Bamboo growth under Irish skies : pushing the limits of a sturdy plant
Faculty of Sciences. Bioscience Engineering
Engineering sciences. Technology
Acta horticulturae / International Society for Horticultural Science. - 's Gravenhage
, p. 83-88
University of Antwerp
The large open spaces of lushly green Ireland seem to offer fertile grounds for the cultivation of different bio-energy species, bamboo being one of the contenders, the cool Atlantic climate notwithstanding. To assess the yield of several bamboo species, a plot was laid out in Ballyboughal, Co. Dublin, Ireland, consisting of four Phyllostachys species. Standing biomass and biomass accumulation were determined according to two methodologies. Firstly, allometric relations were set up for the determination of leaf area and weight based on leaf length and width, and of culm weight based on the average diameter on the ground level and culm length. Random assessment of these measures within a plant or within the canopy lead to calculation of leaf area and culm weight distribution within a canopy. Total leaf area and standing biomass were estimate. Secondly, the plants were harvested at five years after planting, weighed immediately after harvesting to obtain the fresh weight, and air-dried in a nearby greenhouse for two months to obtain dry weight. The best performing species, P. humilis, demonstrating a potential yield of tonnes DW/ha after five years and a relative water content of 20-25% in the spring and around 54% in the summer.