Broadly Bamboo plants fall into the category of clump forming (which ours are) or "running" and unless you are happy to have your bamboo spread considerably, you should choose clump forming. Even clump forming bamboos will spread to an extent but you can control the spread . The most reliable method is to plant within a root barrier which is at least 2ft deep but deeper if you can manage it. Then use a material like paving slabs or root barrier fabric or corrugated iron sheets (but not pond liner because Bamboo roots can penetrate that) and overlap fabric by at least 1ft but again more if you can. Bond the joins in root fabric with mastic. Make sure that the root barrier top edge is at least 3 inches higher than the soil level to prevent creep. Then plant as normal and when you are firming in take a great deal of care to make sure the fresh young canes (rhizomes) are not damaged.
Or you can plant into a container. Phyllostachys bamboos like moist well drained soil and a sheltered situation and if you are planting into a container, we recommend using water retaining gel to prevent drying out (but you will still need to keep moist even in dry winter spells or the leaves will be more susceptible to wind scorch.
Or if you are planting into soil, then just be vigilant about digging out any rhizomes that are spreading beyond the area you want.
We have 3 lovely varieties with green, golden or black canes.
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