Plant Name           Bambusa bambos (L.) Voss


                Common name:  

                Marathi:          Bambu/vasate     

                Hindi:               Baans         

                English:            Bamboo  



Interesting facts and history

Thorny bamboo (Bambusa bambos) as a species described in 1678, pre-Linnaeus time.

  1. bambos. It has a flowering period of 43-49 years. In the year 2014-2016 it is flowering in a vast area of Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.


Identification guide



The plant can grow up to a height of 12 meters, with an 8 cm thickness. 


Roots and branches

Culms from a thick stoloniferous (i.e. it is a plant whose stems grow at the soil surface or just below ground forming adventitious roots at the nodes, and new plants from the buds) rhizome, erect, 10-20 cm across; culm sheaths broadly triangular, densely brownish-hairy within, and scattered hairy without.


Leaf blades

Leaves up to 20 cm long; sheaths to 12 x .2 cm, linear, glabrous; ligule short, entire; petiole short. Inflorescence a compound panicle with the spikelets in heads.



Spikelets 1-many-flowered, 0.8-2 cm long, oblong, terete. Bracts glume-like. Glumes 1-3, to 5.5 mm, broadly ovate, mucronate. Lemmas to 6.5 mm, lanceolate, mucronate, coriaceous, glabrous. Paleas to 7 mm, 2-keeled, ciliate. Stamens 6. Style 1; stigmas 3. Caryopsis linearly cylindric.



Habit / Habitat

It is a herb.

Found most abundantly in mixed moist deciduous forest, and not so commonly in mixed dry deciduous forest and in semi-evergreen forest, growing best along river valleys and in other moist conditions, on hills at elevations up to 1,000 metres




1) Availability of the plant species in India: Throughout India, except Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Sikkim.

2) Global distribution: native to southern Asia (India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Assam, and Indochina). It is also naturalized in Seychelles, Central America, West Indies, Java, Malaysia, Maluku, and the Philippines.



Edible parts


                World wide use:                                Seeds, shoots, Soft branches

                Used by tribal community in Jawhar :Young Shoots



Methodof consumption


Jawhar tribal:       Young shoots used as a vegetable as well as preserved in the form of a pickle.


Other Recipe

Seeds are also reported to be used as for making payasam.

Clean bamboo seeds. Soak in excess water for 24 hour

Pressure Cooking and add melted jaggery

Concentrate it by heating and continous mixing while adding coconut milk and milk. Add ghee, fried cashew nuts, raisins and powdered cardamom.



Medicinal use

The juice from the soft branches of Bamboo during its burning is collected and is used to get relief from pain and to cure the infection of the ear.



Nutritional and medicinal information


Bamboo shoots possess high protein, moderate fiber, and less fat content. They are also known for having essential amino acids, selenium and potassium.


Per 100 g of young shoots for green stem cultivators contain:

 water (90g)

protein (2.6g)

fat (4.1g)

carbohydrates (0.4g)

fiber (1.1g)

calcium (22.8mg)

phosphorus (37mg)

iron (1.1mg)

ascorbic acid (3.1mg)


Pharmaceutical significance

  1. Hydro-alcoholic leaf extracts of Bambusa bambo consist of β-sitosterol and stigmasterol and might be used as a safe alternative to estrogen replacement therapies. The extract was not cytotoxic to MCF-7 cells and is reported to induce cell proliferation as well increased cell multiplication.
  2. The seeds are also reported to have contraceptive property, Piper betle (2-4 gm roots) and Bambusa bambos (2-4 gm seeds) are taken orally in form of a tablet on empty stomach. However no scientific evidence or research had been carried out to verify the same.




Shoots should not be eaten raw as a cyanogenic glycoside taxiphyllin is present in raw shoots. It has several side effect on human health and processing is require to eliminate the toxic compound.


Harvesting and preserving


Tender shoots and stems are harvested from wild.     

Shoots are being preserved in the form of pickle.       


Propagation and Storage

Season of collection

Leaf Fall: March--May, Flowering: Once in a life time, Fruiting: Once in a life time


How to grow it?

Direct sowing of seeds- it has a short viability of less than 3 months in normal storage.

Plants can also be propagated vegetatively by rhizome, culm and branch cuttings and could be raised in a nursery and after the production of roots and rhizomes they could be planted out in the field during the rainy season in pits filled with a mixture of compost and soil.

Dispersers: bird, Self, Insects

Pollinators: Bee, Wind

Method of storage : Seeds"              


Other uses

  1. It is used as a wind breaker and live fence widely.
  2. Leaves are fed to the cattle for fracture repair in tribal areas of Maharashtra, Orissa.
  3. Stem used to make flutes, ladders, baskets and poles.
  4. In India, bamboo is used for making paper, since it provides good quality paper pulp.





Kingdom:          Plantae

Division:          Spermatophyta

Sub-division:   Angiospermae

Class:               Monocotyledonae

Series:             Glumaceae

Family :           Graminae

Genus :           Bambusa

Species :          bambos


















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