Fargesia murielae ‘Red Zebra’ bamboo is an attractive small clumping bamboo with deep dark red matured culm and evergreen foliage. The Red Zebra is a standout ornament bamboo.
The new shoots and sheaths are covered in variable patterns of purplish-brown tints against the green cluster of leaves. This peculiar habit gives Red Zebra bamboo its stunning look. The intensity of red in matured stems also add to the distinct appearance that is similar to the black running and clumping bamboos.
Name: Fargesia murielae Red Zebra, Umbrella Bamboo Red Zebra
Foliage: Evergreen, leaves can be pruned.
Culm: Upright, attractive purplish tints, culm matures to deep dark red.
Height: 2 – 3m.
Spread: 1 – 2m, clump-forming.
Site: Full sun, part shade and shade.
Soil: Loose nutrient-rich soil or loam, well-drained and moist
Hardiness: Fully hardy bamboo.
Use: Ornamental plant, garden centrepiece, individual plant.
Tips for growing Fargesia murielae Red Zebra
Cultivate in contained spaces
Fargesia murielae ‘Red Zebra’ is a tough bamboo, it will thrive in contained spaces where conditions are suitable. Its height and spread make it a perfect plant for growing in pots and containers, ideal for making a statement in the front entryway like the driveway, porch or veranda.
Newly planted Red Zebra bamboo will require a good amount of water well. Also, ensure that the soil remains moist but well-drained until the new plants are rooting.
Cultivate in garden
This clumping bamboo is a standout in the garden the transformation of the stems from purplish brown to dark red as the culms mature.
Red Zebra is a great ornamental bamboo best planted in the front garden, along the side walkways or where the culms are visible.
Propagate clumping bamboo ‘Red Zebra’
This clumping bamboo grows well by clump-base division. It can take 4 – 5 years before this bamboo requires some sort of clump division.
The bamboo’s clump-base will expand and cover the spaces where you plant them. So meanwhile, you can enjoy the bamboos and get more plants when they’ve matured.
To propagate new Red Zebra bamboos, separate the bamboo into several divisions and grow them in propagation pots before planting them into holding pots or straight into the garden. Here is a Complete Guide to Propagating Bamboo by Culm-base Division.
‘Red Zebra’ bamboo plant care
Bamboos, like other plants, will require attention to grow well. The 6 pointers below put in perspective what you can do to ensure that your clumping bamboo, Fargesia murielae ‘Red Zebra’, remains healthy.
Thinning bamboo plants once or twice a year to promote new growths and keep the plant under control. So, selectively trim the old culms and new shoots that you do not want within the bamboo grove.
Pruning bamboo is intensive work compared to thinning bamboo. Dig and remove the parts of the bamboo that have outgrown the allocated space. This is an ideal time to take the bamboo divisions for replanting; or getting bamboo sticks for use in the garden.
Pests and diseases
Bamboos are tolerant to pests and diseases in the UK, however, slugs like the new shoots and leaves. If you a planting a new Fargesia murielae ‘Red Zebra’ or expecting fresh growth in Spring, always add Slug and Snail Pellets to protect them.
Bamboos do not need fertilisers regularly, but the old plants will benefit from the added nutrients. The NPK fertilisers or any that is high in nitrogen are ideal options.
Slugs and Snails Killer
Feeds and Fertilisers
Heavy Duty Pots and Planters
Mulching is a highly recommended care and maintenance job. It will keep the soil moist and protect the bamboo from frost and frozen soils.
Always use the bamboo leaves as mulch since they contain silicon which is naturally high in nitrogen. Organic mulch such as tree barks, grass cuttings mixed with twigs and branches are also great bamboo mulch.
The best time for mulching is early in Spring before the new bamboo shoots come out; or late in Autumn when you expect cold Winter.
Buy bamboo plants
We feature prominent UK Home and Garden retailers where you can buy bamboo plants, tools and products. Check out the links to the retailers in the table for bamboo and product information.
Bamboo Plants, Tools & Roots Barrier
Black Bamboo Plants UK
Bamboo-based Natural Products
Hand Tools & Roots Barrier
To help you choose the right bamboo, we provide a complete Guide to Selecting Bamboo Plants. The neat sequence of 6 questions leads you to the right plant! Read and Download the guide.
Red bamboo plants like ‘Red Zebra ’
Some of our visitors suggested that we create a list of bamboos that have similar features to the bamboos we are featuring in each article. We feel that this is a great suggestion because it makes it easier to cross-reference these bamboos when making comparisons.
We are listing 3 bamboos that are similar to the Fargesia murielae ‘Red Zebra ’. The similarities are based on 5 important factors: the type (either running or clumping), height, foliage, hardiness and use.
We also featured a special group of Award-Winning Bamboo Plants. These bamboos received the RHS Merit Award in the UK and other Bamboo Awards for their notable garden features. If you are having difficulty selecting bamboo, this group of bamboo plants will not disappoint you.
Other small bamboos that resemble Red Zebra are shown in the table.
Small Garden Bamboo
Fargesia murielae Luca, Umbrella Bamboo, Dwarf Umbrella Bamboo Luca
Fargesia murielae Lava, Umbrella Bamboo, Small Bamboo Lava.
Fargesia Murielae Bimbo, Muriel’s Bamboo, Umbrella Bamboo
Fargesia Robusta Pingwu, Green Screen, Umbrella Bamboo
Working with bamboos
The clump formers are non-invasive bamboos, however, clumpers in pots and containers will require repotting after 4 or 5 years. Realistically, it is often hard work removing the bamboos from a pot or container when they’ve filled out the space.
To make the work lighter, always select the right pots before planting your bamboo plants.
The best pots for planting bamboos have stable bases and opened tops – here is a Guide to Selecting the Right Pot for planting running and clumping bamboo.
In addition, the clumping bamboos in the garden do not grow out of the allocated space as the running bamboos do. Nevertheless, they tend to expand around the base. This clumping habit is visible as the new shoots grow into culms and the underground base-buds thicken.
As mentioned earlier, this could be the ideal time to prune the whole plant which is also an ideal time to get new plant divisions and bamboos sticks.
‘Red Zebra’ bamboo
All in all, the Fargesia murielae ‘Red Zebra’ is a stunning bamboo to grow in pots or use as an individual garden centrepiece.
At G.B.P, our goal is to provide the right information for selecting the right bamboo to grow in the garden and in pots and containers. Based on our experience, we also offer bamboo growers’’ tips and guides on how to provide the right care and maintenance for bamboo plants. You can see most of our work on YouTube.