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It’s Ba-ack

August 9, 2012

If anyone out there has been reading this blog for a while, you may remember a post I wrote a little more than a year ago entitled Monster in My Front Yard. In it I described finding two bamboo shoots lifting a heavy rock that was part of a walkway in front of my house, and my concern that the bamboo might spread throughout the rest of my front yard. I dug a trench separating the bamboo zone from the non-bamboo and lined it with old roofing slates. But I worried that the bamboo roots might succeed in squeezing between the slates, and sure enough they have. While investigating some new shoots that were growing right up against the slate on the desired side, I discovered that there were roots growing on the other. And so it was time for phase two of my bamboo blocking effort. I dug a new trench the twenty feet or so from my front stairs to the four foot stone retaining wall abutting the driveway. While digging the trench I found several more roots that had made their way between the slates. (If you are digging and you hit something that is hard as a rock and moves, it is likely a rock. If it is hard as a rock and doesn’t move, it is likely a bamboo root.) Fortunately none has gotten far, and I was able to get them before they had done much damage.

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The trench was about twenty inches deep and between 3 and 6 inches wide. This I filled with nine 80 lbs bags of concrete. While the process was a few hours of hard labor, and the day was hot, the toughest thing about it was not know whether it would work or whether the bamboo will just grow under the whole thing. Time will tell.

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