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Bamboo research in the Philippines - Cristina A. Roxas

Senior Science Research Specialist, Forest Ecosystem Research Division, Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau, Department of Environment and Natural Resources, College, Laguna, The Philippines.

Introduction

The Philippines has a total land area of 300 000 km2. It is composed of more than 7000 islands clustered into three major groups namely: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.

The country has a tropical climate, temperature of 21-34°C and annual rainfall of 120-270 m3. It is rich in natural resources but some of it is endangered due to illegal logging, mining and other land utilization as well as over exploitation problems. The natural vegetation is highly diverse with some 8500 species of flowering plants and 2000 species of ferns. It has 15.88 million ha or 53% of the total land area declared as forest lands. The remaining forests comprise 5686 million ha or 18.9% of the total land area of the country. Out of the total forests, only about 0.805 million ha or 14% remain dipterocarp old growth or virgin forests. These areas have been placed under the National Integrated Protected Areas System (NIPAS) for conservation and protection since 1 Jan 1992, hence, no logging is allowed in these areas. The remaining residual forests, on the other hand, comprise only of 2963 million ha or 52% of the total forest area. Pine forests cover 0.232 million ha or 4% of the area (The Philippine Forestry Statistics 1995).

Bamboo resources and species

There has not been any reliable inventory of available erect bamboos nationwide except that of an FRI-RP-German Project conducted in 1988. Result of the said inventory estimated the bamboo resources at about 10 730 million linear metres, most of which are represented by climbing bamboos totalling 8318 linear metres. In the said inventory, only five species were covered. Of the five species covered, Schizostachyum lima and Schizostachyum lumampao which are naturally growing in the forests were the most plentiful, the former with 27.2 million culms and the latter, with 172.0 million culms available. The Master Plan (1997) for the development of bamboo as a renewable and sustainable resource reported that there were 39 000 to 52 000 ha of bamboo stand distributed as follows: 20 500-34 000 ha in the forest lands; 2236 ha in government plantation; 3037 ha of privately-owned plantations; and 13 455 ha of “natural stands”.

At present, there are 62 species of bamboos recorded in the country. Previous records (1991) showed only 47 bamboo species. The increase in the number of species was due to the introduction of some bamboos as a result of the efforts of the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB) to establish bambuseta in a number of places in the country, ie. Baguio City; Los Baños, Laguna; Nabunturan, Davao del Norte; Malaybalay and Bukidnon. There may have been other new introductions of bamboos in the country, but these have not been reported, seen or identified. Most likely, these are bamboos introduced and planted by garden enthusiasts and are kept as private collections.

Of the 62 bamboo species which are shown in Table 1, 21 are endemic or native Philippine bamboos. Thirteen are climbers and eight are erect. The rest are introduced and a few of them, introduced in prehistoric times. The commercially important bamboos which are usually used in construction, furniture, basketry and decorative articles are shown in Table 2. The current commercial bamboos can be increased to 15 species, especially those with thick culm walls and big-diameter culms which include Bambusa bambos (L.) Voss, B. oldhamii Munro, B. utilis Lin, Dendrocalamus latiflorus Munro D., giganteus Munro, and Guadua angustifolia Kunth (Rojo 1998; Dransfield and Widjaja 1995; Gonzales and Umali 1995; INBAR 1997; Pancho and Obien 1988).

Table 1. Bamboo species growing in the Philippines

Genus

Species

Remarks

Origin

Arundinaria

A. amabilis

NI

Chile

Bambusa

B. atra

OI

New Guinea

B. bambos

OI

India

B. blumeana

OI

Java & Malaya

B. cornuta

OI


B. dolichomerithalla

OI

Taiwan

Bambusa sp. 1

N


B. multiplex

OI

Southern China

B. multiplex f. variegata

NI

Japan

B. multiplex f. elegans

NI

Japan

B. multiplex cv. fernleaf

NI


B. multiplex cv. golden goddess

NI

Chile

B. multiplex cv. A. Karr

NI

Chile

B. oldhamii

OI

China

B. tuldoides

OI

Southern China

B. utilis

OI

Southern China

B. vulgaris

OI

China

B. vulgaris var. maculata

OI


B. vulgaris var. striata

OI


B. vulgaris cv. wamin

OI

China

Chimonobambusa

 

C. falcata

NI


(Syn. Sinarundinaria falcata)



Dendrocalamus

D. asper

OI


D. brandisii

NI


D. giganteus

NI


D. latiflorus

OI


D. membranaceus

NI


D. strictus

NI


Dinochloa

Dinochloa sp.

N


Dinochloa sp.

N


D. diffusa

N


Dinochloa sp.

N


D. luconiae

N


D. pubiramaea

N


Gigantochloa

G. atroviolacea

NI


G. atter

OI


G. levis

OI

Java and Sumatra

Guadua

 

G. angustifolia

NI

Columbia

G. angustifolia var. bicolor

NI

Columbia

Melocanna

M. baccifera

NI

Bangladesh

Pleioblastus

P. argenteastriatus

NI

Japan

P. chino f. elegantissimus

NI

Japan

P. chino f. pumilus

NI

Chile

P. chino f. pygmaeus

NI

Chile

P. distichus

NI

Japan

P. fortunei cv. fortunei

NI

Japan

Phyllostachys

P. aurea

OI

China

P. bambusoides

NI

Australia

P. nigra

NI

China

P. pubescens

NI

Japan

Sasa

S. kurilensis

NI

Chile

S. nipponica

NI

Japan

S. palmata

NI

Chile

Sasaella

S. ramosa

NI

Chile

Schizostachyum

S. brachycladum yellow

OI

Asia

S. brachycladum green

OI

Phil.

S. lima

N

Phil.

S. lumampao

N

Phil.

Schizostachyum sp.

N

Phil.

Schizostachyum sp.

N

Phil.

Shibataea

S. kumasasa

NI

Japan

Thyrsostachys

T. siamensis

OI

Thailand

Yushania

Y. niitakayamensis

OI


N - Native Species, NI - New Introductions, OI - Old Introductions
(PCARRD 1991; Reyes 1992; RP-German project 1988; Sinohin 1990)
Table 2. Economically important bamboos (FAO/ERDB/DENR 1991)
1. Bambusa blumeana - J. A. & J. H. Schultes
2. B. vulgaris Schrader ex Wendland
3. Bambusa sp. 1
4. Bambusa sp. 2
5. Dendrocalamus asper (Shultes f.) Backer ex Heyne
6. Gigantochloa atter (Hassk) Kurz.
7. G. levis (Blanco) Merr.
8. Schizostachyum lumampao (Blanco) Merr.
There are also other bamboo species which need to be conserved. These species are considered rare and endangered like Bambusa atra, Bambusa cornuta, Schizostachyum luzonicum, S. textorium, Cephalostachyum mindorensis and Yushania niitakayamensis.

Culture and heritage

Bamboo is integral in the lives of the Filipinos and its endless uses affect them from birth through their life. Rural midwives use the razor-sharp bamboo knife (Schizostachyum lima) to cut off the newly born baby's umbilical cord. Houses are built with bamboo splits or woven bamboo mats called “pawali”. Bamboo is nourishing food when cooked with coconut milk, fish or with “salujot” (jute, local green vegetable). Culms are carved to make cooking utensils or containers for rice.

It also forms a part of the country's history and cultural heritage. The famous bamboo organ in Lao Piras Church in Paranague, Rigal was built in 1818 by Father Diego Cerra, a priest-musician, visited by many tourists even at present.

The national dancers use bamboo as part of the dance as in the famous “tinikling” and the elegant “singkil” where dancers weave in and out of bamboo poles pounded together rhythmically. Thin-walled bamboos like the ratine butio (Schizostachyum lumampao) are used.

In “tuba” (coconut wine) gathering system, bamboo poles are arranged for gatherers to move freely from one tree to another in their “avenue in the sky”). Balo (Kligantochloa buis) is the species usually used for this purpose.

Bamboo research and development

Aside from initiating the establishment of pilot bamboo plantations and bambuseta in different parts of the country, ERDB, through the UNDP-FAO Bamboo Research and Development Project, conducted research on various aspects of bamboos. Different programmes were conducted to raise the awareness of the people on the importance of bamboos. Farmer Training on Bamboo Propagation was conducted in different parts of the country. Out of the results of research and technologies developed, different publications resulted and they were distributed to various sectors. Since then, people have become aware of the potentials of bamboo and both the public and private individuals/organizations embarked on the massive propagation and planting of bamboos.

Bamboo taxonomy

Logically, it is important that all bamboo species must be properly identified. Bamboos are found everywhere and research on various aspects of bamboo involve many problems in the country. The information accumulated from such research should also be transferable. However, if the bamboo species are not correctly identified and if voucher specimens are not kept or cited, the result has little value. Likewise, identification of bamboos with common or local names, is absolutely discouraged because a bamboo species has many local names not only in the place where it grows, but also in the town or provinces, where it is found growing or marketed. In the case of the Philippine bamboos, there are a number of taxonomic problems. Verification based on the previously collected and identified voucher specimens became impossible because these collections were burned during the war. New collections were only made in the late 1980s, when the Philippine Plant Inventory Project was implemented, with Dr Benjamin Stone as the consultant. Other taxonomists like Dr Elizabeth A. Widjaja of Herbarium Bogoriense, Bogor, Indonesia and Dr Soejatmi Dransfield of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, UK have helped in the identification of some of the important bamboos in the country.

In 1989, Dr Widjaja visited the Philippines and conducted a training course on Bamboo Taxonomy. She visited different parts of the country to identify various bamboos.

In 1993, Dr S. Dransfield also visited different parts of country, specifically the Luzon area. She collected specimens of Schizostachyum and Dinochloa, which needed further verification. Since then, she studied, revised and published articles on the said bamboo species. In 1994, Rojo et al. conducted a 3-year project on bamboos “Field guide for the identification of erect bamboos grown in the Philippines,” collected botanical materials from the field for taxonomic study, provided updated nomenclature of the species and produced a guide book for their identification. In this project, 42 erect bamboo species were identified and described, a key for the identification was constructed.

Bamboo conservation

Due to the diminishing wood supply, bamboos are now in high demand as raw material sources for furniture, handicraft and many products. Because of this, bamboos are over cut by improper harvesting methods, causing serious genetic erosion due to unabated pressure. Hence, there is an urgent need for in situ and ex situ conservation, especially for those considered rare and endangered. In 1987, ERDB, through the UNDP-FAO Bamboo Research and Development Project, initiated the establishment of pilot bamboo plantations and bambuseta in different parts of the country. Details about these plantations and bambuseta are shown in Tables 3 and 4.

Table 3. Bamboo species planted in pilot plantations, their hectarage and location

Location

Species planted

Area/s planted

Rosario, La Union

Bambusa blumeana

2 ha

Bambusa vulgaris

2 ha

Bambusa sp. 1 (bayog)

2 ha

Dendrocalamus asper

2 ha

Magalang, Pampanga

Bambusa blumeana

2 ha

Bambusa vulgaris

2 ha

Bambusa sp. 1 (bayog)

2 ha

Gigantochloa levis

2 ha

Dunarao, Capiz

Bambusa blumeana

2 ha

Bambusa vulgaris

2 ha

Bambusa sp. 1 (bayog)

2 ha

Gigantochloa levis

2 ha

Minglanilla, Cebu

Bambusa blumeana

2 ha

Bambusa vulgaris

2 ha

Bambusa sp. 1 (bayog)

2 ha

Dendrocalamus asper

2 ha

Gigantochloa levis

2 ha

Schizostachyum lumampao

2 ha

Malaybalay, Bukidnon

Bambusa blumeana

2 ha

Bambusa vulgaris

2 ha

Bambusa sp. 1 (bayog)

2 ha

Dendrocalamus asper

2 ha

Gigantochloa levis

2 ha

Schizostachyum lumampao

2 ha

Bislig, Surigao del Sur

Bambusa blumeana

1 ha

Bambusa sp. 2 (laak)

2 ha

Bambusa vulgaris

2 ha

Gigantochloa atter

2 ha

Gigantochloa levis

2 ha

Schizostachyum lumampao

2 ha


Table 4. Location area covered and number of species planted in different bambuseta

Location

Area covered (ha)

Number of species planted

Philippine Bambusetum Loakan, Baguio City

4.4

62

Los Baños Bambusetum Los Baños, Laguna

2.2

34

Davao Bambusetum Nabunturan, Davao del Norte

2

33

Bukidnon Bambusetum Malaybalay, Bukidnon

10

31

ERDB Bambusetum Los Baños, Laguna


20


Bamboo propagation

Knowledge on different methods of propagation is vital to determine the appropriate method for each particular species and their growth condition. Bamboos can be propagated either by seeds, culm cuttings, branch cuttings or marcotting, offset or rhizome cutting and tissue culture.

Propagation by seed

This method is seldom used because of the rare and irregular flowering of most bamboo species. Besides, most bamboos produce infertile seeds or they seldom develop seeds. Moreover, most bamboos generally die soon after flowering (Table 5). In 1990, Sinohin conducted a study on the “Phenology of some bamboos in the Philippines” and recorded phenological details of flowering and fruiting of 7 bamboo species namely: Bambusa blumeana, Bambusa sp., Schizostachyum lumampao, Dendrocalamus latiflora, Dendrocalamus asper, Gigantochloa levis and Gigantochloa atter, growing in different parts of the country (Table 6). Results showed that in all species, formation of flower buds started from October to November and then the flowers bloomed continuously throughout the year. Preliminary surveys and observations also showed that among the flowering bamboo species, only Gigantochloa levis and Schizostachyum lumampao produced viable seeds. Approximately 5 g of seeds of G. levis were collected and germinated, 50% germination was obtained after 3 days. Several germinants were also observed on the spike. Wildlings were also observed. Likewise, about 10 g seeds of S. lumampao were collected in Naguilian Road in Tuba, Benguet. Eighty percent germination was obtained in 2-8 days. Several germinants were also observed on the spike and on the ground.

Table 5. Flowering bamboo species

Scientific Name

Place collected

Date Collected

Gigantochloa levis

Laguna; Batangas; Quezon; Iloilo; Davao

1989; 1990

Dendrocalamus asper

Samar; Leyte; Bukidnon

1990; 1994

Dendrocalamus latiflorus

Baguio; Davao

1990

Schizostachyum lumampao

La Union; Laguna; Abra; Ilocos Norte

1988; 1989; 1990

Schizostachyum lima

Laguna

1993

Schizostachyum brachycladum

Laguna; Batangas

1990

Schizostachyum (green variety)

Nueva Viscaya, Davao

1990

Bambusa blumeana

Laguna; Batangas; Bulacan

1990

Bambusa sp. (bayog)

Nueva Viscaya; Baguio

1990

Bambusa atra

Davao

1983

Bambusa vulgaris

Legaspi (Albay); Samar

1991; 1994

Gigantochloa atter

Leyte

1990

Schizostachyum luzonicum

Zambales

1995

Schizostachyum fenixii

Abra

1995

Pseudostachyum polymorphum

Nueva Viscaya

1989

Dinochloa species (4)

Mt. Sto. Tomas; Benguet; Batangas; Pampanga; Rizal

1994

Bambusa vulgaris var. striata

Quezon City

1995

Thyrsostachys siamensis

Baguio City

1995


Table 6. Bamboo species that produced seeds

Scientific Name

Place collected

Date collected

1. Schizostachyum lumampao

La Union; Benguet

April 1989

2. Schizostachyum brachycladum

Laguna; Batangas

May 1990

3. Gigantochloa levis

Laguna

March 1990

4. Dendrocalamus asper

Samar

May 1994

5. Dendrocalamus latiflorus

Baguio

March 1990

6. Dinochloa species

Rizal; Benguet; Pampanga

Feb. 1989

7. Pseudostachyum polymorphum

Nueva Viscaya

Feb. 1989


Propagation by tissue culture

In 1986, the Institute of Plant Breeding obtained a grant from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) to work on bamboo tissue culture. In 1988, Zamora et al. reported the results of their study (Zamora et al. 1992). Results showed that the media composition, sterilization, and contamination were the main problems encountered. The decontamination procedure for shoots of Dendrocalamus latiflorus was unsuitable for Bambusa blumeana and other species. Callus establishment from ground corms of Bambusa vulgaris, Bambusa sp., Dendrocalamus asper, Gigantochloa levis and Shizostachyum lumampao was observed. Browning was prominent in these species and D. latiflorus. In 1992, Zamora et al. published results of their study entitled “Plant selection, potting mixes and field planting of tissue culture derived plants of Schizostachyum lumampao and Dendrocalamus strictus”. Results showed that higher percentages of survival were obtained with acclimatized plantlets at 2 to 3 leaf stage, timing of potting during warmer months; use of sand; coir dust and soil; sand and coir dust, compost and soil; soil from creekside and sand. Growth of plantlets was favored in rich mixtures containing compost. Rhizomes developed within 3 months in nursery. Potting mixtures were recommended for one - step and two - step potting protocols. Tissue culture derived plants of Dendrocalamus strictus planted in the field after 4, 6 and 8 months of nursery care showed that all plants survived. Planting at the onset of the rainy season was beneficial and growth was fastest in older plants. Tissue culture derived plants of Schizostachyum lumampao likewise survived and grew well.

Vegetative propagation

Over the years many new vegetative propagation techniques have been developed, tested and perfected. The vegetative parts used for propagation were: rhizome or offset, culm, and branch cuttings. The rhizome or offset method of propagating bamboo is applicable to species with loose clumps and they are difficult to raise by culm cuttings such as anos (Schizostachyum lima) and buho (Schizostachyum lumampao). The offset can be collected during the rainy season and if the planting site is near the source, the offset can be planted immediately in the field. However, it is better to raise them first in plastic bags in the nursery before transplanting to ensure better growth and survival in the field (Malab et al. 1995).

Among the vegetative parts, the one node culm cutting method is at present the most widely used because it is the most economical and easiest to handle. This method is recommended for raising planting stocks of the genera Bambusa, Dendrocalamus and Gigantochloa. The cutting should come from healthy one to two-year-old culms. Very young culms rot easily, whereas, older ones withstand transference.

Manipula et al. (1990) conducted a study on the survival and growth of culm cuttings and whole culms of kayali (Gigantochloa atter) in relation to age and culm portion. The results showed that 6-month-old culm had the highest percent bud node sprouts survival at middle portion (43.33%) but not significantly different from the basal portion of the culm; the average number and height of shoots at the basal portion were significantly higher than at the top portion but not very different from the middle portion. The average number of leaves at the basal portion (10.10) was different from the middle and top portion; many differences were observed on the average number of roots and length at 3 portions of the culm used. The average height of shoots of 6-month-old culm was more (6.89 cm) than 1-year-old culm (1.58 cm).

Propagation through branch cuttings is one of the most practical methods and easy to handle. Thick walled species with stout branches like those of Bambusa and Dendrocalamus species grew much better. Generally the basal and middle portion of the bamboo pole are good sources of branch cuttings (Malab et al. 1995).

A modified method is branch-marcot cutting. Although this method is similar to culm cutting, rooting is induced first, the branch is cut into one-node pieces after the roots become apparent. The growth of the marcot plants can be enhanced by raising the plants in plastic bags using the same technique as in culm cutting (Malab et al. 1995).

In 1989, Alfonso developed a new and practical method of propagating Bambusa blumeana by branch marcottage. He did this by attaching transparent plastic bags filled with wet sphagnum moss at the basal portion of branches attached to culms during the monsoon months. After two weeks, roots were visible through the plastic film. They could be separated and planted.

Cariño (1990) marcotted Bambusa vulgaris using compost, garden soil, manalo roots combined with polyacrylamide. Data on number of days for root emergence, length of roots, their color were observed and recorded. Results showed that compost + P4 helped earliest root emergence and longest root length, while manalo roots + P4 produced most number of roots. Using branch cutting was advantageous because branches were plentiful.

Decipulo (1997, personal communication) used branch cuttings in the propagation of Dendrocalamus asper in Malaybalay, Bukidnon. The cuttings were planted directly in the plastic bag, and cut branches from the 2-4 year old culms of D. asper survived well.

Ramoran et al. (1993) studied the rapid production of planting stocks from newly established bamboo plantation of commercially important species viz giant bamboo (Dendrocalamus asper), bayog (Bambusa sp. 1) and kawayan tinik (Bambusa blumeana). The planting stocks were tested in nursery plots. Survival and height of sprouts were analyzed and recorded for each species. Results showed that all treatments were favourable promoting survival and height of sprouts of D. asper. The vegetative parts particularly the level of rhizome offset, gave highest percentage of survival with a mean value of 46.66. The response of interaction between the 3 to 4-year-old clump and rhizome offsets, gave the highest mean survival value of 56.67 percent. No significant variation was found among the treatments used on the survival of Bambusa sp. 1.

Plantation management and harvesting technique

Large-scale plantations should be planned, taking into consideration the prevalent climatic conditions and making sure that water source is easily accessible for irrigation purposes. For areas with a marked dry season, the selection of drought-tolerant bamboos like Bambusa sp. 1, Gigantochloa levis or Bambusa blumeana would be acceptable. For areas with high and regular rainfall or a very short dry season, Schizostachyum lumampao, Dendrocalamus asper, Gigantochloa atter and Bambusa sp. 2 are more suitable.

Pastor (1992) reported that a nursery is vital for establishing a bamboo plantation. In 1986, he directly planted cutting's of Bambusa blumeana and out of the 4000 cuttings planted, only 1000 survived and the experiment was repeated in 1987. A nursery was established in 1988 and survival rate of plants was 60%. Besides improved survival rate, they were able to reduce input cost.

The pilot plantation in Magalang, Pampanga, was established in 1989 using nursery-raised cuttings. Grasses obtained from strip brushing were used to maintain moisture in the bamboo clump. Three hundred gm of complete fertilizer was applied annually for three consecutive years, after planting. Gonzales and Umali (1995) reported that direct planting of bamboo in a large-scale plantation was not feasible and practical. Bamboo planting stocks should be potted in the nursery for about six to eight months before outplanting.

The main objective of managing bamboo plantations was to maximize yield through sustained clump productivity (Virtucio 1996). This was attainable through the application of appropriate silvicultural and harvesting techniques for specific bamboo species. Several factors must be considered to attain such objectives and these include: nature of bamboo stands; site conditions related to the species; specific end use or utilization properties; and regenerative capacity of the given species.

Harvesting is one of the most important activities in a bamboo plantation not only because it leads to the production of culms than be used or sold but also, it can improve production both quantity and quality. A preliminary study conducted on B. blumeana indicated that removal of spines and cutting of culms (close to the ground) increased shoot production, reduced shoot mortality and farming of deformed culms. Virtucio and Tomboc (1990) studied the effect of 3 levels of thinning, 3 cutting age groups and 2 felling cycles on culm yield over a period of 10 years in natural stands of Schizostachyum lumampao, details were as follows: thinning (heavy, moderate and light), cutting age (3 years and above, 4 years and above and 5 years and above); and felling cycle (every year or every 2 years). The results indicated that moderate thinning, cutting once in 3 years and above and felling cycle of 2 years was suitable for managing Schizostachyum lumampao natural stands and to obtain optimum yield.

Virtucio et al. (1992) studied the effect of 3 levels of thinning, 3 cutting age groups and 2 felling cycles on the culm yield of the natural stands of Bambusa blumeana Schultz. The levels of the 3 factors studied were: thinning (heavy, moderate and light); culm cutting age (3 years old and above, 4 years old and above and, 5 years old and above); felling cycle (every year and every 2 years). The results showed that the application of light thinning; cutting of culms 4 years old and above; and a felling cycle of 2 years were the optimum conditions for managing Bambusa blumeana natural stands.

Utilization

Bamboo is one of the natural resources of the tropics, and because of its wide distribution, availability, rapid growth, easy handling and desirable properties, it has been well used in the daily life of the local community for a wide range of purposes. With the alarming shrinkage of tropical forests and the application of restrictions on timber harvesting in consideration of environmental concerns, research on the substitution of timber with bamboo in some areas of utilization was intensified. In recent years, bamboos have been used in the highly competitive world market in the form of pulp for paper, parquet, plywood and furniture industries.

Bamboo has some disadvantages like susceptibility to insect and fungal attack, small diameter, thin-walled and hollow condition. Improvement can be made by further understanding of the structure, physical, mechanical, chemical, and technological properties of bamboo. Due to many advancements a number of new bamboo-based products with special properties were developed replacing timber as the raw material. Most of the new products from thin-walled bamboos are in the form of composites and reconstituted panel products. These products include woven bamboo mat board, corrugated board, bamboo slivers, laminated board, bamboo strips, plyboard, bamboo-based fiberboards, bamboo-based cement-bonded particleboard, and resin-bonded, bamboo-based particleboard (Bello and Espiloy 1995).

Research in progress

Much progress has been made in bamboo research, through the DENR-UNDP-FAO Bamboo R & D Project, which initiated research and establishment of pilot plantations and bambuseta. Much more needs to be done. Different propagation methods are being improved, including the use of branch cuttings for propagation of some bamboo species. Different management and harvesting techniques are being conducted within the plantations established through the UNDP-FAO Bamboo R & D Project. The properties of different bamboo species are being studied in search of other lesser-known species which can be used in addition to the presently used commercial species. Likewise, this is being done to increase resources to develop new products.

Initially, it is important to conduct a nationwide survey to determine the existing bamboo resources in the country. Through this survey, the actual number of bamboo species and their quantity can be determined. Likewise, lesser known species with greater potential could be found. The identity of each bamboo species should be determined and bamboo species on which the local people depend should be prioritized. The rare and endangered bamboo species should be identified, conserved, protected from over-exploitation. More plantations should be established in different parts of the country. Proper management of sustainable resources in natural stands and plantations should be developed. Properties of different bamboo species should be studied to develop new products.

References

Bamboo Master Plan 1997. Executive Summary. Master Plan for the development of bamboo as a renewable resource. OIDC (Orient Integrated Development Consultants, Inc.) and cottage industry technology center, DTI, Marikina City, Metro Manila.

Bello, E.D. and Z.B. Espiloy. 1995. New products and applications of bamboo. Paper presented during the national symposium on the sustainability of the bamboo industry held at the ERDB Auditorium, College, Laguna, 20-21 Dec 1995.

Cariño, F.C. 1990. Marcotting of Bambusa vulgaris Schrad, Using polyacrylamide. Paper presented at the Second National Bamboo R & D Symposium held at the ERDB Auditorium, College, Laguna on Dec 14 1990.

Dransfield, S. and E.A. Widjaja (eds.). 1995. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 7. Bamboos. Backhuys Publishers, Leiden.

Gonzales, L.L. and P.A. Umali, 1995. The art and technique of establishing bamboo plantation in cogonal and stony areas. The Magalang Experience. Canopy International. Vol. 21. Nos. 1 & 2. pp. 9-11.

INBAR Country Report: Philippine 1997, ERDB, Los Banos.

Malab, S.C., S. Ma. Pablico and L.G. Battad. 1995. Bamboo planting material production and nursery management. Paper presented during the National-Bamboo Symposium on Dec. 19-21, 1995 held at the ERDB, Auditorium, College, Laguna.

Manipula, B. M., N. So. Gianan and F. D. Virtucio. 1990. Survival and growth of culm cutting and whole culm of Gigantochloa atter as affected by age and culm portion. Paper presented at the Second National Bamboo R & D Symposium held at the ERDB Auditorium, College, Laguna December 14, 1990.

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