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close this bookRegenerative Agriculture Technologies for the Hill Farmers of Nepal: An Information Kit (IIRR, 1992, 210 p.)
close this folderNatural resources and their enhancement
View the documentOptimum Use of Marginal Land with Sgroforestry System
View the documentMultipurpose Tree Species and Their Uses
View the documentLive Fence: A Multipurpose Living Structure
View the documentTree Seed Collection
View the documentThe Forest and its Many Uses
View the documentBamboo Propagation and Management
View the documentThe Use and Conservation of Traditional Medicine Plant Resources
View the documentEthno-Veterinary Drugs: Reported Use from the Central Development Region
View the documentUnderutilized Food Crop Resources in the Midhills of Nepal
View the documentWhy Bee keeping? The Role of Bees in pollination
View the documentIntermediate Beekeeping in Nepal
View the documentImproved Terracing for Soil Conservation on Hill Farms
View the documentSmall Ponds for Water Conservation
View the documentRunoff Diversion (Mal Tarkaure) for Landslide Control
View the documentPlanning Erosion Control Measures
View the documentUnderstanding the Environment to Determine Possible Local Solutions to Soil Erosion
View the documentGully Stabilisation

Bamboo Propagation and Management

Bamboo is a very useful plant and it serves a wide variety of purposes:

· fodder
· firewood
· basket
· table use
· shelve (nanglo)
· housing material
· house decoration
· paper
· improved ecology
· soil erosion control


Bamboos can be propagated by the use of any of the following: seed, rhizome, culm cutting, or mound layering. February-March is the best time for propagation.

The culm cutting and mound layering methods are discussed below:

Culm cutting


· can propagate more cuttings from a single culm
· less cost
· easy to carry
· simple to plant
· low labour requirement
· may cover a vast area of land within 2-3 years

A. Criteria for selection of a culm for cutting material:

The culm must be:

· in the 2nd year
· with many developed main branches
· healthy
· exposed to the sun
· without aerial roots

Selection for cutting

B. To prepare a cutting:

A single node or a double node may be used but a double node is more likely to grow in dry areas where irrigation is not possible.

· cut the culm according to the bud's position

· the first eye bud of the main branches must be facing the same direction for a double node cutting

Prepare for cutting

C. Planting:

Bamboos can be propagated either in nursery beds or directly in the planting site. If the plant is valuable, propagate it in the nursery; otherwise, plant in the planting site. If the plant is raised in the nursery, transplant in the planting site after 18 months. Outplanting to a permanent site is best done in July. The planting method is outlined below:

1. Dig a hole about 30 cm deep.

2. Loosen the bottom soil of the pit

3.Place the cutting making sure that the first eye bud of the main branch is facing upwards so that the double eye buds are pointing downwards.

4.Those eye buds which point downwards must be in contact with the soil then fill both ends of the cutting with soil and make sure that the soil underneath the cutting is compact.

5. Add water, fill the rest of the soil, mulch using dry leaves, and water again.

6. Protect from animals.


MB Method

When a whole pole without rhizome is used, it is called the MB method. This method assures a high survival rate. The method is excellent for dry land, gulley and for preventing further cutting in gullies and riverbanks.

A. Cutting Preparation

· Select a whole pole.
· Leave the main branches as long as 50 cm.
· Remove the leaves as soon as possible to avoid dehydration.

Cutting preparation

B. Planting Technique

· Dig a trench about 50 cm deep across the slope of the ground. The trench should be the same length as the pole.

· Lay the pole in the ground.

· Dig a trench the same length as the pole.

· Make sure that all the branches are out of the ground.

· Watering and mulching are same as for single an double nodes.

Planting technique



· Mound layering is an appropriate propagation method for culms that cannot be propagated by cutting.

· Open area can be covered within 2-3 years.

· Easy to harvest.

A. Method

· A trench is dug leading outwards from the culm. A half cut is made across the top of the rhizome and the culm is lowered into the trench.

B. Transplanting

· Eighteen months after regeneration the culms are ready for transplantating.

· If the regenerated plant is strongly developed, simply cut a single node; if it is to be transplanted on dry or degraded land, then cut a double node, dig out without damaging the roots and remove it.

· Plant in prepared pits; pits should be slightly deeper and wider than the cuttings root mass.


Good management improves bamboo clump growth.

· Heap up or place organic waste materials (e.g., old thatch) around the base of the clump

· Intercept the early monsoon rains which contain most plant nutrients.

· Thin out the culms 2-3 years. The old culm should be removed by cutting. This will provide more room for new shoots, light and air movement, and will make future harvest easier.

· Avoid picking the first three new shoots that emerge at the beginning of the monsoon.

· Any additional shoots can be picked for sale or consumption.

· Always cut the main branches leaving at least 2 nodes from the base of the branch for future growth, continuous fodder yield and to get more cutting materials.

· Cut the culm above the second node from the ground for future use.

· Growth of existing culms must be encouraged by thinning, harvesting matured culms and removing diseased culms.


All large bamboos (Bambusa and Dendrocalamus spp)

Botanical name

Local name

1. Bambusa balcooa

Dhanu bans

2. Bambusa nutan

Mala bans

3. Bambusa tuld

Sate Tharu, Taru

4. Bambusa arundinacea


5. Bambusa vulgaris

Ornamental value due to yellow stripes

6. Dendrocalamus hamiltonii

Ban, Choyan and Tama bans

7. Dendrocalamus hooker)

Bhalu and kalo bans

8. Dendrocalamus

Dhungre, khorse and phurse bans

9. Dendrocalamus strictus

Lathi (Kata bans)

10. Dendrocalamus patellaris

Liyen gopi and Nibha bans

11. Melocanna baccifera

Lahure (phillinge bans)

12. Thysano lamenamaxima


13. Drepanostychyum intermedium

Tite nigalo

14. Drepanostachyum

Malinge nigalo

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