Prostrate knotweed: Polygonum aviculare



Core eudicots
Polygonum aviculare L.
-Polygonum aviculare subsp. Aviculare.
-Polygonum aviculare subsp. depressum (Meisn.) Arcang.
-Polygonum aviculare subsp. rurivagum (Jord. ex Boreau) Berher in Louis.
The names
Common names: Protrate knotweeed, Knotgrass.
Latin name: Polygonum aviculare L.
Other names: Knotweed, Birdweed, Pigweed, Lowgrass, Centinode, Ninety-knot. Nine-joints, Allseed, Bird's Tongue, Sparrow Tongue, Red Robin, Armstrong, Cowgrass, Hogweed, Pigrush, Swynel Grass, Swine's Grass, Wireweed.


            Weed Description 
Knotgrass can be found on fields and wasteland all around the world
Knotgrass is an annual plant, growing up to 2 meters in height.  It has a woody, branched root and much branched stems, varying in size. When it grows on a suitable soil and clear of other vegetation, the stems are prostrate with large leaves; when it grows crowded by other plants, stems are upright and the leaves are smaller. Leaves are arranged alternately, lanceolate or oval, and usually stalkless. Tiny flowers are formed in clusters of two to three, in the axils of the stem. They vary in color: pink, red, green, or pale white. The plant is in flower from May to October.
A prostrate summer annual with small, elliptic leaves that is primarily found in compacted areas of turfgrass such as pathways or sports fields.  Prostrate knotweed is found throughout the United States.
Prostrate Knotweed (Polygonum aviculare) is a low-growing, broad-leaved (non-grass) annual that germinates very early in spring. The mass of young seedlings are sometimes mistaken for grass or crabgrass, but as they grow they branch and spread widely across the ground.
This low-growing plant is anchored by a thin, white taproot. Tough, wiry branch stems are covered by small, oval, blue-green leaves. When stems or leaves are broken, any sap that exudes from the wounds is clear, not milky. At each point along the stem where a leaf is attached, there is a small, papery sheath.
Prostrate knotweed strongly prefers soil that is hard, compacted, and poorly aerated. It also seems to be rather salt tolerant, but not shade tolerant. Thus it typically is found along streets where plows have piled road salt-laden snow and slush, along paths and sidewalks, and hard trampled, sunny areas in lawns.
It is also called birdweed, pigweed and lowgrass. It is an annual found in fields and wasteland, with white flowers from June to October.
-Roots:  A taproot.
-Stems:  Branching, growing prostrate along the ground, ranging from 4 to 24 inches in length.  Stems are swollen at the nodes with a thin membranous sheath (ocrea) encircling the stem at each leaf base.
Prostrate knotweed's branches do not root to the ground as they grow. They may extend a foot or more in length, so one sprawling plant could extend over two feet across.
-Leaves: Arranged alternately along the stem, lanceolate in outline, approximately 1/2 to 1 1/4 inches long and 1 to 8 mm wide.  Leaves have short petioles and a distinctive thin membranous sheath (ocrea) that encircles the stem at the leaf base.
-Flowers:  Occur in the area between the stems and leaves (leaf axils).  From 1 to 5 flowers occur in clusters and are very small and inconspicuous, white to pinkish-white in color.
The flowers of knotweed are small pink to white and form in clusters in the leaf axis. Flowers form in late spring. Knotweed spreads by seed.
-Fruit:   A dark red to brown achene.
-Seedlings: Cotyledons are narrow, linear in outline, often resembling and being mistaken for a grass.  The stem below the cotyledons (hypocotyl) is often reddish in color.

Identifying Characteristics 

 Prostrate-growing plants with small lanceolate leaves that are primarily found in hard compacted areas of turfgrass and landscapes.  Some of the spurges like Spotted Spurge (Euphorbia maculata) may be confused with prostrate knotweed, however the spurges do not have an ocrea and emit a milky sap when cut unlike prostrate knotweed.
Prostrate Knotweed is a summer annual, which forms dense patches. Prostrate knotweed is probably the earliest of the summer annuals to germinate in the spring. Prostrate knotweed is often confused with first-leaf crabgrass. Prostrate knotweed is a prostrate weed that produces a thin tap root and multiple branched stems. Even though knotweed does not root down at the nodes of the stems, a single plant can form a dense mass up to three feet across. Prostrate knotweed tolerates extremely compacted soils and is often found in high traffic areas. The leaves appear alternately on the stems, and differ in the color of green depending on the age of the leaf, with older leaves being a less intense green. The stems will be knotty and have a paper like sheath.

Knotgrass is used as food and drinks

In Vietnam, where it is called rau đắng đất, it is widely used to prepare soup and hot pot, particularly in the South region.
Resveratrol was discovered by scientists that monitored that habits of the French. They were boggled that the French consume such high fatty foods, yet do not seem to have the heart and health problems of this lifestyle. The consumption of red wine was the link that researchers were looking for to make the connection about longevity.
If you are looking for a resveratrol recommended dosage for a specific health problem, you might ask a practitioner of traditional Japanese or Chinese herbal medicine about the appropriate dose of Japanese knotweed. Of course, they would only recommend the plant for use as a laxative, to relieve constipation or promote regularity.
Japanese knotweed is the most concentrated source of resveratrol and is the source for most dietary supplements. It is found in grape skins and peanuts, too. But, the supplement only appeared on shelves after news reports proclaimed that it was “the” compound in red wine that accounted for the health benefits of the beverage.
Later, conflicting research concluded that it could not account for the benefits, because the concentration was too low. That result never made it to the mass media. When the studies about red wine were released, vineyards wanted to have it classified as a “health food”.
A liter of red wine with the highest concentration would only contain 12.59mg of the compound. The dried knotweed root contains as much as 187mg/kg or 187mcg/gram. So, if a practitioner suggested 24 grams to relieve severe constipation, the patient would only receive about 4.48mg of resveratrol.
At higher dosages, which are found in some of the supplements on the market, all of the known health benefits of this potent antioxidant are negated, because it becomes a pro-oxidant, meaning that it is something like a free radical, which is what antioxidants normally neutralize. 
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Prostrate Knotweed (Polygonum aviculare) is used as medicines

Knotweed is an herb. The whole flowering plant is used to make medicine.
In Asia, knotweed is used in the rural medicines to cure many diseases such as : Bronchitis; cough; lung diseases; skin diseases; decreasing sweating with tuberculosis; increasing urine; redness, swelling, and bleeding of the gums, mouth, and throat; and preventing or stopping bleeding.
Not all of these uses are supported by scientific evidence. The plant is anastringent, coagulant, diuretic and expectorant.
Modern herbalists use it to treat dysentery, excessive menstrual flow, lung disorders,  bronchitis and jaundice, and gall and kidney stones.
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate. 
See LIST OF MEDICINAL HERBS – INDEX on for more informations.
In China and South-east Asian countries are now used Prostrate Knotweed Polygonum aviculare as local medicines:
Parts used: Aerial parts, gathered in summer and dried.
Useful components: Tannins, flavonoids, mucilage, coumarins, siic acid, phenolcarboxylic acids
Medicinal use: Knotgrass is considered to be astringent, diuretic, emetic, purgative, vulnerary and styptic. It has been used for centuries in folk medicine for diarrhea, coughs, bronchial catarrh, inflammations of the mouth and upper respiratory tract, liver and kidney disorders. The decoction made from Knotgrass was administered to kill worms. The fresh juice has been used for nose bleed. An ointment made from the plant is an excellent remedy for sores. 
Safety: Some herbs could react with certain medication. Therefore it is advisable to contact your doctor/herbalist before consumption of any herb.
Kidney Deficiency Treatment
For weakened kidneys, drinking a mixture of prepared rehmannia root, wolfberry fruit, dogwood fruit, achyranthine root, bighead atractylodes rhizome, eucommia bark, cinnamon bark, pilose Asiabell root, lysimachia and climbing fern spore can help clean and restore strength to the kidneys.
Chinese Medicine for Kidney Pain
Pain from kidney stones or other disorders can be excruciating, and while Western medicine offers some good treatment options, others are choosing approaches in favor in the East. For instance, Chinese medicine has its own unique, effective way of treating ailments and diseases.
This a treatment option for pain brought on by small kidney stones. Its aim is to promote circulation of the qi (life force) and induce diuresis, which is the increase of urine production by the kidney. By using various herbs and plants, such as rhubarb, radish seeds and pyrrosia leaf, the body is cleaned and the stones dislodged.
Damp Heat Type
This method involves diluting lysimachia, prostate knotweed, Chinese pink herb, talc, phellodendron bark, Cape jasmine fruit, plantago seed, rhubarb and licorice root tip in water and drinking it. This method is best for treating more serious cases, in which the patient sees blood or pus in his urine or has a fever.
Acupuncture Treatment
Acupuncture therapy can also aid in relieving kidney pain, as this process releases painkilling endorphins that attack the source of the discomfort.
Electrotherapy is also an effective form of Chinese medicine helpful in easing kidney pain. The same acupuncture points are used, though an electrode is used to stimulate the body to speed healing.

Knotweed is an herb that is very hard to kill

Herbicide applications should be timed to catch plants prior to prostrate growth; the best control results will be obtained in the spring when plants are still upright and actively growing, from seedling to flower stage.
Prostrate knotweed is a supreme indicator weed. Knotweed is the earliest germinating of all the summer annual weeds. Due to its early germination timing, knotweed is able to claim resources and invade damaged areas before other desirable grasses begin to grow.
Prostrate knotweed is commonly associated with soil compaction and can be seen in gravel roadbeds, sidewalk edges, crevices, paths and other high-traffic areas (like in front of soccer goals). When knotweed germinates in March is often resembles grass and can offer some false hope that those damaged areas are spontaneously repairing themselves where the snowplow missed the sidewalk. The root system of prostrate knotweed is extremely fine and can mine even the most compacted soils. Prostrate knotweed produces very diminutive pinkish-white flowers in the axils of the leaves and reproduces by seed.
The characteristics of the knotweed that creates knotweed resveratrol are many advantageous ones. Knotweed is considered an invasive species, just another term for weed. It’s in the 100 Worst Weeds list. This plant lives for more than two years. Knotweed is very hard to kill and to completely eliminate it from an area is almost impossible. The weed can live in both extreme cold and extreme hot temperatures. It even survives in -30 degrees F. The roots can go down to almost ten feet deep.
Knotweed may be physically removed, although compact soil conditions may make complete root removal difficult.
Broad-leafed herbicides can also be used to eliminate young knotweed. A mix of 2-4,D and MCPP (mecoprop), can work when used early in the season. It may have to be used more than once to achieve good control. A mix of 2,4-D, MCPP, and dicamba may be more effective, but be careful not to use it beneath young trees as it can be absorbed by their roots.
The best time to spray knotweed is in spring, when wind is calm and temperatures range between the high 50s and the low 80s and no rain is expected for 24-48 hours. The weeds must be growing actively. Be sure to read and follow the product's label instructions and precautions.
Lawn chemical application companies may be able to prevent knotweed with an early application of the pre-emergent herbicide isoxaben, which is not available to homeowners directly. Once established, knotweed is very difficult to remove with most herbicides.
                                                                             Edited and posted by Hồ Đình Hải
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Bamboo shoots

Bamboo shoots

The classification


Kingdom  Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom  Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision  Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division  Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class  Liliopsida – Monocotyledons
Subclass  Commelinidae
Order  Cyperales
Family  Poaceae – Grass family.
Genus  Bambusa Schreb. – bamboo. More than 70 genera are divided into about 1,450 species.
Species: About 130 species.

+The important species

+The synonyms

1-Arundarbor Kuntze
2-Bambos Retz.
3-Bambus J. F. Gmel.
4-Dendrocalamopsis (L.C.Chia & H.L.Fung) Q.H.Dai & X.L.Tao
5-Ischurochloa Büse
6-Leleba Nakai
7-Lingnania McClure
8-Tetragonocalamus Nakai

+The commun names for bamboo shoots

+The English name = Bamboo shoots or bamboo sprouts 
+The local names:
-In Chinese = zhú sǔn jiān or simply sǔn jiān or as just sǔn .
-In Korean = juk sun, a commonly used form, the native word daenamu ssak.
-In Vietnamese = măng 
-In Japanese = take no ko
-In Nagaland= bas-tanga
-In Assam =gaz 
-In Nepal =tama
-In western orissa = kardi 
-In Jharkhand = sandhna.
-In Indonesian and Malay = rebung.
-In the Philippines = labong or tambo.
-In Mizoram (India)=  mautuai (mau means bamboo and tuai implies young).
-In Tripura= "Muya" in kokborok and "Baaser Korool" in Bengali.
-In Goa= kill.

Origin and distribution

Bambusa is a large genus of about 130 species of clumping bamboos. These species are usually giant ones, with numerous branches at a node and one or two much larger than the rest. They are found in tropical and subtropical areas of Asia, especially in the wet Tropics.
Bamboo species are found in diverse climates, from cold mountains to hot tropical  regions.They occur across East Asia, from 50°N latitude in Sakhalin through to Northern Australia, and west to India and the Himalayas. They also occur in sub-Saharan Africa, and in the Americas from the Mid-Atlantic United States south to Argentina and Chile, reaching their  southernmost point anywhere, at 47°S latitude. Continental Europe is not known to have any native species of bamboo.
There have recently been some attempts to grow bamboo on a commercial basis in the Great Lakes region of eastern-central Africa, especially in Rwanda. Companies in the United States are growing, harvesting and distributing species such as Henon and Moso.


Giant bamboos are the largest members of the grass family. In bamboo, the internodal regions of the stem are hollow and the vascular bundles in the cross section are scattered throughout the stem instead of in a cylindrical arrangement.The dicotyledonous woody  xylem is also absent. The absence of secondary growth wood causes the stems of monocots, even of palms and large bamboos, to be columnar rather than tapering.
Bamboos are some of the fastest growing plants in the world, as some species have been recorded as growing up to 100 cm (39 in) within a 24 hour period due to a unique rhizome-dependent system.
However, the growth rate is dependent on local soil and climatic conditions as well as species, and a more typical growth rate for many commonly cultivated bamboos in temperate climates is in the range of 3–10 cm (1-4 inches) per day during the growing period.
Some of the largest timber bamboo can grow over 30 metres (98 ft) tall, and be as large as 15–20 cm (6-8 inches) in diameter.
Unlike trees, individual bamboo culms emerge from the ground at their full diameter and grow to their full height in a single growing season of 3–4 months. During these several months, each new shoot grows vertically into a culm with no branching out until the majority of the mature height is reached. Then the branches extend from the nodes and leafing out occurs. In the next year, the pulpy wall of each culm or stem slowly hardens. During the third year, the culm hardens further. The shoot is now considered a fully mature culm. Over the next 2–5 years (depending on species), fungus and mold begin to form on the outside of the culm, which eventually penetrate and overcome the culm. Around 5 – 8 years later (species and climate dependent), the fungal and mold growth cause the culm to collapse and decay. This brief life means culms are ready for harvest and suitable for use in construction within about 3 – 7 years. Individual bamboo culms do not get any taller or larger in diameter in subsequent years than they do in their first year, and they do not replace any growth that is lost from pruning or natural breakage. Bamboos have a wide range of hardiness depending on species and locale. Small or young specimens of an individual species will produce small culms initially. As the clump and its rhizome system matures, taller and larger culms will be produced each year until the plant approaches its particular species limits of height and diameter.
Many tropical bamboo species will die at or near freezing temperatures, while some of the hardier or so-called temperate bamboos can survive temperatures as low as −29 °C (−20 °F). Some of the hardiest bamboo species can be grown in places as cold as USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 5-6, although they typically will defoliate and may even lose all above-ground growth; yet the rhizomes will survive and send up shoots again the next spring. In milder climates, such as USDA Zone 8 and above, some hardy bamboo may remain fully leafed out year around.
Bamboos are of notable economic and cultural significance in South Asia, South East Asia and East Asia, being used for building materials, as a food source, and as a versatile raw product.
Most bamboo species flower infrequently. In fact, many bamboos only flower at intervals as long as 65 or 120 years. These taxa exhibit mass flowering (or gregarious flowering), with all plants in a particular species flowering worldwide over a several year period. The longest mass flowering interval known is 130 years, and is found for all the species Phyllostachys bambusoides (Sieb. & Zucc.).
The mass fruiting also has direct economic and ecological consequences, however.


Now the wild bamboo varieties haven’t at some where of wild land very low population and were not the economic varieties. All most the bamboo varieties are now cultivated for the economic and useful aims.
Bamboo used for construction purposes must be harvested when the culms reach their greatest strength and when sugar levels in the sap are at their lowest, as high sugar content increases the ease and rate of pest infestation.
Harvesting of bamboo is typically undertaken according to the following cycles:
1) Life cycle of the culm: As each individual culm goes through a 5–7 year life cycle, culms are ideally allowed to reach this level of maturity prior to full capacity harvesting. Bamboo is harvested from two to three years through to five to seven years, depending on the species.
2)Annual cycle: As all growth of new bamboo occurs during the wet season, disturbing the clump during this phase will potentially damage the upcoming crop. Also during this high rain fall period, sap levels are at their highest, and then diminish towards the dry season. Picking immediately prior to the wet/growth season may also damage new shoots. Hence, harvesting is best at the end of the dry season, a few months prior to the start of the wet.
3) Daily cycle: During the height of the day, photosynthesis is at its peak, producing the highest levels of sugar in sap, making this the least ideal time of day to harvest. Many traditional practitioners believe the best time to harvest is at dawn or dusk on a waning moon. This practice makes sense in terms of both moon cycles, visibility and daily cycles.
Leaching is the removal of sap after harvest. In many areas of the world, the sap levels in harvested bamboo are reduced either through leaching or postharvest photosynthesis. Examples of this practice include:
1-Cut bamboo is raised clear of the ground and leant against the rest of the clump for one to two weeks until leaves turn yellow to allow full consumption of sugars by the plant.
2-A similar method is undertaken, but with the base of the culm standing in fresh water, either in a large drum or stream to leach out sap.
3-Cut culms are immersed in a running stream and weighted down for three to four weeks.
4-Water is pumped through the freshly cut culms, forcing out the sap (this method is often used in conjunction with the injection of some form of treatment).
5-In the process of water leaching, the bamboo is dried slowly and evenly in the shade to avoid cracking in the outer skin of the bamboo, thereby reducing opportunities for pest infestation.
6-Durability of bamboo in construction is directly related to how well it is handled from the moment of planting through harvesting, transportation, storage, design, construction and maintenance. Bamboo harvested at the correct time of year and then exposed to ground contact or rain, will break down just as quickly as incorrectly harvested material.

Regional uses of bamboo trees

In its natural form, bamboo as a construction material is traditionally associated with the cultures of South Asia, East Asia and the South Pacific, to some extent in Central and South America and by extension in the aesthetic of Tiki culture.
Many uses of  the bamboo body trees such as:
1-Use in construction to make simple houses, huts, walls, bridges, floors, beds, boat…
2-Use in household instruments as
3-Use as poles for boating, flagpoles.
4-Use to make furniture such as flooring, cabinetry,
5-Use in architectural buiding such as fencing, fountains, grates and gutters…
6-Use as paper in Chinese ancient socials
7-Use to make hard paper form bamboo fabric.
8-Use to make musical instrument such as bamboo flutes. 
9-Use to make fishing rods, bamboo filters and bamboo cannons.
10-Use in the bamboo goods industry.
11-Use as weapons in ancient wars.
12-Use to build thick-green bamboo hedges (lũy tre) in Vietnamese old villages.
Bamboo plays many important parts of the cultures of many Asian countries.

The uses of bamboo shoots

Bamboo shoots are used as food

Bamboo shoots or bamboo sprouts are the edible shoots (new bamboo culms that come out of the ground) of many bamboo species including Bambusa vulgaris and  Phyllostachys edulis. They are used in numerous Asian dishes and broths. They are sold in various processed shapes, and are available in fresh, dried, and canned versions.
Shoots of several species of bamboo are harvested for consumption:
-Phyllostachys edulis  produces very large shoots up to 2.5 kilos. The shoots of this species are called different names depending on when they are harvested.
-Winter shoots are smaller in size, up to 1 kg in weigh per harvested shoot. The flesh is tender and palatable and commercially quite important; they are harvested in November and December in Taiwan.
-"Hairy" shoots are larger in size, but due to their toughness and bitter taste, they are generally used to make dried bamboo shoots. They are harvested between March and May in Taiwan.
-Phyllostachys bambusoides  produces shoots that are slender and long with firm flesh. Commonly consumed fresh, they are also made into dried bamboo shoots.
-Dendrocalamus latiflorus  produces shoots that are large with flesh that is fibrous and hard. As such, they are suitable mainly for canning and drying.
-Bambusa oldhamii produces valuable shoots that are large with tender and fragrant flesh. They are usually sold fresh and in season between late spring and early fall. Their availability depends on local climate. These shoot are also available in cans when not in season.
-Bambusa odashimae is considered similar to B. oldhamii, but highly prized due to its crisp flesh similar to Asian pears. It is produced mainly in Taitung and Hualien and consumed fresh.
A traditional forest vegetable in China for more than 2,500 years, bamboo shoots are not only delicious but are also rich in nutrients, and rank among the five most popular healthcare foods in the world. In Japan, the bamboo shoot is called the King of Forest Vegetables.
The properties of bamboo shoots were recorded in the book of Compendium of Materia Medica, a pharmaceutical text written during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), with the following words: "It’s slightly cold, sweet, non-toxic, and it quenches thirst, benefits the liquid circulatory system, supplements Qi, and can be served as a daily dish."
The shoots (new culms that come out of the ground) of bamboo are edible. They are used in numerous Asian dishes and broths, and are available in supermarkets in various sliced forms, in both fresh and canned versions. The bamboo shoot in its fermented state forms an important ingredient in cuisines across the Himalayas. In Assam, India, for example, it is called khorisa. In Nepal, a delicacy popular across ethnic boundaries consists of bamboo shoots fermented with turmeric and oil, and cooked with potatoes into a dish that usually accompanies rice (alu tama in Nepali).
In Indonesia, they are sliced thin and then boiled with santan (thick coconut milk) and spices to make a dish called gulai rebung. Other recipes using bamboo shoots are sayur lodeh (mixed vegetables in coconut milk) and lun pia (sometimes written lumpia: fried wrapped bamboo shoots with vegetables). The shoots of some species contain toxins that need to be leached or boiled out before they can be eaten safely.
Pickled bamboo, used as a condiment, may also be made from the pith of the young shoots.
The sap of young stalks tapped during the rainy season may be fermented to make ulanzi (a sweet wine) or simply made into a soft drink. Bamboo leaves are also used as wrappers for steamed dumplings which usually contains glutinous rice and other ingredients.
Pickled bamboo shoots (Nepali: tama) are cooked with black eyed beans as a delicacy food in Nepal. Many Nepalese restaurant around the world serve this dish as aloo bodi tama. Fresh bamboo shoots are sliced and pickled with mustard seeds and turmeric and kept in glass jar in sun for the best taste. It is used alongside many dried beans in cooking during winter months. Baby shoots (Nepali: tusa) of a very different variety of bamboo (Nepali: Nigalo) native to Nepal is cooked as a curry in Hilly regions.
In Sambalpur, India, the tender shoots are grated into juliennes and fermented to prepare kardi. The name is derived from the Sanskrit word for bamboo shoot, karira. This fermented bamboo shoot is used in various culinary preparations, notably amil, a sour vegetable soup. It is also made into pancakes using rice flour as a binding agent. The shoots that have turned a little fibrous are fermented, dried, and ground to sand-sized particles to prepare a garnish known as hendua. It is also cooked with tender pumpkin leaves to make sag green leaves.
The empty hollow in the stalks of larger bamboo is often used to cook food in many Asian cultures. Soups are boiled and rice is cooked in the hollows of fresh stalks of bamboo directly over a flame. Similarly, steamed tea is sometimes rammed into bamboo hollows to produce compressed forms of Pu-erh tea. Cooking food in bamboo is said to give the food a subtle but distinctive taste.
In addition, bamboo is frequently used for cooking utensils within many cultures, and is used in the manufacture of chopsticks.
In Indonesia, they are sliced thinly to be boiled with coconut milk and spices to make gulai rebung. Other recipes using bamboo shoots are sayur lodeh (mixed vegetables in coconut milk) and lun pia (sometimes written lumpia: fried wrapped bamboo shoots with vegetables).
In certain parts of Japan, China and Taiwan, the giant timber bamboo Bambusa oldhamii is harvested in spring or early summer.
In Sikkim & Darjeeling, India, bamboo Shoots is know as Tama. Some varieties of bamboo shoots commonly grown in the Sikkim Himalayas are Dendrocalamus hamiltonii, Dendrocalamus sikkimensis and Bambusa tulda locally known as ‘choya bans’, ‘bhalu bans’ and ‘karati bans’, respectively are edible when young. These bamboo shoots are collected, defoliated and boiled in water with turmeric powder for 10-15 min to remove bitter taste of bamboo. Tama is ready for consumption. Tama is commonly sold in the local markets during the months of June to September when young bamboo shoots sprout.
In Assam, India, bamboo shoots are part of the traditional cuisine. It is called khorisa and bah gaj in Assamese.
In the Diyun region of Arunachal Pradesh, the Chakma people call it bashchuri. The fermented version is called medukkeye, which is often served fried with pork. The bamboo shoots can also be fermented and stored with vinegar.
In Jharkhand, India, they are used in curries, and commonly used as a pickle.
In Nagaland (India), bamboo shoot is both cooked and eaten as a fresh food item and fermented for a variety of culinary uses. Fermented bamboo shoot is commonly known as bas tinga. Cooking pork with a generous portion of fermented bamboo shoot is very popular in Naga cuisine.
In Manipur (India), it is known as u-soi. It is also fermented and preserved which is called soibum. It is used in a wide variety of dishes – among which are iromba, ooti and kangshu ar eto.
In Western Orissa or the Kosal region of India, it is a common ingredient. Since this region is dominated by the tribal population, bamboo shoots (kardi), is believed to have been in use for hundred of years. In this region, kardi achar (pickled bamboo shoots) and kardi baja (fried bamboo shoot strands) are also popular. Fresh kardi is best eaten as kardi bhaja. It is kept in bottles for use at later stages. Dried kardi. also called hendua, is also eaten in western Orissa. Itis best eaten with roasted or fried tomatoes.
In Nepal, they are used in dishes which have been well known in Nepal for centuries. A popular dish is tama (fermented), with (potato) and (beans). An old popular song in Nepali depicts tama as , which means, "my mother loves vegetable of recipe containing potato, beans, and tama".
In Vietnamese cuisine, shredded bamboo shoots are used alone or with other vegetable in many stir-fried vegetable dishes. It may also be used as the sole vegetable ingredient in pork chop soup.
In Philippine cuisine, they are called labong. The two most popular dishes for this are ginataang labong (shoots with coconut milk and chilies) and dinengdeng na labong (shoots in fish bagoong with string beans, saluyot, and tinapa). Bamboo shoots are also pickled in the same manner as the papaya dish, atchara.
The bamboo shoots are used as a special dish during the monsoons (due to seasonal availability) in Coorg (Kodagu) district, Karnataka, India. It is commonly known as kanile in the local language. It is usually sliced and soaked in water for two to three days, where the water is drained and replenished with fresh water each day to extricate and remove toxins. It is also used as pickle. It is used as a delicacy by all communities in Coorg.
In Uganda, bamboo shoots are called maleya or kamaleya among the Lumasaba tribe along Mt Elgon region in Uganda. Generally, they are called malewa by the rest of Ugandans. Since it is a seasonal crop, it is harvested once a year and preserved by smoking, then cooked by soaking. It is then washed, sliced and then boiled. It is eaten in ground nut sauce.
The bamboo has a very acrid flavor and should be sliced thin and boiled in a large volume of water several times. The sliced bamboo is edible after boiling. B. oldhamii is more widely known as a noninvasive landscaping bamboo.
The shoots of some species contain cyanide that must be leached or boiled out before they can be eaten safely. Slicing the bamboo shoots thinly assists in this leaching.
Pickled bamboo, used as a condiment, may also be made from the pith of the young shoots. The shoots of the giant bamboo (Cathariostachys madagascariensis) contain cyanide. Despite this, the golden bamboo lemur ingests many times the quantity of toxin that would kill a human.
It is a low-calorie source of potassium. It is known for its sweet taste and as a good source of nutrients and protein.

The main nutrients in bamboo shoots

The main nutrients in bamboo shoots are protein, amino acid, fat, sugar and inorganic salt. They are rich in protein, containing between 1.49 and 4.04 grams (average 2.65g) per 100g of fresh bamboo shoots.
The bamboo protein produces eight essential and two semi-essential amino acids. Although the fat content is comparatively low (0.26-0.94%), it is still higher than in many other vegetables, and the shoots contain rich essential fatty acids. The total sugar content, 2.5% on average, is lower than that in other vegetables. The water content is 90% or more.
Many Asian recipes incorporate bamboo shoots. They appear in soups, dumplings, and stir fries. There is a slightly crunchy, crisp texture retained through cooking which compliments dishes with an assortment of vegetables and meats. Bamboo shoots may also be pickled and used as a garnish, as is especially common in China. Shredded fresh bamboo shoots can appear plain on salads and noodle dishes as well.
Not all species of bamboo produce tasty edible shoots. Some of the best choices are big node, giant timber, sweet shoot, and red margin bamboos. Moso-chiku bamboo is also used to produce edible shoots. Many of these cultivars are also easy to grow and attractive to look at, for cooks who would like to be able to use bamboo shoots fresh from the garden.
The following table shows the main nutrients on bamboo shoots comparing to some other normal vegetables:

Ash Content (g)
Bamboo shoots*
Chinese cabbage
Garlic sprout
White turnip

The following table shows all the nutrients of bamboo shoots:
Amounts per 1 cup (120g)

Calorie Information
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Calories 13.2 (55.3 kJ)                     1%
From Carbohydrate 6.5 (27.2 kJ)
From Fat 2.2 (9.2 kJ)
From Protein 4.5 (19.3 kJ) 
Total Carbohydrate 1.8g              1%
Dietary Fiber 1.2g                           5%
Fats & Fatty Acids
Total Fat 0.3g                                  0%
Saturated Fat 0.1 g                         0%
Monounsaturated Fat 0.0g 
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1g 
Total Omega-3 fatty acids 18.0 mg 
Total Omega-6 fatty acids 99.6 mg 
Protein & Amino Acids
Amounts Per Selected Serving  %DV
Protein 1.8g                                      4%

Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Riboflavin 0.1 mg                        4%
Niacin 0.4 mg                               2%
Vitamin B6 0.1 mg                       6%
Folate 2.4 mcg                             1%
Pantothenic Acid 0.1 mg           1%

Amounts Per Selected Serving     %DV
Calcium 14.4 mg                            1%
Iron 0.3mg                                     2%
Magnesium 3.6 mg                      1%
Phosphorus 24.0 mg                    2%
Potassium 640 mg                       18%
Sodium 288 mg                            12%
Zinc 0.6 mg                                   4%
Copper 0.1 mg                              5%
Manganese 0.1 mg                      7%
Selenium 0.5 mcg                         1%
Amounts Per Selected Serving     %DV
Water 115 g
Ash 1.0 g
                                Source: Nutrient data for this listing was provided by USDA SR-21. 

Bamboo in animal diets

Soft bamboo shoots, stems, and leaves are the major food source of the giant panda of China, the red panda of Nepal and the bamboo lemurs of Madagascar. Mountain gorillas of Africa also feed on bamboo, and have been documented consuming bamboo sap which was fermented and alcoholic; chimps and elephants of the region also eat the stalks.

Bamboo shoots are uses as medicines

Bamboo is used in Chinese medicine for treating infections and healing.
In Ayurveda, the Indian system of traditional medicine, the silicious concretion found in the culms of the bamboo stem is called banslochan. It is known as tabashir or tawashir in Unani-Tibb the Indo-Persian system of medicine. In English, it is called "bamboo manna". This concretion is said to be a tonic for the respiratory diseases. It was earlier obtained from Melocanna bambusoides and is very hard to get. In most Indian literature, Bambusa arundinacea is described as the source of bamboo manna.
Modern research finds that the bamboo shoot has a number of medicinal benefits, from cancer prevention and weight loss to improving appetite and digestion. It is also low in sugar and therefore can be used for treating hypertension, hyperlipemia and hyperglycemia.
Japanese scientists recently discovered that bamboo shoots contain anti-cancer agents and making them a regular part of your diet effectively eliminates the free radicals that can produce dangerous carcinogens.
With the economic development and the improvement of people’s living standards, demand for natural foods, especially organic food, has greatly increased. Moso bamboo does not contain toxic substances and its products are made in strict accordance with the food safety standards, so it is an ideal resource for natural foods.
3- From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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