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How can I plant bamboo in my raised bed?

Hi. I am thinking to plant some bamboo plants in my raised bed for screeing and privacy purposes. At the moment I haven't planted anything and the bed is empty. I am not sure how is best to plant the bamboo in my raised bed?  When I went to the local garden centre recently I was told that first I need to buy a very large ceramic pot and plant the bamboo in the pot then put the pot in the raised bed as some varieties of bamboo are invasive. Given that I have two shared fences with two neighbours I don't want to cause any problem for them. Is there any other way that I can plant the bamboo in my raised bed? I just found out on the RHS website that there is a bamboo root barrier fabric that I may be able to use. But I'm not sure how to use them. Also, I'd appreciate it if you could tell me what non-invasive variety is best for this location (it is shady half a day and sunny after midday). Thank you so much for your help-Susan:) 


  • K67K67 Posts: 2,507
    edited September 2020
    Has it a bottom or open?
    Fargesia is clump forming, not all are tall as they tend to droop, other name is fountain grass.
    Phyllostachys is often sold as clumping and for a few years  its fine. The roots usually run near the top of the plant so should be easy to check.
    There are a few grasses that grow very tall miscanthus is a lovely one but needs cutting down each spring.
  • Thank you very much for your reply @K67. I haven't made the raised bed myself but as far as I know the gardener who made it for me just put the sleepers arond the bed and didn't put anything at the bottom.
  • That looks like a tall fence...not sure what you're screening from on such a tight spot. If you're a beginner gardener I would avoid bamboo as it will cause problems if you don't know what you're doing. So many nicer things to plant there for colour and texture than inert bamboo that will look shoved there and eventually cornered by fencing. If you want a grassy texture so many other plants to choose from as suggested above. The RHS had a great page explaining the different varieties and their attributes. 
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • Thank you @amancalledgeorge for your reply. The neighbour's garden behind that fence is not level with our garden and it's much higher than our garden so when they're standing in their garden they're right in our face.😊 so I thought may be planting bamboo may help.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,052
    I'm inclined to agree with @amancalledgeorge.
    Is there a reason you're particularly keen on bamboo? The Fargesias are certainly much better behaved, but if it's that narrow section of the fence you're screening, there are lots of alternatives which would be less troublesome, and would give more height if you need it. If it's the fence on the right that's the problem, the screening would only go a few feet, unless you're putting another bed along there. 

    More importantly - does the bed have a back, or left hand side,  on it? It looks as if it's open to the wall, which isn't great, for any planting purposes. You need a good barrier there. Apologies if there is, and I just can't see it  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • That explains it...ah property developers and their lazy landscaping habits @Susan1359
    To Plant a Garden is to Believe in Tomorrow
  • Thanks @Fairygirl😊. Yes, the bed has a back side but not a left side and instead attached to the brick wall from the left side- no the fence on the right is no problem, it's just the one behind the raised bed. Well, the main reason of thinking of planting bamboo is the height they provide but if I know of any other plants that provide screening, height and are evergreen and less troublesome I'd choose them!😃
  • edhelkaedhelka Posts: 2,311
    edited September 2020
    To balance the opinions, I think bamboo would be absolutely lovely there (disclaimer: I love bamboo). You don't need to worry about root barrier, your pot (raised bed) is a functional root barrier (be sure to fill it with topsoil and not only compost, so the level doesn't drop). I would choose according to the height needed, both fargesia (lower) and phyllostachys (taller) are good. Fargesia is truly clumping so if you want to be 100% sure, go for fargesia.
  • Thank you very much @edhelka😊 you put my mind at ease!😃 I was going to choose fargesia based on my internet search, but wasn't sure as those who suggested it live in the US etc and in a different climate from the UK. Thanks again for your reply😀
  • LoxleyLoxley Posts: 5,228
    The open side will be a problem, as you'll have soil/compost against the wall, causing damp. Re bamboo, you won't need to plant it in a pot as it will be contained within the raised bed. Line the raised bed with a permeable membrane to help keep the runners in check, but bamboos will tend to root horizontally so it's not such a massive concern in this situation.

    Lollipop trained holly or japanese privet could be an alternative, planted in a group of three so the 'balls' are almost touching.
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