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I got this boo 2 years ago in a 5 gallon pot. It didn't have any real blue culms and the culms were skinny. In fact I was not 100% sure it was a Himalayacalamus hookerianus Teague's Blue. I potted it up to a 20 gallon pot and it has really grown. I finally am getting fat blue culms.
Thanks and I agree! Every time I walk past I have to go look at them again. This was the first bamboo that got my attention and taught me to appreciate their beauty. Last night I had to look at other blue ones online and lust after them. LOL
I just got one recently from Bamboo Sourcery--Kell's pictures tempted me and I couldn't resist! They're not that horribly far from me so I should have got off my lazy butt and drove up there, but I was feeling lazy so I did mail order instead. Very good quality...haven't gotten around to writing my Watchdog report yet since there's one thing still backordered and I want to make sure I either get my money back or my plant before I write the review, but I was very happy with the plants that I did get (this one and two Otataea's...the one on backorder is another one that I blame Kell for, Bambusa vulgaris 'Vittata').
Janet, this one is fairly common around here and is sold in many nurseries. There are a few online bamboo nurseries to order it from I am sure. I have been to Bamboo Sourcery where Liz got hers and it seemed to be a good one. http://bamboosourcery.com/bamboo.cfm
Liz, are you going to keep yours in pots or in the ground? Himalayacalamus hookerianus stays in a nice clump at the Strybing Arboretum. I love the mature culms which are honey colored.
Did you get the 2 Otataea just to be a the lush green screen? The culms on this one are not fancy are they?
You know last February, I went to Bamboo Sourcery just to buy a Bambusa vulgaris 'Vittata' for Lali for her birthday. And they only had bad looking ones that were in 1 gallon cans. They were in a very wet enclosure and looked pretty sick to my untrained eye so I didn't get it there. I have heard you can root the vegetative growth so I am going to try that from my big one but it will be slow going if it takes. I was at Bay Fair a few weeks ago and they literally have 2 little groves of 5 to 6 foot ones outside of Macys. I was so shocked. But the beautiful yellow big fat culms were quite scarred with the color maimed so my urge to grab one and run was not ignited. LOL.
This clump at the Strybing has been pretty stable the last few years. I wonder if they contain it underground.
I haven't decided where I'm going to put my blue yet--I have visions of redoing my back deck and when I do I was thinking of having it in a container back there, but I'm not sure when I'll get to that. That's where the Otataea are going too. I got them for their general shape/look, I don't think the culms are that interesting. I thought about planting them in one area of my garden where I need some screening from the neighbors, but I don't water my garden much at all so I don't think the bamboos would be very happy.
I have noticed they are very thristy. In summer they want water everyday. They were all quick to fill their 25 to 30 gallon pots too. I was thinking and hoping they would be slow growers but they go nuts.
based on hearing that they need lots of water, would they be a good plant for a bog water area?
I have a low lying spot that fills with water during the fall and spring around here, but is dry (unless we get a lot of rain) during the summer and I'm looking for a screen plant. Do you think it might be a good choice, provided I dig down and put some steel walls in to contain it from spreading...LOL
Also do you think they would survive in my neck of the woods?
The particular bamboos that we've been talking about here won't be hardy in your zone. You might start a new thread looking for suggestions that would work in your zone, that way more people will see it and you'll get more suggestions. Do you have the ability/desire to water that area well in the summer? If there is a bamboo that is hardy in your zone and would like the boggy conditions in fall/spring it's probably going to need more water than your normal rainfall in the summer as well to keep it happy.
I guess them needing a "lot of water" should be put in perspective--we have a very dry climate out here (10-20 inches of rain per year, all in the winter months). I grow mostly California natives and other plants from Mediterranean climates which need very little summer water, that's why anything that even requires a "normal" amount of water to survive is not going to get planted in my garden beds, I keep the thirstier plants in containers instead since it's easier to take care of their water needs that way. That's why I'd start a new thread for suggestions if you do want a bamboo--they definitely do enjoy regular water but I'm not sure if they all would like being in boggy conditions or if that would cause problems for some of them.
Tradewinds Bamboo from Oregon has quite a selection of plants to choose from. If you will check out their webb sight, you will find the information as to temperatures, culm size, height and whether it's a runner or a clumper. I am sure they have at least a few species that would be comfortable in your zone. Dotti
Please describe the soil you are getting all that success with the blue bamboo. I have a 3 year old plant in the ground that is still 4 feet tall. I might put it in a pot. Of course I'll have to bury it in the winter, that could be difficult.
Sorry Poetinwood. I missed your question before. I am sure it is just regular bought potting soil. I use whatever is on hand. Often I mix up a bunch together. I can also add a variety of add ons. I seem to love to buy lots of stuff and stir. LOL
Since I have bought my bamboo one by one they are all in different mixes and all do great, almost too great. I assume from this that they are not picky at all about what they are in.
In fact the only one that is not doing great is the only one that is inside and the only one I have not repotted using my own soil. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.
Dotti, thanks for the link. I notice that there are bamboos hardy to this zone (7); but the ones I like most require lots of land and water - both of which are a little scarce on my lot. So I guess I will just have to settle for envying Kell's glorious blue culms.
Steve, if you ever get to San Francisco go to the Strybing Arboretum. They have 2 clumps I visit whenever I go. In fact it was it was 1 of those clumps that made me have to get this one. I often wonder if it is contained underground for it it stays in such a nice manageable clump even for a small yard. Look at the last 7 pictures, all from the Strybing.
guess what I'm now living in FL and what do you think was my first plant here???? a black bamboo. I went to a backyard plant sale and what do you know I walk into a back yard that has a mature bamboo grove... had I not already been in love from the pictures of bamboo, I would have most certainly fallen victum to bamboo then. I pick up a newly planted black for (now don't faint) $10.00 bucks. I'm so in love with bamboo and I'm so thrilled that I can now start growing some of them.
We are just renting right now, until we really decide where we want to live... I'm 2 miles from the bay and love it, but now that I'm in a location that I can grow bamboo, it is a tug of war, acreage over being closer to the ocean. I'm a native floridian and so love the water.
As soon as I find batteries I'll take a picture and post. I've joined the ABS which has provided a lot of great information.
yes, I'm getting up there as well, but when you fill the land with boo, then there isn't much to take care of other than enjoying and riding a lawn mover inorder to keep the runners in check...LOL Besides I guess I wouldn't mind a short drive to get to the water...LOL