Some years ago my plantsman friend gave me a couple of pots of bamboo varieties that he'd grown. He assured me they were non-invasive. Of course I believed him - he was so much more learned and wise than me. And so I planted them with an eye to enjoying their leafy vegetation.
Bamboo By The Garage
One variety is totally well-behaved. It's growing at the corner of the garage, and has bulked out beautifully - not to big, not too small, just right. Apart from shedding dead flaky pieces of bamboo skin, it does absolutely nothing wrong. Lovely plant. Can thoroughly recommend it.
But now to the other variety - the one with coarser leaves, planted behind the Stables. Oops. This bamboo is definitely not self-contained and modest. Oh no. It runs out of its garden border across the lawn, shooting up ghastly spikes which are unpleasant to stand on. Help! Lawn mowing needed urgently! Other strong shoots turn up meters away from the parent plant, in the middle of the Camellias, in the middle of the Phormium near the water race. This bamboo is a rascally invader. So even a renowned plantsman can make a mistake - just occasionally!
Invasive Bamboo Behind the Stables
And (help me!) I'm not so good at keeping it in trim. The silly girlie inside me is tempted to encourage the bamboo, let it spread, and turn into a thicket. Or a bamboo grove? Hmm. This girlie has obviously been reading too many English country garden magazines.