Sunday, October 24, 2010


Four years ago, (before we even moved in), we planted bamboo down by the creek. Those first plants had a tough go at things. We didn't quite know how to transplant it yet (our root balls were WAY too small), the summer was terribly dry (and we weren't here to water), we planted them next to black walnuts (which inhibit growth). Despite all of our errors, a few of those original plants are still hanging on. Since then we have added 5 other varieties of bamboo. Some are growing faster than others, who would have thought it would have taken so long to get such a fast growing plant established. A lot of people ask us why we like bamboo. Here are ten reasons:

1.People food
2.Animal food
3.Erosion Control
4.Wind break
5.Nutrient removal from runoff.
6.Building material, plant stakes, ect.
7.Visual screen.
8.Cool place for kids to play.
9.Adds excitement to the bonfire.
10.We just like it!
This has been our fastest growing bamboo, it gets the most light, which sure does help. It is an unknown variety from a grove off of Sardis Rd in Charlotte, NC.
This is the giant of the temperate bamboos, Moso, it can grow up to eight inches in diameter and makes some of the best tasting shoots. This start is from a grove at a cemetery in Anderson, SC.

These are two starts we planted by the road. Unfortunately, we are going to have to move them because the water company is putting in a new line. The one in the background is "Allgold" purchased at the Bamboo Festival held at the NC Arboretum in Asheville, NC. The bamboo in the foreground is an unknown variety from a grove in Mint Hill, NC. Young bamboos are difficult to identify as many of their distinguishing characteristics do not show up until they start to mature. The shoots are the best way to identify different species, and we are hoping to be able to identify the unknowns next spring.


  1. When and how do you harvest the shoots?

  2. In the spring, the new shoots will emerge from the ground. It is best to cut them off a few inches below the soil line when they are about 6-8 inches tall. There are some great youtube videos if you are interested!