How to get rid of bamboo? #319890 - Ask Extension


How to get rid of bamboo? #319890

Asked May 09, 2016, 2:42 AM EDT

Some fool planted bamboo at the corner of our yard several years ago, and the bamboo is growing like crazy and moving at about 4 feet per year into our yard. I had the county "expert" out previously, but he was clueless. I need help. Thank you.

Howard County Maryland

Expert Response

Controlling bamboo is not an easy undertaking. Restricting unwanted bamboo spread can be accomplished through sturdy barriers and by cutting back new shoots. In Maryland, bamboo has a distinct period of shooting, March through May. If cut back at this time, new shoots will not grow. To prevent the bamboo from spreading from your neighbors yard the best solution is installing a barrier (heavy grade butyl rubber) in the soil. Even a barrier needs to be inspected periodically to make sure the bamboo does not “jump” over it. Annual trenching around the clump and careful removal of all traces of the rhizomes will contain it as well. Please see the following short video on the subject

and our archived Newsletter of Summer 2012

If you want to eliminate an existing stand of bamboo, this is a two step process. Cut all the stalks to the ground and allow the new growth to emerge and develop leaves during the summer. In October spray the mature foliage with a non-selective herbicide containing glyphosate. (There are some glyphosate products labeled for bamboo). Repeat the application in 14 days. Follow all label directions and be careful to protect non-target plants from any over spray." This may need to be repeated for several seasons. Bamboo is semi-evergreen and has a waxy coating on the stems and leaves, so a surfactant (helps the herbicide stick to the leaves) is advisable. If any bamboo is left alive, it will return. See our bamboo publication


Thank you.

That operation sounds like a lot for me (one person) to manage and accomplish.  Do you know of a gardening company that could successfully do this job?  Howard 410-465-6714.  Thank you.

The Question Asker Replied May 09, 2016, 2:36 PM EDT
If you do not want to tackle yourself, all you can do is call landscaping companies that have some expertise in bamboo removal.

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