The Phyllostachys Aurea (Golden Bamboo) Full Care Guide

The Golden Bamboo, otherwise known as the Phyllostachys Aurea or Fish-Pole Bamboo, Golden Bamboo, Yellow Bamboo, Running Bamboo, is a rather well known bamboo plant by gardening enthusiasts around the world.

Best known for its average maintenance and fast growth, this bamboo will likely liven up your house (or garden) with its green colored leaves. But, only if you learn how to take proper care of it for it to thrive.

Fortunately, this is exactly what we’ll cover in this Golden Bamboo Care Guide. So let’s dive in.

In order to take proper care of your Golden Bamboo you’ll need to keep in mind the following guidelines:

  • Water: The Golden Bamboo grows best with regular watering to keep the soil moist during the dry season. Reduce watering once the plant is established.
  • Light: Keep your Phyllostachys Aurea in an environment where it can receive partial to full sun on a daily basis. 
  • Soil: Make sure to keep the Golden Bamboo in soil with moist but well-draining properties, so ideally, one that is made of loam.

That’s it – sunlight, water and soil! The basic 3 fundamentals for all plant care, and with the Golden Bamboo this is no exception. With these three elements, your leafy friend will live healthy and happy.

Scientific / Botanical Aspects

In botanical terms, the Golden Bamboo belongs to the Poaceae family, the genus Phyllostachys and the species Aurea, hence its scientific (or botanical) name Phyllostachys Aurea (fil-oh-STAY-kis AW-ree-uh).

Other members from the Poaceae family include Calamagrostis X Acutiflora ‘Avalanche’, Cheyenne Sky Switch Grass, Christmas Bush, Festuca glauca ‘Casca11’ PP23307, Virginia Bluebells, Golden Japanese Forest Grass, Calamagrostis Brachytricha, Semiarundinaria nitida, Calamagrostis X Acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’, Japanese Forest Grass ‘Aureola’, Chinese Silver Grass ‘Strictus’ and Morning Light Maiden Grass.

As with other Phyllostachys’s, the Golden Bamboo is an evergreen plant, which means it will be present year-round in your garden.

Growing Region

The Golden Bamboo is a plant native to China to Vietnam.

Knowing your plant’s native region is very useful, as it can give you tips on which environment is best for your Golden Bamboo. If you keep it in mind, you can try to replicate these conditions at home, and you’ll likely end with a healthier plant.

With this in mind, the Phyllostachys Aurea will be most used to the heat zones in the 7 – 11 region, as the plant hardiness level falls between 4b, 4a, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a, 10b, 10a.

Growth and Size


In terms of size and growth, the Golden Bamboo is a relatively fast grower, which makes things tricky for any plant enthusiast.


But, how big does the Golden Bamboo actually get? What should you expect in terms of size? Let’s dive right in…

The Phyllostachys Aurea can grow up to 15′ – 25′ (4.5m – 7.5m) in 15′ – 25′ (4.5m – 7.5m) and 8′ – 15′ (240cm – 4.5m) in 8′ – 15′ (240cm – 4.5m). 

Also, expect it to grow in a wonderful spreading shape, which is something worthwhile to remember when making your garden landscape plans.


In terms of watering, the Golden Bamboo is a fairly complicated plant to take care of. This is mostly because it has a not so straightforward watering schedule and somewhat regular watering needs.

Specifically, most experts agree that the Phyllostachys Aurea grows best with regular watering to keep the soil moist during the dry season. Reduce watering once the plant is established.

Which is why it is considered a plant with relatively average needs in terms of water. 

As a rule of thumb, you should remember to keep your Golden Bamboo in soil with moist but well-draining characteristics, as these will guarantee the right conditions for your plant to grow and thrive. 

When you consider this, this is why you should aim to choose soil that has good drainage, occasionally dry, and occasionally wet properties to keep the right moisture levels at all times. 

However, in our experience, the best solution to knowing the right amount of water for your Golden Bamboo is with the ‘thumb’ technique. Basically, you insert your finger into the soil, and based if you feel the soil moist or dry, you determine if it needs any water, which is the most appropriate way to go about watering your leafy friend.

Soil Mix

As mentioned earlier, the Golden Bamboo prefers to have soil with good drainage, occasionally dry, and occasionally wet properties at all times, reason why you need to make the soil mix out of loam.

This is why most experts agree that the Golden Bamboo requires soil with clay, loam (silt), and sand, which will give you the right conditions it needs.

In addition to this, expert gardeners recommend having preferably alkaline, acid or neutral soil.

Light and Exposure

In terms of light & exposure, the Golden Bamboo requires partial to full sun in order for it to thrive under the right conditions. 

Most experts agree that this bamboo will do well as long as you keep it in partial to full sun, and it will be able to grow properly.

Specifically, we recommend that you place your Phyllostachys Aurea in little to partial shade (only 2-6 hours of direct sunlight a day), to full and direct sun (more 6 hours of direct sunlight per day).


Being an evergreen plant, the Golden Bamboo will be present year round in your garden. But, you can expect it to have its ‘prime-time’ during the spring (early, mid, late), the summer (early, mid, late), the fall, and during the winter.


The leaves from the Golden Bamboo have a beautiful green color during most of the year.

In particular, they have a simple arrangement with an alternate organization in its leaves. You can expect the leaves from your Phyllostachys Aurea to be around (> 6 inches) in size.

Attracts, Tolerance and Resistance

The Golden Bamboo is well known for its tolerance to animals like deer, so don’t worry if any of these come along, your Phyllostachys Aurea will be fine.


Now, let’s talk garden and how your Golden Bamboo will look best in it.

Most Phyllostachys Aurea owners agree that this bamboo will look great in most asian/zen and contemporary gardens of all types. 

In particular, the Golden Bamboo’s best location within your garden is in hedges and screens, and in patio and containers, others use it for landscaping in a privacy screen, barrier, erosion control, or a windbreak.

Companion Plants

Golden Bamboo’s do well with some other plants beside it. One good companion plant is the Acer, which will pair up nicely with your leafy friend.

Others consider that a nice Azalea will work well too, so choose whichever you find works best for you!


So that’s it! These are the main plant care requirements that you need to keep in mind in order to have a healthy Golden Bamboo in your garden or home.

Martin Duran

Hey y'all! My name is Martin Duran and I am from Cali, Colombia. Since 2018 I have been learning about plants and how to take care of them. Here's is my journey... “The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.” ― John Muir

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