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The romance of bamboo is back

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Flourishing: A bamboo grove at the Cubbon Park in Bangalore.
Flourishing: A bamboo grove at the Cubbon Park in Bangalore.

M. Raghuram

Civic bodies in the State have been asked to promote bamboo plantation wherever possible

BANGALORE: Thanks to the Forest Department’s initiative, the bamboo will be added in the scheme of greening of the city. None can dispute the aesthetic appeal of bamboo, particularly the variety with the yellow stem and green stripes (Bambusa vulgaris), a species that is easy to propagate.

The slender yellow stem with a large green canopy of pointed and papery leaves gives a soothing effect to the eyes, and according to Principal Chief Conservator of Forest A.K. Varma, the bamboo is gaining commercial value.

He says the department has requested the civic bodies in the State to promote bamboo plantation in the State wherever possible.

A few years ago only a few areas in the city had bamboo groves. Cubbon Park and Lal Bagh have at least 16 varieties of bamboo.

According to a former forest official, A.C. Lakshmana, there are 36 varieties of bamboo that could be commercially cultivated. One of the large species of bamboo is the Chinese bamboo which grows to a height of 60 feet. This species can be found only in Moodbidri in Dakshina Kannada district.

The owner of Soans Farms at Moodbidri, L.C. Soans, says that this variety of bamboo acts as an agent of moisture retention. The large steeple-like canopies that the Chinese bamboo develops are so thick and wide that the one has to strain his eyes to spot the sun’s rays passing through them.

Scientist of the Tree Improvement and Propagation division of the Institute of Wood Sciences and Technology T.S. Rathore says that Bambusa vulgaris is best suited for ornamental effect.

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