Removing 1.5 Acres of Bamboo in Towson, MD

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Greetings all. A new property of my family's is covered by a massive stand of running bamboo. The lot is six acres rectangular, where about *one and a half* acres of the total acreage is covered by a very dense stand of running bamboo. It is 350 feet long deep at its longest dimension The plants have been there for decades, as the property was allowed to fall into a state of disrepair. It is our intention to restore the property, inside and out.
Options for removal I've seen generally target small areas. However this is a much bigger problem! My first thought is to hire someone with a bulldozer to come push it all down, and then put it all in a commercial wood chipper. This could get expensive though. What else can we do? What problems does my scenario present? Hiring a panda bear would probably not go over well with the neighborhood.
The property is in Towson, Maryland.
Thank you in advance.
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Are you allowed to clear cut the wooded/brush/bamboo area ?
Is it considered a "wet land" ?
You should check with your nearest conservation/environmental authorities to make sure you are allowed to cut all of that natural vegetation down without some kind of site plan/impact study done and having a permit hearing...
~~ Evan
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(rolling eyes)
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Roll your eyes all you want but if the DEC catches on to what you're doing, and it's not "legal," they can pretty much ruin you for life.
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@Nate:
It might not be "native" to Maryland, but it is growing there on its own over a 1.5 acre area -- which makes it something that might require permission of/supervision from the AHJ or environmental/conservation authorities before you go about removing it on your own...
The nativity of a species of plant doesn't impact its vital role as a means of erosion control and as a water absorber...
Making major changes which effect erosion and water flow properties of most lands requires oversight -- it is the size of the area in which the OP seeks to modify that is really at issue...
~~ Evan
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On 2/10/2012 11:13 AM, Evan wrote: ...

...
I'd think it far more likely to be on a noxious weed list _requiring_ control than the converse...
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Evan wrote:

Were it protected land; water shed, riparian, wetlands, etc, the owner would know by perusing the property survey or simply phoning the town clerk. Such information is generally on line too as it's public record... they'd be able to say if there is a septic or utility line buried. Absent a body of water on that piece of land I seriously doubt that stand of bamboo is in any way protected... I have a 1/2 pond that I mow right to the edge each fall and cut out most of the catails. I'd just hack that basmboo down and do whatever it takes within legality (chems/fire) to be rid of it. With the right equipment it shouldn't take very long to cut, chip, plow, and rake that small plot, no more than 4 eight hour days and like 40 gallons of diesel. If kept closely mowed whatever roots remain will die off within a couple three seasons, I seriously doubt any defolient is necessary, just keep mowing, even if twice a week... with my 7' mower I can mow an acre in 20 minutes. I mow 10 acres of lawn every week, when weather is dry I can do it all in one day, and I have several separate areas, and lots of edging, miles of edging. With my brush hog I can chop down a 4 acre wildflower meadow in about four hours, typically 4'-6' tall:
http://i41.tinypic.com/18ndpg.jpg
http://i44.tinypic.com/15dto4h.jpg
http://i39.tinypic.com/2cygs4o.jpg
No problem with my finish mower either:
http://i44.tinypic.com/25ujfgj.jpg
http://i43.tinypic.com/1177lom.jpg
http://i40.tinypic.com/2pzy2s1.jpg
http://i40.tinypic.com/2yn19xu.jpg
After clearing wild turkeys have a feast:
http://i44.tinypic.com/2134qps.jpg
I can guarantee I'd have that bamboo gone in three days, all while in total A/C, dust-free comfort, with music blasting, wouldn't even work up a sweat.
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On Feb 10, 2:34pm, Brooklyn1 <Gravesend1> wrote:

Hello all. I've been in talks with the local government (whom I work for) about the legal necessities and ramifications of this job.
I've located the septic tank well within the bamboo. So looks like I'll be using a chainsaw around there.
I got an email from a local government forester who referred me to the Home Horticulture & Master Gardener Coordinator at University of MD, Carroll County Extension. He gave me two links, one of which I've seen already posted. The first one is by Frank Gouin (retired MD Agronomist, who was the Bamboo guru).
http://bayweekly.com/articles/bay-gardener-dr-frank-gouin/article/putting-curse-bamboo http://www.nps.gov/plants/alien/pubs/midatlantic/control-grassesandsedges.htm
I am leaning towards some means of chopping it down to ground level (brush hog/saws), disposing the bamboo however (chipper?), and then applying Roundup in the Fall, as described in the first link.
Also for the friends of nature here, even if we clear cut the whole bamboo, there's still three acres of old growth deciduous trees behind it to harbor plenty of animals and what not. One of the main reasons for wanting to clear the bamboo is to prevent it from taking over the giant trees back there. I think killing off an invasive forest for the benefit of an old one, is a good trade off. But that's not the point of this post.
Thank you all for all the tips thus far. I think this post will find its way into Google searches and benefit many more people than just me.
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check this out
http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/growgreen/downloads/bamboo_running.pdf
http://www.ag.auburn.edu/hort/landscape/bamboo.html
Depending on the species, your bamboo forest could yield 50,000 to 100,000 pounds of dry timber per acre.
From second link.......
ERADICATING BAMBOO. Bamboo can be eradicated by several methods:
1. Graze it with cattle during the summer. If the plants are so large that cattle cannot bend them over to graze the leaves, they should be cut and the cattle allowed to graze the new plants as they emerge.
2. Cut the old plants in winter or early spring and the new shoots as they emerge in the spring and summer. This will require cutting several times.
3. Spray the area with a herbicide. Of the several tested at Auburn, Sodium TCA (sodium salt of trichloroaecetic acid) gave best success. This should be sprayed on the soil over the areas in which the bamboo is growing at a rate of 50 pounds active ingredient in at least 100 gallons of water per acre. It is preferable to apply it in late winter or early spring before new growth starts. Rain will carry the chemical down to the root system and it will be absorbed. This will sterilize the soil for about 90 days, so nothing should be planted on the area until about June.
http://www.mobot.org/gardeninghelp/plantfinder/IPM.asp?code=223&group=71&level=s
You can also kill bamboo by flooding the area and keeping it flooded for a couple weeks. I killed a very small area of bamboo (~2' x 2') by flooding.
Sounds like you have a fair amount of work ahead. :(
cheers Bob
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On Mon, 6 Feb 2012 08:54:09 -0800 (PST), Elliott P

Burning won't do much except make the bamboo grow back faster and stronger. With six acres to tend you really need a decent sized tractor anyway, something at least 40 HP. I already have the tractor and a 5' tiller, also a 7' brush hog that depending on the bamboo might knock it down. With the right equipment 1 1/2 acres is a relatively small area for clearing. Were it me I might rent a flail shredder. Then till, and rent a rake... with the tractor till deep and then rake out the roots. You can hire an excavating company or DIY. You don't indicate the type of bamboo; how thick/tall... photos would help... it may need a crew with chain saws or a flail shredder could do the job: http://www.woodsonline.com/flailShredders.aspx This time of year a nearby farmer might do the job at a reasonable price, I'd guestimate $2,000. But with bamboo there's no guarantee it won't grow back... then I'd think you'd have to resort to a defolient, probably several applications.
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I received an addendum to the herbicide treatment. Garlon 4 (and RoundUp) can be mixed with water, also. Adding a little detergent to the mix would allow for the herbicide to better adhere to the slick bamboo stalk.
I wouldn't recommend using a bushhog or shredder to cut the bamboo. Any knot or joint, left behind, would likely sprout. Running bamboo/ yaupon is a prolifically invasive grass specie.
You will have one heck of a job removing all the above ground bamboo debris, no matter what you do to cut it. Do a little at a time. It'll eventually get done, unless you can afford to do or have the whole job done, at one time.
Sonny
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On 2/6/2012 10:54 AM, Elliott P wrote:

I imagine you could interest a back scratcher manufacturer? ^_^
TDD
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I had the same reaction as Ron when I read that post.
I don't think it is native anywhere on the continent. but then I hae been wrong once or twice in my life.
Harry K
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There are 3 species of Arundinaria native to the US, all in the SE/Appalachia area: A. appalachiana, A. gigantea, and A. tecta. That's all we've got for native bamboos. There are others in N America, in Mexico and Central America. Mexico, for instance, has 8 genera and 35 species.
If you want to know more: http://herbarium.usu.edu/webmanual /
Kay
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On 2/7/12 2:42 PM, Kay Lancaster wrote:

Actually, the Arundinoideae are not bamboos. They are reeds. None of the bamboo genera fall within that subfamily.
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean, see
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On 2/7/12 7:40 PM, David E. Ross wrote:

Oops! Arundinaria are NOT part of the Arundinoideae. Instead, they are indeed bamboos.
--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean, see
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This came through after I found the initial statement... should have known you'd know when you stopped to think about it!
Kay
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["Followup-To:" header set to rec.gardens.]

Arundo is in the Arundinoideae; Arundinaria is in the Bambusoideae. I think you're confusing the two genera.
Arundinaria are the giant canes; they are found in N. America and S. Africa. When you read about canebrakes, they're talking about big stands of Arundinaria.
Kay

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wrote:

Prepare for a multi-season struggle: http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/chatham/ag/homehort/BambooControl.htm There's a vast network of underground rhizomes that can sprout the second you knock down the tops, and will keep on doing so as long as there is stored starch in them. It will take a very long time to exhaust them by purely physical control methods, so this is one of those cases where physical and chemical controls may be required.
Always a good practice with trying to control something this firmly established:get an expert id on the weed first. If, for example, you've actually got Japanese knotweed, sometimes called Japanese, American or Mexican bamboo, there's a good possibility that the control measures could be different. http://www.invasivespeciesinfo.gov/plants/knotweed.shtml http://www.nps.gov/plants/alien/fact/pdf/faja1.pdf
Kay
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