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Bamboo

Botanical Name(s): Bambusa Vulgaris, Bambusa Arundinacea, Bumbusa Apous, Bumbusa Orientalls, Bumbusa Spinosa, Bambusa Nutans
Family Name: Gramineae
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Poales
Family: Poaceae
Subfamily: Bambusoideae
Genus: Bambusa
Species: B. vulgaris
Popular Name(s): Bambou, Bambu, Bambu Comun, Bambu Verde, Daisan-Chiku, Gemeiner Bambus, Golden Bamboo, Grand Bambou
Parts Used: Bamboo leaves, Bamboo Exudate, Banshalochan, Tabasheer.
Habitat: Throughout India, in areas up to 2100 m in elevation

Description
Bamboo, botanically known as bambusa vulgaris, can be described as an open, clump-type bamboo species having lemon yellow culms, with green stripes and dark green leaves. The plant can grow up to a height of 12 meters, with an 8 cm thickness. New culms shoot up in mid-summer and attain full height in less than 60 days. The plant is native to the Himalayas, but is now cultivated widely throughout tropical Asia and America. It is also present in the regions ranging from Sierra Leone to South Nigeria and other African territories. Since common bamboo enjoys plenty of moisture, keeping it well watered is a necessity for a healthy plant. It has been considered as one of the fastest growing plants on Earth.

Plant Chemicals
(+)- cellulose (41-44%), pentosans (21-23%), lignin (26-28%), ash (1.7-1.9%), silica (0.6-0.7%). Per 100 g of young shoots for green stem cultivators contain water (90g), protein (2.6g), fat (4.1g), carbohydrates (0.4g), fiber (1.1g), calcium (22.8mg), phosphorus (37mg), iron (1.1mg) and ascorbic acid (3.1mg). per 100 g os young shoots for yellow stem cultivators contain water (88g), protein (1.8g), fat (7.2g), fiber (1.2g), calcium (28.6mg), phosphorus (27.5mg) and iron (1.4mg).

Uses & Benefits of Bamboo
  • Bamboo is used in manufacturing a number of products, like building materials, carpentry, farming, forestry, hunting and fishing apparatus, fuel and lighting, household, domestic and personal items, pulp and paper.
  • The culms of bamboo are largely used in constructional work, tool handles, weapons, furniture, musical instruments, handicrafts, stakes, pots, etc.
  • The leaves are sweet and have astringent, cooling, emmenagogue, opthalmic, vulnerary, constipating and febrifuge properties.
  • The leaf sheaths of bamboo are urticant. They are used in food for criminal poisoning.
  • The young new shoots of bamboo are eaten in Asia. Bamboo plants are especially cultivated to produce these shoots.
  • Bamboo shoots are planted as ornamental or boundary markers and used in supporting banana plants.
  • Bamboo extract is used to treat various inflammatory conditions.
  • Its sprouts are acrid, bitter and laxative and are helpful in inflammations, ulcers and wounds.
  • Split stems of bamboo are used for making baskets, fences, roofs and roof tiles.
  • In India, bamboo is used for making paper, since it provides good quality paper pulp.
  • Stem sheaths of bamboo are used as covers for beehives.
  • The bamboo resin (tabasheer, banshalochan) has astringent, acrid, sweet, cooling, expectorant, constipating, cardiotonic, haemostatic, aphrodisiac, and diuretic properties. It is used to treat infantile epilepsy.
  • Bamboo is used as an abortifacient for kidney troubles.
Caution
  • Bamboo should not be used by pregnant and breastfeeding women, unless so prescribed by their doctor