About Bamboo Flooring

Bamboo Flooring > About Bamboo Flooring

What is a Bamboo?

The bamboo has long been identified to epitomize longevity, versatility, and strength against adversity. A bamboo is a member of the grass family known as the fastest growing woody plant which can reach heights of over 200 feet. It has been reported to grow as much as 48 inches in 24 hours and can potentially reach its full height within 4 months. Though mostly grown in warmer climates, it has also been found in other areas of diverse climates such as cold mountains or tropical islands.

Unlike trees that usually take decades to mature, the bamboo can reach its optimum stability within 5 years. Despite its fast growth, the bamboo is strong and pliable that it has been known to withstand even the strongest of storms. Even more impressive is its ability to regenerate itself once it has been harvested. Due to its nature, products made from bamboo have been recognized in modern times as environmentally friendly. As the world races to save the environment by minimizing cutting down of trees, the bamboo is now considered a topnotch renewable resource and the best alternative to lumber .

The Versatility of Bamboo

Versatility of Bamboo
In ancient times, the bamboo has been used as musical instrument because of its hollow stalk, medicinal herbs by the Chinese and the Indians, as paper, textile, and construction material. As construction material, it was traditionally used in Asian culture as primary material for simple bridges and housing. As knowledge and technology advanced, it evolved to serve as support for concrete and as bamboo flooring. However, to gain the necessary strength to serve this purpose, the bamboo had to be treated to avoid water absorption.

Over the years, processing and treatment has become so advanced that those harvested on its 5th to 6th year are claimed to be even harder than some variants of hardwood. The bamboo’s fame as a green product continued to increase in the 21st century. Treatment methods not only made it sturdy, but it has been made resistant to insects and decay.

Currently considered one of the most popular flooring trends, bamboo flooring has fascinated homeowners with its durability, elegance, and environmentally friendly nature. The main sources of bamboos used for flooring are the forests of Vietnam, the Philippines, Indonesia, Korea, and China. The largest producer of bamboo flooring in the world is China where the most widely cultivated bamboo specie is known as Moso. Moso bamboo that has been grown in ideal conditions and harvested not earlier than 5 years is considered the best for bamboo flooring.

Installation of bamboo flooring is no different from the usual hardwood floor installation. There are different types of installation depending on the types of floors and it is usually undertaken as the last endeavor in any construction or remodeling project.

Taking care of bamboo flooring is likewise not a difficult task. The key to maintaining bamboo floors and keeping it beautiful for years to come is to keep it clean and ensure that it does not absorb too much moisture.

Bamboo Flooring Styles and Colors

Bamboo Natural
The basic colors of bamboo flooring are carbonized and natural. Carbonized bamboo is heated to darken the wood and produce a shade similar to coffee. The longer the heating process, the darker the shade of the bamboo. On the other hand, natural bamboo flooring has a lighter tone since the bamboo is merely bleached but is considered more sturdy. Natural bamboo registers a hardness of 1380 under the Janka Bell Test – even harder than red oak (1290) and white oak (1360) Meanwhile, carbonized bamboo registers a hardness of 1180.

Though it only has 2 basic colors, various bamboo flooring manufacturers offer a wide range of stains such as hickory, chestnut, ebony, and more. Stained bamboo flooring can appear in the entire gamut of earth colors from the lightest shade of cream to the darkest ebony. As such, a stained bamboo flooring can match any design that homeowners prefer for their home.

Styles and Colors
There are different styles to how the bamboo is oriented to produce the floor planks. The most common are the horizontal bamboo flooring and the vertical bamboo flooring. Other uncommon types of bamboo flooring are the strand woven bamboo flooring, hand scraped bamboo flooring, and engineered bamboo flooring. These are types not usually offered by flooring retailers. These are priced higher due to the increased difficulty in manufacturing and are preferred by homeowners who want a unique design to their bamboo flooring.
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