Champaign City Council adopted an ordinance to ban running bamboo within the City limits effective February 3, 2015. Running bamboo can become an invasive nuisance through the aggressive spread of underground rhizomes resulting in the emergence of new bamboo culms far from the plant. Running bamboo can also grow to a height in excess of 30 feet, often blocking natural sunlight or interfering with overhead utility lines. Running bamboo left unchecked can leap from yard to yard, block sidewalks, and potentially cause property maintenance concerns.
The ordinance bans running bamboo from being planted on the parkway and on private property. The ordinance allows existing running bamboo planted on private property to remain, however it places restrictions on how the running bamboo must be maintained as to prevent encroachment onto adjacent public and private properties. Voluntary compliance with the ordinance requirements is encouraged; however when a violation is encountered, the Neighborhood Services Department will address the concern following established procedures for nuisance abatement.
Property owners with existing planting of running bamboo should contact the City of Champaign Neighborhood Services Department prior to the ordinance effective date of February 3, 2015 to document the existence of the running bamboo and obtain a copy of the maintenance requirements to ensure continued compliance.