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Getting rid of bamboo

We have recently moved into a property which, to our dismay, has a variety of bamboo plants which we would like to remove. In particular is some type of giant bamboo which we have cut right down to the base and sprayed with a woody weedkiller. We have also tried to dig out the base with a 1/2 tonne digger to no avail, as even the digger seemed unable to dig it up. Is there an easy way to kill this notorious weed? Yours, bamboozled.


Amitrole is effective in controlling bamboo. Cut the bamboo down to ground level. When it starts shooting again, spray with Amitrole. The best time to do this is autumn and spring, so March is a good time. Repeat applications will be required to achieve a complete kill.

Amitrole kills weeds slowly, so do not expect results overnight. Effects may not become visible for about 3-4 weeks.

This is a non-hormonal weedkiller with a short soil life. Woody weedkiller has no effect on bamboo.

Good luck and persevere.

UnitecAdvice by Dr Dan Blanchon from Unitec's Diploma in Sustainable Horticulture and Bachelor of Resource Management.

Reproduced with permission from NZOOM Home and Garden content,
from the previous website of  TVNZ News

The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH

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Last updated: June 27, 2005