How to Plant Your Bamboo
If you have average garden soil, your bamboo will probably do well if you simply dig a hole, and plant it! However, you can take a few steps before and after planting that will help your bamboo establish and grow quickly. Click on a link to open a picture, click on the picture to close it.
8 Basic Steps to Planting Your Bamboo
- Water your plant(s) very thoroughly several hours before you plant. If your plants are rootbound, soak them in a wheelbarrow or bucket of water overnight.
- Dig a hole as deep and at least as big around as the root ball. The wider the hole, the better, because the roots and rhizomes will move into the loosened soil more easily.
- Loosen the roots on the outside of the root ball, pulling them with your fingers. If the roots are thick, you can use pruners to pull the roots apart. Don't worry about being too "rough" but try not to damage any rhizome or shoot buds.
- Place the root ball in the hole and make sure it is level with, or a little lower than the surrounding soil level.
- Break up any big clods and backfill the hole, firming the soil to remove any air pockets. Mound some of the soil in a ring about 2"-3" high around the outside of the root ball. When you water, the ring will hold the water until it can seep down into the root ball and surrounding soil.
- Water the plant thoroughly. Check the soil around the plant with a shovel, to make sure that the soil is saturated. Rule of thumb for watering transplants is: once/day first week; every other day second week and so on for the first month. After that, water as need to keep the soil moist but not soggy.
- Add a 3" layer of mulch to cover the planting area . This will help hold moisture, discourage weeds, and provide nutrients. Bark or wood chip mulches will work, but they can actually deplete nitrogen from the soil as they decompose. My favorite is a half/half mix of composted manure and recycled yard waste I get from the local landscape supply yard. If you use a mulch with a composted manure in it, you won't need additional fertilizer at planting.
- If you do fertilize, you can choose from any number off-the-shelf chemical fertilizers. Whichever one you choose, be sure to follow the application rates in the directions to avoid waste and environmental contamination.
You can lick on the links below to learn more about soil and fertilizing basics.
A Soil Primer