The meditative clack of bamboo stalks in the wind or the peaceful sound of snow falling on bamboo leaves are but a couple of the reasons to grow this hardy, ornamental grass. Bamboo is easy to propagate and easy to grow. You can use bamboo to create a natural screen between properties or a fast-growing forest; you can also use it as a decorative house- or deck plant. Find a variety you particularly like, and after asking the owner, take a few cuttings from the stalk. Within a few weeks, you can be on your way to growing your own bamboo forest.
Select a bamboo stalk from an established plant and cut it at the base using a sharp saw.
Choose a section of the stalk that has two to three nodes on it. The nodes are the horizontal rings that circle the stalk.
Using the sharp saw, cut off a section of the stalk at the top and at the bottom. Remove all the leaves from your selected stalk.
Fill a 6- to 8-inch planting pot with a mixture of potting soil and coarse sand. Choose a pot that has holes in the bottom; this will allow water to run through the pot and seep out when you water.
Make a small hole in the potting soil about the size of your bamboo stalk.
Press the bamboo stalk into the hole and bury it so that the first node is covered. Pat the soil down firmly around the bamboo stalk and water well.
Cut four thin polls that are at least twice as high as the bamboo stalk. Stick them into the soil at the edge of the pot at equally spaced intervals.
Take a large piece of clear or opaque plastic and drape it over the poles, gather the bottom around the pot and secure with a rubber band or twist-tie. Cut off any extra plastic.
After 2 to 3 weeks, you should see new leaves beginning to form on your bamboo stalk. Give it one more week and then transplant it to a permanent place in the garden or into a larger decorative pot.
Things You Will Need
- Bamboo stalk
- Garden saw
- 6- to 8-inch planting pot
- Potting soil
- Coarse sand
- Four dowels
- Clear or opaque plastic
- It is a good idea to start several stalks so that if one does not take your work will not be fruitless.
- Take cuttings from stalks that are no more than 3 years old when selecting bamboo for propagation.
- The plastic will keep your bamboo stalk moist, but it is important to check the soil every few days. If it begins to feel dry, take off the plastic, soak the pot in water and then replace the plastic.
- Some bamboo is of a clumping variety; this variety is easily contained in a garden or landscaped setting. However, non-clumping varieties of bamboo can take over quickly and be difficult to contain. Before planting a non-clumping bamboo, dig out the area and line it with heavy plastic or other material to stop your bamboo from taking over the area.