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Black Bamboo - Phyllostachys nigra
Introduced in 1827, black bamboo became the first hardy oriental bamboo and is reported to be the only species in which the culm turns a true ebony color, making it an excellent selection for the ornamental landscape. Get all the details below

Black Bamboo - Phyllostachys nigra

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Black Bamboo
Phyllostachys nigra

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones: 6a-11 Find Your Zone 

Note:  For our customers who live and garden north of USDA Plant Hardiness Zone 6a, where this Bamboo is not winter hardy, you'll be happy to know it can be grown in containers that can be brought indoors during winter and placed back outside when temperatures warm up.



Special Attributes

Introduced in 1827, black bamboo became the first hardy oriental bamboo and is reported to be the only species in which the culm turns a true ebony color, making it an excellent selection for the ornamental landscape. New canes emerge green and turn ebony black within two years, reaching 15 to 30 feet in height depending on location. The culm sheath have wavy blades with prominent oral setae, auricles and ligules.

Please Note: The foliage of Black Bamboo has been damaged at temperatures below 10 degree Fahrenheit under high wind conditions. If a dry wind is possible, plant in a protected area. Foliage loss occurs at 0 to -5 F, with complete top kill of canes at around -10 to -15 F.  Black Bamboo is being grown in USDA Zone 6 with moderate top damage during the harsh winter months. 




Landscape & Other Uses

Containers/Pots: Good
Crafts: Good
Edible: Good
Hedge: Good
Indoor: 6 hours min. sun
Ornamental: Excellent
Privacy Screen: Excellent
Wood Quality: Good




Cultural Preferences

Black Bamboo is easy to grow when planted in the right environment. It will tolerate some shade but the culms are not as erect in shaded sides as some other species and tend to weep or arch over. Therefore, the more sun the better. We suggest 6 hours direct sunlight a day for best performance. Black Bamboo appreciate a moist but well-drained loose soil of average fertility. When established, most bamboo will tolerate periods of dry weather, however, will appreciate an occasional deep soaking if the leaves begin to curl from drought distress.

Black Bamboo is a running bamboo, which means it spreads. Bamboo can be controlled in a small area (a normal city yard) simply by mowing or stepping on the young shoots. New shoots of some bamboo can also be used for culinary purposes and cooked, much like asparagus. Keep in mind that running bamboo only puts up new shoots for a short time each year and, when they are "shooting," the new plants are very fragile and easy to destroy. Root pruning or a Bamboo Root Barrier are other methods to control spread.









Plant Details

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones: 6a-11 Find Your Zone 
Type: Running
Height: Zone 6: 15' |  Zones 7-9: 30'
Spread:  5'+ with no control
Culm Diameter: 2"
Sun: Full Sun or Part Shade
Soil: Average
Growth Rate: Fast


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