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Life after Bamboo

I'm looking for suggestions for screening plants to replace the Bamboo I have spent the last year removing. Having bought a house with a nice but recently neglected garden I completely underestimated the trouble I would have with the Bamboo which went down most of the right hand side of the garden. It was lifting the concrete path and shooting up all over my garden and even the neighbours. So after a lot of cutting and digging it's now all gone but this has obviously left my garden rather exposed to the next door garden.

Has anyone got any suggests of something which will provide privacy without taking over in the same way the Bamboo did?


  • Hi, I'm afraid I can't see your photo.

    There is also a variety of bamboo which does not spread like the more common types - apparently - but after going through a bamboo removing month of hell myself, I sort of went off bamboo for life image

    Not knowing what kind of soil you have, what exposure or situation, or how high a screen you're looking to create, I'm going to throw a few randoms your way!

    Is there a fence on that side, trellis?

    Could you grow some large shrubs against that, like smoke bush, pieris, aucuba, choisiya? Or train some climbers up there if you have a fence/trellis? Jasmines, clematis, climbing roses?

    It really does depend what you like, and on the other factors mentioned before.

  • Thanks Jess, I'll try again with the photo.

    If it works you'll see there is only a low fence on that side so very exposed and nothing to climb up. There is some established Red Robin and Rose, and I have potted Clemitis to plant. i'm considering a hedge of some type but don't really know what I'm looking for.



  • Katherine WKatherine W Posts: 410

    Bamboos are an immense group of plants and nothing is more silly than dumpig them all in the same category. So one possibility is to go to a serious and reputable bamboo nursery (and do some research beforehand) and get some less vigourous variety. I have a soft spot for Hibanobambusa tranquillans "Shiroshima".

    Else pick any of the many shrubs adapted to the conditions of your garden (is it sunny, shady, moist dry?), and make a sort of mixed hedge with year round interest image

    My 4 seasons hedge by the pergola includes Lilac (mid spring), Mahonia (winter), Eleagnus (autumn), Rosa rugosa (summer), Viburnum bodnantense (winter), Azara microphylla (spring), Philadelphus (late spring) and Buddleja (summer). These are all very adaptable shrubs, and include both evergreen and deciduus shrubs, to get a sense of intimancy year round, but a bit more light in winter. They all have fragrant flowers.

  • CeresCeres Posts: 2,575

    You could go for something like a cotoneaster hedge which will give you red berries in the winter.

  • dominomandominoman Posts: 150

    I'm still in the nightmare job of trying to kill my bamboo.  Six months in now and I am prepared for the long haul...

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 8,724

    I also in the process of removing a bamboo which, after years of being beautifully behaved, has decided to make a break for freedom.  Fortunately I can get all around it but it's still b***** hard work getting it out.

    In case it's helpful to others with large bamboo clumps, this is my method -

    Cut the stems down to ground level. This will enable you to see any gaps between clumps.

    Trench around each clump with a mattock and cut any underground stems.

    Undercut the clump with a pickaxe

    Finally chop each clump into sections with an axe and prise sections apart with 2 forks back to back.

    Once the clumps are removed you should be able to trace any runners.  They aren't generally more than a few inches below ground so aren't that difficult to follow if they are running through the garden or under a lawn as mine are.  I am having to lift some turf, but it is important to remove as much as possible.

    I did try Roundup Gel on some of the new growth but there is no evidence of it having any effect at all.

  • dominomandominoman Posts: 150

    Thanks KT53.  Glad to hear you got there in the end.  I'm still a long way behind.

    In my experience Roundup  and SBK are both equally innefective on bamboo.  Digging it out is really the only way.

  • KT53KT53 Posts: 8,724

    Getting there, not got there yet.  I started properly yesterday and it's tiring work.  Not helped by the fact that I can't kneel.  I have to either sit on a low stool/seat, lie flat or move around on my backside.  That is going to make removing the runners 'interesting'

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