Don’s Expert Answers: plant height query

Question From:
Greg Haynes in Renmark, Renmark South Australia

Nature of problem:
plant height query

Type of Plant (if known):
dwarf sacred bamboo, nadinia domesica nana

Symptoms of Plant Illness (please try NOT to diagnose your problems yourself):

Soil Type (e.g. sandy, clay or loam) OR Potting Mix Type:
potting mix

How often do you water the plant:

How many hours of sunlight does the plant get each day:

How long since you planted it:
3 years

Have you fertilised? If so, with what and when:

Is the plant indoors or outdoors:

Is the plant in a pot or in the ground:

What other treatments have you given the plant:

Upload photo if available:

Other Comments:
Just curious on how tall the plant can grow ? as my dwarf sacred bamboo is nearly 1 meter tall. The label states it grows to 45cm.
Can you advise please
Thank you, kind regards Greg

A smart question Greg, Sadly many plant labels are misleading. Some nursery people understate the height of plants on labels in the belief that this will get them more sales. This is a very bad practice. We did a number of segments on Burkes Backyard TV program on this issue. I have some Miniature Baeckea virgata plants and the label says “grows to 30cm tall”. Mine are now over 3m tall and still growing – ten times the label height! From 1 foot tall to over 10 feet tall! My Grevillea ‘Elegance’ is listed on websites as growing to “3m tall X 2m wide” (the plant’s label says “4m X 4m”) – mine is 9m tall and 20m wide! I love this plant and have a very large garden where there is plenty of room for it to grow. It also feeds hundreds of honey-eating birds for most of the year. But surely we all need better information than this. Nandina domestica ‘Nana’ averages about 1.5m tall. I have seen the odd plant that is a bit over 1.5m however. There are other, prettier dwarf nandinas like ‘Gulf Stream’ which may even reach more than 1.5m. Remember that, like people, plants vary a bit in height. Humans usually grow little more than 2m tall at most, but Robert Wadlow grew to 2.72m (8 feet 11 inches) tall. I hope that this all helps. Don