Bamboo rhizome barrier is STRONGLY recommended if planting a running type bamboo. If you’ve ever heard horror stories of bamboo popping up in neighbor’s yards, it is because the bamboo was planted without an adequate barrier to control spreading. Running bamboo species can be highly invasive, and a strong, time tested, functional barrier is an absolute must. Save yourself future removal work, money and headaches by installing root barrier properly before you plant running bamboos. Bamboo CAN be controlled for years of safe, secure beauty!
For containing running types of bamboo we have found that our polypropylene root barrier works better than any other material, such as sheet metal or concrete. Concrete cracks, and has a rough surface on which the rhizomes can get a purchase and break through. Sheet metal requires several seams and will rust, leaving the way open for bamboo “escapees.” Wood is not strong enough and will rot.
If you are planting a clumping type of bamboo, installing barrier is unnecessary and can actually cause maintenance problems down the road.
Our polypropylene plastic barrier comes in various widths and thicknesses; what is recommended for your situation depends upon a number of factors. If you have soft sandy/loamy soil, are installing on a steep slope or are planting certain species of bamboo (especially aggressive runners or giant timber types) we will recommend a deeper and sometimes thicker rhizome barrier. Please ask our staff what is best for your situation and for special instructions if your site is on a steep slope or has sandy/loamy soil. The smooth HDPE, available in a variety of widths and thicknesses, is rigid enough to stand without support in a trench yet flexible enough to wrap around corners, pipes, and other site features. The material cuts with a utility knife but is strong enough to resist root penetration.
One of the advantages of this thick but flexible barrier is that you can create a screen or grove of bamboo of any shape.