bamboo for Ottawa

Discussion in 'Poaceae' started by cait1, Jul 18, 2006.

  1. cait1

    cait1 Member

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    I have been told that there is a bamboo hearty enough to withstand an Ottawa winter (zone 5a). I was wondering if anyone knew what this might be?
     
  2. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Phyllostachys nuda is very hardy as far as bamboo is concerned. I believe a well established clump can withstand -28C. Even with such extreme cold it would likely have to be of short duration and with culm and leaf damage surely. I don't know if this fits your area (and requirements) or not.

    Cheers, LPN.
     
  3. cait1

    cait1 Member

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    Thanks very much, I will look into this and see if Phyllostachys nuda will suit my purposes.

    Cait
     
  4. smivies

    smivies Active Member

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    I've tried in Kingston but it's just a little too windy. It's not the temperature that does it in, it's the frozen ground, sun, and wind. I've tried two species, P. bissetti and Fargesia nitida. Both are claimed to be above ground hardy to near -30ºC but they die back every year and resprout for me(I don't protect them). F. murielae and P. aureosulcata are two others with similar hardiess to P. nuda.

    Along with my growing experience I've seen
    - P. aureosulcata at the Guelph aboreteum & Metro Toronto zoo that die to the ground every winter
    - P. aureosulcata, bissetti, & nuda stay virtually evergreen in the Niagara area
    - F. nitida evergreen clumps in Niagara & Edwards gardens in Toronto

    With careful siting & winter protection you might get the canes to survive the winter.

    Simon
     
  5. Weekend Gardener

    Weekend Gardener Active Member 10 Years

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    It's not just the minimum temperature that is hard on bamboos - it's the combination of wind and cold. Almost all bamboos need a consistent moisture level in the soil. Cold air temperatures and drying winds are usually what do them in. If you can provide conditions that minimise the effects of both - a sheltered position, wrapping up the culms and foliage - you might be able to get the culms to survive through your winters.

    I agree that Phyllostachys nuda would be a reasonable choice to start with, although the Fargesias are reportedly more cane hardy.
     
  6. pierreleon

    pierreleon Member

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    Where could I get these hardy bamboo (I live in Ottawa) Is there any mail/internet order places ?
    Thank you
     
  7. Weekend Gardener

    Weekend Gardener Active Member 10 Years

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    You don't want the hassle of having to import it across the borders. Why don't you try BambooWorld of Canada? They are based in Chilliwack in BC. They have a wide variety of bamboos and they ship Canada wide.
     
  8. pierreleon

    pierreleon Member

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    Thank you I shall order there Phyllostachys nuda and see if it will work in my garden.
    Best regards
    jc
     
  9. Ottawa_Z5A

    Ottawa_Z5A Member

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    Hey everyone,....my name is adam, and I also live in ottawa, and I am growing hardy tropicals....you can order them through Ritchie Feed & seed, or Broadway Gardens, out in St.Catherines.
    happy Holidays
    Adam
     
  10. petauridae

    petauridae Active Member

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    P. nuda is listed by Lewis Bamboo in Alabama as being hardy to 4, if I remember correctly. The guy that runs that nursery does lots of follow-up research with the people he has sold to, so I think I would believe him (as well as those who've posted above).

    http://www.lewisbamboo.com/Cold_Hardy_Bamboo.html
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2006
  11. Weekend Gardener

    Weekend Gardener Active Member 10 Years

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    The most useful information I have come across so far is this active thread on Bambooweb: http://www.bambooweb.info/bb/viewtopic.php?t=1152. This is the report from bamboo enthusiasts, some who grow large collections, and reflects real life experience. There is a large list of bamboos that did well in the opening post.
     
  12. PhillyPalms

    PhillyPalms Active Member

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    I second Lewis Bamboo.
     
  13. petauridae

    petauridae Active Member

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    Granted this thread is about Ottawa, but just in case anyone is interested...

    If you are out in western US, take a good look at http://www.bamboogarden.com/ in Portland, OR. They're spectacular (and who I ordered from).

    Forestfarm.com runs a good ship (I've been to their nursery) and they sell a few bamboo (but aren't specialists like the others).
     
  14. Icecat

    Icecat Member

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    I'm in Ottawa - Westboro actually and I bought my Bamboo plants at Sheridan Nurseries in Whitby - I think most Sheridan Nurseries have them. I've got about 3 different species - they survived the first winter and all are doing well. If you want, I can post the species name tomorrow... I also bought a few late in the fall when they were 1/2 price...all survived... They are hardier than you think!
     
  15. pierreleon

    pierreleon Member

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    Thank you for this information. I did get a bamboo (Phyllostachys nuda) from BC ..it has barely survived ..I hve seen today the first "stick" peaking out from the ground ..I am quite disappointed about the results.. may be I shall try to drive south to Sheridan and make anpother trial with bamboo
    Best regards
    jc
     
  16. screppi

    screppi Member

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    I am following this thread with interest - I would like to plant bamboo in a wet spot near the back of my property. I live just outside Ottawa. I had heard that P. nuda was probably the best choice for Ontario, but I have also heard that, because of the weather, bamboo always dies down each winter. Does anyone have any experience with this?
     
  17. smivies

    smivies Active Member

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    Without some sort of winter protection, even P. nuda will die to the ground in most winters in Ottawa. Winter protection can vary, ranging from a vertical burlap wrap (hard to do for big plants), to bending culms over and piling snow and leaves over them. If the spot you want to plant them is moist but well drained, P. nuda is OK. If the spot is a wet, poorly drained area most of the time, Arundinaria gigantea might be a better choice.
     
  18. screppi

    screppi Member

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    Thanks. I guess bamboo isn't what I need. I wanted to use it as a privacy screen, so I was looking for quick growing, tall (about 15 feet), invasive so it would fill in the area and has to like wet. The area is a ditch of sorts, which is under about 2 feet of water in the spring, but never quite dries out as the sump pumps from neighbouring houses pump into the ditch. Poplars like it, but I don't like them!
     
  19. Marineavoile

    Marineavoile Member

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    Funny to find that I am not the one thinking of planting bamboos in Ottawa, especially in Westboro!

    Being new to bamboos, I am not sure how to interpret your information about bamboos dying down in winter. Does it mean that, in the growing season, they only reach a few feet in size?

    I need a tall screen to help me forget about unpleasant neighbours who have a high deck close to the property line, and I am interested in a tall, fast growing plant, that's happy in the shade and won't block the path nearby. If they stay short, bamboos don't quite fit the bill!

    Thanks for your help.
     
  20. bdarmanie

    bdarmanie Member

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    I live in Ottawa as well and considering going with the P nuda plant but need to know for others in the area of thier success. I called Bamboo World and was told that others in the Ottawa area were successfully growing them but I want to hear it from them with details before I make the big investment.
     
  21. fridgidbamboo

    fridgidbamboo Member

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    Go see the top 6 Phyllostachys for zone (5b) 6 on needmorebamboo.com. They do well over there. The temperature usually drops close to what you can expect in zone 5 (minus 23 degrees celcius or so) during a cold spell but the rest of the time, it is usually milder. Could this translate in these bamboos growing and increasing in size in 'our' zone 5? The 6 for zone 6 are Phyllostachys atrovaginata (with the largest canes), Ph. aureosulcata, Ph. aureosulcata 'Aureocaulis', Ph. aureosulcata 'Spectabilis', Ph. bissetii and Ph. rubromarginata (the tallest). They also show you pictures of cold damage in their bamboos. You probably noticed that Ph. nuda (and Ph. nuda 'Localis') don't belong there. It could be less hardy than expected... There are 3 more Phyllostachys aureosulcata that you can find on bambooworld.com that are worth trying. Other than the Phyllostachys genus, you might want to try A few clumping Fargesias: F. Nitida, F. nitida 'juizhaigou', F. murielae, F. rufa and F. scabrida (zone 6?) These can grow to 10 feet or more with time. To complement the tall Phyllostachys, there are a number of short spreading bamboos - 30 cm to 150 cm - that belong to the Pleioblastus and Sasa families and are surprizingly hardy. In fact, they usually defoliate in zone 5 each winter and are better mowed each spring to promote new, fresh growth. They will even increase in size. I am trying Phyllostachys bissetii and Ph. rubromarginata this year and they are in their first winter, so we'll see in spring. I will try many more this spring, hoping to identify those that fare the best in my zone 5 garden. I'll keep you posted on this.
     
    Last edited: Jan 29, 2012
  22. schtickyrice

    schtickyrice Member

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    I found some Fargesia rufa at http://www.laportegardens.com/ last year and planted in September. I only mulched with compost, and the plant overwintered quite well. Leaves that stuck up above the snow eventually yellowed, but everything under the snow cover remained green (I will bend stems to cover all under the snow this year). New shoots came up this spring, but the plant remained 3 ft tall, and not the privacy screen effect that I was after.

    I would like to try a taller bamboo variety this year and was hoping for some success stories...either that or opt for Miscanthus grass for the privacy screen to shut out neighbours...
     
  23. woodschmoe

    woodschmoe Active Member 10 Years

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    P. Rubromarginata seems to be amongst the hardiest tall, running forms; being grown by others in Zone 5 with good results. You will lose the screening effect of miscanthus in the winter.
     
  24. schtickyrice

    schtickyrice Member

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    Thanks. Would I need to bury P. rubromarginata in snow to keep it green? How pliable are the stems? Wouldn't I lose the screening effect with this as well?
     
  25. ghost39

    ghost39 New Member

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