Posts Tagged ‘american bamboo society’

Yes, really, there is such a thing as World Bamboo Day.  And why not?  Bamboo is fantastic!  It can be worn, carved, eaten, pulped, fashioned into clothing and dwellings, played as an instrument, grown as a living fence…the possibilities are nearly endless.  On September 18th, break out your bamboo cutlery, fry up some bamboo shoots, and invite your friends over to your bamboo tiki bar to celebrate one of the globe’s most and versatile and dynamic plants.

The first World Bamboo Day was initiated as part of the World Bamboo Organization’s 8th congress held in Bangkok in 2009.  The Day was intended to spread awareness of the importance of bamboo as a vital part of international economies and as a key element of the sustainable living movement.  From Israel to the Phillipines, celebrations feature speakers from across the political spectrum, foresters, bamboo cultivators and suppliers, artists and chefs.

So, what can you do to show your love and appreciation for this glorious, generous grass?

– Californians can take part in the American Bamboo Society’s Fall Meeting this Sept 17 in the Bamboo Garden at Foothill College in Los Altos.  The gathering begins at noon and will feature highlights of the president’s recent trip to Colombia.

– Cook up a tasty stir fry, such as this delicious and incredibly easy recipe featuring spinach and tender young bamboo shoots.

– Pick up some bamboo pieces to make a flying paper lantern,  wind chime, or kite for a fun and sustainable crafting project.

– Plant some bamboo in your garden using Daphne Lewis’ informative books as a fantastic resource for your burgeoning zen paradise.

– Deck yourself out in your best bamboo threads from Bambu Batu and show some pride in your favorite natural fiber!

How will you celebrate World Bamboo Day?

Thinking of getting into the bamboo business?  Excited by the idea of growing the wonder-grass for food or construction projects?  Dream of a shady, peaceful zen grove? Whether you are looking to plant for fun or profit, you may want to seek advice from Daphne Lewis.  She is the author of several books including Farming Bamboo and Hardy Bamboos for Shoots & Poles that are great reference guides for the beginning farmer.  The publications cover the essentials, including species and site selection, irrigation and pest control, as well as harvesting and marketing your crop.

Residents of USDA zones 7 and 8 will be delighted to hear that their warm, humid climates are ideal for successful bamboo cultivation. As a rule, if corn will do well in your soil, so will bamboo.  This grass likes more summer than winter rain, and soils that are not easily saturated.

Many Southern states are beginning to experiment with bamboo, and Lewis herself has been involved with collecting data on American production.  In October of 2010, Lewis moved to Perry, Georgia from Seattle, Washington to investigate how many pounds per acre several different species of bamboo would yield.  For those interested in the particulars of variety and pound per acre, visit the ongoing study at her website,

Lewis is involved in all aspects of raising and selling bamboo from germination to fabrication.  Through her site and contributions to the American Bamboo Society’s blog, Lewis aims to educate farmers as to the many commercial advantages to their crop.  Whether it be selling the young shoots to restaurants for special dishes, bagged for charcoal or kindling, used as fodder for livestock, mulch, or building material, farming bamboo can be a profitable endeavor.

At Bambu Batu we are excited to see more bamboo grown on native ground, and look forward to seeing what her research and advocacy will produce in the future!