The white bamboo plant, or bambusa chungii, is a vigorously growing member of the Poaceae family. This spreading evergreen grows bluish-green canes with rich green foliage. The white bamboo is not white. However, as a natural defense, this bamboo covers its newly developing shoots with a white powder, causing its whitish appearance. The white bamboo plant is easily grown and requires very little care. White bamboo adapts well to most soil variations and is tolerant to wet feet.
Position the white bamboo plant in a warm, sunny location. Choose a location that receives at least eight hours of full sunlight for the most vigorous growth. Make sure that the location is well-drained and does not promote standing water, according to Tropical Bamboo.
Protect the growth of your white bamboo plant by applying a layer of mulch to the growing area. Apply a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch around the white bamboo plant, as recommended by the American Bamboo Society. This will reduce the potential for weed invasion and protect the bamboo’s roots, rhizomes and soil moisture.
Irrigate your white bamboo plant at least twice each week, providing about a gallon of water. Adjust the irrigation levels for periods of rainfall and drought. Inspect the white bamboo plant daily and always irrigate if its leaves shows signs of curling. This is a clear sign of drought stress.
Feed your white bamboo plant generously throughout the growing season from early spring through late fall. Use a slow-release fertilizer with higher levels of nitrogen. Select a palm or ornamental fertilizer with a 13-13-13 or 20-20-20 combination, as recommended by Bamboo4u.
Prune the white bamboo plant annually to control growth and redirect energy. Remove any dead or dying culms which appear tan or discolored. Remove old culms to redirect the plant’s energy to the newer, more vigorous culms. Use a sharp, sterile handsaw to remove the culms from the base of the plant near the soil’s surface, as recommended by Tropical Bamboo.