What to do when ground control doesn’t work: Bamboo

For some bamboo is a lovely plant, a welcome addition to the garden; for others bamboo is a living nightmare. Typically weed control fabric can be used to prevent the spread of unwanted plants, but the same cannot be said for bamboo. Even an ultra-strong ground control fabric is no match for bamboo due to the plant’s sheer strength – it has even been known to break through patios. Ground control and weed control fabrics are better suited to suppressing light weeds once the area has been chemically treated.

Some species of bamboo can become extremely invasive and even spread into neighbouring gardens, breaking through any barriers there may be. Eliminating bamboo is a headache for both homeowners and landscaping professionals alike but it is not impossible. Here is what to do when to tackle pesky bamboo:

Dig up the roots

The only way to completely remove bamboo from an area is to dig it up. What makes bamboo invasive is the complex network of rhizomes, which are responsible for producing the shoots and roots. Rhizomes are strong and powerful, and have the ability to tear through any weed control or ground control fabrics. Depending on the magnitude of the infestation, a backhoe may need to be used.

Digging up the roots can be very effective in eliminating bamboo. However, if any of the rhizomes are missed the bamboo plant can easily grow back, so this process may need to be completed a number of times. Digging out bamboo can be incredibly hard work but there are a couple of things that can be done to make the digging process that tiny bit easier.

Pour boiling water over bamboo roots

After the root systems are exposed, boiling water can be poured directly on them to kill the plant. This method will need to be repeated when new growth appears. Any dead root systems will also need to be removed to ensure new plants don’t grow.

Use weed killer

Once the root systems are exposed a weed killer containing glyphosate can be used. This should be the last option as harsh chemicals are involved, which can affect the fertility of the soil and make it difficult for any plants to grow thereafter.

Find out more about the Growtivation Product That Works range by downloading our Product Guide and your free copy of our Landscaping That Works guide to weed control and geotextile fabrics. Our PledgeMark warranty certifies that our products are suitable for their intended use for your peace of mind and quality assurance.

To find out where you can buy Growtivation products visit our online Where to Buy facility or contact the friendly team at Growtivation for advice on 0800 197 8885 or email sales@growtivation.com.