Phyllostachys aureosulcata, or Yellow Groove Bamboo, is an evergreen, very cold hardy species native to China. Plants here in Zone 7 will reach about 30 (9 m) tall, with the canes 2 inches (5 cm) thick. Canes and branches have 3-5 medium green leaves 6 inches (15 cm) long by 0.75 inches (1.90 cm) wide. They are deeply pilose at the base. Plants form large clumps and can become very invasive if not kept in check. They are great for privacy screens in the landscape or for accent in containers. The new growth in mid spring is edible, but the wood is of inferior quality. The plants are hardy in USDA zones 7-10.
Blooming: Our plants have never bloomed in the greenhouse. This may be due to our keeping them in containers.
Culture: Phyllostachys aureosulcata do best in full sun to light shade. In the landscape, they are not fussy about soil type as long as it is moist. In the greenhouse, we use a soil mix consisting of 2 parts peat moss to 2 parts loam to 1 part sand or perlite. We water the plants regularly and we fertilize them only once during the growing season. We use a balanced fertilizer diluted to half the strength recommended on the label. These plants are very aggressive growers and can break ceramic containers if growth is left unchecked. On a yearly basis, we remove half of the clump to help with this problem. It also make the containers last longer. If grown in the landscape, they need some sort of barrier to keep them in bounds. I have personally seen landscapes where this plant has taken over the whole yard. When that happens the only way to recover your yard is the old pick and shovel method of removing unwanted plants.
Propagation: Phyllostachys aureosulcata is propagated by division of large clumps.
Phyllostachys aureosulcata was featured as Plant of the Week September 12-18, 2008.
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Cal's Plant of the Week was provided as a service by the University of Oklahoma Department of Microbiology & Plant Biology and specifically Cal Lemke, who used to be OU's botany greenhouse grower and an avid gardener at home as well. If the above links don't work, then try the overview site. You may also like to look at the thumbnail index. ©1998-2012 All rights reserved.