Phyllostachys aurea

Plant of the month: February

Phyllostachys aurea

Also known as: Fish pole bamboo, golden bamboo

Family: Gramineae

Native to: Fujian and Zhejiand in China

Blooms: Several-year period

Habitats: Mountainous regions

Where to find it at the BBG: Grass Garden

You will find Phyllostachys aurea in the northern section of our Grass Garden, in the Bamboo Maze. This is a running bamboo whose rhizomes are known for travelling through the ground quite aggressively, giving it the nickname ‘Orient Express’. We have tried to reduce that tendency by planting the root systems within landscaping root control sheets in order to keep the plants ‘well-educated’.

Phyllostachys aurea is a graceful evergreen bamboo producing large clumps of bright green canes 2.5-3.5 metres high that become yellowish with age and exposure. Leaves linear-lanceolate are yellow to golden-green. The name Phyllostachys means “leaf spike” and refers to the inflorescences. In this genus of bamboos the stem or culm has a prominent groove, called a sulcus, which runs along the length of each segment (or internode), making it one of the most easily identifiable genera of bamboo.