Bamboo – A Lot More than Panda Food
Bamboo is an amazing material! Yes pandas do like to chomp on the soft young shoots, but bamboo can really be used for so many awesome applications. Bamboo flooring being one of the best uses of bamboo to my mind.
Bamboo is technically a grass, not a tree with a fast growing and easily cultivated nature. It can grow up to 1m a day in optimal conditions, making it one of the most sustainable options for flooring. It is also super tough, strong and actually has a greater hardness rating than many hardwood flooring materials. This makes it a great choice for high use areas and even commercial interiors such as shops or cafes. It is also a lot less effected by moisture than hardwood as it is a lot less pourous.
Just like any low quality flooring, low quality bamboo can warp and scratch. Choose good quality bamboo and should not have any issues. As it is a natural material, extended exposure to water may cause some mould to grow and warping to oocur. Just be sure to mop up and spills as quick as you can. In very dry, arid environments (I’m talking desert), some shrinking can sometimes occur.
Bamboo flooring is now made in a range of styles and colours, from the natural blond colour to darker browns, and even grey. Be aware that if you like really dark colours, the bamboo has been carbonised, which reduces its hardness somewhat. Bamboo does tend to lighten somewhat in colour over time, with rooms with direct sunlight tending to see the most fading. Curtains can reduce this fading so consider this if your home has a lot of natural sunlight.