Monday, September 28, 2009

Leaping rhizomes!

This is why you leave 1 -2 inches above ground when you install a bamboo rhizome barrier. Pictured is a rhizome from Phylostachys nigra "Megurochiku" coming up for air and diving right back into the ground. A 30 inch plastic barrier with 1 to 2 inches above ground is an effective way to contain a running bamboo in its intended planting area.

Although I do love running bamboo, clumping bamboo is nice because it is non-invasive and does not require containment with rhizome barrier. For me, running bamboo belongs in a pot.


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Mad Man Bamboo Nursery on Facebook; bamboo rhizome barrier.

Facebook plunge

It's funny, I don't find Facebook very user friendly and sometimes I wonder the purpose of it when you get alot of meaningless chatter. But I do see its real power, connecting people together.

I'm a bit "old school" - I like e-mail, I don't get text messaging and twitter, not so sure. I'm like a weird Luddite mixed with amateur technology adopter - if its easy to use, I'll try it, if its too complex, nevermind.

Anyways, today I took a step into the 21st century and set up a Facebook account for my bamboo business - Mad Man Bamboo.

If you'd like to see what I am up to, look to your right, click "Become a Fan", sign up if your new to Facebook or if your already registered with Facebook - you'll become a "fan." I'll be posting updates from time-to-time and hope to have it serve as a place to answer questions regarding my favorite plant - bamboo.

Bamboo rhizome barrier

Another new thing I have added to our offerings is - bamboo rhizome barrier. We carry both 24 inch and 30 inch. More on this by clicking here - bamboo rhizome barrier.



Monday, September 7, 2009

Interesting question from a reader: Larger the diameter for bamboo, the stronger it is? True or false?

Received an interesting e-mail from Javier, a reader of this blog that posted the following question:

"Hi Sean,

Is it safe to say that the larger the diameter the bamboo is, the stronger it is? If not, please shed some light on this.

Many thanks,


Great question and the answer is "no." It really depends on the fiber and lignen (the white binding material between the fibers) and how tightly packed they are. So, bamboo with larger air chambers (like Phylostachys heteroclada "Water Bamboo") in them or ones that are not as densely packed, even if they are large in diameter, are not necessarily the strongest.

But more impressive is the fact that bamboo, in its very strongest form is like reinforced concrete and is, in some cases, stronger than steel. Steel has a tensile strength of 23,000, while the strongest bamboo has a tensile strength of 28,000.

It also used 1/8th the energy in production that concrete does, pretty impressive.

For more interesting facts on bamboo, its strength and its possibilities for solid, environmentally friendly buildings of the future, check out the article from Discover Magazine, ironically enough, from 1996 - The Bamboo Solution.