Percentage of naturally occurring species Bamboo Biodiversity of India  Bamboo Species /Live collections

According to the growth pattern bamboo falls in two main categories

(i)                  Sympodial or Pachymorph or clump forming and

(ii)                Monopdial or Leptomorph or non-clump forming, runner bamboo.

Bamboo parts:

Auricle: An ear like adjunct found at the basal portion of some leaves.

Branches: Branching pattern varies among bamboo. Branching occurs at the node. Some have only one branch which remains stout and dominant while some have one main branch followed by several small branches. Schizostachyum are widely branched where the primary branch cannot be differentiated from the other branches where as Melocanna baccifera branches close to the top of the culm.

Culm: It is the aerial part of the bamboo plant which is hollow except at the nodes (with some exception). It bears the lateral buds and the leafy branches. Depending upon the type of bamboo the culm varies in diameter and height. In some varieties the culm size may increase at the rate of about one to two feet per day. Most of the culms are green in color while culms with different colors are also met with like yellow with green stripes (Bambusa vulagris ‘Vittata’), black (Phyllostachys nigra), blue (Himalayacalamus hookerianus) and purple stripes on green canes (Gigantochola sp. ‘ Sumatra ’). Apart from this the culms also have different shapes like with swollen nodes (Bambusa tuldoides ‘Ventricosa’, Bambusa vulgaris ‘Wamin’), square when mature (Chimonobambusa quadrangularis).

Culm sheath: The culm bears a “leaf” like protective sheath at the node which is tightly wrapped around during growth, called the culm sheath. The culm sheath persists for some times and then dries and falls off. It varies in structure and color. It also aids in identification of bamboo.

Foliage leaves: These perform the photosynthetic function and produce the food. The size, shape, color, hairiness of the blade varies from species to species. Some species have broad but lesser leaves while others have small and numerous leaves. Some species have green leaves with white stripes (Pleioblastus fortunei), yellow with faint green stripes (Pleioblastus viridistriatus Chrysophyllus’). Bamboo can be identified by having an insight into the appearance of the leaves.

Internode: Area of the culm between the nodes. These are protected by the culm sheath. The internode have culm wall surrounding the lacuna. In most of the species the internode is hollow although with some exceptions like Dinochloa spp., Chusquea spp. having solid internodes. Such solid bamboos are often referred to as ‘male bamboo’.

Node: This is the solid region of the culm from which new branches grows. It also bears the culm sheath. In the monopodial bamboo it may give rise to new culm or roots.

Shoot: The new bamboo culm that emerges from the ground is called the shoot. It is often edible. These are soft and fragile when young.

Sulcus: A groove that occurs throughout the entire length of the internodes of culms or branches.

Turion: Newly emerged young tender shoots without any branches or leaves.  


Bamboo is truly amazing! Bamboo has over 1,000 uses that have been helping people, animals and the environment for hundreds of years. We have compiled a simple, short list just to give you a glimpse of the many uses of bamboo.

As time goes on, we will post additional lists as well as in-depth articles on the uses of bamboo…so stay tuned. And, if you have a creative use for bamboo, please feel free to share it here with everyone.

1.    Airplane Wing Members
2.    Alcohol
3.    Awnings
4.    Alarms
5.    Buttons
6.    Beehives
7.    Books
8.     Boxes
.    Candle Sticks
10.   Caulking
11.    Couches
12.    Cradles
13.    Curtains
14.    Colanders
15.    Diesel Fuel
16.    Deodorizers
17.    Dustpans
18.    Dams
19.    Desks
20.    Fertilizer
21.    Firearms
22.    Flower Pots
23.    Frames
24.    Firewood
25.    Fireworks
26.    Games
27.    Gates
28.    Grates
29.    Gutters
30.    Hampers
31.    Helmets
32.    Hats
33.    Humidors
34.    Hairpins
35.    Incense Sticks
36.    Iceless Cooler
37.    Insect Cages
38.    Jackets
39.    Jars
40.    Jewelry
41.    Kites