Full Review: Bamboo Garden

It is a very hard to find the garden without reviewing the campus map.  Parking lot 6 is closest to the garden and even though there is a “faculty and student parking” sign, anyone can purchase a parking permit using the machine with a credit card or cash.  The garden is just below the Japanese Cultural Center, building 6600.


The garden is a bursting with a diverse collection of bamboo from all over the world.  It started in 1989 as a landscape for the Japanese Cultural Center built by student and staff volunteers.  It continues to grow and is one of the few with such a diverse collection.  Many of the plants have placards with Latin names for the genus and species.  The garden entrances have paths that guide you down into the garden.


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   Entrance from parking lot      Chusquea pittieri, Costa Rica


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 Steps down into the garden   Semiarundinara okuboi, Japan


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                  Bamboo                              Sasaella ramosa


Some of the garden paths are open to the sunlight and some are protected with walls of bamboo.  There are a number of benches for relaxing with a view of the different bamboo species.  Many of the bamboo grow tens of feet tall and can be used as screens.  Semiarundinara okuboi (above) is one of the tall species and its canes are very flexible.   Others are short and bushy and used as groundcover like Sasaella ramosa (above).   Himalyacalamus falconeri (below) is a clumping bamboo that is also called Candy Cane Bamboo.  It has dark green stripes on red and yellow canes with small, feathery leaves. 



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        Garden path         Chimonobambusa marmoreal variegate

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     Bamboo visitor                         Bench


Himalyacalamus falconeri, Himalayas

Some of the paths are guided up and down hill with stone and bamboo.  There is a picnic table that is a great place for a peaceful snack or meal.  The bamboo lined path contains Phyllostachys nigra or Black Bamboo from China which has black canes and feathery green leaves.   This species is one of the most prized bamboos for decorative wood working.



There is a Japanese garden pavilion called the Azumaya, which was built by students from the International College of Crafts and Arts in Toyama, Japan and given as a gift to Foothill College in 1998.  It is a place where students can study.  Bambusa textilis or Weaver's Bamboo (below) grows up to 40 feet tall and can be used for weaving and for making furniture. 


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                Picnic table              Bamboo-lined stairway

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    Uphill stone path                Bamboo lined path

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                    Pavillion                        Bambusa textilis, China

Otateo acuminata or Mexican Weeping Bamboo (below) is cultivated as an ornamental plant.  Phyllostachys viridis (below) has green stripes on vivid yellow culms (stems) and can grow 40 feet tall with three inch diameter clums.  The wood from this species is high quality and shoots are edible and tasty. 



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  Mexican weeping bamboo        Japanese Cultural Center

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  30 foot tall bamboo    Phyllostachys viridis (Robert Young)

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    Against the bamboo wall         Bench for bamboo views

Bambusa tuldoides (below) is also called Punting Pole Bamboo and is fast growing. It is used to build screens in Asian gardens.  Pseudosasa owatarii is one of the short bamboos with a maximum height of two feet.  It is native to Yakushima, a small island in Japan.  Bambusa multiplex or Silverstripe is the largest of its species and can reach 25 feet tall.  Its leaves and sometimes its culms have a white stripe. It is another bamboo with edible shoots.




   Bambusa tuldoides, China

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Pseudosasa owatarii , Japan           More bamboo

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              Silverstripe (bush and leaf), Southeast Asia