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Although this could very well be a picture of me finding a new treasure at a favorite nursery, it's actually an illustration by David Catrow for a children's book called Plantzilla.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

A Bamboo Mystery

On it's way to the Highline Botanical Garden's annual plant sale, the plant mobile had to pull over when it saw this.

Behind that fence is nearly a block of nothing but bamboo.  Hmmm. Did Alan forget to rhizome prune this spring?  

Well, maybe not nothing but bamboo.  That white looking stuff on the right is protective bubble wrap on Musa basjoo.  Mine froze to the ground this year as I didn't protect them.


More bamboo.  The drive on the left goes to a neighbor's house.  The indentation in the fence on the right contains some non-bamboo plantings.

Like this.


The driveway to the bamboo house had a closed heavy wood gate.  I walked all over the area and couldn't find a back access road or alley.  Being curious, I peeked over the fence in the one spot in the driveway in front of the gate and got this view.
Bamboo grower/wholesaler?  There are no bamboo nurseries in Des Moines to be found on the interweb.  It's a mystery.  Anyone have a clue?

26 comments:

  1. I clicked on your link to Alan's blog and the post about digging out running bamboo rhizomes. Yikes! Brought back nightmares of our first bamboo plants which turned out to have been misidentified as a clumper. Luckily we discovered its errant ways early on but it was still a big project to get rid of it. The idea of living near all that bamboo strikes fear into my heart!

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    1. I keep thinking of cutting down my running bamboos (I've killed a couple by simply cutting, fertilizing, cutting for a couple of years.) but I love walking through the grove so it's yearly rhizome digging for years to come. Someday we may move which would probably be easier than removing all that bamboo.

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  2. Yikes! They need a hungry panda. Perhaps they planted a couple of running bamboo a few years ago not realizing how invasive it was, and have never bothered trying to contain it. This is why the only bamboo I have is planted in a stock tank.

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  3. Replies
    1. I think you meant SCORE! ;)

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    2. Looks as though it's mostly in pots so maybe not too scary. However, most bamboo places say that they make some money selling bamboo and even more being paid to remove the stuff.

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  4. I recall that it was a bamboo nursery open to the public at one time. I don't know its status now. It could perhaps be a wholesale provider.

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  5. Bamboo is almost always recommended as alternative screen or hedging. Looks like the gardener definitely took this to heart!

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    1. Here it seems to be used as a lawn alternative as well.

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  6. Peter, it's easy to have a backyard that looks like this. Just do nothing for a few years. :P

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  7. I wonder what kind of challenge it will be if and when someone decides to sell this property?

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    1. Easy. Cut the whole thing to the ground in late summer, throw down some pavers, cover the soil with beauty bark, throw some big pots of interesting plants on top, and say nothing to the real estate agent.

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  8. A peek into a world without humans: mother nature takes over, lead by running bamboo.

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    1. I wonder which would win, bamboo, blackberries, or English Ivy?

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  9. I remember that being the second growing location for Clinton.

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    Replies
    1. That makes perfect sense. Thanks Alexander.

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  10. Random unknown bamboo nursery. Cool! It's funny how many people react with fear and here I am newly obsessed with bamboo. I'm determined to have 2 or more groves of running bamboo in addition to numerous clumping bamboos in my next garden.

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    1. It's really not that bad especially if there is a barrier or you rhizome prune at the edges. Mine got out of hand as I allowed it to spread unchecked for 20 years and trying to keep it in check has become an annual season-long chore. They're such cool plants though.

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  11. That's a lot of bamboo! I've heard it can be difficult to remove or control. Des Moines? Did I miss something? Ah, I see you're talking about Des Moines, Washington (not Iowa). No matter which Des Moines, the bamboo seems out of place...but interesting.

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    1. Visitors are often surprised to see bamboo flourishing in our region, especially the larger timber types but it's quite happy here.

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  12. Oh, that stuff is like crabgrass!

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    1. At least crabgrass is easier to dig up and responds to a nice spray of vinegar on a hot day or chemical poison.

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  13. In LA we noticed some people used bamboo as hedging. But maybe it is easier to control in a dryer climate. I'd keep my distance from that place to avoid some bit of rhizome jumping into the trunk of my car.

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Thanks so much for taking the time to comment! I love to hear your thoughts.