Bamboozled? Turn Excess Cuttings into an Ornamental Border

Did you know that bamboo grows faster than any other plant on earth? The owners and tenders of this perennial evergreen understand this fact all too well. Not only can giant varieties reach heights upwards of 100 feet, but also bamboo has been known to surge two feet or more in just one day.
Before you try to tame this unruly beast by cutting and discarding, consider an application that is sustainable, practical, attractive, and virtually free.
In three simple steps, you can create a decorative edging for your plant beds (the one shown above came from a 20-foot high Golden Bamboo plant):

1. Make cuts that won’t impact the overall aesthetic of the mother plant.
2. Don’t dry out the stems (also called culms). When newly cut, they are malleable and easier to work with than dried pieces.
3. Secure the stems in place with bamboo stakes hammered into the ground at intervals along the perimeter of your plant bed. The stems will dry in formation.

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Jennifer Volland

Jennifer Volland

Jennifer M. Volland is an independent writer and curator based in Long Beach, California. She conceived and co-curated the exhibition and publication Grand Hotel: Redesigning Modern Life for the Vancouver Art Gallery (2013). She is co-author of Edward A. Killingsworth: An Architect’s Life (Hennessey + Ingalls, 2013) and Long Beach Architecture: The Unexpected Metropolis (Hennessey + Ingalls, 2004). Her writing has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, CITY, Environmental Graphics Magazine, Sunset, Arcade journal for architecture and design, and Western Interiors and Design, among other print and online publications.
Jennifer Volland

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