Phyllostachys aurea, Phyllostachys nigra, Pleioblastus auricomus, Pleioblastus hindsii, Pseudosasa japonica, Chimonobambusa quadrangularis

Bamboo species

Family: Poaceae

Origin: Asia

Overgrown bamboo with stalks and leaves falling everywhere.
Bamboo forms dense stands that exclude all native species and that spread outwards.
Photo credit: Jonathan Boow

Regional Pest Management Plan (RPMP) status

  • Whole region — Sustained control
  • Hauraki Gulf Controlled Area Notice pest

View more about the RPMP statuses

General description

Tall, erect, perennial, rhizomatous grasses < 7 m tall that form dense thickets. Stems are smooth, hollow canes. Leaves are alternate.

What you need to know

To help protect our environment, from 1 September 2021, you:

  • will not be allowed to breed, distribute, release or sell bamboo species within the Auckland region.
  • will not be allowed to plant bamboo species within the Auckland region, unless you are transferring an existing plant on your land to another location within the boundaries of the same property.
  • must destroy any bamboo species on land that you occupy if it has been planted in breach of the above rules and you are directed to do so by an authorised person.


Forest and riparian margins, scrubland, wasteland, roadsides, gardens.


Vegetative spread from rhizomes. Human-mediated dispersal through dumping of garden waste.

Impact on environment

Forms dense stands, excluding other plants. Reduces plant diversity and alters faunal assemblages. Can impede access to natural areas.


Site Management

Follow up treated areas 3 times per year. Encourage natural regeneration of native plants or replant treated areas where possible after 2-3 treatments to establish dense ground cover and minimise reinvasion.

Recommended approaches

Physical control

Method: Cut stems and dig out rhizomes.

Plant parts requiring disposal: Rhizomes and roots.

Disposal options: Can be chipped and used as mulch, stems can be recycled for use as stakes or remove to landfill.


Biocontrol is currently not available for this species.

Community agrichemical control recommendations

No qualifications:

For small infestations: Cut stump and paste freshly cut base of stems with double strength glyphosate gel, cut stump and spray freshly cut base of stems with 250ml glyphosate green per 1L of water or cut stump and foliar spray regrowth with 150ml glyphosate green per 10L of water.

Certified Handler/Experienced agrichemical user:

For infestations amongst desirable broadleaf species: Cut stump and foliar spray regrowth with 150ml haloxyfop-P-methyl per 10L of water.

For infestations amongst desirable species: Cut stump and very carefully foliar spray regrowth with 150ml glyphosate green per 10L of water avoiding any spraying on desirable species foliage.

Caution: When using any herbicide or pesticide please read the label thoroughly to ensure that all instructions and safety requirements are followed.

Close up of a bamboo leaf with brown tips.
Leaves are alternate.
Photo credit: Jonathan Boow
Close up photo of bambo leaves.
Bamboo is part of the grass family.
Thin branch of bamboo with green leaves and brown tips.
Bamboos are some of the fastest-growing plants in the world.