place your rhizomes on the new layer of soil. Make sure any bud eyes are facing up.

Step 8

Cover the rhizomes with soil. Make sure your plastic barrier comes up above the soil level to prevent rhizome penetration.

Step 9

Water the planting thoroughly and mulch. Make sure the soil doesn't dry out by watering whenever it starts to feel a bit dry.

Things You'll Need

  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • String
  • Shovel
  • 6-mil plastic sheeting, minimum
  • Bamboo rhizomes
  • Water
  • Mulch


  • Planting and Caring for Bamboo
Keywords: bamboo care, bamboo planting, bamboo barrier

About this Author

Christopher Earle is a freelance writer based in Denver, Colo. He has been writing since 1987 and has written for NPR, The Associated Press, the Boeing Company, Ford New Holland, Microsoft, Active Voice, RAHCO International and Umax Data Systems. He studied creative writing at Mankato State University in Minnesota.