Go Green with Bamboo

The Power of Bamboo
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant in the world with certain varieties that grow a foot or more per day. Their stalks reach maturity in only three to six years—decades less than the maturity rate of a traditional North American hardwood. Plus, a single bamboo stalk can be harvested multiple times since it regenerates after cutting.
Bamboo is by far one of the easiest and most affordable ways to go green in and around your home. Consider top bamboo products when you’re ready to upgrade, replenish or replace:

Bamboo Floors
Bamboo flooring has gained popularity as an environmentally sustainable building material that is stronger than most hardwoods. Its durability, cost and status as a green building material make it an attractive choice for many homeowners. It’s sleek, durable and stylish, at a great price.

Bamboo Fencing
Bamboo fences are probably the most practical, effective and sustainable type of fencing. They can be easily mended, cut and bent. They’re also durable and flexible, holding strong even when tested against high winds. Bamboo fences are naturally antibacterial, which means mold and mildew are avoided.

Countertops
Bamboo countertops are hard, durable and bring warmth to your kitchen. A uniquely renewable source, bamboo’s natural resistance to bacteria makes it ideal for the kitchen. The product can be finished with natural mineral oil, beeswax or linseed oil, for protection and easier cleaning (who couldn’t use that?).

Furniture
Considering new furniture for inside or outside your home? Take a look at the many bamboo products on the market. You’ll find that nearly anything can be made from bamboo including chairs, tables, sofas, beds and more. There’s a vast array of styles, colors and designs that are totally affordable. The fun side of bamboo is its flexibility, allowing furniture makers to get create unique and refreshing designs that are harder to achieve with traditional hardwood.

Blinds
Not only are bamboo blinds popular for their aesthetically pleasing looks—they’re energy efficient, durable, inexpensive and easy to maintain. Bamboo blinds are very suitable as window blinds because they have a very low heat absorption rate.  They keep a low temperature in the house during summer and help keep the heat inside during the winter.  You can also use bamboo blinds and shades for room dividers or door screens as well. Best of all, they’re surprisingly affordable.

As you consider options for going green in your home, try implementing bamboo anywhere you can. The floors are durable, the countertops are beautiful, the fabrics are soft and the price is just right.

From American Home Shield “Inside & Out” April 2011 issue

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