Best Practice for Watering Bamboo

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The amount of water a plant needs varies based on it’s species, climate, and eco-system. Even what works on one side of your town, may not work on the other side of town or even the other side of your yard as microclimates can be different in little pockets of our world.

Watering Bamboo
Early season bamboo getting watered at New England Bamboo Company

Luckily, bamboo watering patterns are easy to figure out if you know what clues to look out for. Indistinct of the zone you live in or whether your bamboo is destined for indoors, outdoors, retained areas, or containers, the right watering pattern for your particular circumstances isn’t that hard to figure out.

bamboo indoors
Potted bamboo for the indoor gardener.

Let the bamboo itself tell you when it needs water. Soon enough you will get to know your plant’s watering needs and find the rhythm it likes best. The key is in the leaves.

Bamboo leaves
Bamboo leaves on a blue sky

Bamboo leaves will curl into themselves when they need water. Once they are watered, the leaves will stretch back open in a few hours. Wait again until the leaves curl in, and then water again. After a few cycles of this, you will have listened to your bamboo and learned what watering frequency it prefers.

Letting the bamboo go a bit dry is okay and much better than overwatering. One of the most common ways bamboos die is from overwatering. Keeping the bamboo soaked will cause rot. Your bamboo leaves will also let you know when it is unhappy with too much watering. They will turn brown and possibly expose it to developing a fungus. If you see them starting to turn brown and the soil is wet, stop watering it, wait for the moment the leaves begin to curl, and then learn it’s preferred frequency by watering, watching the leaves begin to curl and water once again.

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