Bamboo Irrigation and Intercropping
We are planning to plant about an acre of Guadua bamboo seedlings on our land on Ometepe Island, Nicaragua . We will need to irrigate through the dry season for the first and possibly the second year. I am currently evaluating my options for irrigation and would appreciate any feedback.
The Bund and Trench method of planting would be the cheapest way to irrigate.
A drip system is fairly easy to set up, easy to operate and is the most water efficient.
Sprinklers would give me good coverage but cost a little more. They would also be as easy to operate as drip but require more water pressure.
I'm considering planting crops between the seedlings for the first couple of years and that would certainly affect my watering needs.
With our seedlings 5 to 7 meters apart how much space could I actually use for vegetables and how long before the bamboo would require that space?
Would the proper use of sprinklers for the first two dry seasons help my bamboo spread faster?
Stephane from Guadua Bamboo replied:
In terms of rainfall affecting the growth of Guadua Bamboo please see this article about the optimal climate conditions for bamboo farms under the chapter: precipitation.
Intercropping can easily be performed during the first 2-3 years of the newly planted bamboo plantation (at 5m x 7m spacing), of course each year you'll have less and less space. 5 years after planting the Guadua plants should have formed a dense plantation.