Species of Bamboo
There are many different opinions on how many species of bamboo that there are. Some experts say there are approximately 1000 species of bamboo, while others say there are more than 1600 species on the planet growing naturally. Of course, all these species of bamboo are both decorative and useful when they are used in the homes and businesses in countries around the world.
Regions of growth
Of the many kinds of species of bamboo out there, 64% of the varieties of bamboo growing naturally do so within the Southeast Asia regions. 33% of the species grow naturally in Latin America, and the last 7%, give or take a few species, grow in the Africa and Oceana regions of the world.
In America, there are only three species of bamboo that grow naturally. These three species once covered nearly five million acres of land in America, until settlers began to tear down this “Cane Break” for farming lands. Any other species of bamboo that grow in North America are generally those that have been transplanted from other places.
Different species of bamboo grow in different temperature zones, depending on what kinds of needs the particular species has. Most bamboo grows in areas of temperate, sub-tropical, or tropical temperatures, with those growing in the temperate zones the hardiest of the species.
For gardeners, the temperature zones that bamboo grows best in are zones 4 through 10. The heartier species of bamboo should be grown in zones 4 through seven, while sub-tropic species can be grown in zones 9 and 10. Tropical species should only be grown in places considered zone 10, and anything grown indoors should be a heartier variety.
Clumpers and runners
There are two distinct sections of bamboo that describe how they grow in nature. These two sections, clumpers and runners, are determined by what kinds of roots or rhizomes they have, as well as how fast they spread. Clumpers grow in dense clumps and slowly expand from the place of origin. Runners spread quickly from where they began and tend to take over anywhere that they exist.
While there is some proof to show that there are tendencies for these two sections of bamboo to grow in certain areas, there are always exceptions to the rules. But clumpers tend to grow in tropical areas, while runners are known for growing in the temperate zones where they are planted or found naturally.
While there are an indeterminable number of species of this woody grass in the world, there are certainly enough to keep people interested in making objects and other useful items out of bamboo. In the future, it might be possible to find even more species as the usefulness of the ones already discovered continues to grow.