photos copyright: Ned Jaquith Bamboo Garden 2019
A large grove of P. vivax in central California.

photos copyright: Noah Bell, Bamboo Garden 2019
raised berm and pruning trench around a P. vivax.

photo copyright: Noah Bell, Bamboo 2019
Colorful sheath blades on new P. vivax shoot

photos copyright: Noah Bell, Bamboo Garden 2019
Tree frogs are about the only animals able to climb bamboo! Suction cup appendages. Found this little guy on a P. vivax cane.

photos copyright: Noah Bell, Bamboo Garden 2019
Deer, walking into the P. vivax grove at Bamboo Garden

Phyllostachys vivax
Common name:
Chinese Timber Bamboo

Typical height in USA: 40 to 50 feet
Diameter: 3 to 5 inch canes
Hardiness: -5 F
USDA Zone recommended 6 through 10


Phyllostachys vivax is one of the hardiest timber bamboo. In most circumstances P. vivax will mature to 45 feet in height, with 3-4 inch diameter canes, but if given ideal conditions in SE USA, or China and Japan, it can grow to 70 feet and 5 inches in diameter. This may be the largest hardy bamboo growing in the Pacific Northwest along with P. edulis Moso. It has grown over 4 inches in diameter in Oregon and has been present in this area for over 100 years. It is usually the quickest to attain large size in the PNW. Even though they have a large diameter, the culms have a thinner wall than average thus are not especially strong. They are very attractive and can be used for many craft or decorative projects, but not recommended for building grade material. Shoots from this bamboo are among the best eating, and are prolific in the late spring.  Often the new shoots emerge in mid to late May, depending on the weather pattern which influences the soil temperature. Even though this bamboo is very large, it can still be contained using the basic root pruning techniques we recommend. Unlike most bamboos, P. vivax can achieve large size  and diameter in a relatively small area, as seen on the image on the middle left.  This bamboo is over 30 feet tall and is growing on a raised berm that is less than 30 feet in circumference.  A miniature grove has formed a very effective vertical screen.
Next Picture
Back to Timber Bamboos
Other Bamboos


  photos copyright: Noah Bell, Bamboo Garden 2019
Pruning trench for rhizome control.  Even very large bamboos such as P. vivax can be effectively controlled
using tried and true root pruning techniques.          

  photos copyright: Ned Jaquith Bamboo Garden 2019
Teresa standing among P. vivax, new shoots on left, older culms
 on right.