Although much larger, bamboo plants are closely related to the blades of grass found growing in your lawn. This member of the grass family encompasses many different varieties, some reaching a height of 70 feet. The majority of bamboo species require tropical and semitropical climates. Bamboo plants do not survive outdoors in cold climates due to their inability to survive killing frosts. These interesting plants require special care in yards and landscapes.
Select a suitable location for growing your bamboo plants. Keep in mind that these plants require more than five hours of sunlight during the daytime. Partially shaded locations protect plants from intense heat. Choose an area that allows adequate space for the mature size of your bamboo plants. Find an area that provides protection from wind. Determine whether you want a single bunch of bamboo plants to create an interesting centerpiece to your landscape, or perhaps you require a screening effect near the edge of your property.
Add compost or soil high in organic materials to your selected planting site. Use this organic material in heavy, clay soil to encourage the presence of healthy earthworms. Create a loamy mix by incorporating the additives into the existing soil with a garden shovel. Plant your bamboos into your prepared soil according to the instructions provided with your individual variety of plants.
Water the soil around your bamboo plants to encourage rapid growth. Bamboos like moist, well-drained soil. Pile mulch around the base of the plants to decrease evaporation after watering. Allow the leaves to remain on the ground for this same purpose. Check the soil regularly to test for adequate moisture. Do not allow the soil to become soggy from too much water. Likewise, increase the frequency of watering when the surface begins to show signs of dryness. Water more frequently during dry seasons.
Apply a fertilizer to your bamboo plants to increase soil nutrients. These rapidly growing plants thrive when treated with organic fertilizer high in nitrogen. Follow the manufacturer's directions for mixing and applying fertilizers to your bamboo plants.
Cut back your bamboo plants with pruning shears to eliminate wilted or dead sections. Prune your bamboo plants once each year to encourage healthy growth. Cut dwarf bamboo plants level with the ground each spring. These dwarf varieties quickly grow back to exhibit healthy, uniform growth.