Weaver’s Bamboo is a gorgeously decorative and non-invasive plant that easily tolerates wind, heat, sun, and the cold. With its neat and upright lower half and graceful green glossy leaves in the upper half, it is suitable for any landscape.
- Common name: Weaver’s Bamboo
- Botanical name: Bambusa textilis
- Type: Clumping
- Average height: 20-30 ft (10-12 m)
- Average diameter: 1.5-2.0 in (3.8-5 cm)
- Hardiness: 18°F (-8C°)
- USDA Zones: 7-9
- Light requirements: Partial shade or full sun
- Best use: An excellent screen or hedge, furniture, weaving, crafts or an ornament
What cultivars of Bambusa textilis are there?
Before we go into the characteristics of Weaver’s Bamboo, I want to point out some specimens. Although there are general similarities, there are also some features these varieties differ. So, you should definitely check out the specific cultivar in shops to make sure, you’re buying what you really want or need.
Here are the different Bambusa textilis cultivars and varieties:
- Bambusa textilis var. gracilis or Slender Weaver’s Bamboo or Graceful Bamboo: This is, by far, the most popular variety of the Bambusa textilis family. It won’t grow taller than 25 ft (7.5 m), which is perfect for privacy from a 2-story house.
- Bambusa textilis var. glabra: Similar to the slender culms of Gracilis, this also has a smooth almost silky touch. It grows up to 30 ft (9 m).
- Bambusa textilis ‘Dwarf’: The smallest variety of this bamboo species. The maximum height is 18-20 ft (5.5-6 m). It is a tropical bamboo that does best in USDA Zone 8.
- Bambusa textilis ‘Kanapaha’ or Royal Bamboo / Giant Weaver: As you could read from its name, Kanapaha is the giant of the “textilis family”. I can grow as tall as 50 ft (15 m).
- Bambusa textilis ‘Maculata’: Not so common but still graceful like Gracilis. The max. height of this bamboo is 25 ft (7.5 m). It does best in USDA Zone 8 because it is a tropical bamboo.
- Bambusa textilis ‘Mutabilis’ or Emerald Bamboo: A quite rare but magnificent cultivar with an average height of 30-40 ft (9-12 m). It is suitable for USDA Zones 9-10.
- Bambusa textilis ‘Scranton’: A quite rare specimen as well. It can grow of 20-30 ft (6-9 m) tall and is suitable for USDA Zones 9-11.
What does Weaver’s Bamboo look like?
Weaver’s bamboo is a tall, compact, non-invasive plant with 2-inch thick upright culms that makes for a perfect screen.
In China (native origin), this bamboo grows to a height of 40 feet. In North America, this tropical bamboo reaches a height of 30 feet, unless there is an enormous amount of rain which further increases the height.
When fully mature it has impressive thin-walled greenish-blue culms with continuous white rings developing at the nodes.
The olive green short leaves grow in a bunch throughout the year and provide a graceful appearance of a majestic plant. The foliage is chiefly in the upper half of the cane and provides ample shade.
Bambusa textilis can function as a decorative ornament or be used as a screen. Weaver’s bamboo is ideal along boundaries, narrow lanes, and swimming pools. Also, because of its durable and long pliable fibers, it is used for weaving.
What are the best growing conditions for Weaver’s Bamboo?
This particular bamboo is quite cold-resistant for its origin. It will tolerate light frost and sandy soil but it needs the sun and ample water.
Weaver’s bamboo will grow well in full sun but will also do well with at least half a day of sun. It does not thrive in complete shade.
However, depending on your cultivar, these things may be different!
Planting Bambusa textilis
Once planted, weaver’s bamboo will take about a decade to reach its full height potential. It tends to grow in a large clump which can measure about 3 feet (1 meter) at the end of 5 years.
This clump distance will double up in 10 years. Over time, the canes will form upright stems with thick foliage in the upper part which will remain for the entire year. To avoid encroachment on important boundaries and fences it is important to plant the bamboo away at least 5 feet away from these areas.
New shoots will appear all year round, but the dense glossy leaves will be most marked in summer and fall.
During the initial phase of growth, the bamboo must be watered regularly. In fact, the plant does grow well in the presence of copious amounts of water.
Once the plant is established, it is quite tolerant of drought. But if you want the canes to reach heights of more than 30 feet, you will need to water regularly, especially during summer.
Like most bamboo plants, Weaver’s Bamboo grows well in rich well-drained soil. It is important to check the soil features before planting to ensure that it is rich in nutrients. If not, one may have to add a layer of organic soil mix.
If the winters are exceptionally cold, one should apply a layer of mulch to protect the undergrowth of newly planted bamboo.
Caring for Weaver’s Bamboo
Once weaver’s bamboo has established itself, it does not require a great deal of maintenance. Besides watering, pruning is recommended to enhance aesthetics.
Weaver’s Bamboo tolerates pruning with remarkable ease. Pruning should be done once a year and all dead or weakened stems should be removed. If you want a preselected shorter height of the canes, you will need to prune at least twice a year.
Disease and safety
Overall, Weaver’s bamboo is very hardy and pest-resistant. Slugs may appear in very wet weather and should be removed to prevent damage to the leaves. The bamboo is deer-resistant.
To propagate weaver’s bamboo, it is important to plant the cutting of the young rhizomes in early spring.
Best uses of Weaver’s Bamboo
It makes an excellent screen and hedge because it doesn’t spread as much as running bamboos and it grows very densely.
In addition, it works well as a windbreaker and can be cut to any height to screen out undesirable views. Weaver’s Bamboo is an excellent plant for the driveway, a protective fence, or a free-standing ornament.
You can also use it for small crafts and its durable fibers can be used for weaving.