Cape Town Nursery

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Black Bamboo


Black Bamboo is also known as Phyllostachys Nigra. The name Phyllostachys means “leaf spike”. It grows in an upright position. Generally, the stems grow around 3m – 9m in height.

As a matter of fact, this specific black bamboo tree can spread at a rapid rate. They spread by creeping underground. The new rhizomes begin to grow new shoots from their joints.

Winter is a harsh season for this bamboo plant. The leaves will often turn brown. It will, however, flourish during spring again.

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Why Choose Black Bamboo Phyllostachys Nigra?

This type of black bamboo tree is very visually appealing. Additionally, the black canes with green leaves are beautiful to look at. The newer canes come out green in colour and slowly turn black over a year or two.

Running bamboo trees, like Phyllostachys Nigra, are perfect for making a dense hedge or even a privacy screen. Furthermore, wind can be a problem and it needs to be protected as much as possible. They must be sheltered from the wind and during the summer they must be kept well watered.

  • Common Names: Bamboo, black bamboo, timber bamboo
  • Direct Light: full sun or partial shade
  • Preferred Soil: moist and well-drained
  • Growth Rate: very fast-growing
  • Leaf Colour: dark green
  • Cane Colour: polished black
  • Hardiness: fully hardy
  • Feeding: plenty of nitrogen (Blood, Fish and Bone Fertilizer)

How to Maintain Black Bamboo (Phyllostachys Nigra)

Black bamboo in South Africa works well as a potted plant. They prefer a cool location over winter. This is because Phyllostachys Nigra enjoys a dormant period. If placed indoors, they will need as much light as possible to thrive and grow strong. Additionally, 4 hours of sunlight will do. This species spread aggressively by underground rhizomes and need to be contained from spreading into the neighbour’s yard.

When it comes to maintaining this bamboo, remove all the smaller canes from the clump. They will always remain small and aren’t good for anything. The young and healthy canes should be left behind. The canes should also be displayed. Remove all the grow on the lower branches and leave them on the top.


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