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Phyllostachys aurea - (Carrière.)Rivière.&C.Rivière.                
Common Name Golden Bamboo, Fishpole Bamboo
Family Poaceae or Gramineae
Synonyms P. bambusoides aurea. Bambusa aurea. Sinarundinaria aurea.
Known Hazards None known
Habitats Woodland[162].
Range E. Asia - S.E. China.
Edibility Rating  
Medicinal Rating  
Fully Hardy Moist Soil Semi-shade

Form: Oval, Upright or erect.

Physical Characteristics       
 icon of manicon of flower
Phyllostachys aurea is an evergreen Bamboo growing to 6 m (19ft) by 6 m (19ft) at a fast rate.
It is hardy to zone (UK) 6. It is in leaf 12-Jan. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind.

USDA hardiness zone : 6-11

Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It can grow in semi-shade (light woodland). It prefers moist soil and can tolerate drought.

Phyllostachys aurea Golden Bamboo, Fishpole Bamboo

Phyllostachys aurea Golden Bamboo, Fishpole Bamboo
Woodland Garden Dappled Shade; Shady Edge;
Edible Uses                                         
Edible Parts: Seed;  Stem.
Edible Uses:

Young shoots - cooked[61, 105, 177]. They can also be eaten raw and have very little bitterness[183]. They are said to be the sweetest of the genus[25]. The canes are about 15mm in diameter[K]. In China, the new canes are 2 - 5cm in diameter[266]. The shoots are harvested in the spring when about 8cm above the ground, cutting them about 5cm below soil level. Seed - raw or cooked. The seed is only produced at intervals of several years, it can be eaten in all the ways that rice s used and can also be ground into a flour and used as a cereal[183].
Medicinal Uses
Plants For A Future can not take any responsibility for any adverse effects from the use of plants. Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.

None known
Other Uses
Paper;  Plant support;  Wood.

The canes make excellent plant supports and are also used for making items such as umbrella handles, walking sticks, fan handles and pipe stems[25, 162, 195]. The canes are very hard but super-flexible[195]. A fibre from the stems is used for making paper[189]. The stems are harvested at any time of the year and crushed with a hammer. They are then cooked for 2 hours or more with lye and beaten in a ball mill for 4 hours. The fibre makes a yellow/gold to cream paper[189].
Cultivation details                                         
Landscape Uses:Container, Screen, Specimen. Requires a rich damp soil in a sheltered position[200]. Dislikes prolonged exposure to hard frosts[200]. Established plants are drought resistant[74]. A very hardy bamboo, it succeeds in most parts of Britain[25] but suffers leaf and culm damage at temperatures below about -15°c. Plants only flower at intervals of many years. When they do come into flower most of the plants energies are directed into producing seed and consequently the plant is severely weakened. They sometimes die after flowering, but if left alone they will usually recover though they will look very poorly for a few years. If fed with artificial NPK fertilizers at this time the plants are more likely to die[122]. Although called the ' Golden Bamboo', the leaves of this plant only turn golden if plants are grown in full sun[195], especially if the plants are half-starved. This species is considered by some botanists to be a part of P. bambusoides[25]. Cultivated for its edible shoots in China[25, 162], it has the sweetest taste of the genus[25]. It has been widely planted as an ornamental in the Mediterranean and seems to be naturalizing there[50]. This species is notably resistant to honey fungus[200]. The rootstock is running[25], but not aggressively so, the plant forming fairly tight clumps[195]. New shoots are produced from late May[25]. This is a good companion species to grow in a woodland because the plants have shallow root systems that do not compete with deep tree roots[195]. Special Features:Not North American native, Naturalizing, Inconspicuous flowers or blooms.
Seed - surface sow as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse at about 20°c. Do not allow the compost to dry out. Germination usually takes place fairly quickly so long as the seed is of good quality, though it can take 3 - 6 months. Grow on in a lightly shaded place in the greenhouse until large enough to plant out. Seed is rarely available. Division in spring as new growth commences. Divisions from the open ground do not transplant well, so will need careful treatment and nurturing under cover in pots until at least late spring[238]. Division is best carried out in wet weather and small divisions will establish better than large clumps[238]. Another report says that you can take large divisions from established clumps and transfer them straight to their permanent positions, misting or drenching them frequently until they are established[200]. Basal cane cuttings in spring.
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Expert comment                                         
Botanical References                                         
Links / References                                         

  [K] Ken Fern Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.

[25]Lawson. Bamboos.
Fairly comprehensive, it was once the standard work but is now rather dated. Deals with species hardy in Britain, giving cultivation details and some uses.
[50]? Flora Europaea
An immense work in 6 volumes (including the index). The standard reference flora for europe, it is very terse though and with very little extra information. Not for the casual reader.
[61]Usher. G. A Dictionary of Plants Used by Man.
Forget the sexist title, this is one of the best books on the subject. Lists a very extensive range of useful plants from around the world with very brief details of the uses. Not for the casual reader.
[74]Komarov. V. L. Flora of the USSR.
An immense (25 or more large volumes) and not yet completed translation of the Russian flora. Full of information on plant uses and habitats but heavy going for casual readers.
[105]Tanaka. T. Tanaka's Cyclopaedia of Edible Plants of the World.
The most comprehensive guide to edible plants I've come across. Only the briefest entry for each species, though, and some of the entries are more than a little dubious. Not for the casual reader.
[122]? The Plantsman. Vol. 1. 1979 - 1980.
Excerpts from the periodical giving cultivation details and other notes on some of the useful plants. A good article on the flowering of bamboos.
[162]Grounds. R. Ornamental Grasses.
Cultivation details of many of the grasses and bamboos. Well illustrated.
[177]Kunkel. G. Plants for Human Consumption.
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
[183]Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants.
Excellent. Contains a very wide range of conventional and unconventional food plants (including tropical) and where they can be obtained (mainly N. American nurseries but also research institutes and a lot of other nurseries from around the world.
[189]Bell. L. A. Plant Fibres for Papermaking.
A good practical section on how to make paper on a small scale plus details of about 75 species (quite a few of them tropical) that can be used.
[195]Farrelly. D. The Book of Bamboo
Very readable, giving lots of information on the uses of bamboos, both temperate and tropical.
[200]Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
[238]Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses.
A very well presented and informative book on herbs from around the globe. Plenty in it for both the casual reader and the serious student. Just one main quibble is the silly way of having two separate entries for each plant.
[266] Flora of China
On-line version of the Flora - an excellent resource giving basic info on habitat and some uses.

Readers comment                                         
Elizabeth H.
besenkar Tue Sep 23 2008
Bambu yetiþtiriciliði

BAMBU FÝDANLIÐI Deðiþik tür bambu üretimleri,

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Subject : Phyllostachys aurea  

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