Hairy Beechey Bamboo - Bambusa beecheyana var. pubescens
September 30, 2019

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August 24th, 2019 - DIGGIN’ BAMBOO: Asaph and I dug a nice-sized HAIRY BEECHEY BAMBOO, Bambusa beecheyana var. pubescens, rhizome division for him to take with him to plant. What a very nice fellow he is! He popped by for a visit with friends from the Peanut Butter Palace in Orlando on Friday. This species has edible shoots that are “one of the chief sources for edible shoots in southern China” where it native to and is known as Ta Tao Chu. It is also planted commercially for its edible shoots in Thailand where it is known as Phai Kim Sung, Phai Luem Laeng, or Phai Tong Luem Laeng. This particular hairy variety, pubescens, is naturally resistant to Mosaic Potex Virus which affects some non-hairy beecheyana clumps. It has thick culms that are quite good for construction projects. The somewhat open clumps produce summertime orangish-colored massive new shoots that are striking when seen from a distance, especially around sunrise or sunset when the light catches the color just right. It is listed on some websites as growing to 40’ tall with 3” diameter culms yet my 15 year-old clump that is in a sheltered spot here at Bamboo Grove is now 50’ tall with 5” culms. It is rated by some nurseries as being hardy down to 29F. Mine withstood two nights of 19F quite well a few years back. Tropical Bamboo Nursery in Loxahatchee sells this and a naturally virus-free non-hairy type.