yama
Senior Member
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:10 am
Location: Salem, MA

Bamboo Bonsai

Japanese garden forum may not be proper place to post Bamboo Bonsai.
I like to stay on Japanese garden forum. I don't't like to see word of jap maple, jap something. I use to threat nuseries when I see jap maple, jap criptmeria, jap cherry tree etc.in thire catalog.
Less likely to see jap maple, jap black pine in Japanese garden forum.
Peoples in Japanese garden forum seems to civilized :)
It is ok to let's Bonsai people to know this posting.

To make Bonsai bamboo is very exciting.
A bamboo grow in ground in favorble condition, may reach to 90 feet within 90 day aftre bamboo shoot porking out. 90 feet bamboo can be in bonsai pot 12 inch hgh or so, and take much of time , let's say 2 years.
other drawf type bamboo bonasai finish by end of the year and its hight can be high as one inch tall.
Pre Bonsai bamboo material is not much expensive as other type of bonsai tree. If you fail, then without much of expence , You can try again. I have lectured years ago at Bamboo society meeting at Savanna, GA. you can google serch my name , "mike yamakami "and you can find some of information about Bamboo Bonsai.
I am going to write again if some one intrested in this forum, and write article of bamboo for Japanese garden separlatly.
Please lte's me to know if you are intrested in Bamboo bonsai.
( I won't write in Bonsai forum)

Mike Yamakami

The Helpful Gardener
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Location: Colchester, CT

Yama, what species are you talking about? If you can't find the Latin, just use the Japanese and we'll figure it out...

HG
Scott Reil

yama
Senior Member
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:10 am
Location: Salem, MA

Type of bamboo for bamboo baonsai
I have not tried clumping type bamboo. If you live warm area zone 7a or 8,9.10 may work. If you have heated green house,it also work.
rest of article sre base on my experience.

ground cover type bamboo
Sasa veichii=Kumazaza
pleoblastus distichus mini= Oroshima chiku, smaollest of bamboo, discovered at Yakushima.

tall bamboo
Many phyllostachys group bamboos works, Black bamboo, yellow groove bamboo, moso bamboo, hechiku, hime hachiku.etc. Arundiaria gruop bamboo worked well in zone 7b (around metro Atlanta,GA area)
also arrow bambboo.
Many Bonsai books of Japan not showing how to make bamboo bonsai, I had to try myself to figure it out. Took me years to get sertisfactory resolt.

1)
Make rectangular wooden box 4 to 6 inside diameter, 16 ' inch long.
if you have scrap wood dimention don't have to excact.
you can find plastic window box. but don't pick small box

2) Best time to prepair Between Octber to Feburaly in zone 7a 7 b, zone 8.
if colder than zone 7 then early spring is the best time.( without hourticulture knowlege or green house.)
pull out bamboo from pot , and cut rhizome into 2 to 6 inch lenght. Each rhizome have to have eyes at least two. ( eye= dormant shoot at rhzone node) if rhzome is curved, use copper wire to straight out.

To make bamoo baonsai, bamboo have to have thin diamter rhizome and solid rhizome. this the first step. transplant bamboo rhizome from ground or lager pot, rhizome is too lage to fit small,shallow bonsai pot.
when you transplant bamboo into rectangular pot, bamboo can ce with cane of rhizome only. rhizone only take a little longer to establish ,but easy to work with.

Soil for bamboo is not so picky. good drain soil and well ferliized soil will do the work. cover soil with leave ,mulch to keep moist.

I have photo of my bonsai bamboo, if I can find it, will send it Scott or Roger. New digital camera is ordered after learn how to use is, I can post photos.
I may have to write articles of draft in Japanese then traslate to Eglish.
I am missing so many things in this post.
yama

The Helpful Gardener
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Joined: Tue Feb 10, 2004 2:17 am
Location: Colchester, CT

Mike my old bonsai sensei use to dwarf Phyllostachys culms by cutting the outer sheaths off near the base. He said the lack of support caused the culm to stop growing without topping it, and he would do this occasionally to arrest growth. Have you heard of this technique?

S
Scott Reil

yama
Senior Member
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:10 am
Location: Salem, MA

Hi Scott
Yes, It is common knowlege to controle bamboo.
Bamboo grower for colem , or bamboo shoots. they have to cut off old rhizome to curage new roots and rhizome. Old rhizome do not produce ideal bamboos for shoots or colum. Most bamboo colums are harvested 3or 4th year colum. older than 5 years old colum considered as inferior. Age of cane determined bybamboo branch.Trained eye can tell age of bamboo cane.
Bamboo in the Japanese garden, roots prone and cut down mature bamboos can controle size of Bamboo.
To contorole hight of bamboo, there are two ways. one top off with tool. or quick shake of new growth brake off top.

Ground cover type bamboo
cut 1 to 2 inch above garound by end of winter, new growth develope small size leave and stay low. also when new leave come out, pull out new growth will also controle hight of ground cover type bamboos.
Some bamboo, while bamboo shoot is still browing, remove out skin carefull also affect to growth. timeing of removal of sheeth is tricky however. I know about it by experiment but did not master technic.
yama

yama
Senior Member
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:10 am
Location: Salem, MA

Hi Scott
My slunt eye cought something in left eye and it was painfull to open eye past week or so. It is getting better now and can use both eye today. :D
I try to grow bamboo in 7 to 17 Gal pot and wanted keep certine hight without pruning.
Japanese botanist classifiey bamboos differently in the past.
sasa are often ground cover type bamboo, some of group of sasa is tall 35 feet. any bamboo which keeps sheath after bamboo reach to it's max hight, are sasa. removing shearth from bamboo, slos down or stop grow hight wise. timing of removing sheath is tricky. if remove too early stage of growth, yo8ung inmature colum get sun burn and damege colum.
I use sharpe razer blade at node to separate sheath. or strip off narow and keep 50 % or so untile time is right. I think that moist at base of sheath and or sun light at node some how regulate it's growth.
I also rip sheath useing smalltwizer , and tie it so that sheath has opening to dry out moist bbut protected from sun.

I wanted use bamboo in my job and wanted keep bamboo in size controled.
Some bamboos are not affected by removing sheath, sheath come off ealy stage of it's growth. root pruning can reduce it's size and hight.
We use all tools avable 8)


Yama

The Helpful Gardener
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Of course we do, Yama!

I noticed you didn't like the clump types for this project; I have a Fargesia in my yard that I have thought about trying for pot culture. Do you feel this won't miniturize?

S
Scott Reil

yama
Senior Member
Posts: 124
Joined: Wed Jun 30, 2010 7:10 am
Location: Salem, MA

Hi Scott
Yes, I growed clumping tyepe bamboo.zone 7b is marginal for cluming bamboo. Cady grow fergisis here./salem ,MA
Most mamboo I grow was mainly for Japanese garden. Some bamboo was for bamboo shoot production.
I can't speak for bamboo which I did not grow myself 8).
soil tempreture of bonsai pot and bamboo in ground are different enviroment condition.
yama

imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Bamboo Bonsai

I have black bamboo and I also had a variegated dwarf bamboo before and that one did stay small. I once had a buddha belly bamboo in a pot, but it was not a bonsai. It was just in a pot and about 6 ft tall. My cat at the time liked being taken out everyday to chew on a leaf. I need to divide and repot the black bamboo, I might consider trying to bonsai it. It is not very short and it still needs to be watched like a banyan tree, but it is something I can try out.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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