How to Paint Bamboo Poles

Saylor Connors

It is a simple project to paint bamboo poles to match any decor. Bamboo poles may be used as decor accessories, as curtain rods or simply placed in vases. Most bamboo poles come in either their natural state which is a blond color or can be found in a stained mahogany, walnut or light brown.

If you plan to custom match a bamboo pole to your interior color scheme using latex paint, you will want to decide on either gloss, semi-gloss or satin paint.


A high gloss paint will give a more modern look to your bamboo poles. If you want a more subtle look, use a low gloss or mat paint.

  1. Select color swatches from your local hardware store to bring to your home to see what color you want to paint your bamboo poles. Some paint manufacturers offer small sample pints so you can test colors before you purchase a large amount of paint. Decide on the color you want to paint your pole.

  2. Take your pole outside or in the garage to sand. You may want to sit on a chair to save stress on your knees or back. Start to sand your bamboo pole with a medium grit sanding sponge. The benefit of using a sponge is it will wrap softly around the pole for easier sanding.

  3. Start with medium grit if the bamboo pole is already finished or has been painted already. You will need a more rough surface for the new paint to adhere. Finish with a fine grit to make a more smooth finish.

  4. Use a find grit sanding sponge if the bamboo pole is in it's natural state. Start by rubbing the sanding sponge up and down on the pole to prepare the surface for the new paint. Wipe any dust off the pole with a lint-free towel.

  5. Select either a paint brush or paint roller to apply the paint. A roller with a very fine nap would suit this project well since the bamboo surface is smooth.

  6. Apply the paint to the middle of the pole except the last four inches on each end of the pole. Lean this unpainted part of the poles onto two saw horses so the middle of the pole can dry. Let dry for three hours or until there isn't any tackiness to the paint.

  7. Paint the unpainted ends and then lean the dry part of the bamboo poles against the saw horses. If the pole needs a second coat, repeat the procedure until the desired coverage is achieved.