Thursday, July 21, 2011

Clumping bamboo is shooting from the ground....

One of the big distinctions between running bamboo and its non-invasive clumping cousin is the time of year that they begin to shoot.  Running bamboo generally begins to shoot starting in March and it lasts through approximately June or so.

Clumping bamboo, on the other hand, starts shooting around July and it lasts through late September/early October.  Of course this can vary some with temperatures, rainfall, irrigation and fertilization and other key growing factors.

So, like a kid in a candy store, I am on the hunt for new bamboo shoots.  Sure enough, the clumping bamboo is starting to shoot.  When I first make the discovery, my hear goes pitter-patter and it brings a big smile to my face.  I usually drag my wife over to gloat in my new discovery, but she usually humors me with a smile.  Sometimes she is impressed, but other times, I guess I'm just easily amused and amazed.  I can't help it - I'm a 'Bamboo Geek' after all.

I'm always thrilled by bamboo shooting.  Not only is the vertical growth amazing both in speed and height, but the colors and textures are almost unworldly.  Some look like a alien tentacle piercing through the earth, green with scales.  Others are smooth and red like a red hot poker.  What's funny is that the new shoots transform so much that they look nothing like they started just two months later.  I guess that's what makes bamboo such a special plant.

So, here are some photos of clumping bamboo that I discovered shooting right now:

Bambusa oldhamii 'Giant Clumping Timber Bamboo'

Himalayacalamus porcata

Bambusa tuldoides 'Punting Pole Bamboo'

If you happen to own a clumping bamboo (or two...), get out there, kneel down and you may discover a new shoot or two.  For a 'Bamboo Geek' like me, there is nothing more satisfying.


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
Twitter: @madmanbamboo


Gerhard Bock said...

My oldhamii has three new shoots that are much thicker than last year's, almost 2 in. That's impressive after less than 2 years in the ground. Other bambusas are shooting, too, including chungii Barbellata and Alphonse Karr. Exciting time of year!

Anonymous said...

mu giant timeber needs to be trimmed and topped. Way to tall. new shoots all the time. Stocks must be at least 20 ft tall