Description from Flora of China
Rhizome neck 8–20 cm. Culms 3–5 m, 0.3–2 cm in diam.; internodes terete, 15–18 cm, initially white powdery; wall 4–5 mm thick; supra-nodal ridges weakly prominent; sheath scar very prominent, ridged. Branches 7–14 per node. Culm sheaths gradually deciduous, pale red-brown, narrowly rounded-triangular or narrowly rounded, shorter than internode, leathery, gray-yellow setose or nearly glabrous, margins initially yellow-brown setose, longitudinal ribs prominent; auricles small; oral setae absent or sparse, brown; ligule truncate, ca. 1 mm, initially ciliolate; blade erect, triangular or linear-lanceolate, glabrous. Leaves 3 or 4 per ultimate branch; sheath glabrous; auricles oblong, with oral setae; ligule purple, truncate, ca. 1 mm, glabrous; blade lanceolate, 5–12 × 0.6–1.3 cm, glabrous, secondary veins 3- or 4-paired, transverse veins distinct, base cuneate, one margin spinescent-serrulate, other margin obscurely serrulate. Inflorescence raceme or simple panicle, partially exserted from spathe; spikelets 1–1.5 cm; rachilla internodes 0.5–3 mm, glabrous; florets 1–3, green. Glumes 2, sparsely pilose, apex acuminate; lemma acuminate and long mucronate at apex; palea keels ciliate; lodicules ciliate. Anthers yellow or purple. Ovary ovoid, glabrous; style 1; stigmas 3, plumose. Caryopsis unknown. New shoots May–Oct.
Fargesia dracocephala is one of the main food species for the giant panda.
A bamboo cultivated under this name in the West differs substantially from this description.
* 1500–2200 m. S Gansu, W Hubei, S Shaanxi, N Sichuan.