Large Leaved Bamboo

Indocalamus tessellatus

Family: Poaceae (poh-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Indocalamus (in-do-KAL-a-mus) (Info)
Species: tessellatus (tess-ell-AY-tus) (Info)


Ornamental Grasses and Bamboo

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


Unknown - Tell us


USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade

Light Shade



Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:



Grown for foliage



Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Anniston, Alabama

Folsom, Louisiana

Royal Oak, Michigan

Hulbert, Oklahoma

Portland, Oregon

Fayetteville, Pennsylvania

Hopkinton, Rhode Island

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Apr 3, 2015, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

For sheer drama, this is the best bamboo for my region. It has the largest leaves of any cultivated bamboo. On mature plants, they can reach 2' long by 4", giving a tropical effect in the garden. Best sited where there's some protection from strong winds, as a windstorm can shred the big leaves.

Mature clumps in mild climates can reach 8-10' in height. Here in Boston Z6a, 6-8'. Growth is dense and canes are well clad with foliage to the ground.

On young plants, the leaves often brown out in winter, at least in cold-winter climates. Mature plants are more evergreen.

This species prefers part shade, and is much more shade tolerant than most bamboos. It can adapt to indoor cultivation.

Needs well drained soil, especially in winter. T... read more


On Apr 2, 2015, WUVIE from Hulbert, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

Now that our patch of Indocalamus tessellatus has had a chance to become established, I agree with another poster's comment that it is indeed aggressive.

It is one of our first bamboo of the season to shoot, easily noticed right about the time we mow for the first time of the spring season. The shoots are strong and dark, so merely brushing your hand along the ground, you can easily find them, and if need be, dig them out.

Very durable stuff, it hangs in there through cold temperatures, but the older it gets, the tougher it is for braving winter chills. Can be trimmed like a hedge if a tidier look is wanted, and odd shoots cut out to keep it in line. I enjoy the large, tropical-looking leaves.


On Nov 14, 2010, N2tropicAL from Anniston, AL wrote:

i grow many species of bamboo in my garden and this is a favorite. by definition, i never call any bamboo invasive, but i would certainly call them agressive. invasive plants invade areas in which they were not planted via seed dispersal or thru natural transport of material suitable of propagation (like colocasia bulbs in the SE moved thru water transport).

this species is an agressive spreader, but can be easily maintained. my plants have surpassed the typical height growing to 13 ft tall in rich, organic soil with suitable moisture. the large leaves are very attractive and command the attention of many garden visitors.


On Jan 3, 2003, lupinelover from Grove City, OH (Zone 6a) wrote:

A very beautiful bamboo. Spreading, so should be given plenty of room, or grow in containers. The leaves are the largest of any bamboo, so they need to be protected from harsh wind and sun. Seldom grows more than 48" tall, but can grow to 80".