Gigantochloa pruriens is a perennial, evergreen, densely clump-forming bamboo that can grow 10 - 15 metres tall. The thin-walled, erect, woody culms can be 60 - 120mm in diameter with internodes 40 - 60cm long.
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food and source of materials.
Southeast Asia - Indonesia (Sumatra).
Lowland areas, at elevations up to 400 metres[
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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[
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. 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. We have no specific details on the habit of this species.
Young shoots - cooked and eaten as a vegetable[
The culms are used as building materials for making items such as pillars, walls and roofing. They are also used for making the Batak traditional calendar "perhalaan"[
Th young culms are used for cooking glutinous rice ("lemang")[
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