Fargesia angustissima also sometimes known by it's old name Borinda angustissima is a really beautiful clumping bamboo which in my mind is one of the daintiest bamboo in our garden. It has an airy upright habit with relatively narrow but stiff canes which hold masses of delicate tiny leaves. In early summer the new canes (or culms as we call them) are produced which vary from a mid-green to a vivid purple and which when mature can reach up to 2 cm in diameter often covered with an attractive white powdery bloom
This bamboo benefits from planting in more sheltered conditions to look it's best it is happy in shady locations and untimately develops into a stunning specimen. Can also be grown in a container where it will be happy if provided adequate feed and watering. Repotting every couple of years or so.
The plant here in our garden is over 10 years old and is around 4 metres tall planted in dry clay amongst birches, Eucalyptus and other Fargesia.
Before planting it is a good idea to soak the bamboo thoroughly to ensure the rots are well and truly saturated then dig a hole at least twice the size of the root ball add compost then place the bamboo so that the finished soil height will be slightly lower than the top of the root ball. Backfill using your soil mixed 50:50 with good compost. Once planted gently firm down the soil around the base add a top dressing of a good fertilizer, we prefer poultry manure, then mulch with a good 8-10 deep layer of compost. Finally water again to help settle the bamboo. In dry periods it may be necessary to repeat watering regularly, if the bamboo looks dry and the leaves are curling this is a sure sign. After the first season we repeat the mulching and feeding each spring.
Now stand back and enjoy. Don’t expect your bamboo to grow away like a rocket, yes bamboo can grow incredibly fast but most of this happens over a 3 month period which is very generally late May through to early August so if you’ve planted either side of this period I’m afraid you’ll have to wait.
Pruning and Grooming
Bamboo can be very accommodating here. I’ve seen pristine clipped hedges and topiary shaped plantings of both Phllostachys aurea and bissetti showing easy how easy it can be managed. What I like to do though on any large bamboo is to remove all old, thin and spindly canes (or culms as us horticulturists call them) then prune away all the side branches off the remaining culms to a height of between 60cm to 150cm depending on your choice. This in my opinion show bamboos off to there best making them stately specimens.
For more information see our Bamboo Care Guide for these types of Bamboo:
Also see our Bamboo FAQ
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Josephine Stewart on 24 May 2017
Thanks to Tim and all the team for processing my order in time to be a birthday present. The plants arrived in super condition, and the birthday girl was absolutely delighted with them!