Must be replanted bamboo

Planting bamboo: the 5 most common mistakes

Extremely vigorous, evergreen and robust: The bamboo is one of the most popular giant grasses and is often planted in German gardens. No wonder! The giant grass virtually achieves maximum biological performance. Some bamboo species grow to their full height within a very short time and easily conquer large areas. With us, the bamboo is particularly popular as a solitary, as a hedge or privacy screen, because the majestic plant lets you dream of distant lands thanks to its exotic appearance. It is of course all the more annoying when the dream turns into a nightmare and problems arise after planting a bamboo. Here are five mistakes to avoid when planting a bamboo.

1st mistake: forgetting the rhizome barrier

Before you plant a bamboo, you should definitely find out which genus it is. In the case of species belonging to the genus Phyllostachys in particular, a lack of rhizome barrier can have fatal consequences. Because the Phyllostachys species are extremely vigorous and form woody rhizomes that grow in all directions. That means: If a bamboo is "blown out", it can hardly be caught again, because the rhizomes are not only easy to grow, but also extremely tough. Before you know it, the former garden has quickly become a bamboo forest. If it is too laborious for you to set a rhizome barrier, simply plant an umbrella bamboo (Fargesia): These species grow clumpy, so they do not form runners.

So if you want to plant a runners-forming species in the garden, a rhizome barrier for the bamboo is indispensable. The material of the rhizome barrier should consist of HDPE (high pressure polyethylene) and be at least two millimeters thick. Home-made root barriers, for example made of pond liner, are not a real obstacle for the bamboo. In addition to the right material, special aluminum rails with which you can connect the beginning and the end of the rhizome barrier are also important.

To keep the rhizomes of the bamboo in check, the barrier is buried in a ring about 65 centimeters deep into the ground, whereby the barrier should look out about five centimeters above the ground. This makes it easier to check later whether individual rhizomes have overcome the root barrier. Since the rhizomes usually grow horizontally, you should make sure when digging in that the barrier is set in the ground at a slight angle. In the lower area, the diameter should be smaller than at the top - so overall a slight funnel shape should result. As soon as the roots hit the rhizome barrier, they are directed upwards and cannot grow under the barrier.

2. Error: Set the root barrier too close

Another important point: A root barrier dries out the soil within the barrier more easily. If the rhizome barrier is set too tight, the bamboo will eventually suffer from drought and will start desperately looking for water. The roots then move further down and can thus overcome the rhizome barrier. If, on the other hand, the bamboo becomes too dense, it can even burst the root barrier due to the enormous pressure. Therefore you should leave enough space for the bamboo: The root barrier should have a diameter of at least one and a half to two meters - the more, the better! In the case of a hedge, the diameter is slightly smaller (about one meter), as the bamboo can also spread to the side.

3rd mistake: planting bamboo too deep

Since bamboo is a shallow root, you should be careful not to plant it too deep. Because that doesn't do him any good! If bamboo is planted too deeply, its oxygen supply is compromised. If the roots lack the vital gas, they start to rot and die. Therefore only plant bamboo deep enough that the upper root area is flush with the ground.

4. Mistake: Do not loosen the soil thoroughly

Especially with compacted soils, it is important to thoroughly loosen the soil before planting a bamboo. Because even if bamboos are actually very easy to care for and get along well with any humus garden soil, they are very sensitive to waterlogging. If the earth is permanently too wet, the roots suffer from a lack of oxygen and can rot. The optimal soil is therefore fresh, nutritious and yet permeable. If you want to plant bamboo in an extremely compacted clay soil, you have to prepare the soil accordingly. Loosen the soil sufficiently and mix in some sand or expanded clay. This is how you ensure good drainage. Alternatively, you can work a drainage layer of gravel into the bottom of the ground. To do this, dig the earth within the rhizome barrier around 50 to 70 centimeters deep and fill in a 10 to 20 centimeter high layer of sand. Improve the excavation with plenty of humus soil, fill it back into the excavated hole and finally insert the bamboo - as described under point three: The top of the container bale must be flush with the surface of the earth.

5. Mistake: Mulching the root area of ​​the bamboo

Many plants love bark mulch - bamboo doesn't! On the contrary: bark mulch binds nitrogen. Since bamboo is very hungry for nutrients and above all needs nitrogen, you are doing the bamboo a disservice by covering its root area with nitrogen-binding mulch. In addition, hardly any weeds grow under a bamboo anyway and the dead leaves form a natural layer of mulch over the years. If you really want to mulch, it is best to use dried grass clippings, which are spread thinly over the root area. If you want to fertilize bamboo, you can provide it with a special bamboo fertilizer in spring. But you can also use a conventional long-term lawn fertilizer. Make sure that the last date for nitrogen fertilization is already in June. In late summer you can support the bamboo with a potassium-rich lawn autumn fertilizer. Similar to lawn, this promotes the frost resistance of the leaves and the ripening of the stalks.

Bamboo is a great eye-catcher - whether in the garden or in the bucket on the balcony or terrace. Here we give you an overview of the different types of bamboo and explain what to consider when planting and caring for them.