Bamboo is a perennial evergreen that is part of the grass family (a very tall and woody grass that is). Similar to grass, bamboo is characterized by a jointed stem called a culm. Typically the culms are hollow but some species of bamboo have solid culms. Each culm segment begins and ends with a solid joint called a node. Nodes are are characterized by a swelling encircling the ends of the culm segments. The segments between the nodes are called internodes. From the node grow leaves and branches. Similar to the culms, the branches are also segmented with nodes and internodes.


The bamboos are subfamily of flowering perennial evergreen plant in the grass family. Giant bamboos are the largest members of the grass family.  Bamboos include some of the fastest-growing plants in the world due to a unique rhizome-dependent system. Certain species of bamboo can grow 91 cm (3 ft) within a 24-hour period, at a rate of almost 4 cm (1.5 in) an hour (a growth around 1 mm every 90 seconds, or one inch every 40 minutes).


There are many features offered by bamboo which give bamboo great potential as a fiber resource for the pulp and paper industry such as:

  • Bamboo can be chipped in a similar manner to wood, and bamboo chips handle, pulp and bleach like wood chips
  • Bamboo chips could be blended with wood chips and co-cooked and bleached at existing wood-based chemical pulp mills - the clear advantage is that there is virtually no capital investment required to co-cook a blend of say 20% bamboo and 80% wood chips other than a possible chip blending station
  • Technology exists to clone bamboo which means that specific species could be cloned to meet specific pulp requirements
  • Cloning technology can be used to develop bamboo farms designed to produce fiber suited for specific wood-based pulp mills
  • Bamboo farming offers the potential to develop a fast growing fiber resource for the pulp and paper industry
  • Bamboo farms offer the potential for other industrial development such as the production of particleboard, MDF and hardwood flooring substitutes
  • Depending on the species, farms may also produce bamboo shoots for food
  • From an environmental perspective, the use of bamboo chips must be restricted to using bamboo only from certified bamboo farms to prevent usage of natural stands
  • Bamboo cloning technology could be used to redevelop depleted natural stands

image of bamboo    image of bamboo cluster   image of bamboo


Bamboo Fiber Length:  2.7-4.0 mm

Bamboo Fiber Width:    15  micron