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Phyllostachys nigra AGM

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© RHS 2002

Characteristics

Plant type

Bamboo

Habit

Columnar/Upright

Resilience

Hardiness

H5 (hardy - cold winter)

Colour

Foliage

Green in Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter

Stem

Black or Green in Autumn, Spring, Summer or Winter

Size

Ultimate height

2.5-4 metres

Ultimate spread

1.5-2.5 metres

Time to ultimate height

10-20 years


Preferred common name

black bamboo

Family

Poaceae


Phyllostachys are attractive, tall, clump-forming, evergreen bamboos with canes grooved on alternate sides between the nodes, and usually two leafy branches at each node

P. nigra is a large, elegant evergreen bamboo with arching canes, green at first becoming blackish-brown with maturity, and narrow-lanceolate leaves to 12cm in length

Other common names

  • kuro-chiku
  • whangee cane

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun
  • Part shade

Aspect

  • South-facing or West-facing
  • Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow in fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil, in full sun or partial shade. Protect from cold drying winds. In a container grow in a loam-based compost and feed with a balanced liquid fertiliser on a monthly basis during the growing season. May remain clump-forming in poor or dry soils but can become invasive in warm, moist or favourable conditions; see bamboo control and bamboo cultivation

Soil

  • Moist but well-drained
  • Acid, Alkaline or Neutral
  • Loam

Propagation

Propagate by division in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Architectural or Hedging/Screens


How to care

Pruning

Remove spent stems and thin to show off stems to best effect. Cut back after flowering

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

Generally disease free