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Bamboo (Bambusa bambos) resource development in home gardens in Kerala State in India: need for scientific clump management and harvesting techniques

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Bambusa bambos, the thorny bamboo, is the most common species found in the home gardens in Kerala. A sample survey was conducted to evaluate the current management and harvesting practices of bamboo clumps in home gardens. The survey revealed that most of the clumps were poorly managed and inappropriately harvested. This was due to the ignorance of the farmers on scientific clump management and harvesting techniques. Regeneration was adversely affected in the inappropriately harvested clumps and resulted in the depletion of the resource. Where clumps were well managed and scientifically harvested with a felling cycle of 6 to 8 years, culm production was higher, poles were longer and output was larger. Due to the higher proportion of high graded long poles, well-managed clumps fetched higher price and enhanced farm income. Poor clump management implies that there is considerable opportunity to develop the resource without incurring additional cost. For this, a package of scientific clump management and harvesting techniques is suggested.


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