Bamboo Tablet

Was bamboo the first tablet? While attending the 10th World Bamboo Congress in Damyang, South Korea, we visited one of the beautiful forested groves of bamboo. Most of the bamboo forest was left untouched, however there was a section where the public was encouraged to interact with the culms and immediately I was surprised to see how many people had left graffiti on the nodes and how the vertical text and characters stood out so visibly on the culms.

A quick wikipedia search confirmed, traditionally, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean are written vertically in columns going from top to bottom and ordered from right to left. Horizontal and vertical writing in East Asian scripts

I think Bamboo was the first tablet in these parts. I was impressed by how easily the calligraphy is written and read vertically compared to western horizontal calligraphy that wraps around the the culm, out of sight.

SAM 5645

I think writing would likely have developed on bamboo culms long before paper was invented.  Without ink, characters can simply be scratched onto the young bamboo shoots. Simply by cutting and keeping the node of bamboo preserved the inscription like a tablet of clay.

Grass is greener: why bamboo trumps useful eucalyptus

THERE is a growing movement among local authorities in SA lobbying for the replacement of water-guzzling eucalyptus trees with plantations of bamboo grass, which proponents say has more downstream value chain opportunities.

Bamboo is the biggest member of the grass family. It is grown mainly for its tough fibre, which has about 5000 uses, including production of paper.

Read more: Grass is greener: why bamboo trumps useful eucalyptus

Food & Trees for Africa announces first Bamboo Carbon Registration

In an international first, Food & Trees for Africa’s Bamboo for Africa has been registered as a Verified Emissions Reduction programme under the international Verified Carbon Standard. This brings cost effective carbon sequestration to South Africa and addresses enterprise development, corporate social investment and black economic empowerment.

Read more: Food & Trees for Africa announces first Bamboo Carbon Registration

Bamboo Symposium

The Bamboo Symposium which was held on the 11th & 12th August 2011 at the East London International Convention Centre was a great success bringing together interested parties from around the country and abroad. Emphasis was on how to unlock the potential of bamboo in South Africa, coupled with its potential for job creation.

Read more: Bamboo Symposium