Bambusa tulda Roxb. in Manipur State, India: Exploring the Local Values and Commercial Implications
Keywords:Bamboo-hut, suspension-bridge, pillars, decorative items, fishing-equipments, processing
Tropical moist climate in Manipur supports rich and luxuriant growth of Bambusa tulda Roxb. locally known as Saneibi, which is endemic to northeastern region and West Bengal of India. It represents one of the most costly species of bamboo in Manipur, its price ranging from Rs. 70-150/-per mature bamboo culm. The meitei Manipuris have a rich traditional knowledge for utilization of this particular bamboo species. In fact, it has got multipurpose use covering several aspects from religious to industrial. Because of its strength and durability it is of great demand on the market. Its young shoots (ushoi) and the fermented young shoots (soibum) represent a significant vegetable for local people. Ushoi costs Rs.10-50/- per piece while soibum cost Rs. 30-50/- per kg. Local medicine man use this for healing properties. It forms a good raw material for various handicraft works, house building, paper industries, fencing, and several other useful equipments for day to day life. This bamboo species could yield more than 15 very commonly used and highly marketable articles with prices ranging from Rs.10/-to Rs 300/-per piece. Therefore, the development of small scale industries with highly skilled handicraftsmen can be profitable. Plantation of this bamboo species on farmland, borders of home garden, foothills, riversides, sides of ponds will prove to be a good business as well as a proper help in the conservation and sustainable management of this endemic species. Traditional mode of propagation is done successfully through off-set planting method. This paper presents a detailed study on this particular bamboo species regarding taxonomy, status of distribution, density, regeneration capacity, traditional uses, methods of processing and its commercial implications highlighting the eco-friendly nature of bamboo plantation and bamboo products.
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