Saturday, September 29, 2012

Roseville homeowners bring tropical feel to their backyard - bamboo-style

Today we had a chance to visit some fellow bamboo aficionados that live in Roseville to see their backyard.  Over a couple of years they have bought bamboo from me and have quite a nice collection of both running and clumping bamboo.

These folks are nice people and love bamboo.  They have clumping bamboo from another house they still own but no longer live at and have grown to understand bamboo (the difference between running and clumping) and appreciate it for its usefulness and beauty.

As we walked into their backyard - I couldn't help to say - 'Wow!'  The backyard has a definite 'oasis a la Hawaii feel.'  They use both running (contained) and clumping species quite nicely in combination with palms and it is a really nice, relaxing and well done landscape.  Most of which was done by themselves.

Here are some photos of their nice backyard:

A two year old Bambusa oldhamii 'Giant Clumping Timber Bamboo' behind a peaceful water feature.

An Otatea acuminata aztecorum 'Mexican Weeping Bamboo' in a cleverly constructed container that is finished off with bamboo fencing.

A Phylostachys nigra 'Giant Black' in a container in its first year of growth.

A hand-made tiki from Turlock, CA.  I definitely need to get the name of the guy who does these.

I thought they did a great job on their backyard and am happy to see the bamboo that I grew has found a happy home, as it certainly shows.


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Sunday, September 23, 2012

Local bamboo artisan puts heart into his creations

At our September 15 plant sale in Elk Grove, I had the pleasure of meeting Steven King, a Sacramento area bamboo craftsman that makes both beautiful and functional hand-carved art pieces made from bamboo poles.

Steve's business, Bamboo Whisperer ( is just getting off the ground and he has already sold several pieces.

Steve has had an interesting journey that ultimately led him to pursue his craft.

"In 2007, my vehicle was hit head on by a wrong way driver. After receiving 2 operations on the left arm and one on the right, I began using meditation as a method of pain control. During sessions, I would play various styles of music. One particular genre stood out from the rest, and is how I discovered the wonderous sound of the Shakuhachi.

Deciding to take the next step, I began learning the instrument and accompanying music. Being able to produce the sounds that captured my full attention was a wonderful experience. Deciding to display the flutes, I began creating ideas on how best to do so while maintaining the harmony within the instrument. It was at this point that I realized the best medium to use was the same material as the flute itself. Bamboo!

Just as I created the first wall-mounted display, I learned that the surgeries failed. Five additional surgeries and four years later, I was no longer able to position my arms to hold the Shakuhachi.

Being mindful of not what was lost, but rather my new found passion, I spent 2011 developing crafting techniques which would allow me to continue working with bamboo under the new limitations.

The Shakuhachi and the warm, open community which surrounds it across the globe, helped me through some very difficult times. Through my art, I hope that in some small way, I'm able to offer something in return."

In talking to Steve at the sale, his art is both a passion and a means to achieve peace and focus.  It was very clear to me that Steve loves what he does.  I can relate.  Although running Mad Man Bamboo is alot of work, it underscores a fact of life that if you love what you do, it doesn't feel like 'work.'

I also like it that Steve is a local craftsman.  He has a personal stake in his art and it shows.

According to Steve, "Bamboo Whisperer is art, inspired by nature and life. I don't consider the pieces a form of my personal expression, but rather an opportunity for others to see more of the beauty nature has within it.

Sometimes I can visualize a piece immediately, other times I will have it sitting next to me for a week before the first cut. During the latter, I know something is there, but the image is unclear. Over time, I've come to realize the vision is always there in plain sight, it was only my thoughts which were out of focus.

It is in this way, I am connected to every piece. Each one has either allowed, or enhanced a peaceful moment."

At the sale, we talked about Steve participating in future plant sales and local farmers' markets.  I'm hoping we will see him and his art in 2013.

In the meantime, if your interested in any of Steve's pieces, you can contact him at his website at


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A nice Fall bamboo discovery in the garden...

I love this time of year.  Fall is literally right around the corner and temperatures, with some exception, tend to get mild during the day with cooler evenings here in California.  Can't complain about that!

Another reason I love the emergence of Fall is the fact that the new shoots on my clumping bamboo, that started shooting in July, are now starting to mature. Around this time of year, it's not uncommon to find some new 'bamboo' discoveries, piddling around the yard.  Tonight was no exception.

Watering tonight and I stumbled across this beauty.  A new large shoot from my Himalayacalamus hookerianus 'Teague's Blue Bamboo'. Hands down my favorite bamboo, with tonight's discovery affirming that.

Here is to a beautiful Fall!

Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Sunday, August 12, 2012

Sacramento needs more plant sales!

As a garden geek that loves his plant sales, I find that the Sacramento area has a few good ones, but they are far and few (at least in my opinion). My favorite one that I participate in every Spring is at the Shepard Arts and Garden Center in Sacramento put on the good people from the Sacramento Perennial Plant Club.

So for me (and my wife) its more than just getting that chance to sell the bamboo plants I take so much pride in. For us, its far more than that - a chance to catch up with fellow small local plant growers, other vendors, our customers - many of whom we consider to be friends. It's also a virtual 'kid in a candy store scenario' - we end up spending half the profit on new plants, many of which you would never find anywhere else.

Here is me in my element - talking bamboo at a plant sale

In the Summer, Fall and Winter, there seems to be very few plants sales in the Sacramento are - a plant sale drought, if you will. I've never been one to just sit there and think that more plant sales are just going to magically appear.  They take alot of work to pull together and I totally appreciate this reality.

So, taking matters into my own hands, I am partnering with Jennifer Kahl, who owns The Secret Garden in Elk Grove to organize a Autumn Garden Faire and Plant Sale. Ironically, we met Jennifer at a plant sale several years ago as a fellow vendor. 

Our focus for the Autumn Garden Faire and Plant Sale is to feature small niche and unique plant growers and local crafters and create a nice event that plant geeks like me and many others in the Sacramento area crave.

Here are the details of the event:

What: Autumn Garden Faire and Plant Sale

When: Saturday, September 15, 2012 from 9 am to 3 pm 

Where: The Secret Garden located at 8450 West Stockton Boulevard Elk Grove, CA 95758 (Off of HWY 99 between Calvine and Sheldon)

Free to the public.

Please support your local plant growers and crafters, if you use Twitter, Facebook or other social media venues, give this event a 'shout out' and feel free to use the attached flier.

If you are a local plant grower or local crafter and wish to participate in the event, send me an e-mail at and I'd be happy to send you a vendor application.

Hope to see you there!

Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Monday, July 30, 2012

The Huntington... definitely one for the gardener's bucket list...

Talk to most hard-core garden geeks, people like me, and we have our own garden 'bucket lists.' That list of dreamy garden destinations you must visit before you kick the bucket.

 Over the years, I have sought out those 'dream' locations that could never be replicated in a home garden due to sheer size and cost, but are what make them special 'dream' places to visit.  Places you never forget, places that bring you back to your childhood and fill your heart with joy and your mind with wonder.

Some of those places are in the Sacramento region, others are in the Bay Area and Southern California. Our proximity to all these locations, living in Sacramento, makes me appreciate living in California as a gardener's paradise full of bucket list places for gardeners to explore.

Recently, on a trip to Southern California, I was able to convince my family to spend a half day at The Huntington in San Marino, CA (near Pasadena), a 200 acre facility that has 120 acres of themed gardens as well as a library and and extensive art collection, among other things.  Specifically, I was very excited to see the recently renovated Japanese Garden, the Chinese Garden (called the Garden of Flowering Fragrance) and the Jungle Garden.

The Huntington did not disappoint and it ranks on the top of places that I have now had the honor to visit.

Here are some photos of my recent visit:

The recently renovated Japanese Garden at The Huntington in San Marino, CA.  At the top of the hill is the Japanese House.  This garden opened to the public in 1928.

This is the side view of the garden with a large grove of bamboo to the left that you can walk through.

This is the bamboo pathway in the Japanese Garden.

This is the Plantain Court (Ba Jiao Yuan) in the Chinese-inspired Garden of Flowing Fragrance.

This is the Terrace of the Jade Mirror (Yu Jing Tai) in the Garden of Flowing Fragrance.

This is one of the many ponds in the Jungle Garden... very peaceful and beautiful.

This is part of a very old grove of Bambusa beecheyana 'Beechey Bamboo' (a clumping bamboo) that stands at the entrance of the Jungle Garden.  This is likely at least 60 years old, if not older, and is massive.

Visiting The Huntington's garden was an experience I will never forget.  I will be posting many more photos on out Facebook page over the next several weeks.  Like our page and see much more than just this.  For you fellow gardeners, if you love these types of experiences, add The Huntington in San Marino, CA to your gardeners 'bucket list.' It is worthy for placement on the top of the list for sure.  I can mark this off my bucket list, but no doubt will visit again if the opportunity comes around again.

Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Got Bamboo?

We are very excited to offer a new shirt for all you bamboo lovers out there (or those that also love Panda Bears).  This shirt is 100% cotton and is in a natural color.  We have small, medium, large and extra large adult sizes available.

Shirts are $15, plus CA sales tax.  We won't be able to sell them at the Farmers' Market, but will have them at future plant sales.

We can also ship anywhere in the United States for $5.50 shipping and handling.

Want a shirt? E-mail me at


Mad Man Bamboo Nursery - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Monday, July 9, 2012

'Weaver's Bamboo' adds style to a modern LA area building

Sometimes when you have a 'garden moment', an inspiration, that one mix of plant material with hardscape or against the right building, it just speaks to you. This picture does just that for me.

Lately, I have grown to really appreciate Bambusa textilis 'Weaver's Bamboo' for it lush green coloring, upright stature and its clean open look.  It looks like a classic running bamboo, but it is a non-invasive clumper.  Names so for its thin culm walls that can be used for basket-weaving and other weaving crafts.

Paul, a Bamboo Geek blog reader, asked me to ID this plant and in exchange he gave me permission to show off this photo taken of a hedge of 'Weaver's Bamboo' taken in the Los Angeles area, used against a modern whitewashed building.

If this doesn't show off LA style, I'm not sure what does.... beautiful.

Never fear... it looks just as beautiful in our warm, sunny Sacramento landscapes as well!


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A new variety of bamboo, a fluke or recipe for disappointment?

I often stroll about the backyard, usually on some project or just merely focused on a gardening basic, like keeping your plants watered during a hot summer day.  It's easy to get so focused that you forget the little things, the garden surprises that lurk around the corner, soon to be discovered in the garden.

Admittedly, when I had passed by a three gallon container of Bambusa multiplex "Alphonse Karr" (a clumping bamboo) that I recently potted and that was slated to be sold at a farmers market or a plant sale, it never really caught my eye.  It's not unusual during the summer to see leaves on bamboo that are heat stressed, faded or just show the effects of the season's extremes.  I had probably walked by this bamboo several dozen times thinking a heat stressed culm on this bamboo had met its final days, fried in the hot, brutal Sacramento sun.

Finally, the other night, this plant caught my attention. Not sure why, but it did. Pure white leaves, mixed with dark green leaves, unusual, but very unlikely to be anything but dead leaves. I touched the leaves thinking that they were for sure dry, but much to my surprise, the leaves were alive and very healthy.  My heart, going pitter patter, I knelt down and examined the plant further - three independent white-leaved culms among maybe a total of six other green-leaved culms.

My thought process - Eureka! A new variety!

Excited, I showed my wife who dispensed caution that this could indeed be a fluke, a mere coincidence.  In bamboo geek-speak - a genetic anomaly.  Only time will tell, I suppose.  But, it was exciting to possibly have a new variety on my hands that perhaps, if I'm lucky, I could submit to the American Bamboo Society as a named variety.

So, as usual, getting way ahead of myself, I posted the photo on Facebook asking for common names for my "new" bamboo (if it turns out to be a stable new variety)...

This is what I got on Facebook (lots of clever folks for sure):

"Dove Bamboo"

"Ghost Bamboo"

"White Oragami"

"Crane Bamboo"

"White Gold"

"White Light"

"Peace Doves"

"White Unicorn"

"White Bamboo"

"Dawn Mist"

"Mist at Dawn"

"Karr Blanche" (clever)

So, I have a spot picked out for this bamboo.  I will grow it out and observe it to see if its genetics are stable and showed the white-leaved leaf as a consistent trait.  If so, I'll submit it as a new named variety, a dream come true for a plant geek like me. So, if you read this blog and have a great idea for a new name, post it here.  Who knows, it it rings true, I may use it.


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Sunday, June 17, 2012

Congrats to Aaron Cochran for winning a local Turf War contest... using bamboo in a landscape design

I  must admit that I have been a bit busy and well... I'm a bit behind on a few things including this blog. One thing that was a great experience a few months ago was to participate on the DIY Network's show Turf War.  No, I didn't have my yard remade into something new, pitting my self against a competing neighbor's yard makeover.  Rather, I was able to provide clumping bamboo for the project (one of the competing neighbor's yard located in Elk Grove, CA).  The show itself aired on June 1, hence my guilt for the lateness of this post.

I couldn't post photos or really even discuss the show until it aired on June 1.  So 16 days later, I want to share me experiences with the show and the project.

As with most camera shoots that are not live, your often at the whim or mercy of the post-production editor. And much to my surprise, when I was finally able to watch the show (via the complimentary DVD that was sent to me by the production company), I actually had some air time (providing advice on clumping bamboo to one of the show's contestants).

In the show I participated - Fire Water versus Floating Bed, I had the great honor of working with local landscape professional Aaron Cochran of Landscapes by Cochran.  Aaron is one of the most down-to-earth guys you could run across in the landscaping industry and really cares about the details.  He is passionate about his work and it shows.  In the episode I participated in - Aaron won. No surprise from me.  Aaron knew the difference between running and clumping bamboo and know how to incorporate it into a landscape appropriately and artistically.

Honestly, this understanding of bamboo (specifically the difference between running and clumping bamboo) is lost on many folks, even landscape professionals, but Aaron showed a level of expertise and savvy on how you can use clumping bamboo - with all the benefits and none of the problems that running bamboo can pose in the ground.  Of course, with the good information that does exist on clumping bamboo on the internet and in well-informed gardening magazines, the perception of bamboo, specifically clumping bamboo, is changing.

I also was very impressed with the production staff at Big Table Media, a Sacramento based production company, and there overall knowledge of bamboo.  I discussed bamboo at length with some of the production staff and they showed a genuine appreciation for bamboo and really understood the difference between running and clumping bamboo.  It was really quite refreshing.

Thanks to professionals like Aaron, he was able to use clumping bamboo in his winning Turf War design.  Cheers to that!

So, here are a few photos and highlights from the Turf War episode I participated in:

Aaron Cochran and I at the project site, clumping bamboo is in the background.

Filming the homeowner and Aaron working on the water feature.

Bambusa ventricosa 'Buddha's Belly Bamboo' that I helped the homeowners plant in pots. Great choice since a constrained environment (growing in a pot) really brings out the 'bellies' in this bamboo. If you watch the episode, this is where I provided advice along the way, some of which showed up.

Overall, I really enjoyed participating in the show.  Aaron really did a great job on design and execution.  Most of all, his incorporation of bamboo showed a level of sophistication and understanding.  Coupled with the well-informed Big Table Media staff, it was great to see how well this project turned out with the use of clumping bamboo.

The show continues to be re-aired, so check your local listing or the DIY Network's website for the next time it is scheduled to air.


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Rocklin bamboo nursery on DIY Network's Turf War “Fire Water vs. Floating Bed" episode

Tomorrow (Friday, June 1, 2012) at 6 pm - Here are the details on the Turf War episode I am on that airs on the DIY Network tomorrow - "Turf War “Fire Water vs. Floating Bed: But please be sure to check your local cable listing, as air times are subject to change! Here is a link to your episodes information that can help keep track air times:"

I'll be posting photos of the project on my Bamboo Geek Blog shortly after the show airs.

Hope you enjoy the show!


Mad Man Bamboo Nursery - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Monday, April 30, 2012

On most gardener's bucket list... U.S. Botanic Gardens in Washington D.C.

On a recent trip to Washington D.C., I had a chance to quickly swing by the U.S. Botanical Gardens. This place is not only a gardener's paradise, it is full of history and significance as is almost every square inch of Washington D.C. is.

Pulled from the US Botanical Gardens website, here is a brief history:

The United States Botanic Garden is rooted in the nation’s heritage. During the late 18th century, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and James Madison shared the dream of a national botanic garden and were instrumental in establishing one on the National Mall in 1820.

The institution actually traces its beginning to 1816, when the constitution of the Columbian Institute for the Promotion of Arts and Sciences in Washington, D.C., proposed the creation of a botanic garden to collect, grow and distribute plants of this and other countries that might contribute to the welfare of the American people. The Institute’s garden was established by Congress in 1820 to the west of the Capitol Grounds, from First Street to Third Street between Pennsylvania and Maryland Avenues. This facility functioned until shortly after the organization stopped holding meetings in 1837.

In 1842, the idea of a national botanic garden was reestablished when the United States Exploring Expedition to the South Seas (the Wilkes Expedition) brought a collection of living plants from around the globe to Washington, D.C. Initially placed in a specially constructed greenhouse behind the Old Patent Office Building, the plants were moved in late 1850 into a new structure on the site previously occupied by the Columbian Institute’s garden.

The US Botanical Garden in 1867.

In continuous operation and open to the public since 1850, the Botanic Garden moved to its present location in 1933, a complex located along the north and south sides of Independence Avenue bordered by First Street and Third Streets, SW. The Garden includes the Conservatory, which was renovated from 1997-2001; the National Garden, which opened in 2006; and Bartholdi Park, which was created in 1932. A plant production and support facility opened in Anacostia in 1993, which includes 85,000 square feet under glass divided into 34 greenhouse bays in addition to maintenance shops.

The U.S. Botanic Garden was formally placed under the jurisdiction of the Joint Committee on the Library of Congress in 1856 and has been administered through the Architect of the Capitol since 1934. The Architect of the Capitol has served as Acting Director of the U.S. Botanic Garden and is responsible for the maintenance and operation of the Garden and for any construction, changes or improvements made.

Making the most of the time I had, here is a picture tour of what I saw...

The front of the U.S. Botanic Gardens.  Their feature exhibit was Orchid Mystique.

Beautiful specimen of Bambusa oldhamii 'Giant Clumping Timber Bamboo' in the main entryway

Part of the Orchid Mystique exhibit which really focused on the beauty of Orchids but also the fact that many varieties of the plant species is endangered in the world.

The main part of the conservatory which has a water feature down the middle. Very beautiful.

This was in the kid's play area.  I had to really resist playing in the bamboo!  This would have been a dream play area for me as a kid with a tunnel made of bamboo.

A 65 year old Willow Leaf Fig Bonsai Tree.

A nicely done terrarium.

A Stromanthe. A very stunning plant indeed.

Bambusa vulgaris 'Vitatta', a clumping bamboo that grows only under the protection of the conservatory.

If ever in Washington D.C., this is a must-visit place for any gardener.  It is located near the House of Representative's side of the Capitol Building.  Truly one of those places that belongs on a gardener's bucket list...


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Clumping bamboo wakes up with warm temperatures

I always love late April, early May as it is when the "naked" culms of clumping bamboo begin to leaf out. The warm days and moderate evening temperatures do wonders that no fertilizer can beat.

Clumping bamboo typically shoots in late Summer through about late Fall.  At that point, since the shooting ends right around when the colder temperatures begin (late October), the clumping bamboo goes into dormancy where the new culm stops growing, doesn't leaf out and essentially, for lack of a better description, looks "naked."

A "naked" clumping bamboo culm.  This was taken on February 10, 2012.

So for several months in the winter, you sit there and hope and pray that the wind and/or frost doesn't topple your beautiful new culms.  Its always a pang of disappointment for a "Bamboo Geek" like me to see that tall new culm toppled over after a Winter storm.

Now with the newly warming temperatures, when it finally breaks into the 80's, the new branches and leaves begin to emerge from the nodes of the "naked culms."

This is what I saw today (April 29, 2012).  Makes my heart go pitter-patter!

Really looking forward to seeing these new culms once they are fully leafed out likely in July.  Its what brings me joy, not only for the newly found privacy, but out of my appreciation for bamboo itself.

If you, my Bamboo Geek readers, have similar stories to share, please send your photos my way at  Folks that are experienced with bamboo and especially those discovering (or re-discovering) bamboo love to see how clumping bamboo grows and I'd love to share the stories of others.

Enjoy the beautiful weather!

Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Thursday, April 12, 2012

A hidden garden beauty...

Thamnocalamus crassinodus 'Kew Beauty'

About four years ago, I planted a rare, very clumping beautiful bamboo in the back end of my yard thinking it was the perfect spot for it to flourish.  The bamboo, Thamnocalamus crassinodus 'Kew Beauty', is very rare and exceptionally beautiful with light airy culms and leaves; and very vivid red coloring on its culms and branchlets.  It's so dainty, it really is suited for mostly shady sun conditions, especially in the Sacramento area with its hot summers and intense afternoon sun.

Pretty soon I realized this wasn't the best spot for 'Kew Beauty'.  But as with most things, finding the time to tend to the simplest things seems to be a challenge in life.

So, it sat, and sat, and sat.  Looking somewhat pitiful and untended after several years of being on the 'to-do' list, I finally dug up what is now a very mature plant and split it in two.  The largest piece I kept for myself and the rest, I plan on selling once it roots out (likely by late Summer).

After, I relocated the main plant into a large pot and under a shade structure, and cleaned it up, I was amazed how such a neglected plant could still be so beautiful.  Pictured is the smaller plant I intend to sell in the near future.  Funny how sometimes mild neglect can bring the best out in some plants.


Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Thursday, April 5, 2012

Mad Man Bamboo and a Yard Crashers project...

After participating in production of the Season 7 premiere of DIY Network's Yard Crashers in October,  I have been waiting for several months now to see the show, and see what ultimately ended up in the final cut.

Ironically enough, I just watched the show, which premiered this past Monday, last night (Wednesday) as I was on a family vacation in Carmel, California.  The place we stayed in Carmel did not have the DIY Channel, so with that I had to wait until we got home to watch the show on the DVR.

So, I wanted to share with you my contribution to the project and my overall experience participating in Yard Crashers.  If you watched the show, you saw brief glimpses of me, but I was working hard behind the scenes on the second day of the project, planting plants and generally helping out where I could.

Overall, I had a really good time and was happy to be able to show how clumping bamboo and running bamboo can be used properly (planting the right type of bamboo in the right circumstances) to create a lush, green new yard.

The project itself was located in Sacramento in the Curtis Park neighborhood.  If you have ever watched Yard Crashers you know that they jam their projects into a two day timeframe.  With that, they mobilize a near army of contractors, artisans and nursery professionals to pull off a somewhat ambitious yard makeover.  The project was designed by Misha Lindsey of Design by Misha who did an excellent job in designing the makeover and guiding the project to completion. She was also very kind, down to earth and easy to work with.

I donated about a dozen bamboo plants to the project which you see lined against the fence.  They were Bambusa ventricosa 'Buddha's Belly Kimmei', Bambusa multiplex 'Hedge Bamboo', Phylostachys nigra 'Daikokuchiku (Giant Black Bamboo) and one Himalayacalamus hookerianus 'Teague's Blue Bamboo'.  Although not specifically mentioned in the show, the bamboo played a key role in accenting the overall "Thai look and feel" to the project and brought in some lush green foliage to what was once a very stark, average backyard.

With that, here are some photos of the entire project:

Here is the yard before the Yard Crashers Crew began.  Pretty typical yard.

When I arrived, on day two,  this is what I saw - the Thai style levitation bed's frame was done (Matt Blashaw, the show's host, was working on the roof), they were laying the foundation of the paver patio and they were well along the way to completing the new deck.

Here is Matt working with one of the homeowners with a saw.

A photo with Matt during a very brief break.

Clumping bamboo along the fence line to create that lush Thai-style backdrop.

The "Teague's Blue Bamboo", a clumping bamboo, was planted as a centerpiece ornamental near the barbecue.

I really liked the barbecue that Misha Lindsey designed.  Behind that are Phylostachys nigra 'Daikokuchiku' (Giant Black Bamboo) that were going to be placed in pots and temporarily staged behind the barbecue.

The finished levitating bed with bamboo in the background.

The finished project, which was done by around 7 pm the second night.  I was very tired by the end of the day, but had a great time and it was an experience I will never forget.

If you missed the show, click here to see when it will air again.  Once the video is posted, I will share with everyone as well.

Earlier this year, I also participated in Turf Wars which will air sometime soon.  I don't know the date yet, but will announce it here and also on our Facebook page.

Thanks for watching!

Mad Man Bamboo - Rocklin, CA
(916) 300-6335
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Saturday, March 24, 2012

Beautiful miniature bamboo sighting in Midtown Sacramento...

I always love discovering bamboo used correctly and where it shows off beautifully.  Today, I was walking along K Street, somewhere near 24th Street in Midtown Sacramento, and stumbled upon some Plieoblastus viridistriatus 'Chrysophyllus', a 3 foot miniature bamboo that is a pretty aggressive runner (not suggested for planting in the open ground, but great in a patio container).  Here is 'Chrysophyllus' planted in an enclosed planter in front of a business.  Perfect spot for this type of bamboo.

Since it is now spring, the fresh new leaves, with its bright lime-yellow coloring, are really shining.  Always a nice thing to see...

Mad Man Bamboo
(916) 300-6335
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Friday, March 23, 2012

Awakening from a long winter slumber - running bamboo is now shooting...

For a couple of weeks now, I have spent several strolls through my garden with a keen eye on new bamboo shoots popping out of the ground from my running bamboo plants.  Until today, I strolled back in the house a bit disappointed, but still hopeful that it would only be a few more days until I see those beautiful bamboo shoots poking out of the ground, showing awakening from the long, cold winter slumber.

The way bamboo works is - running bamboo shoots in the Spring (March through June) and clumping bamboo shoots in the Summer (late July through mid-October).  So these times are particularly exciting for a 'bamboo geek' like me.

Today, sure enough, I saw this, which put a smile on my face and I found myself gawking at it:

This is Phylostachys nigra 'Black Bamboo'.  A running bamboo that shoots bright green and turns black over a year and a half.  This was the first shoot I discovered this season.

This is one of my favorite running bamboos - Phylostachys bissetti.  Tough as nails (takes high wind and minus 10 degrees), beautiful with lush green foliage and it is fast growing.  I got a glimpse of several shoots like the one pictured above peeking out of the ground.

Yes, I am a 'bamboo geek', finding these little garden surprises makes my heart go pitter-patter; and, this is just the beginning, more shoots are working their way up through the soil to the warm Spring sun.  Can't wait...

Mad Man Bamboo
(916) 300-6335
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