Although many characteristics of bamboo are similar to those of hardwoods, bamboo is not a wood but a grass, with remarkable characteristics of its own. Its tensile strength and weight-to-strength ratio make it the strongest growing woody plant on earth. There are over 1500 different varieties growing up to 60 feet tall, from sea level to12,000 feet, on every continent but the North and South poles. Three species are natural to the United States, thriving best in the cotton states and the valleys of Southern California. Some species grow over four feet a day! Most bamboo is found in China, and starting over 4,000 years ago Chinese people used bamboo, then silk, then paper to record history and spread culture.
All Bamboo regenerates naturally from its root system like a lawn and is the fastest growing canopy for the re-greening of degraded lands. The bamboo specie used for flooring is harvested every 4 – 8 years, is not a food source or habitat for pandas, and releases 35% more oxygen than the equivalent stands of trees.
To make flooring, the wall of the hollow bamboo stalk is cut and milled into long thin strips and treated with a non-toxic boric acid and lime solution (as a pest deterrent). After the strips are dried, they are glued together with heat and pressure to create a multi-strip board. The bamboo is then milled into tongue and groove planks.
Panet Hardwood has established strategic alliances with a bamboo manufacturer who meets our high quality standards. This supplier has established quality criteria to achieve ISO 9001:2000 and ISO 14000 performance standards. Our bamboo flooring has been awarded certificates of compliance for meeting these standards. Our UV-Coatings comply with international standards (EN 71), with no migration of hazardous elements and while all bamboo flooring manufacturers use adhesives with urea formaldehyde, our products fall below the most stringent global standards. These standards are the European E1 requirements of 0.1 ppm (parts per million). Our supplier has been certified to meet or exceed this standard. It is our goal to continue to push for additional reductions or the complete elimination of formaldehyde for our products. Given its short harvest cycle and natural regeneration, Bamboo is considered a “green” product. It is slightly harder than maple and since it is made up of many pieces it has superior stability characteristics. It can be nailed or glued directly to a wood or concrete subfloor.