Counties Support Greater Ability to Control Invasive Bamboo

MACo Policy Associate Alex Butler testified to February 11, 2020 to support SB 491 – Regulation of Invasive Plants – Bamboo – Prohibitions. This bill would would allow both counties and the Department of Agriculture to take stronger action to curb problematic bamboo growth and prohibit individuals from allowing bamboo to grow without proper upkeep and maintenance to prevent overgrowth onto a public right-of-way.

Bamboo is a perennial grass that is notoriously hard to control – it can spread rapidly and create a dense thicket, crowding out native species. There are several subspecies of bamboo, and the legislation would include all bamboo species in the genus phyllostacys.

From the MACo Testimony:

State and local agencies have been receiving an increasing number of complaints regarding overgrown bamboo. Unlike other plants, there are few biological controls for bamboo, which means that unkept areas of bamboo quickly expand beyond their intended boundaries. Bamboo is difficult to maintain and can present problems for residents and surrounding property owners.

Follow MACo’s advocacy efforts during the 2020 legislative session on MACo’s Legislative Tracking Database.