UACES Facebook Bamboo
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(April 2012)

QuestionI have a major dilemma in my yard - running bamboo! My husband planted it several years ago (he is no longer my husband... not because of the bamboo!) and it has, of course, gone nuts and sprouts into the neighbor's yard. Who could you recommend I call to help me remove all of the bamboo from my yard and my neighbor's?

AnswerI don’t know, planting bamboo could be grounds for divorce! It is a tenacious plant with a far spreading root system. Unfortunately removing running bamboo isn’t easy. I can’t recommend individuals, but do contact your local nursery and ask for references. Get a couple of bids. I doubt they can totally eradicate it in one day. If you can, cut it to the ground, then backhoe or till the area, rake up all the runners and roots, and then when what is left behind starts to sprout, hit it with roundup. Good luck!

(March 2012)

QuestionWe have just built a new pool and it turned out much higher than expected so we need privacy OVER the 6 ft fence as we are almost looking over the fence into neighbors yard. We have a very small yard and were thinking we would almost have complete back full with pool and patio and plants. There is 53 inches between fence and concrete around pool on one side and 36 inches on other side. Rest is connected to house and porch. I would like to know what you would suggest to fill this space in that will grow up over the fence for privacy. We were thinking about Bamboo and someone suggested oleander. We would be open to other suggestions also if you have any thoughts.

AnswerDefinitely not running bamboo-or your neighbors won’t be your friends any more. I would assume you want tall plants, and if you have tall bamboo, it can run as far away from the base as it is tall—20 foot tall bamboo can send up suckers 20 feet away. Clumping bamboo would be an option, but your space is quite narrow. Since your space is limited, you want tall vertical plants. Oleander is an option if you live in central or southern Arkansas, but it would not be reliable further north. The downside with oleander is the blooms will drop in the summer, which will be quite close to your pool and it is not fast growing in Arkansas and it does spread fairly wide. What about a holly such as Nelly R. Stevens, Foster, Savannah or Lusterleaf holly. Another option would be to build a trellis and let a vine grow up it to give instant privacy, and not take up an abundance of space.

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