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How do you remove bamboo from the garden?

IMG_1085.jpegIf you wish to poison the bamboo, then it is best applied to the freshly cut stumps or stubs of stems so it is quickly absorbed and circulated to the roots.


Bamboo has the ability to seal over within 30 minutes or so of stems being cut so the approach should be to mix up a solution of one part glyphosate to six parts water, then cut a bamboo stem off and immediately paint the stub with the solution. Repeat with each stem.


Adopt the same approach with new shoots - cut one off and paint with herbicide immediately. Do not store the glyphosate/water solution for any length of time because it degrades rapidly after dilution. It should be used within 48 hours of mixing with water.


Cut culms will not regrow but cutting them will encourage the underground rhizomes to send up even more new shoots. Restricting the bamboo screen is best done by regularly cutting out mature stems and allowing young ones to grow up to replace them. This process will ensure the screen will not become too dense and will be regularly rejuvenated, so you never end up with old bamboo that dies out or breaks off. Treating cut culms with glyphosate will impact on mature bamboo - it is absorbed and translocated throughout the entire plant.


Digging out is also workable but you must remove every single root or piece thereof - bamboo is very resilient and will shoot from the tiniest bit of root or stolon left behind.


Whichever method you choose, perseverance is key to the successful eradication of bamboo!


"Crafty" people love bamboo so you may find someone either in the family or the local community who would love the canes for a project or two. - Noelle


Yates Tree and Blackberry Killer is far better than any glyphosate product. It will kill bamboo in days, whereas glyphosate could take months to kill off an established bamboo unless you flood it.


And don't waste your time with a shovel. Buy a mattock and save your back!! That is my preferred method of getting rid of unwanted plants and trees. - virtuallyjohnny


I believe the CSIRO developed a method for removing clumping bamboo. If I remember correctly, it was to cut one in every three stems just below a node. Immediately fill the shoot up with Glyphosate and then cap off with mud. Repeat this process for several weeks. This method ensures that it sucks the poison down into the base of the clump, killing it off.


Bamboo has a waxy coating on the leaves and stems which doesn't allow Glyphosate to penetrate. The only way to get it into the plant is on freshly cut wounds. - MitchellMc


My experience removing crazy amounts from client's yards back in the day. It's a 2-stage process or you can skip the chemical stage altogether.


1. Cut it down to a couple of nodes above the ground. Each cut section should be mid-node so that you have a hollow section of stem. With a glyphosate at the recommended dilution rates fill these hollows up with the product. Do this early in the day. It will be gone, totally absorbed, in a couple of hours. Similar to what CSIRO suggests by the sound of it.


2. Start from an edge with a mattock and dig towards the centre. Bamboo is only shallow rooted so once you get under the root-mat it gets easier. You may need to use an axe or the cutter side of the mattock to divide the clump as you go. If it's a clumping bamboo as you get to the 'core' of the plant it will be a big clump that will likely need dividing.


Or consider… clumping bamboo is actually highly prized and quite expensive. If you know you have a clumping variety contact a bamboo grower/nursery or a tree removal company and they may come around and remove it for free and may even offer you some money. Worth thinking about for you grab the poison or break your back. - Adam_W


Basically what we did was:


1. Chopped down the culms to as close to the ground as possible so that we were left with an effective "bamboo stump/root system", equivalent to a tree stump for bamboo. We used an angle grinder.


2. Used an axe, mattock and shovel to break the bamboo stump/root system in to 15/30cm x 15/30cm squares. Dug them out. This took ages and was pretty rough work.


3. Once the large bamboo stump/root system was removed, we tilled the soil mostly by hand. Using a small mattock and spade, removing all remnant roots and culms to try and make sure growth won't reoccur.


4. Used Yates Tree and Blackberry Killer on any smaller root systems that were difficult to remove. And we're monitoring the soil for new culms coming out and will keep monitoring for the next 3-12 months before replanting. - DesmondC


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