Growing Bamboo for firewood and other uses
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    Default Growing Bamboo for firewood and other uses

    Has anybody considered bamboo as a quick growing firewood???

    I've been considering it. We've got an acre of land and rather than pay for firewood ($80 to $100 a truckload) I thought perhaps this might be a better replacement. Especially since it grows so fast.

    We can go through a couple of loads a month when it's cold and that won't include having to cook on the woodburning stove when things go belly up.
    We're still working on reinsulating a mobile home so right now that's the best we can do.

    Any experience with this?
    Last edited by Backwoodsgirl; 01-06-2012 at 11:23 PM. Reason: forgot something

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    Registered User frugal-fannie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Backwoodsgirl View Post
    Has anybody considered bamboo as a quick growing firewood???

    I've been considering it. We've got an acre of land and rather than pay for firewood ($80 to $100 a truckload) I thought perhaps this might be a better replacement. Especially since it grows so fast.

    We can go through a couple of loads a month when it's cold and that won't include having to cook on the woodburning stove when things go belly up.
    We're still working on reinsulating a mobile home so right now that's the best we can do.

    Any experience with this?

    I am not sure what state you are in or how far north, but in Southern California a lot of people use it as landscaping. I have heard it can take over. There are many varieties but has anyone grown their own bamboo shoots? So at least you would have something to burn and something to eat?

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    does bamboo grow anywhere? I would consider it for myself. I wonder if it will be easier to chop????

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    I've heard on the news that bamboo can be pretty invasive(sp?). That's here on the east coast in PA. People used it for a landscaping barrier and the roots ran over to the neighboring property.Some property owners even had fences that went down several inches down into the ground.

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    Default i think it would take alot to use as a wood source...

    has anyone ever tried burning it? sounds like a good idea but not sure how much you would get from an acre and how good it burns...also looking for answers.....good questiion!
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    A neighbor behind us has a small grove at the back of his yard it is tall, dense and the cats love to hunt .

    Totally useless facts about bamboo

    Does bamboo make good fire wood? - Yahoo! Answers

    Does bamboo make good fire wood?

    Best Answer - Chosen by Asker
    Bamboo burns hot, but very quickly, so you need more of it to produce the same heat as hardwoods.

    It's not recommended to burn bamboo in a fireplace inside a home because there can be a lot of trapped air in bamboo. This leads to steam building up causing large "pops" and explosions as the wood burns, which could be dangerous. Some people say you should drill "steam vents" into the wood before using bamboo in your living room fireplace.

    Charcoal made from bamboo can be very high quality.

    Some people are exploring the possiblity of using bamboo as an alternative fuel for electric power plants since bamboo grows very quickly, is easy to harvest, and is easy to transport, much easier than mining coal, for example.

    http://www.ehow.com/how_7180438_grow...-firewood.html

    http://www.bamboocraft.net/forums/showthread.php?t=2950


    There seems to be quite a bit of pros and cons.... I did a google search on bamboo firewood for the above links. There were a lot more there.
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    We had a few stalks a couple of years ago and planted some shoots in another part of our yard. 'Over the past five years we've lost quite a bit of our backyard due to lots of rain and we we were getting desperate so we've been planting bamboo and throwing big rocks down. The bamboo has spread but I wouldn't say it was horribly fast...not like kudzoo. That was the main reason we put it in because it's supposed to grow fast and spread quickly. Not sure why but it really isn't.

    We have a fire pit out back but I wouldn't recommend using it has your main heating source. We tried a few and it burned fast! We had to jump the fence to cut some more down because what we had dried burned too fast. I also noticed it left a lot more ash than wood.

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    From what I gather on the search engines, they are growing a bamboo called Dendrocalamus strictus, which is a semi-tropical bamboo.

    I'm not allowed to post url's yet so look up "Bamboo as fuel firewood" and look for a site talking about "Haiti reconstruction"

    I live in zone 9. From some of the websites selling and teaching about bamboo growing there are several different bamboos that are thicker than others.

    The one above is almost solid inside.

    To keep the bamboo from popping when you burn it, you run a piece of rebar down the middle to break those inside pockets so that they don't explode.

    My roomie says he's cut bamboo before and you don't cut it straight across to cut it down like you would a tree. You have to bend it and whack it with a machete and it's easy to cut at an angle.

    There are tropical bamboos and then there are those that can take some cold, some that like drier weather and some that like almost swampy conditions. You really have to do a lot of research on this.

    The Timber bamboos grow the fastest. Another thing I'm beginning to realize is that you want to pick the tallest, thickest bamboo you can grow in your area if you are going to be cutting it down on a regular basis because if you don't you are going to have to wait up to 10 years to get a decent harvest.

    The page above says they harvest about every three years.

    Also, if you are using it for landscaping rather than cutting it and eating it all of the time you need to put in a special root barrier to keep it from traveling.

    There are two different types of bamboo. Running and Clumping. The runners are the Timber and larger bamboos, but you can still find some clumpers that will grow quite tall.

    Not all bamboo produces edible shoots. You'll have to check it out before you buy it and plant it.

    You can also plant some bamboos in large containers or very deep raised beds (24" deep).

    I'm thinking that bamboo is a good alternative, if I grow the right kind.

    Oh, they also require a lot of fertilizer to get good growth.

    Backwoodsgirl

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    I don't think that would be much of an option for zone 5. And it is very invasive. I think I would burn sod or cobs first.
    As far as food-sprouts.

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    There are some bamboos that grow in zone 5, but you are right! If it is easier to grow corn or sod then do it!

    Down here with all of that sand, heat and humidity, it's easier to grow bamboo. Not only that, but sometimes our property is flooded during heavy rain so we need something that can withstand hurricanes, heavy rains and droughts. Bamboo does that.

    The culms are full grown height before the really hot temps hit.

    Backwoodsgirl

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