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Gardening Answers Knowledgebase

Plant Answer Line Question

Keywords: Thamnocalamus, Fargesia, Borinda, Screens, Bamboo

I would like to have some bamboo planted in my backyard for privacy. However, I am uncertain as to which species will work the best. The planting area will be about 8 feet by 2 feet near a wooden fence. The area does get some sun but is mostly shady. I am looking for bamboo that is fast growing but not invasive. I want it to grow upwardly fast (no more than 30 feet) but I don't want it to invade my neighbor's property on the other side of the fence. Could you recommend at least three different bamboo species that would work for this area?


In the December 2005 issue of Horticulture magazine, local author Val Easton recommends a number of different clumping bamboos. (You should choose clumping rather than running bamboo for your privacy screen, as they will not be likely to invade your neighbor's property.)

Here are three recommendations from her article:
Borinda macclureana - hardy to USDA Zone 7 part sun, 12 - 20 feet tall
Fargesia robusta - hardy to USDA Zone 6, dense erect to 16 feet
Thamnocalamus tessellatus - hardy to USDA Zone 7 upright to 16 feet

Local gardening expert Ciscoe Morris recommends Chusquea culeou and several species of Fargesia in his book Ask Ciscoe.

This article from Horticulture Magazine (May 2007) also has a good list of clumping bamboo:

  • Chusquea culeou
  • Fargesia robusta 'Wolong'
  • Borinda angustissima
  • Thamnocalamus crassinodus
  • Fargesia murielae
  • Thamnocalamus tessellatus
  • Borinda boliana
  • Chusquea culeo 'Cana Prieta'
  • Fargesia nitida

You might try the following two nurseries for availability: the Bamboo Garden Nursery and Beauty and the Bamboo.

Date 2018-04-21
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May 31 2018 13:14:08