Articles

Bambusa tuldoides Munro

Bambusa tuldoides Munro

Family

Gramineae

Synonyms

Bambusa pallescens (Doell) Hackel, Bambusa ventricosa McClure, Bambusa longiflora W.T. Lin.

Vernacular Names

Malaysia Buloh balai.
English Punting pole bamboo, verdant bamboo, Buddha's belly bamboo.
Indonesia  Bambu blenduk.
Vietnam H[os]p.

Geographical Distributions

Bambusa tuldoides is native to southern China and Vietnam. It is also widely cultivated in southern China, Japan, Southeast Asia and has also been introduced to Europe, the United States, Honduras, Puerto Rico and Brazil.

Description

B. tuldoides is a densely tufted and sympodial bamboo. The culm is erect with slightly nodding tip, measures 6-10 m tall, measuring 3-5 cm in diametre, near the base and with a wall 4-5 mm thick. It is hairless when young and thinly covered with white wax. The internodes are 30-36 cm long but not swollen. The nodes are slightly swollen where the lowermost is with 1-2 nodes and with a ring of greyish silky hairs above the sheath scar.

The branches are frequently from the basal of the 1st or 2nd node upwards, the complement branch is few to many, with the primary branch is dominant and thornless.

The culm sheath is caducous, hairless or sparsely covered with a few deciduous appressed brown hairs on the outer surface, marked with 1-3 yellowish stripes towards the outer margin and ribbed-striated when dried. The apex is asymmetrically arched-convex and slanted along the outer margin for 1/10 to 1/8 the length of the sheath. The blade is erect, asymmetrically triangular to narrowly triangular, acuminate and subulate. The base is 3/4 as wide as the apex of the sheath. The basal margins are adnate to the auricles, hairless or sparsely covered with a few deciduous appressed brown hairs on the outer surface and with rough hairy on the lower half on the inner surface.

The ligule is 3-4 mm long, lacinate, shortly and densely fringed. The auricles are prominent, bearing slender bristles along the edge and slightly unequal. The larger one is ovate to ovate-elliptical and undulate-wrinkled while the smaller one is broadly ovate to elliptical. The young shoots are smooth. The leaf blade is lanceo-shaped to narrowly lance-shaped, measuring 10-18 cm x 1-2 cm, hairless or sparsely pubescent toward the above base and densely soft-hairy beneath. The auricles are developed or lacking, narrowly ovate or falcate and bearing straight or curled bristles along the edge.

The inflorescence is borne on the long leafless branches, consisting of groups of pseudospikelets and scattered along the branches. The spikelet measures 2-5 cm x 2-3 mm, greenish yellow or with a purple hue and bearing 2-5 perfect florets. The caryopsis is cylindrical, slightly curved, measuring 8 mm x 1.5 mm, thickened and hairy at the apex.

Ecology / Cultivation

In tropical Asia, B. tuldoides grows naturally at low altitudes. In the United States (California, Florida), it grows well in subtropical areas and noted to be frost-hardy (to -7°C).

Line Drawing / Photograph

Bambusa_tuldoides

References

  1. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 7: Bamboos.