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Bamboo Biology - Taxonomy and Classification

Bamboo Biology - Article Contents

  1. Taxonomy and Classification
  2. Morphology, Structure, and Anatomy
  3. Bamboo Behaviors
  4. Runners vs. Clumpers
  5. Identification
  6. The Bamboo Flower

Bamboo Taxonomy and Classification

Bamboos have an unique anatomy and their superproductive behaviors are truly interesting to study. Bamboo is part of the true grass family, and makes up the largest and most productive member of the grass family. Over 1,000 species and 91 genera of bamboo exist throughout the world and they grow in a wide range of climates and regions. Bamboo has the ability to grow in regions that range from the sub-Sarahan deserts of Africa, to the cold mountain terrain of the Himalayas. It has a long and detailed history and is one of the most versatile plants in the world. The majority of species are native to the tropics of Asia, although one variety is native to the United States, Arundinaria gigantea. The sizes of bamboo species vary greatly. The smallest varieties grow to a height of 11 inches, while giant timber bamboo can reach heights of over 100 feet. Below is a list displaying the taxonomy under which bamboo is classified.

KINGDOM: Plantae
DIVISION: Magnoliophyta
CLASS: Liliopsida
SUBCLASS: Commelinidae
ORDER: Cyperales
FAMILY: Poaceae
SUBFAMILY: Bambusoideae
TRIBE: Bambuseae
SUBTRIBE: bambusinae

It is also important to point out that bamboo is commonly distinguished by its root system as either running or clumping. The difference between running and clumping bamboo root systems is discussed later in this article. Basically, running bamboos are invasive and spread rapidly, while clumping bamboos generally stay confined to a single area.

Bamboo in Other Languages

The significance and value of bamboo is far reaching across the globe. Below is a list of language used to refer to bamboo in various parts of the world.

KOREAN: Dae 대 or Daenamu 대나무
HINDI: Baans बाँस or Vanoo वेणु