I have had success growing bamboo in a containers in a couple of different ways. My black bamboo (phylostachys nigra), pictured above, is growing with some gusto in a metal horse trough that I got for free from my neighbor. Depending upon the style of your garden, they can be attractive.
Using a drill bit made for metal work, I drilled several holes in the bottom, created an airgap by placing the trough on bricks. This is dome to prevent rhizomes from escaping the container and into the ground below.
I have also planted four runners in glazed ceramic pots (pictured is phylostachys bambusoides "All Gold"). If have read some literature recommending unglazed to let the soil breathe, but on the flip side unglazed during the summer tends to dry out the soil in the pot. Especially here in Sacramento, where we get several days of temps over 100f in the summer. That can mean a dead bamboo plant - real quick. All that said, I have had nothing but success using the glazed pot.
Like the trough, I have the glazed pots sitting on granite pavers I had left over from our front yard landscaping project last spring.
The other question from Paul is the size and height of container grown bamboo plants. My observation is that they do not get as big or robust as a running bamboo planted in the ground. That fact is true for most plant's size as the pot physically controls the development of the root growth.
Container grown bamboo put in a decorative container adds style and interest to any garden.
Try it out sometime....
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