Short Running Bamboo
Dwarf bamboos are understory plants and prefer to be shaded from hot afternoon sun. Some prefer mostly shade, while others may take some morning sun if not placed against hot walls or other excessively sunny conditions. These are some of Laurie's favorites and have a wide landscape use. They provide interest in the garden with attractive foliage, leaves which make a nice rustling noise in a breeze, and easy care.
Pleioblastus humulis -very attractive short bamboo, especially when used as a ground cover. Dark green leaves. Usually a knee-high groundcover but can possibly grow up to 10' with ideal conditions. Possibly but unlikely in this region. We prefer to cut or mow it in the winter to keep it tidy. One of Laurie's favorites. Prefers partial shade or morning sun with afternoon shade.
Pleioblastus viridistriatus -"Dwarf Green Striped Bamboo". Extremely attractive in spring and early summer when the leaves are golden yellow with green stripes. Can be mowed in winter to encourage new brightly colored leaves in spring. Beautiful in the garden or in a pot, as well as a ground cover. Usually grows to about 3' or less. Prefers partial shade or limited morning sun with afternoon shade. A nursery favorite each spring when the leaves first unfurl-everyone loves the striking springtime-chartreuse colors.
Shibataea kumasaca -to 7' but usually about half that size, about 3' or so. Unique bamboo with zig zag nodes. Prefers acid soil. Makes a great short hedge, mounding garden shrub, or container plant. A nursery favorite. Soft look in a shady location. Very attractive. Prefers shade or filtered light in this area but can take a moderate amount of morning sun with sufficient water and deep soil. The foliage on this has a lovely sweet aroma that permeates the air on warm days. Try it in a container on a patio.