What is the best way to remove bamboo?

Keith P
by Keith P
  19 answers
  • Keith, this can be a long process. The best way is to cut the bamboo shoots as soon as they appear. More will come back, just keep cutting them. Eventually the energy stores in their rhizomes underground will become exhausted and the plant will die. You can also apply a systemic herbicide like Roundup to the cut areas to help kill it off. Sort of "wash" the cut spots, don't just spray the area.
  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) on Jan 25, 2012
    Dan gives good advise on the Bamboo. It travels via underground rhizomes so you will need to be diligent with your efforts. A great way to wash the area is to use a foam paint brush with undiluted concentrated herbicide, 'painting' each shoot as you chop them off. Think of it as a therapeutic exercise. I love pulling weeds!
  • Keith P Keith P on Jan 25, 2012
    I bought a house with 2 strips of bamboo. one strip is about 60-70ft, the other is about 20-30ft. I've received quotes of $6000 to remove it. the landscaping companies want to dig it out.
  • 3po3 3po3 on Jan 25, 2012
    My understanding is that bamboo can be really persistent and tough. If these guys dig it out, I"m not sure they can guarantee it won't come back. It would be really frustrating to be out $6,000 and watch the bamboo come back months later. I think persistent attacks with Dan's method are your best bet. Good luck, Keith.
  • Sherrie S Sherrie S on Jan 25, 2012
    Keith, you may have panda bears in your local zoo that would love the bamboo. Florida has no panda bears. I think the plant is beautiful. My neighbor has it and it hasn't invaded my house.
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Jan 26, 2012
    Keith, that is a lot of bamboo! I am equally skeptical that digging it out would be completely successful. The "cut and paint" method will work, over time, but you are going to be left with a huge mass of bamboo roots. So you might want to do a combination. "Cut and paint" first, give the herbicide awhile to work, and then have them come in and dig.
  • I will send my 14 year old over he eats almost anything..... Even if he doesn't like the taste he will sure get a kick out of the weapons he can make (and his mother will hate) hahaha ....good luck
  • Ricardo B Ricardo B on Jan 26, 2012
    Well, Keith... who ever did the dirty deed and planted that space hungry and invasive monster probably moved or was consumed. I can only have empathy (or sympathy) for your situation... All the above. I read somewhere that digging a long and very deep trench and dumping concrete into it may (and I barely mean... may) slow down it's march. I say... learn the 1,000 uses for bamboo and start a business.
  • Chemicals, dig, chemicals, dig. Not an easy project. But be sure to dig and use chemical as soon as you see any new growth developing. The sooner you stop it when it comes up, the less root development will occur. Eventually you will have success.
  • Keith...might be easier to sell the house and move....
  • Keith P Keith P on Jan 26, 2012
    What about cutting & painting then rototilling???
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Jan 27, 2012
    I don't know if you'd be able to get a rototiller through that mass of roots, and the bamboo will re-grow from any bit of root left.
  • Mike and Anne Mike and Anne on Jan 27, 2012
    Remember that Bamboo survived the Atomic Bomb blast in Japan so it is a tough plant. Any root or plant joint left in the ground after plants are dug are capable of regrowing so if you dig you will just have to be persistent evey year in digging up any sprouts that come up. Cutting the plant and painting the cut stem with the "strong" version of Round-up probably does the best job in the shortest length of time but it will take more than a year to get it under control..
  • Elizabeth Elizabeth on Apr 10, 2015
    I watched a man who had a really big hedge of the stuff work at cutting it for months; eventually he was successful. Then I bought a house where someone had planted it along a back fence. I called the successful bamboo man and he said after getting it all cut, then just keep it mowed and it finally stops growing. It worked.
  • Stacie Stacie on May 14, 2015
    ROUNDUP - over and over. Forever. Never let it flower.
  • Margaret G. Margaret G. on May 16, 2015
    I've dealt with invasive bamboo that my neighbor planted. The only way to truly get rid of it is to dig and pull up all the rhizomes. Unfortunately, we had to get rid of every shrub, tree, and plant in the area that the bamboo invaded in order to eradicate the bamboo. Chemicals are not effective. You still have to be diligent and on bamboo watch for years to make sure that no more is coming up from that little piece you might miss. We also dropped bamboo barrier (it is a very thick plastic, made for bamboo) along the fence line to prevent it from crossing back into the yard, and watch that the bamboo doesn't jump the barrier.
  • DORLIS DORLIS on Nov 19, 2015
    My boss planted some in his yard as a screen between him and his neighbor. He eventually paid someone to eradicate it from his yard and the neighbor's. If you plant a running bamboo, put a border around it that goes at least 6" above ground and at least 1' below ground and the border should be of steel or concrete.
  • Michael Michael on Apr 11, 2021

    I found that installing a rhizome root barrier about 20 inches deep and 4 inches or so above ground. This will deprive the roots on your yard the energy from the grown bamboo. After that, mow down the shoots that will still pop up. But the root system will eventually die off.