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Phyllostachys Bambusoides Castillonii or Castillon Bamboo is a hardy bamboo, with thicker than usual, golden yellow canes with a characteristic green stripe in the grooves; making it a very ornamental bamboo. A winner of the Royal Horticultural Society’s Award of Garden Merit, this is a great addition for its architectural value, as a hedge or screen application, on the patio, and as a container plant. The beautiful cane colouration is best pronounced by clearing the growth part of the way up the stems in a hedging or screening location.
A native of China and perhaps Japan, the root of the binomial name Phyllostachys is derived from the word phyllon, which in Greek, means ‘leaf’ and stachys meaning ‘spike’. Bambusoides, in Latin, means ‘resembling Bambusa’, which was a name for bamboo that was in fact the result of an erroneous pronounciation of the word Mambu, which is Indian. The Castillon Bamboo is of the Family Poaceae. Its Genus, Phyllostachys is in general an attractive evergreen form of bamboo, with a clump forming, suckering growth habit, and grooved canes on alternate sides between the nodes. They will typically have two leafy branches growing from each node. The variety Phyllostachys Bambusoides Castillonii is a robust bamboo with more thick canes of a golden-yellow colour and rising to between 4-5 metres or more in height. The green stripes of the grooves are unique, and they present a glossy, dark green, and lance shaped leaf, usually about 15 cm in length. This variety is one of the most colourful bamboos, and when grown in its preferred exposures to sun and shelter, can be truly spectacular. As the plants age, the colour becomes much stronger. The roots are usually loosely clumping, but can run as well when in very warm garden locations.
In the UK and Ireland, the Castillon Bamboo is hardy to about minus 10. It prefers full sun to partial shade, with aspects of a south-facing or west-facing direction. Phyllostachys Bambusoides Castillonii prefers a somewhat sheltered exposure. Soils should be moist, but well drained. Loam is the desired predominant texture; and the soil media should be rich in humus. It is best to protect your Castillon Bamboo from cold drying winds. Tolerant to near neutral pH, the Phyllostachys Bambusoides Castillonii will thrive in slightly acid or slightly alkaline soils. They will reach ultimate height of 4-8 metres and an ultimate spread of 2.5-4.0 metres in the 5-10 years they spend reaching full maturity.