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Maryland lawmakers propose choking off invasive running bamboo

February 3rd, 2023 by WCBC Radio

Running bamboo grows so fast and is so invasive that it’s rooting up headstones in cemeteries, crossing neighborhood property lines and becoming a "major issue" in Maryland parks. Bamboo overgrowth was so bad for one Maryland resident that the constituent contacted Del. Linda Foley, D-Montgomery, for help with a neighbor’s bamboo crossing the property boundary. Now Foley, a member of the Environment and Transportation Committee, has introduced a bill to regulate the invasive species. Foley said she hopes the bill will educate people about the invasive nature of bamboo and encourage gardeners to take appropriate measures before they decide to plant it. The bill, HB 0090, Control of Running Bamboo, would prohibit property owners from allowing running bamboo to grow on their property without proper upkeep, or allowing it to spread to the adjoining properties or a public right-of-way. Violations would carry a fine of up to $50 for a first offense. A second offense would be subject to a fine not exceeding $200. Maximum fines could not exceed $3,000 under the bill.