Bamboo

Can anyone recomend a large growing species of bamboo for zone 6a (Louisville Kentucky). Would like to plant some along a length of fence line. Also, is growing bamboo from seed feasible and practical (germination rate/growth rate)?
Thanks
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DavidPT40 wrote:

Try rec.gardens.bamboo or http://www.americanbamboo.org/ or you might want to sign up for this boo list http://lists.gryphongardens.com/BambooHobbyist /. GOOGLE is another resource.
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Travis in Shoreline (just North of Seattle) Washington
USDA Zone 8b
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It is not very neighborly to plant bamboo along a property line since most varieties are very invasive. A horticulturist at Longwood Gardens new of a case where bamboo planted on one side of a house spread under the house and sent sprouts up the other side of the house. At the very least shop for a controllable variety and consult with your neighbor first.
Check out:
http://www.invasive.org/eastern/species/3057.html
http://www.gardenpower.com/projects/plants/01045.htm
http://www.bambooworld.com.au/pages/Hedge.htm
http://www.se-eppc.org/manual/PHAU1.html
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Stephen M. Henning wrote:

Yes, there are clumpers and there are runners and it is wise to know which are which but the fear of bamboo is over rated. If it were as invasive as some claim, it would have overtaken the world by now.

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[snip]

I agree totally... the oxalis in my garden is more like what I would call "invasive"!
Mark Tutty Gisborne NZ
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Invasive doesn't mean that it takes over the world, it means that it spreads naturally and it is difficult to get it out of the part of the world it has taken already. An example is bind weed that can regenerate from portions of their roots that are left behind. You don't see it too often but nobody wants to see it in their garden.
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wrote:

Bamboo makes an excellent, fast growing and evergreen privacy screen and is used extensively for this purpose. If you select a runner, you just need to take the proper precautions when planting it and utilize a control barrier. Any reputable place that sells bamboo will recommend it, sell it to you and provide instructions on how to correctly install. This plant is very manageable if you do it right and nothing can beat the vision and sound of a well grown bamboo grove.
pam - gardengal
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running bamboo forget seed it is rare Phyllostachys rubromarginata Phyllostachys decora Phyllostachys vivax (die to the ground in hard winters like this one)
These bamboo will run a distance equal to their height every year unless some form of barrier is used. If the other side of the fence is mowed regularly that will also help.
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That's an easy one -- Arundinaria Gigantea. Bear in mind, bamboo spreads pretty good (some are REALLY fast) so you'd better put in a rhizome barrier around whatever you plant or you might be looking across to your neighbor in a court room.
As for growing from seed -- sure, it's feasible but it's almost impossible to find the seed. Bamboos typically flower once every 50-100 years. A bunch have just recently flowered but most seed is being closely held (much more profitable that way) and the seed does not remain viable for very long. Better bet is to just buy the plants and go from there.
Burton's Bamboo is right up in Middletown, Ohio, a few hours drive from you, and I think they ship as well. They're a good resource. Last I checked, they also offer tours of their facility and groves as well. If anyone would know what varieties would do best in the area it would be them.
James
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