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Useful Temperate Plants

Thamnocalamus spathiflorus

(Trin.) Munro

Poaceae

+ Synonyms

Arundarbor aristata (Lodd. ex Lindl.) Kuntze

Arundinaria aristata Gamble

Arundinaria procera Wall. ex Munro

Arundinaria spathiflora Trin

Bambusa aristata Lodd. ex Lindl.

Bambusa macra Wall. ex Munro

Fargesia crassinoda T.P.Yi

Thamnocalamus aristatus (Gamble) E.G.Camus

Thamnocalamus crassinodus (T.P.Yi) Demoly

Thamnocalamus nepalensis (Stapleton) Stapleton

Thamnocalamus occidentalis (Stapleton) Stapleton

Common Name:

No Image.

General Information

Thamnocalamus spathiflorus is a clump-forming, evergreen bamboo that can grow 3 - 4metres tall, occasionally to 5.5 metres; the erect, woody culms are 10 - 20mm in diameter with thin-walled internodes 15 - 18cm long[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
]. The plant spreads slowly by means of short rhizomes, eventually forming quite a large, dense clump.
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and source of materials. It is grown as an ornamental, where it can be used as a hedge and screen.

Known Hazards

None known

Botanical References

51
Title
Flowers of the Himalayas.
Publication
 
Author
Polunin. O. and Stainton. A.
Publisher
Oxford Universtiy Press
Year
1984
ISBN
-
Description
A very readable and good pocket guide (if you have a very large pocket!) to many of the wild plants in the Himalayas. Gives many examples of plant uses.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
,
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.

Range

E. Asia - Himalayan regions of India, Nepal and Tibet

Habitat

Forming thickets in damp sites in cedar, oak and fir forests; at elevations up to 3,600 metres[
51
Title
Flowers of the Himalayas.
Publication
 
Author
Polunin. O. and Stainton. A.
Publisher
Oxford Universtiy Press
Year
1984
ISBN
-
Description
A very readable and good pocket guide (if you have a very large pocket!) to many of the wild plants in the Himalayas. Gives many examples of plant uses.
,
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Prefers growing on steeply sloping sites[
220
Title
Bamboos of Nepal
Publication
 
Author
Stapleton. C.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Year
1994
ISBN
0947643680
Description
An excelllent little booklet that looks in some detail at the native bamboos of Nepal, including looking at their uses.
]. Coniferous and mixed subalpine forests; at elevations from 2,500 - 2,900 metres[
266
Title
Flora of China
Publication
 
Author
 
Website
http://flora.huh.harvard.edu/china/
Publisher
Missouri Botanical Garden Press; St. Louis.
Year
1994
ISBN
 
Description
An excellent, comprehensive resource in 25 volumes. In addition to the botanical information the flora also gives basic information on habitat and some uses. An on-line version is also available.
].

Properties

Edibility Rating *  *
Other Uses Rating *  *
HabitEvergreen Bamboo
Height4.00 m
PollinatorsWind
Cultivation StatusOrnamental, Wild

Cultivation Details

Thamnocalamus spathiflorus is found at moderate to high elevations (up to 3,600 metres) in the Himalayas, where it experiences frost and snow. One report says that it is only hardy in the milder areas of the temperate zone[
195
Title
The Book of Bamboo
Publication
 
Author
Farrelly. D.
Publisher
Sierra Club.
Year
1984
ISBN
0-87156-825-X
Description
Very readable, giving lots of information on the uses of bamboos, both temperate and tropical.
], though another says that it can tolerate short-lived temperatures falling to around -20°c. It is unlikely to tolerate prolonged exposure to low temperatures[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].
Succeeds in most soils in sun or shade so long as the soil is moist[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
]. Prefers a good loamy soil in a semi-shaded position[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
,
11
Title
Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement.
Publication
 
Author
Bean. W.
Publisher
Murray
Year
1981
ISBN
-
Description
A classic with a wealth of information on the plants, but poor on pictures.
,
25
Title
Bamboos.
Publication
 
Author
Lawson.
Publisher
Faber
Year
1968
ISBN
-
Description
Fairly comprehensive, it was once the standard work but is now rather dated. Deals with species hardy in Britain, giving cultivation details and some uses.
], the leaves curling up when the plant grows in strong sunlight. Dislikes drought[
1
Title
RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956
Publication
 
Author
F. Chittendon.
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Year
1951
ISBN
-
Description
Comprehensive listing of species and how to grow them. Somewhat outdated, it has been replaced in 1992 by a new dictionary (see [200]).
]. Requires a position sheltered from cold winds[
25
Title
Bamboos.
Publication
 
Author
Lawson.
Publisher
Faber
Year
1968
ISBN
-
Description
Fairly comprehensive, it was once the standard work but is now rather dated. Deals with species hardy in Britain, giving cultivation details and some uses.
,
195
Title
The Book of Bamboo
Publication
 
Author
Farrelly. D.
Publisher
Sierra Club.
Year
1984
ISBN
0-87156-825-X
Description
Very readable, giving lots of information on the uses of bamboos, both temperate and tropical.
].
This species is notably resistant to honey fungus[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Bamboos have an interesting method of growth. Each plant produces a number of new stems annually - these stems grow to their maximum height in their first year of growth, subsequent growth in the stem being limited to the production of new side branches and leaves. In the case of some mature tropical species the new stem could be as much as 30 metres tall, with daily increases in height of 30cm or more during their peak growth time. This makes them some of the fastest-growing species in the world[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].
Bamboos in general are usually monocarpic, living for many years before flowering, then flowering and seeding profusely for a period of 1 - 3 years before usually dying. This pattern can vary - sometimes flowering is sporadic, with plants flowering annually and not dying; at other times it is gregarious with all the plants in a specific species coming into flower at the same time. In this species the flowering cycle is reported to be around 16 - 17 years[
361
Title
Bamboos of India: A Compendium
Publication
 
Author
Seethalakshmi K.K., Muktesh Kumar M.S.
Website
http://www.inbar.int/publication/txt/tr17/default.htm
Publisher
Brill.
Year
2002
ISBN
8186247254
Description
A very good book giving botanical descriptions of the plants with brief notes on subjects such as uses, habitat and range. It is also available to view on the Internet.
].

Edible Uses

Young shoots - cooked[
177
Title
Plants for Human Consumption.
Publication
 
Author
Kunkel. G.
Publisher
Koeltz Scientific Books
Year
1984
ISBN
3874292169
Description
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of Latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
,
361
Title
Bamboos of India: A Compendium
Publication
 
Author
Seethalakshmi K.K., Muktesh Kumar M.S.
Website
http://www.inbar.int/publication/txt/tr17/default.htm
Publisher
Brill.
Year
2002
ISBN
8186247254
Description
A very good book giving botanical descriptions of the plants with brief notes on subjects such as uses, habitat and range. It is also available to view on the Internet.
]. The new shoots are about 15mm in diameter[
K
Title
Plants for a Future
Author
Ken Fern
Description
Notes from observations, tasting etc at Plants For A Future and on field trips.
].

Seed - cooked and used as a cereal[
177
Title
Plants for Human Consumption.
Publication
 
Author
Kunkel. G.
Publisher
Koeltz Scientific Books
Year
1984
ISBN
3874292169
Description
An excellent book for the dedicated. A comprehensive listing of Latin names with a brief list of edible parts.
]. The plants only flower and produce seed at intervals of several years.

Medicinal

None known

Agroforestry Uses:

A valuable plant for screen planting in wet areas[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
A clump-forming species, it is a valuable understorey species in its native range, where it does not hinder the regeneration of tree growth and also provides food and shelter for wildlife[
267
Title
Bamboos of Bhutan
Publication
 
Author
Stapleton. C.
Publisher
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
Year
1994
ISBN
0-947643-67-2
Description
Excellent little booklet about the bamboos growing wild and cultivated for food, raw materials etc in Bhutan. Very good guide to identification.
].

Other Uses

The canes are strong and are used for making walking sticks, baskets and pipes[
25
Title
Bamboos.
Publication
 
Author
Lawson.
Publisher
Faber
Year
1968
ISBN
-
Description
Fairly comprehensive, it was once the standard work but is now rather dated. Deals with species hardy in Britain, giving cultivation details and some uses.
,
46
Title
Dictionary of Economic Plants.
Publication
 
Author
Uphof. J. C. Th.
Publisher
Weinheim
Year
1959
ISBN
-
Description
An excellent and very comprehensive guide but it only gives very short descriptions of the uses without any details of how to utilize the plants. Not for the casual reader.
,
51
Title
Flowers of the Himalayas.
Publication
 
Author
Polunin. O. and Stainton. A.
Publisher
Oxford Universtiy Press
Year
1984
ISBN
-
Description
A very readable and good pocket guide (if you have a very large pocket!) to many of the wild plants in the Himalayas. Gives many examples of plant uses.
,
195
Title
The Book of Bamboo
Publication
 
Author
Farrelly. D.
Publisher
Sierra Club.
Year
1984
ISBN
0-87156-825-X
Description
Very readable, giving lots of information on the uses of bamboos, both temperate and tropical.
,
272
Title
Plants and People of Nepal
Publication
 
Author
Manandhar. N. P.
Publisher
Timber Press. Oregon.
Year
2002
ISBN
0-88192-527-6
Description
Excellent book, covering over 1,500 species of useful plants from Nepal together with information on the geography and peoples of Nepal. Good descriptions of the plants with terse notes on their uses.
,
361
Title
Bamboos of India: A Compendium
Publication
 
Author
Seethalakshmi K.K., Muktesh Kumar M.S.
Website
http://www.inbar.int/publication/txt/tr17/default.htm
Publisher
Brill.
Year
2002
ISBN
8186247254
Description
A very good book giving botanical descriptions of the plants with brief notes on subjects such as uses, habitat and range. It is also available to view on the Internet.
]. They can also be used as plant supports[
146
Title
A Manual of Indian Timbers.
Publication
 
Author
Gamble. J. S.
Publisher
Bishen Singh Mahendra Pal Singh
Year
1972
ISBN
-
Description
First written in the 19th century, but still a classic, giving a lot of information on the uses and habitats of Indian trees. Not for the casual reader.
]. The canes are quite brittle and so are not very useful for weaving, in their native range they are only used for this purpose when better species are not available[
220
Title
Bamboos of Nepal
Publication
 
Author
Stapleton. C.
Publisher
The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew
Year
1994
ISBN
0947643680
Description
An excelllent little booklet that looks in some detail at the native bamboos of Nepal, including looking at their uses.
].

Propagation

Seed - surface sow as soon as it is ripe in a greenhouse at about 20°c. Do not allow the compost to dry out. Germination usually takes place fairly quickly so long as the seed is of good quality, though it can take 3 - 6 months. Grow on in a lightly shaded place in the greenhouse until large enough to plant out. Seed is rarely available.
Division in spring as new growth commences. Take divisions with at least three canes in the clump, trying to cause as little root disturbance to the main plant as possible. Grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse in pots of a high fertility sandy medium. Mist the foliage regularly until plants are established. Plant them out into their permanent positions when a good root system has developed, which can take a year or more[
200
Title
The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992.
Publication
 
Author
Huxley. A.
Publisher
MacMillan Press
Year
1992
ISBN
0-333-47494-5
Description
Excellent and very comprehensive, though it contains a number of silly mistakes. Readable yet also very detailed.
].
Basal cane cuttings.
Cite as: Temperate Plants Database, Ken Fern. temperate.theferns.info. 2018-08-16. <temperate.theferns.info/plant/Thamnocalamus+spathiflorus>

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