Bamboo Wall Panels, Doors, & Ceiling Tiles
The perennial evergreen plant, bamboo, is a member of the grass family. It functions as a single plant, self-propagating as it spreads underground via a network of rhizomes. Bamboo is not harmed by harvesting and can grow into mature fiber in three to seven years. Some bamboos attain heights of 100 feet or more, and growth of 1.5 inches per hour (about 3 feet in one day) can be observed. By comparison, oak takes approximately 120 years to grow to maturity.
In addition to being attractive, easy to maintain, and harder than standard hardwoods, bamboo also represents a considerable ecological savings since it reduces the need for virgin lumber, often harvested using clear-cut methods. Compared to fast-growing pine forests, about twice as much fiber can be taken from a bamboo forest per year. It is gaining popularity due to its strength, natural beauty, and multifaceted uses.
Most bamboo is found in China, but India, Japan, Vietnam, Costa Rica, and Indonesia are also commercial exporters. Over half of the world’s population relies on bamboo for daily use. There are 1,500 uses for bamboo, including furniture, cabinetry, flooring, baskets, cases, screens, scaffolding, fences, and wall coverings. There is an increasing demand for domestically-grown bamboo, and it is anticipated that local availability of bamboo will improve in the near future. There is one species that is native to the U.S. – Switch Cane Bamboo (arundinaria gigantea) – whose habitat is the Southeast region of the country.
Bamboo can be installed in the same way as its hardwood counterpart. The natural grain of bamboo is said to be even more beautiful than hardwood, yet it is much less expensive. It is considered a hardwood, almost equivalent to our hardest native wood, maple, making it more durable and able to withstand heavy use. Unlike wood, bamboo has no rays or knots, allowing it to withstand more stress throughout the length of each stalk. Bamboo’s sectional anatomy, both as a cane and on a microscopic fiber level, enhances its structural integrity. Its high silica content in bamboo fibers means the material cannot be digested by termites.