Bamboo is nutrionally similar to rice, corn, and wheat and is rich in protein and amino acids. Bamboo leaves have been known to have healing properties for conditions such as irritability, headache, and insomnia. Bamboo has also been used in building and can be used as a more sustainable alternative to wood.
Bamboo is durable, extremely strong and resistant, as well as being fairly common in warm, temperate climates on multiple continents. It can be used as a building material for large constructions like bridges as well as smaller tools like handbaskets and kitchenware. However it takes much skill to craft bamboo into complex structures, so the casual might not find it as useful, albeit hard to control in a yard.
Besides its use in construction of items that would normally use wood, such as houses and kitchenware, bamboo can be found in clothing as well. The cellulose is treated with sodium hydroxide, and used to produce a type of viscose. This viscose can either be used alone or in combination with other fibers to weave many types of clothing.
Another use that has not yet been mentioned is musical instruments. As a hollow reed, bamboo has lent itself to a wide variety of instruments, from flutes to wind chimes to xylophones.
Bamboo can also be used as a kind of flooring. Because bamboo is a renewable resource that grows extremely quickly, it is a great material to use as flooring that is both sustainable and beautiful. Some brands even qualify for use in LEED certified structures. The adhesive that is used to keep the flooring together is formaldehyde-free and the material meets standards for good air quality—it doesn’t give off fumes or particulates that could jeopardize airspace.
My parents placed 4 or 5 pots of bamboo on their driveway to block the view of the neighbor’s house. The bamboo grew quite tall and full very quickly.
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