The common term Bambщ, or Bamboo, indicates hundreds of genera and species of evergreen perennials, widespread over much of the globe; they form fleshy rhizomes, which have a creeping or tufty development, from which particular erect stems are produced, similar to flexible canes, which bear numerous evergreen leaves; bamboos generally change foliage in spring or early summer, so the period in which they are most beautiful and decorative is summer, autumn and winter.
Hundreds of species also exist in cultivation, belonging to different genera: phyllostachys, pleioblastus, sasa, shibatea, bambusa; the names are very particular and high-sounding, but indicate different species of simple bamboo, those that our grandparents cultivated only and exclusively to obtain from the stems an economic support for tomato seedlings.
In fact, for a time the bamboos were demonized, as invasive and difficult to grow plants, or not very decorative; in reality there are many species of very decorative, vigorous and rustic bamboo, with stems in various colors, from dark black to golden yellow, and with a very different bearing: there are dwarf bamboo, which form small tufts lower than a couple of meters; there are also giant bamboo, which over the years can safely reach 25 meters in height.
The Bambщ are plants spread all over the globe, therefore there are tropical species, which love the heat and are grown in pots in Italy, as there are varieties of Himalayan origin, which withstand even intense and prolonged frost.
In the garden, a few dozen species are cultivated, but every year new varieties are presented on the market, with particular stem color, growth habit and cultivation needs.
In general, the bamboo available in Italy for cultivation in the garden belongs to rustic species, which well withstand the summer heat and winter cold, including persistent, intense and prolonged frost and snow. Occasionally, especially in the case of particularly delicate species, it may happen that in winter the plant dries up, even completely. In general, however, the aerial part is ruined and not the dense and compact rhizomatous roots, which therefore re-grow at the arrival of the first warm and late winter.
Bamboos love sunny, or partially shaded, but always brightly lit positions; they love slightly acid soils, but they develop without problems even in slightly alkaline soils, without having any problems; it is fundamental that the soil is very well drained, because the rhizomes are easily attacked by fungi or molds in case of constantly damp or muddy soil.
They are grown in the ground or in pots, always remembering that their development in height can be conspicuous, and a thin plant, more than 10 meters high can easily overturn a light or small pot.
They are rustic plants, which bear drought very well, but it is good to water the specimens recently as a home, especially if placed in pots; we always wait for the soil to be dry between one watering and another.