Phyllostachys aurea, the Golden Bamboo or Fishing Pole Bamboo is perhaps the most popular bamboo planted in the U.K and for good reason. It has sturdy upright olive green, maturing to golden yellow canes or culms as we call them reaching between 3.5-5m high clothed in delicate pale green leaves. Although Phyllostachys aurea belongs to the family of bamboo that can grow large and spread easily, it tends to behave a pretty well in the U.K climate rarely spreading far. The golden bamboo is also easy to distinguish from other bamboos by the ornamental crowded nodes at the base of the canes, most bamboo have equidistant spacing of the nodes along the culms. For the anglers out there this is why it is sometimes called the fishing pole bamboo as the crowded nodes allow the culms to be stronger at resisting lateral compression!
I've grown Phyllostachys aurea for many years, it was one of the first big bamboos available here, and it has proven to be very hardy and versatile reponding well to pruning. As such it is ideal for hedge planting and can be clipped into formal shapes very successfully. Whilst on holiday in France and saw it clipped into large balls in a public garden to great effect.
One of the most reliable easy to grow bamboos and a popular alternative to the Black Bamboo. It is best suited to a sunny position in good rich soil. RHS Award of Garden Merit. We recommend using: Bamboo Root Barrier for this bamboo as a precaution or to encourage it to grow in a shape or direction.
- Eventual Size: Up to 5 metres, but can be pruned
- Position: Sun to part shade; out of cold, drying winds - especially coastal winds
- Foliage: Evergreen
- Habit: Columnar/Upright/Clump-Forming/Well behaved slightly spreading
- Soil: All soils, but avoid waterlogged areas; very dry soils will need extra watering
- Cane/Culm Colour: Dark green canes that mature to a golden yellow
- Hardiness: H5 - Hardy in most places throughout the UK even in severe winters (-15 to -10)
- Uses: Screening Bamboo, Hedging Bamboo
- Common Names: Golden Bamboo and Fish-pole bamboo
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
QUESTION & ANSWER
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Jane on 16 May 2018
Thank you they arrived in good condition and are a wonderful height
Gill Pottle on 13 May 2018
I bought two of these a year ago for large containers and theyamp39re absolutely thriving. Wonderful plants, thank you )
Conall on 9 Apr 2017
Beautiful healthy looking bamboo, very pleased with purchase.
David Craig on 23 Nov 2016
Annabelle Walter on 10 Apr 2016
strong healthy plants. highly recommend
Fiona Jackson on 16 Mar 2016
Lovely golden bamboo plants, very quick delivery - will definitely use you again!