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How to Plant Bamboo Plants in New England

Bamboo is a versatile garden plant that can be used as a privacy screen, accent plant or border hedge. While not typically grown in New England, regional gardeners can find several cold-hardy bamboo plants that will perform well in their area, from the northern corners of Vermont to the more temperate winters in Connecticut and Massachusetts. Plant bamboo in the spring in New England so it gets established before winter.

Plant in a location that offers your bamboo full sun and protection from wind. Bamboo can spread, so select an area that offers lots of room to grow.

Dig a hole twice the size of your bamboo plant, using a shovel. Remove rocks, weeds and roots form the hole.

Pull your bamboo plant from its container. Separate out tangled roots before planting. Place the bamboo in the ground at the same level as it was planted in the container. Hold the plant straight and cover over the roots with soil.

Water the newly planted bamboo until the soil becomes saturated and compresses around the roots.

Mulch your newly planted bamboo with a 2-inch layer of mulch. Bamboo enjoys growing in a mulched area and will perform better if heavily mulched, according to the American Bamboo Society.

Water your newly planted bamboo twice a week (and more often if the weather is hot). Plants under 5 gallons need 1 gallon of water; larger plants need more. Continue to irrigate in this manner throughout the year.


Select a bamboo suited for New England winters. The American Bamboo Society recommends Phyllostachys bissetii and Phyllostachys aureosulcata for northern gardeners.

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