Bamboo: Introduction to Bamboo in Vietnam

We can’t get enough of bamboo!  Bamboo in Vietnam is a special thing.  It’s even more special for us because it’s deeply tied in to why we’re doing what we do.  Keep reading to find out about some of the many uses of bamboo in Vietnam.

Bamboo Love

There’s something special about bamboo. Yea, we know we’re always going on about it.  But after doing a little bit of research to back up this love, we’re even more enthusiastic about it.  It’s one of the fastest-growing plants in the world (although apparently, it’s actually a grass!). Its never-ending fortitude also means that it’s littered all through Vietnamese culture in books, songs and stories.

Bamboo Grass

As a plant/grass, it super flexible and evergreen.  It’s great at sucking out carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and pumping out that delicious O2.  In terms of its place in Vietnamese society, it’s probably also got one of the widest range of uses.  It can be used for furniture, decorations, tableware, scaffolding and fishing rods. It’s gone so far as to give a new airline its name.  And people have even started making straws with it (like us dummy!).  Bamboo shoots are also a pretty big deal when it comes to food round here.  We love it, but it’s a pretty hit and miss, marmite kind of flavour!  

Bamboo Regeneration

There are around a whopping 800,000 hectares of bamboo forest around Vietnam.  Its crazy resilience is shown by the fact that it was one of the first plants to regrow after the use of Agent Orange.  It can grow all over the country as well, from the coast to the plains, and from the lowlands to the highlands.

Bamboo at Tết

Here, people also reckon that bamboo is a good luck charm and a plant that’ll help ward off any bad luck.  It’s got a role in that most important of festivals in the Vietnamese calendar, Tết or Lunar New Year. In some of the more traditional households, people still make sure to plant a bamboo right outside their front doors.  This stops any bad luck from being able to get in and haunting their houses for the year to come.  We’re pretty down with this.  

Bamboo Countryside

We’ve been mad lucky to find an alternative to plastic by stumbling on bamboo straws.  And even luckier that it’s an alternative that fits our sky-high standards. There’s something super special about the huge areas of the country that are covered in bamboo.  As well as all the other amazing sights and sounds of the countryside, it’s definitely worth trying to check out a bamboo forest if you’re ever in Vietnam.