Commercial cultivation of bamboo begins
Part of: Prelims and GS – III – Agriculture
Context With the threat of Yellow Leaf Disease spreading to vast tracts of arecanut plantations looming large, farmers in Karnataka’s coastal belt have now begun commercial cultivation of bamboo in a small way.
About Yellow leaf disease
- Abnormal yellowing of leaf tissue is called chlorosis.
- Leaves lack the essential green pigment chlorophyll. Possible causes include poor drainage, damaged roots, compacted roots, high soil pH, and nutrient deficiencies in the plant.
About Bamboo plantation
- Bamboo can be used in 1,500 different ways including as food, a substitute for wood, building and construction material, for handicrafts and paper.
- The advantage of bamboo is manifold compared to monoculture tree plantations.
- After planting, bamboo can become part of agroforestry practice in small land holdings.
- New bamboo plantations may curb the pressure from deforestation by serving as wood substitutes. Due to its versatile nature and multiple uses, it is also called ‘poor man’s timber’.
- It can be planted to reclaim severely degraded sites and wastelands.
- It is a good soil binder owing to its peculiar clump formation and fibrous root system and hence also plays an important role in soil and water conservation.
- It is the fastest growing canopy, releasing 35% more oxygen than trees.
- There are studies reporting that bamboo stands sequester 12 tonnes of carbon dioxide from per hectare.
- Though it grows tall like a tree, it belongs to the grass family.