How To Treat Bamboo For Construction?

How To Treat Bamboo For Construction
Salt water – A traditional method, still widely used, especially in Asia, is to soak the poles in salt water. This is roughly equivalent to pickling your bamboo, removing the sugars, preserving it, and making it less appealing to pests. Afterwards, they dry the bamboo in the sun for two to three months.

What treatment do you used to make the bamboo durable?

Boric Acid Borax – Curing bamboo with borax and boric acid is the most popular bamboo preservation method (for indoor use) around the world because it is effective and more environmentally friendly than other wood preservatives. The combination of boric acid and borax in a ratio of 1:1.5 is an alkaline salt called: Disodium octaborate tetrahydrate (Na2B8O13 x 4H2O) and is available in pre-mixed powder form, usually under the commercial names: Tim-Bor  or SoluBor, among others.

Disodium octaborate tetrahydrate is a white, odorless, powdered substance that is not flammable, cumbustible, or explosive and has acute low oral and dermal toxicity. The product itself is fire retardant and shows no hazardous decomposition, This salt, is used as an insecticide and fungicide, and is also effective against fungi and algae.

It has an infinite shelf life and is not affected by temperature. Diluted with water, bamboo can be impregnated, submerged or sprayed with this chemical. Formula (1):

boric acid / borax ratio 1:1.5

Formula (2):

boric acid / borax / sodium dichromate ratio 2:2:0.5

Recommended concentration:

4-5% indoor use (not exposed to weather or ground contact)

Why is it important to treat bamboo before it is used for construction?

Bamboo is susceptible to insects like termites, borers, the powderpost beetle, and even fungi. If not treated properly, bamboo products and structures will only last a few years before they are eaten to dust. But don’t get discouraged, there are many ways in which bamboo can be treated.

– These methods include adding a borax based solution into the poles. You can do this through immersion, or pressure treatment using the Boucherie, or the modified Boucherie system. But in this article, we are going to talk about a special low-tech treatment option, the Vertical Soak Diffusion, or VSD.

VSD is an efficient treatment method for small projects or even large construction projects if you have a small budget. This is because it can be done with less equipment and very little investment. In the VSD method, all the nodes of the bamboo pole except the last one are punctured with a long iron rod with a spearhead.

What is a good sealer for bamboo?

FINISHING THE BAMBOO PLYWOOD – Some people like to apply an additional layer of finish coat on top of the stain to protect your bamboo plywood from moisture. You can use oil, wax, or polyurethane to finish your bamboo plywood, but we always recommend testing these products on a sacrificial piece of plywood before proceeding with your project.

Mineral oil is an affordable option that will easily coat your plywood. Apply it liberally using a cloth, but avoid cheaper clothes because they might pill, and those tiny pieces of fabric are a pain to get off. You might even want to run the cloth through a wash cycle first to get off excess pillage. After the plywood is saturated, you can easily wipe off the excess oil. (Important: On surfaces where food will be prepared, avoid vegetable-based oil since it will degrade and quickly turn rancid and could subject you and your family to a nasty case of food poisoning!)

Raw Linseed Oil is made from crushed flax seeds (not to be confused with boiled linseed). This oil has a longer curing time and must be frequently re-applied but provides a nice satin finish.

Minwax Paste Finishing Wax works well and is safe even for surfaces that will contact food. Wax finishes aren’t as commonly used as oils but will be fine for indoor surfaces, although it does require some elbow grease to apply and buff to a sheen!

Tung oil is also an option because it dries with a bit of gloss it’s generally water-resistant. It’s made from the nuts of china wood trees and used as the fundamental ingredient in many finish blends—harder to apply and require frequent re-coating but is somewhat more resistant to water than other finishes.

Watco Danish Oil isn’t absorbed quickly but contains a little more natural variation than other finishes. You can achieve the desired level of sheen by adding more coats, but you’ll need to wait at least a day in between coats to allow it to dry. You can always go over the surface with super fine sandpaper to get a cleaner/smoother surface finish.

Other types of finishes used are beeswax, carnauba wax, shellac, and walnut oil. Some of these finishes can also be mixed with mineral oil for different levels of consistency and sheen. As with all finishes, we recommend trying these out on a sacrificial piece to determine permeability, finish sheen, and water resistance.

Oil and wax finishes don’t last as long as polyurethane finishes and will need to be re-applied at more frequent intervals.

Polyurethane finishes — whether oil or water-based formulas — are fine and come in finishes ranging from satin sheens to high-gloss shine, depending on your preference—brush on following the manufacturer’s instructions on the can. : How to Stain and Finish Bamboo Plywood

How do you dry bamboo for a building?

How to Dry Bamboo Poles? – The most common way to dry bamboo for commercial purposes is “air drying”. Once the bamboo poles are harvested and chemically treated, all poles should be stacked and stored under cover.

Can you build houses with bamboo?

( Faizal Ramli / Bamboo is one of the fastest growing plants in the world. Flexible and lightweight, Bamboo is a sustainable building material that is actually stronger than wood, bricks or even concrete. This is especially important in earthquake prone areas of the world like Indonesia.

  1. For a building to be earthquake proof, it needs to be strong enough and light weight, as well as flexible enough to move to be able to withstand shaking.
  2. Bamboo construction was earthquake tested in 2018 on the Indonesian island of Lombok.
  3. After a series of earthquakes most of the concrete buildings near the epicenter were damaged or destroyed.

Houses made of bamboo survived. Now, a new project is helping villages in the area rebuild with bamboo according to Fast Company. “Bamboo is a lightweight material, and it’s very strong,” Marcin Dawydzik, a structural engineer at the London office of Ramboll, the engineering, design, and consulting company that designed a template for the bamboo houses told Fast Company.

As the earthquake happens, the house will move a little bit and wobble and shake. But that actually means that the energy is being dissipated, and all that movement makes it survive very strong earthquakes,” Dawydzik said. The engineer became involved in the project after he found out that a friend living in Lombok’s bamboo house survived while her neighbors poorly constructed concrete homes did not.

“I thought, I’m an engineer, working for an engineering company,” he said. “I have the skills. How can we help?” That’s when he came to Indonesia to see the destruction first-hand. According to a company press release, he said, ” Villages were flattened with bricks and rubble scattered all around, in many cases the building foundations were all that remained.

  • This was not an unusually powerful earthquake for the region, but lack of reinforcement in the buildings meant the damage, and consequential loss of life, was far greater than it should have been.
  • What I found even more disturbing was that communities had already started rebuilding with the same absence of structural integrity that had existed in the destroyed buildings!” That’s when he began to work on a bamboo design that would be able to withstand earthquakes.

First, Dawydzik and his team of engineers met with local people to ascertain what their needs were so that they didn’t impose their western ideas on the designs. Convincing people to use bamboo was an issue because even though it was readily available and used in Indonesia for construction, there was a stigma attached to it.

Bamboo is viewed in Indonesia a little bit as a kind of poor man’s timber,” he told Fast Company. “That’s what they call itThey look to the Western world and they see big concrete buildings full of glass and steel and concrete and they want to live the same way.” But, Dawydzik points out that concrete is only as strong as the reinforcements inside it and if the building is badly designed or if the concrete is made incorrectly, the building will fail during an earthquake.

Concrete is also not an environmentally sound building material and contributes to climate change. When the engineering team returned to London, they partnered with researchers at the University College London (UCL) who used 3D scanning of bamboo to make the home model as structurally sound as possible.

  1. They wanted to create a digital blueprint of each bamboo pole used according to Rodolfo Lorenzo, an engineering professor at the university.
  2. This enabled the engineers to understand how each pole would perform.
  3. Three model homes were built in three villages in late 2019 when the engineers partnered with a local nonprofit Grenzeloos Milieu,

They used both skilled and unskilled community members and explained how the new structures would resist earthquakes. During the building of the model homes, a UCL team scanned every piece of bamboo used. The nonprofit is now working with the communities to grow their own bamboo that will be used to construct houses.

Young bamboo shoots can be used for food, and after two years to construct furniture and after five years, the plants are large enough to build houses from according to Fast Company. The team is also currently working to tweak the design and to create a DIY manual that is similar to what you get from IKEA.

Only you are not assembling a table or chair, you are building a home. This bamboo structure can be used anywhere bamboo grows to build strong, safe, affordable, and green homes. YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: Norway will Pay Indonesia to Reduce Deforestation and Cut Emissions Build Your Own Bamboo Bicycle With This Awesome DIY Kit This New Rapid Response Factory Will Build Post-Disaster Housing

How do you protect bamboo from decay?

Eco-friendly preservation of bamboo species: Traditional to modern techniques Kaur, P.J., Satya, S., Pant, K.K., and Naik, S.N. (2016). “Eco-friendly preservation of bamboo species: Traditional to modern techniques,” BioRes.11(4), 10604-10624. The continuous depletion of forests calls for the astute usage of existing resources.

Fungi and termites cause serious damage to biomass under storage and service conditions. Various protective treatments with high amounts of toxic chemicals are used by the wood and bamboo industry. Efforts are being made the world over to develop environmentally friendly preservatives for wood and bamboo species.

Recent research highlights the potential and effectiveness of traditional practices and procedures, mainly water leaching technique and smoke treatment. Under laboratory conditions, the service life of treated blocks were found to be at a par with commercial chemical preservative treated blocks.

  • Various plant extracts and oil-based formulations, such as organic acids, essential oils, and eco-friendly chemical-based preservatives, are in the stage of development.
  • The bio-efficacy of such preservatives is measured in terms of the improvement in resistance to fungi and termites.
  • However, much work still needs to be done to completely determine the efficacy of many of these newly developed preservatives and techniques.

The present paper discusses an overview of the developments in the field of environment-friendly biomass preservatives. Eco-Friendly Preservation of Bamboo Species: Traditional to Modern Techniques Perminder Jit Kaur, a, * Santosh Satya, a Kamal K. Pant, b and Satya N.

Naik a The continuous depletion of forests calls for the astute usage of existing resources. Fungi and termites cause serious damage to biomass under storage and service conditions. Various protective treatments with high amounts of toxic chemicals are used by the wood and bamboo industry. Efforts are being made the world over to develop environmentally friendly preservatives for wood and bamboo species.

Recent research highlights the potential and effectiveness of traditional practices and procedures, mainly water leaching technique and smoke treatment. Under laboratory conditions, the service life of treated blocks were found to be at a par with commercial chemical preservative treated blocks.

Various plant extracts and oil-based formulations, such as organic acids, essential oils, and eco-friendly chemical-based preservatives, are in the stage of development. The bio-efficacy of such preservatives is measured in terms of the improvement in resistance to fungi and termites. However, much work still needs to be done to completely determine the efficacy of many of these newly developed preservatives and techniques.

The present paper discusses an overview of the developments in the field of environment-friendly biomass preservatives. Keywords: Bamboo preservation; Plant extracts; Durability; Fungal attack; Termites attack; Bamboo treatment Contact information: a: Centre for Rural Development and Technology, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, 110016, India; b: Department of Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, 110016, India; *Corresponding author: [email protected] INTRODUCTION The experience of modern development, especially related to the deteriorating status of the environment and human health, is now sufficiently indicative of its inherent non-sustainability.

  1. The continuous increase in the human population, coupled with the modern lifestyle, has generated a huge demand for wood and wood-based products in the service sector, causing severe deforestation.
  2. Hence, to achieve sustainable development, environmental issues ( i.e,, issues concerning the relationship between humans and nature), along with other dimensions of SD, have to be given due attention.

Bamboo, a unique creation of nature, assumes great significance in this context. The short life span (one to three years) under storage conditions of bamboo culms because of insect-pest infestation is one of the biggest constraints on the utilization of bamboo in the housing sector.

Brown-rot fungi such as Oligoporus placenta and white-rot fungi such as Trametes versicolor, as well as bacteria and subterranean termites, deteriorate bamboo culms in storage, often one or more of these organisms attacking the culms in succession. It has been found that untreated bamboo has a service life of only two to five years.

The environmental and human health hazards of conventional chemical preservatives are well known (Schultz et al.2007; Xu et al.2013). The present paper discusses the latest developments in the techniques of preservative impregnation inside biomass culms.

  • The latest developments in the methods of wood cell wall modification, heat treatment, and supercritical fluid extraction techniques are compiled and discussed.
  • The bio-efficacy of such preservatives is measured in terms of improvement in fungus resistance, termite resistance, and field performance.
  • Rigorous field testing is required to license the recommendation of a technique for a biomass species.

The present paper provides an overview of the developments in the field of environment-friendly preservation for wood and bamboo species. NEED FOR ECO-FRIENDLY PRESERVATION TECHNIQUES Chemical treatment has been considered a solution to enhance the service life of biomass species.

The chemicals used by local artisans as well as industry include copper chrome arsenic (CCA), sodium pentachlorophenol, boric acid-borax, Cu/Zn naphenates/ abietates, tebuconazole, IPBC (3-iodo 2- propanyl butyl carbamate), chlorothalonil, isothiozolones, and synthetic pyrethroides, all of which are presented in Table 1.

Severe harmful effect of these chemicals has led to their ban in many countries. The leaching of these chemicals into the soil and water has alarming consequences. Even though biomass culms are treated with CCA, creosote preservatives have been able to extend the service life of bamboo to around 36 years, yet their mammalian toxicity cannot be ignored.

  1. The odor of creosote makes it a preservative for outdoor application only.
  2. CCA, AAC, and CCB contain arsenic and chromium.
  3. The carcinogenicity of chromium and arsenic is a well-known fact.
  4. For this reason, effluent containing these preservatives should be treated before disposal (Yen and Chang 2008).
  5. PCP is banned for use in most countries.

In contrast, triazoles, though they are expensive, are commonly used in plant protection of wood, for example: tebuconazole and propiconazole. Previous studies suggest that the leaching of toxic metals from treated wood merits disposal concerns (Khan et al,2006; Moghaddam and Mulligan 2008).

If the concentration of leached metals in waste biomass is higher than threshold or the toxicity limit, it is regarded as hazardous waste. The disposal of chemically treated wood is an onerous task. Looking at the toxic effects of many of these preservatives, researchers are attempting to develop eco-friendly preservatives (Xu et al.2013).

The successful preservation of bamboo culms was defined as the safe storage of a large quantity of culms that could later be used. The characteristics of an ideal preservative as described by Liese and Kumar (2003) are: (i) toxicity to the target organism (wood and bamboo destroying) and minimum toxicity to the non-target organism, (ii) permanent fixation inside the bamboo culm, (iii) high penetration inside the bamboo tissues, (iv) easy disposal of treated product, and (v) strength of treated culm not affected by preservative impregnation.

The outer skin of bamboo is high in silica content. This restricts the flow of preservative into the culm. It is also difficult to penetrate inside the waxy layer of bamboo (Janssen 2000). The absence of ray cells in bamboo also constrains the flow of preservative to only the longitudinal direction. The radial flow of the preservative is hindered due to the refractory nature of bamboo culms.

Thin culms can collapse and crack during the treatment process (Liese and Kumar 2003). Table 1. Commercially Available Preservatives used for Wood/Bamboo Treatment (Liese and Kumar 2003; Evans et al.2007) Traditional Preservation of Bamboo The local bamboo growers preserve bamboo using systems that have been passed down to them according to traditional practices. Documentation and scientific verification of these methods is scant. Good Harvesting Practices Liese and Kumar (2003) also reported that the harvesting time affects the durability of bamboo.

Durability is affected by the seasons. During the dry seasons, susceptibility to attack by fungi is greater because of the increased starch content. Thus, the right time to harvest is during or after the rainy season. The culms should be cut such that leaves are not removed. Leaves allow for the natural evaporation of free capillary water.

Water Leaching Methods Submerging the bamboo culms in running or stagnant water helps the villagers to preserve the bamboo. As the culms are lighter than water, weight is put on the culms to submerge them completely in water. The fresh poles are stored for about 3 months in stagnant or flowing water.

Starch, carbohydrates, and other water-soluble substances may be fermented or washed out. The duration of dipping varies from species to species. Ashaari and Mamat (2000) have observed the lower starch content of water-leached B. vulgaris bamboo species. Slaked lime makes the surface of treated bamboo alkaline.

This delays the attack of fungi. Kaur et al, (2013) performed a decay resistance analysis of water-leached bamboo samples (weight loss: 9.7%) comparable to CCA-treated bamboo culms (weight loss: 7.3%). Studies have also reported that the remarkable reduction in starch content and the presence of additional amine groups in the treated samples might have contributed towards enhanced fungal resistance.

Aur et al, (2016b) reported that the ability of treated samples to resist insect and microbial attack under field conditions only lasted up to six months, which was much better than the control. The water leaching method was found to be incapable of giving complete protection to the culms under field conditions.

Smoke Treatment Smoke treatment is used in villages to enhance the durability of bamboo species. Bamboo culms are stored in the kitchen over the fireplace. This process of using smoke to prevent insect attack is thousands of years old. Villagers have learned from experience that bamboo culms stored in this way are able to survive insect attack up to several years.

However, no scientific data on the smoke treatment process for bamboo species can be found in the literature. It is expected that polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, phenols, aldehydes, ketones, organic acids, alcohols, esters, hydrocarbons, and various heterocyclic compounds present in wood smoke are able to improve the durability of wood species.

If bamboo culms are fumigated (using their own branches and leaves) for a longer time, they become inedible to insects. The culms are smoked at an air temperature of 50 to 60 °C, which changes the moisture level of the air. The reduction in the water-soluble constituents including starch might help to protect the culms from fungi and insect attacks.

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Looking at the eco-friendly nature of the process, Hadi et al, (2012) reported on the effectiveness of smoke-treated wood against subterranean and dry-wood termite attack. The smoke, a byproduct generated during the pyrolysis process for making charcoal, could potentially be a useful means to increase wood resistance to termite attack.

Wood specimens were exposed to smoke for a different duration of time. Sengon and Pulai wood specimens given smoke exposure for three days and Sugi specimens given smoke exposure for 15 days were classified as highly resistant. The most effective duration of smoking for producing high resistance in bamboo is not reported in the literature.

ZERI (zero emission research and initiatives) at EXPO Hannover (2000) built an impressive circular roof building from smoke-treated bamboo. Kaur et al, (2016a) designed an experimental set up for the smoke treatment of D. strictus bamboo samples. Their study highlighted the effectiveness of this simple treatment method.

Bamboo culms smoked for 8 hours were inoculated with P. versicolor fungi for 12 weeks. The significant reduction of starch (34.5%) and the deposition of a sooty layer of un-burnt carbon particles on the culm were reported to be beneficial for enhancing the service life of the treated product.

Investigations of smoked bamboo culms found them to be similar to water-leached bamboo culms. Smoked bamboo samples were found to be non-durable under field conditions (Kaur et al,2016b). Under laboratory conditions water leached and smoke treated bamboo samples showed weight loss of 9.6% and 12.2% respectively.

However, these methods were not able to protect bamboo give protection to bamboo under field conditions. Samples were able to withstand the field conditions only up-to six months. Special Construction Practices Bamboo houses are traditionally made using special precautions.

Various constructional methods have been followed since ancient times to protect bamboo houses. Generally, villagers take care to avoid the direct contact of bamboo culms with the soil and ground. This reduces the uptake of moisture through the soil or air. Bamboo culms are not placed in a cement base on the ground.

Houses made at places of high altitude are generally free from termite attacks. Buildings are designed to facilitate unrestricted airflow (Liese and Kumar 2003). Along with this, solutions of tar and lime wash are used as paint and coating on wall (Janssen 2000; Randall 2000).

  • The use of mud-coating to protect the huts of bamboo is also practiced in many parts of Bangladesh (Uddain 2008).
  • Plastering with cement also helps to reduce microbial attack.
  • Investigations into the quantitative effectiveness of these methods, is not reported in the literature.
  • BOTANICAL EXTRACT-BASED PRESERVATIVES The traditional methods of the preservation of bamboo are simple, safe, and inexpensive.

Field investigations of samples treated using these methods showed the poor durability of traditionally treated bamboo culms when exposed to outdoor conditions, including the combined effect of sun, rain, weathering, and microbial and insect attack. Plant extract-based preservatives have extensive potential, as they are toxic only to the target microorganism or termites and are safe for mammals.

Plants and trees possess numerous constituents and extractives such as terpenes, alkaloids, flavonoids, glycosides, stilbenes, esters, phenols, polyphenols, alcohols, and water-soluble substances, which are known for their antibacterial and antifungal properties. These components can be isolated from biomass using non-polar and polar solvents.

Schultz and Nicholas (2002) described the need to study the fungus and termite resistance of these extracts and termed it as a highly rewarding research area. The nature and quantity of extractives influence the durability of tree species. The factors that influence the choice of preservatives for industrial application are: the fungal and termite resistance of plant extract-treated products, the optimality of preservative concentration, the duration of biomass treatment/preservation, the fixation ability of the plant extract inside of bamboo or wood culms, and the leaching resistance efficiency.

  1. In addition to this, knowledge about the shelf life, heat, and temperature stability of the preservative gives more confidence to the consumer.
  2. However large scale production and treatment techniques based on plant extract based preservatives is still in development stage.
  3. Azadirachta indica Extract Neem oil, with azadirachtin as the major component, is known as an assured insect control agent.

Subbaraman and Brucker (2001) added certain binding and bittering agents to enhance the efficacy of neem oil (3 to 40%) as a wood preservative. Dhyani et al, (2004) reported neem oil to be effective against wood-decaying fungi. Subsequently, Venmalar and Nagaveni (2005) reported the efficacy of neem seed oil on rubber wood.

  1. In untreated blocks, a weight loss of 65% was observed in samples exposed to white rot fungus, compared to 43% in samples exposed to brown rot fungus.
  2. In treated blocks, a weight loss of less than 10% was observed.
  3. Copper in combination with Neem oil has shown complete protection against both brown and white rot fungi.

In field experiments, treated wood samples were found to be resistant through nine months of observation. Islam et al, (2009) investigated the antifungal efficiency of neem leaf extract along with copper sulfate and boric acid (NECB) tested on mango ( Mangifera indica ) and rain tree ( Albizia saman ) wood.

The wood samples treated with neem leaf extract alone showed high levels of resistance against S. commune fungi. Furthermore, copper sulfate and boric acid were added, respectively, to neem leaf extract, to each a produce a 5% (w/w) solution that was able to protect the timber specimens, giving rise to weight losses of 3.3% and 3%, respectively.

In field testing for 12 weeks, an average increase by six to seven times the life span of treated blocks as compared to the control was reported. Similarly, Machado et al, (2013) observed the effectiveness of neem oil (0.01, 0.1, 1.0, 2.5, and 5.0%) in white spirit against five species of decay fungi and two species of termites.

It was suggested that the neem oil could only be useful as a wood preservative by optimizing formulations with new co-biocides. Erakhumen and Ogunsanwu (2009) used hot neem seed oil at the temperature of 60 °C to treat B. vulgaris bamboo. The treatment was found to be effective in improving the water resistance, anti-swelling efficiency, and dimensional stability of bamboo.

However, contrary to this, Kaur et al, (2014) reported the poor durability of bamboo samples treated with neem oil. Dip- as well as pressure-treated bamboo samples showed weight losses of more than 25%. Aleurites moluccana Nakayama and Osbrink (2010) tested oil from the nut of the kukui plant, Aleurites moluccana, for termite resistance properties.

  • Oil from mechanically pressed nuts of the Kukui plant, on dilution with acetone, was tested on southern yellow pine wood using a vacuum-pressure infiltration chamber.
  • This study reported the best results against the Formosan termite ( Coptotermes formosanus ) when treated with the oil concentration of 47%.

The results also reveal that the oil is not a toxic agent and that the treatment is environment friendly. Neobalanocarpus heimii Chengal ( Neobalanocarpus heimii ) timber has a high natural durability and a high extractive content. Yamamoto and Hong (1988) studied the extractives of this tree and tested them against decay fungus.

The anti-fungal components of chengal were found to be insoluble in water and only slightly soluble in methanol. Components of chengal extracted with methanol over the course of 12 h produced a weight loss of 9% in wood specimens exposed to C. versicolor fungi. Kadir et al, (2014) further investigated the termite resistance of the extract of this plant and reported that a 1% level of concentration of this extract was sufficient to cause 100% termite mortality in 25 days of laboratory investigation.

Anacardiumo ccidentalel Cashew nut shell liquid (CNSL) is a by-product of the cashew industry. It is obtained either by extraction in hot oil or in solvents or by mechanical expulsion from the shells. Venmalar and Nagaveni (2005) evaluated the proficiency of cashew nut shell oil as a wood preservative.

Cashew nut shell liquid (CNSL) is chiefly used in the preparation of synthetic resins. CNSL consists of anacardic acid (about 90%) and cardol (about 10%). A very low concentration of copper (0.4%) was reported to provide good protection. In a test of the efficacy of CSNL against white and brown rot fungi, the addition of copper to cashew nut shell oil resulted in a weight loss of less than 10%.

The percentage of Cu in CNSL combinations was around 0.02 to 0.048. In field experiments, pressure-treated copperized CNSL panels were observed to be resistant up to 24 months of exposure. The average increase in the life of bamboo in the case of copperized CSNL was 7 to 8 times compared to untreated samples.

  1. Cryptomeria japonica Cedar oil is a natural termicide, mold inhibitor, and decay preventer for wood.
  2. Extract of cedar wood tree is reported to be highly effective at penetrating inside the wood cell walls.
  3. Areas treated with cedar oil will create a barrier against insect entry, because of the slow release of aromas.

The cedar oil interferes with the pheromone system of termites and ants. Japanese cedar oil is reported to contain some terpenoids, which are termite anti-feedants. Ferruginol, present in cedar oil, provides it with a capacity to deter the growth of termites and fungi (Hemmerly 1970; Adams 2004 ),

Mun and Prewitt (2011) performed a double extraction of Juniperus virginiana heartwood using methanol flowed by hexane, chloroform, and ethyl acetate. The extract was able to inhibit the growth of T. versicolor as well as G. trabeum fungi. The effectiveness of cedar oil as a wood preservative was further demonstrated by soil analyses of treated wood blocks performed by Tumen et al,

(2013). High level of thujopsene and cedrol were expected to be responsible for the high fungal resistance of extracts of the Ashe juniper wood species. Wood blocks treated with ethanol extract of Ashe juniper exhibited the lowest weight losses of 18.8% and 3.6% against brown and white rot fungi, respectively.

  • Cinnamomum camphora Camphor ( C.
  • Camphora ) is known for its special aroma and insect-repellent properties.
  • The extract of this plant is well established as antifungal and antibacterial.
  • The performance of this extract as a bamboo preservative was studied by Xu et al, (2013).
  • Their investigations highlighted the anti-fungal potential of the extract from leaves of the plant by testing the thermal stability and decay resistance properties of the treated product.

Bamboo samples impregnated with resin mixed with camphor leaf extract exhibited weight losses of 6.60% and 5.54% against P. chrysosporium and G. trabeum, respectively (12-week test). Although the thermal stability of the samples treated with leaf extract was found to be improved above the addition of resin alone, still further improvement in thermal stability is required.

Another study showed the effectiveness of extracts obtained from the debarked stem of this tree (Li et al,2013). Wood samples treated with a methanol-extracted solution were able to resist the decay of G. trabeum fungi. The details about the field investigations of culms in the field have not been reported in the literature.

Parthenium argentatu Resin from the Guayule tree is reported to be an anti-feedant for termites and is likely to provide protection to wood (Bultman et al,1991). Bultman et al, (1998) extracted flaked guayule shrub extract using acetone-pentane azeotrope.

  1. The samples were found to be resistant to attack in the Arizona forest.
  2. However, the samples were not able to resist attack in Panama, which was thought to be due to the change in microbial activity in the two places.
  3. Nakayama et al,
  4. 2001) attempted to impregnate the wood with resinous material extracted from organic solvents under 700 kPa pressure using the nitrogen gas for 30 minutes.

Resin material, i.e acetone extractable material, removed from guayule had shown both insect and microbial resistance properties. The impregnation of resin at 50% concentration into wood had made the wood resistant to termite attack. When the resin content was 97% of the maximum, complete termite mortality was achieved.

The activity of both brown rot and white rot were observed to be inhibited by resin extracted from guayule. However, Holt et al, (2012) directed studies towards the evaluation of the termite resistance of particleboard made of guayule resin and found its termite resistance properties to be less convincing.

No further investigations were performed to utilize this extract as a wood or bamboo preservative. Nerium oleander Nerium oleander is one of the world’s most poisonous plants and contains numerous toxic compounds (oleandrin and neriine) that are cardiac glycosides.

  • Turkish oriental beech ( F.
  • Orientalis L.) and Scots pine ( P.
  • Sylvestris ) were impregnated with a solution.
  • The decay resistance of wood specimens treated with aqueous solutions of N.
  • Oleander extract was studied.
  • The extract was prepared from oleander leaves and flowers in 96% ethyl alcohol.
  • The effects of the extracts on the developments of P.

placenta (brown-rot fungi) and T. versicolor (white-rot fungi) were ascertained. The most effective dosage of N. oleander extract was 0.25%. The lowest weight loss observed for beech wood was 5.02% at a concentration level of 0.25% oleander extract against T.

  1. Versicolor after 3 months of decay exposure (Goktas et al,2007a).
  2. Sternbergia candida An endemic and poisonous plant of Turkey, S.
  3. Candida is known to possess anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties.
  4. Extract from S.
  5. Candida was able to suppress the attacks of P.
  6. Placenta and T.
  7. Versicolor fungi on wood.

The extract from the bulb and leaves of the plant was diluted within 96% ethyl alcohol was used to treat wooden blocks that were exposed to theses fungi for 12 weeks. Dosages of 0.25% and 0.75% were reported to be sufficient to provide desirable protection to the treated wood (Goktas et al,2007b).

  • Milicia excelsa Onuorah (2000) evaluated the brown rot ( L.
  • Trabea ) and white rot ( P.
  • Versicolor ) fungal resistance of Milicia excelsa and Erythrophelum suaveolens,
  • Various dosages of the extract were dissolved in 60% methanol solutions.
  • The soil block analysis of the wood reported its resistance to fungal attack at concentration levels of 3.0 and 6.0 lb/ft 3,

Acetone extract of the tree was found to be resistant to termite attack under field conditions as well. Syofuna et al, (2012) investigated the water, hexane, and acetone extract of this tree applied on less durable wood species. The acetone extract-treated wood samples displayed weight losses of less than 10% after seven days in a field installation.

The acetone extract of this tree is reported to have potential as a wood preservative. Peppermint Oil The decay resistance of peppermint oil and eucalyptus oil and their main components (menthol and eucalyptol, respectively) was reported by Matan et al, (2009). Several molds ( Aspergillus niger, P. chrysogenum, and Penicillium sp.) and a white-rot decay fungus ( T.

versicolor ) were used to study the dip treatment. Peppermint oil and menthol were reported to show higher fungal resistance than eucalyptus oil and eucalyptol. Only peppermint oil at the MIC was capable of providing complete protection from mold growth on rubberwood for up to 12 weeks at storage conditions of 25 °C and 100% RH.

  • Both peppermint oil and eucalyptus oil at the MICs showed moderate resistance to fungal decay and high resistance to termite attack.
  • Valonia Oak Sen et al,
  • 2009) combined extract from the leaf of the Sicilian sumac ( Rhuscoriaria L.), valonia oak ( Quercus macrolepis Kotschy), and bark of the Turkish pine with various chemicals like boric acid, borax, aluminum sulfate, and copper sulfate to impregnate wood, using a full-cell pressure process at 1 bar vacuum (30 min) to 8 bar pressure (60 min), followed by 15 min at atmospheric pressure.

The results of the wood decay analysis using a white-rot fungi, T. versicolor, and a brown-rot fungi, G. trabeum, showed that treated unbleached wood blocks displayed high antifungal activity, with weight losses less than 10%. The addition of aluminium sulphate (1%) had a positive effective on the reduction of leaching. The study indicated the positive effect of adding 1% boric acid or borax on the retention of valonia oak and sumac leaf extracts, but not P. brutia bark extracts. Interestingly, it was observed that the addition of more than 3% mineral salts had a negative effect on the fixation of all three extracts.

  1. No investigation on the termite resistance of the extract was performed.
  2. Essential Oils The use of essential oils and their derivatives in the pharmaceutical, healthcare, food, and packaging industries has prompted researchers to explore their effectiveness as green preservatives for bamboo and wood.

Various insecticidal, anti-fungal, and antibacterial components present in essential oils provide them with certain advantages as wood preservatives. Being renewable products, they are environment-friendly. Kartal et al, (2006) evaluated the essential oils present in cinnamaldehyde.

  1. It was found that the cinnamic acid present in cinnamaldehyde was effective against white rot fungus.
  2. All the essential oil-treated wood samples showed weight losses of less than 10% when exposed to termites.
  3. Further, Yen and Chang (2008) reported the effects of catechin, quercetin, and eugenolto cinnemaldehyde on the basis of their antifungal index.

A combination of three mechanisms of antifungal properties have been suggested, namely alteration of the cell wall, interference with cell wall synthesis, and the addition of radical anti-oxidation. Mohareb et al, (2013) investigated the in vitro as well as in vivo antifungal activity of eighteen Egyptian plant essential oils, including the oils of C.

Sempervirens, C. limon, T. occidentalis, S. molle, and A. monosperm, on the protection of wood. The essential oil of A. monosperma exhibited the highest inhibitory effect, with EC50 values of 31 mg/L-1 and 53 mg/L-1 against H, apiary and G. lucidum fungi, respectively. A solution of cassia oil at 15.0% was reported to be the best fungicide, sustaining a negligible mass loss after 3 weeks of fungal exposure.

In recent studies, it has been well established that essential oil-treated wood samples are durable against fungal attack. Panek et al, (2014) reported on the fungal and mold resistance of beech wood treated with ten types of essential oils. Though tea tree, thyme, sage, and lavender essential oils were not able to provide sufficient protection to the wood, they were found to inhibit fungal growth better than the control samples.

Oregano, thyme, sweet flag, and clove oil-treated beech wood samples were able to resist the attack of C. puteana fungi, sustaining a weight loss of less than 1%. These essential oils were found to be susceptible to attack by white rot fungi. Recently, Salem et al, (2016) reported the protection efficiency of essential oils from the leaves of Pinus rigida (wood) and Eucalyptus camaldulensis Dehnh.

against mold fungi. Eucalyptus camaldulensis leaves were found to be ineffective at controlling mold fungal growth on wood samples. L-a-pinene, aterpineol, borneol, and fenchyl alcohol applied to P. rigida wood helped the treated wood to resist the mold fungi attack up to three months under laboratory conditions.

Although these investigations highlighted the potential of essential oils as bamboo and wood preservatives, none of these studies evaluated the termite and outdoor performance of the treated product. The questions of termite resistance and the service life of treated culms in the field require detailed investigation.

The direction of future investigations could involve applying large-scale production protocols to investigate the treatments reviewed above. In addition to this, the heat sensitivity and non-stability of the active constituents of various essential oils need to be addressed to promote their use as an effective wood preservative.

  1. ECO-FRIENDLY CHEMICAL TREATMENTS There has been considerable recent interest in the development of environmentally friendly, non-toxic chemical-based preservatives in order to protect wood and bamboo from deterioration.
  2. The properties of wood, such as easy impregnation inside the biomass cells and deeper and more homogenous uptake makes them an attractive alternative to commercially available toxic chemical-based preservatives.

In addition, a few studies have demonstrated the use of certain waste products like industrial effluents as potential preservatives. Bio-Oil Pinewood, pine bark, oak wood, and oak bark were pyrolyzed. Bio-oils or pyrolytic oils were fractionated to obtain lignin-rich fractions consisting mainly of phenols and neutrals.

The pyrolytic lignin-rich fractions, and complete bio-oils fractions were tested using one brown rot fungus ( G. trabeum ) and one white rot fungus ( T. versicolor ). The lignin-rich fractions showed greater fungal inhibition compared to bio-oils when impregnated at the 10% concentration level. While bio-oils show some effectiveness against both brown and white rot fungi, they were not nearly as effective as commercial biocides.

However, they may not be very useful as additives to biocide formulations. These bio-oils were also found to be leachable. Thus, more work is required to reduce their leachability, for instance by the addition of copolymers and other additives (Mohan et al,2008; Temiz et al,2010).

  • Temiz et al,
  • 2013) obtained bio-oil by pyrolysis of giant cane at 450 to 525 °C.
  • The anti-fungal decay resistance of this specimen was observed for 16 weeks of exposure.
  • The negligible weight loss of the bio-oil treated samples (less than 3%) showed bio-oil’s high potential as a wood preservative.
  • The results of the termite resistance analysis of the treated samples were found to be encouraging, with complete termite mortality after 4 weeks of investigations.

Effluents from Paper Mill and Wood Vinegar The effluent of paper mill contains a large amount of organic waste. Tripathi and Chand (2005) used black liquor from the soda craft process diluted with water to treat wood. Exterior and ground contact samples showed no growth of fungus when treated with 1% liquor + 3% CuSO 4 and 5% liquor + 3% CuSO 4, while untreated samples showed 85% growth.

  • The treated samples were shown to be protected under extremely humid conditions for up to 9 months.
  • High humidity promotes the growth of fungus as compared to normal conditions.
  • The results showed that the effluent of paper industry waste could be successfully used as a wood preservative.
  • Interestingly, Sulaiman et al,
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( 2005) and Velmurugan et al. (2009) described wood vinegar made from bamboo and broad-leafed trees as an antifungal preservative used for treating wood. Furthermore, Salim et al, (2013) showed the effectiveness of wood vinegar as an anti-sapstain against mold fungal growth.

  1. The studies described the volatile components of wood vinegar as responsible for enhancing the protection from decay. The P.
  2. Densiflora wood dip treated in wood vinegar was durable against decay fungus for up to three weeks under laboratory conditions.
  3. Recently, Durmaz et al,
  4. 2015) studied the anti-fungal resistance of Scots pine sapwood treated with Kraft black liquor using a vacuum impregnation process.

A weight loss of 5% kraft liquid was reported for the samples treated at concentrations of 0.35 % and 0.15% following six weeks of exposure to Coniophora puteana and Poria placenta fungi, respectively. Nanoparticle Impregnation Matsunaga et al, (2008) investigated the scope of nanoparticle impregnation inside wood cell walls.

It was expected that the nanoparticle impregnation of the preservative inside the wood cell wall would make the wood less prone to insect attack. SEM analysis suggested that copper particles were large in size. The challenge of introducing copper particles into the wood cell wall can be overcome by the use of copper carbonate nanoparticles.

Dispersions of copper-carbonate nano- and microparticles were examined. A non-uniform distribution of copper particles in the cell walls was achieved, with delivery of bioactive components only into the parenchyma wood cell walls. It was suggested that the copper particles were too large to penetrate into the nano-capillary network of the cell walls.

  • The copper within the cell walls was found to be at a lower level than that in conventionally treated wood.
  • The impregnation of the wood cell was further improved upon by the work of Matsunaga et al,
  • 2012) using nano-particles (2 to 4 nm).
  • The spectra of specimens impregnated with nano-particles showed no significant changes in their relative peak intensities of lignin and carbohydrates after exposure to T.

versicolor, Wax Impregnation Kurt et al, (2008) used different kinds of hot molten waxes to improve the hardness of wood. The ray cells of wood act inhibit the wax to completely impregnate the wood cell wall. Based on visual observation, paraffin wax provided wood with maximum durability.

  • The use of pine wax was associated with the maximum mortality rate for termites.
  • The termite resistance of the leached samples was found to be less than that of unleached samples.
  • Wax-treated wood was found to susceptible to leaching.
  • In addition to this, Lesar and Humar (2010) used montan wax, polyethylene, ethylene copolymer, and oxidized polyethylene wax to improve the performance of beech ( Fagus sylvatica ) and Norway spruce ( Pinus abies ) wood tested against white rot, brown rot, and blue stain fungi.

Polyethylene wax was reported to be the best solution against staining fungi, with samples treated with this wax sustaining a weight loss of only 1.7% against T. versicolor fungi. Although the water sorption of the treated samples was reduced, the treated wood samples were not found to be weak against blue stain and mould fungi.

Organic acids There are various organic acids reported in literature with effectiveness against these micro-organisms and providing improved service life to the treated culms. Certain acids including acetic acid (widely known as preservative in food industry), formic acid (preservative in livestock feed), and propionic acid (preservative in feed and grain storage) have been investigated to reveal their potential as wood preservatives.

Schmidt (2006) observed the effectiveness of formic acid and propionic acid to reduce the discoloration of wood because of bacterial attack. Sun et al, (2011) found hydrochloric acid effective to protect wood. Citric acid, formic acid, propionic acid, and sorbic acid inhibit the mould growth on bamboo species (Tang et al,2009).

Further, acetic acid (10%) and propionic acid (10%) were observed to completely protect bamboo from fungal colonization (Tang et al.2012). Recently, Bahmani et al. (2016) observed inhibition of fungal growth by wood samples impregnated with the solution of acetic acid (5%) and propionic acid (5%). Complexes to Reduce Boron Leaching Boric acid preservative is associated with the disadvantage of leaching under outdoor conditions.

A few investigations have suggested locking the boric acid inside the wood using different approaches. Tetra-hydroxyborate ions produced by the hydration of boric have demonstrated the ability to provide wood with resistance against decay. Obanda et al,

(2008) have reviewed the research in the field of boron fixation and classified all strategies that have been employed into fifteen categories. Use of oil, polymerization and modification of wood cells, and organic and inorganic complexes of boron are a few of the major methods used in various laboratories.

Among these reported methods, wood treated using envelope treatment was reported to perform the best. This includes air-seasoning with diffusible borates, diffusion storage, air-seasoning, and finally treatment with creosote. A composition of three chemicals (copper sulphate, zinc chloride, and sodium borate) has been used to develop an environment friendly preservative (Tripathi et al,2005).

The formulation was found to be amorphous, water insoluble, and soluble with the help of co-solvents. A fixation study of ZiBOC in Chir and Poplar found aqueous leachabilities of only 23.6, 13.1, and 12.1% for copper, zinc, and boron in chir and 53.5, 6.5, and 5% in poplar. Analyses showed that a 0.50% concentration of salt (3.13 kg/m 3 ) completely protected the poplar completely against both fungi.

The laboratory effectiveness of the solution was demonstrated by the weight losses of wood blocks treated with 0.2% (1.39 kg/m 3 ) and 0.1% (0.68 kg/m 3 ) concentrations of salt were able to provide complete protection against against white and brown rot fungi.

The boron compounds disodium octa-borate tetrahydrate, boric acid, and borax are used as insecticides for wood. Borates are also stomach poisons against termites. Boron compounds enter a glassy state when heated. The solubility of boric acid in water is about 5%. However, when mixed with borax, the solubility of boric acid markedly increases.

This is an excellent preservative for protecting wood indoors because it is highly soluble in water. Wood treated with a 2% boric acid solution showed almost complete protection from fungi (Hashemi et al,2010). A few studies have been reported in the literature involving boric acid and the thermal treatment of wood.

  1. Artal et al,
  2. 2008) studied the effects of incorporating boric acid and di-sodium octa-borate along with heat treatment to decrease the loss in modulus of elasticity (MOE) because of heat treatment.
  3. Similarly, Percin et al,
  4. 2015) observed that boric acid treatment before heat treatment was useful to a great extent in reducing the mechanical strength losses, including modulus of elasticity, bending strength, tensile strength, and compressive strength.

In an attempt to reduce the leaching of boric acid from wood cells, Akong et al, (2015) prepared a hydrogel based on N-tert-butyloxycarbonyl amino acid, benzotriazol-1yloxy, tris (dimethylamino) phosphonium hexafluorophosphate, triethylamine, and amino group along with borax powder to provide wood with full protection against leaching.

  1. The antibacterial and enzyme inhibition properties of tannins were used to inhibit the wood rotters.
  2. The latest development in the use of tannin impregnation to improve wood properties started with Yamaguchi et al,
  3. 2002), who investigated three types of tannin solutions, namely mimosa tannin (MT), resorcinolated tannin (RMT), and catecholated tannin (CMT).

An ammonia aqueous solution, tannin solution, and CuC1 2 aqueous solution were mixed in different proportions. The pressure treatment was applied at pressures up to 9.3 kg/cm and was maintained for 30 minutes. On the third day, the mortality of the termites was 100% for CMT- and CMTNH 3 -exposed termites.

  • Contact toxicity tests revealed that most of the tannin-ammonia-copper solutions did not have contact toxicity because the termites had eaten the treated cellulose pellets and remained alive.
  • Wood eating-damage tests indicated that the tannin-ammonia copper agents offered a high level of protection against termites.

The eating-damage tests, which were conducted after 21 days, revealed that none of the solutions except RMT were able to give complete protection. Thevenon et al, (2009) examined the protective effects of other tannin formulations on wood. Tondi et al,

(2013) used boric acid and a hexamine solution to dissolve tannin powder. Vacuum-impregnated wood samples were tested with the above solutions for fungi and termite resistance. The observed weight losses were less than 3%, which showed the effectiveness of the solutions at imparting fungal and termite resistance to the wood.

Hydrogel Impregnation The efficacy of using organosilicon compounds (silanes and siloxanes) to protect masonry, textiles, ceramics, etc., has been investigated in the context of wood by Palanti et al, (2012). A water-based active emulsion of methoxy-terminated dimethyl phenylsiloxane (DMS) and N-octyltrieth oxysilane (n-OTES) in different proportions and a micro-emulsion of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and triethoxysilane (TES) and 60% w/w active macro-emulsion of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) were investigated; only the N-octyltriethoxysilane (n-OTES) was included for the analysis of anti-fungal activities.

The decay resistance analyses showed a weight loss of 10.9% when using a 100% w/w active micro-emulsion of polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) and triethoxysilane (TES). The Percentage Weight Gain (PWG) following treatment was found to be related to the durability. As PWG increased, the weight loss due to fungal exposure decreased, and thus implied improved durability.

The study found that the PTMS-treated beech (2.75 to 14% PWG) was poorly protected against T. versicolor, Table 3. Eco-Friendly Chemicals for Enhancing the Durability of Wood/Bamboo N-N-(1,8-Naphthalyl) Hydroxylamine (NHA-Na) Kartal and Imamura (2004) studied the combined fungicidal properties of copper, boron, and ammonium salts as a means of enhancing the durability of wood. Both the fungal and termite resistances of different treatments were investigated.

  1. Various combinations of copper sulfate pentahydrate, boric acid, and N’-N-(1,8-naphthalyl) hydroxylamine (NHA-Na) were examined.T.
  2. Versicolor was reported to be a more depredating fungi than Fomitopsis palustris,
  3. Ammonium salts were found to be effective against both kinds of fungi.
  4. The addition of copper salt to boric acid was reported to improve the fungal resistance of wood.

In unleached samples, the boric acid treatment was assessed to be completely resistant to termite attacks. However, upon leaching with water, a tremendous increase in termite attacks was observed in the study. Of all the leached samples, the boric acid and copper combination showed the best termite mortality (65%).

The preservation and treatment of both bamboo and wood species is essential. A key focus is required to develop good weathering properties and environmentally benign, economical, and effective preservatives that give reliable performance and ensure that the treated product can be easily and safely disposed of at the end of its service life. Traditional bamboo preservation methods such as water leaching and smoke treatment are absolutely safe, economical, and environmentally friendly. However, scientific data regarding their effectiveness and the mechanisms involved is very limited in the literature. Laboratory investigations of traditional treatments ( e.g,, water leaching, smoking) have shown the potential of these treatments as potent fungicides under laboratory conditions. For the longer-duration protection of bamboo, chemical treatment has been considered a viable solution. For bamboo culms and palm wood environment-friendly organic acid have been used successfully. For the development of environmentally acceptable preservatives, for instance plant-based preservatives, there is much research and development needs to be done. The studies on the efficiency of eco-friendly preservatives have been limited to the laboratory only. Very limited data is available regarding the efficacy of wood preservatives used for bamboo. In the past decade, research on non-toxic preservatives has advanced remarkably. Recent research has demonstrated that eco-frienldy chemicals such as bio-oil, hydrogels, and boron complexes, are very efficient in improving the service life of wood/bamboo culms. Their scale up studies for industrial units need detailed investigations.

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2013). “Chemical composition and efficiency of bio-oil obtained from giant cane ( Arundo donax L.) as wood preservative,” BioResources 8(2), 2084-2098. DOI: 10.15376/biores.8.2.2084-2098 Thevenon, M.F., Tondi, G., and Pizzi, A. (2009). “High performance tannin resin boron wood preservative for outdoor end uses,” European Journal of Wood and Wood Products 67(1), 89-93.

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Xu, G., Wang, L., Liu, J., and Hu, S. (2013). “Decay resistance and thermal stability of bamboo preservatives prepared using camphor leaf extract,” International Biodeterioration & Biodegradation 78, 103-107. DOI: 10.1016/j.ibiod.2012.12.001 Yamaguchi, H., Yoshino, K., and Kido, A.

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Does bamboo need to be fumigated?

The bamboo packing material must be subjected to mandatory fumigation, preshipment, with ethylene oxide at either: 1. a rate of 1500 g/m³ for 24 hours at 21°C, or 2.

How do you seal bamboo?

Step 5 – Apply a solvent-based wood sealer to the bamboo, using the china brush. Wood sealers tend to sag on vertical bamboo surfaces. If you notice this, smooth the sagging areas with the brush. Let the sealer dry for two hours. Apply another coat.

How long will untreated bamboo last?

Without any protective treatment, most bamboo species have an average natural durability of less than 2 years. Stored under cover, untreated bamboo may last 4-7 years. These variations in bamboo durability strongly depend on the species, the length of the culm, the thickness of the wall, but also, and equally important, the time of harvesting,

The lower portion of the bamboo culm is considered more durable, while the soft inner part of the wall deteriorates faster than the outer harder portion. This is related to the anatomical and chemical nature of the woody cells. Although some of the characteristics of bamboo resemble those of wood, its growth characteristics and microstructure is different.

Unlike timber varieties like teak, the structure of bamboo is void of toxic deposits, The large amounts of starch present in bamboo makes it highly attractive to mold and fungi, termites and powder-post beetles. They cause much damage during drying, storage, and subsequent use.

  1. Tests have also shown that bamboo is more prone to soft rot and white rot attack than to brown rot.
  2. Bamboo consists of 50-70% hemicellulose, 30% pentosans, and 20-25% lignin.
  3. The lignin present in bamboos is unique, and undergoes changes during the growth of the culm.
  4. Bamboo is also known to be rich in silica (0.5 to 4%), but the entire silica is located in the outer layer (1 mm), with hardly any silica in the rest of the wall.

Bamboos also have minor amounts of waxes, resins and tannins, but none of these have enough toxicity to improve its natural durability.

Do you have to dry bamboo to build with it?

Download Article Download Article Making crafts out of bamboo can be fun. However, before you can use bamboo you need to let it dry out. This process is called curing bamboo. If you leave bamboo to air dry, it can take 6 to 12 weeks. However, there are shorter methods to cure bamboo for at home projects.

  1. 1 Select bamboo to harvest. If you’re harvesting bamboo for an at-home project, you’ll first want to select the proper culms to harvest. Culms are stems of bamboo that shoot up from the ground. Look for culms that are longer and straighter in appearance. These bamboo culms may be sturdier and their width tapers off with height. This means you’ll have a variety of sizes to work with when using the culms for at home projects.
  2. 2 Watch for infected culms. Before you begin curing and storing your bamboo, remove any infected culms. Culms that contain fungus, bugs, or other problems can infect the rest of the culms.
    • Look for circular ring patters, which can indicate fungus. While fungus is mostly cosmetic and can be removed, it can be a pain if it spreads. If you only have a few culms that look like they might have fungus in an otherwise healthy batch, you might want to simply toss the infected culms.
    • Some viral infections leave mosaic-like patterns on bamboo culms. These culms should be discarded. You should also get rid of culms infected with a black, sooty mold.
    • Bugs and parasites can infect bamboo culms. Watch for a white substance on shoot tips. If you notice such a substance, peel back the culm leaves and look for small, pink bugs. Such culms should be discarded as the pesticides required to treat such infections are pricey and time consuming.


  3. 3 Prepare your culms. Once you’ve gathered culms and checked for infection, prepare them for the curing process. It’s easiest to simply use a grill to cure bamboo for home projects. Therefore, you may want to saw the bamboo culms into manageable pieces of 4 feet or so. You can use a saw or clippers that can be purchased at most hardware stores.
  4. 4 Use heat to cure the bamboo. You can use an outdoor gas grill to cure bamboo at home. You should remove the racks from the grill and then place the bamboo culms inside one at a time.
    • Turn the heat to high. Watch for the bamboo to change color slightly. This indicates resin rising to the surface, important to the curing process as it strengthens culms.
    • Take an old rag and rub the resin into the bamboo culms. The color of the bamboo should slowly change from deep green to mint green. Once the entire culm has reached this color, set it aside somewhere to cool.
    • Wait for the culm to be cool enough to handle. Then, poke holes in its inner membranes. You can use any tool that can poke through bamboo culms, such as sharp scissors. This will quicken the drying process.
  5. 5 Take safety precautions. Always wear protective gloves during the curing process to avoid getting burned. When setting bamboo out to dry, choose a non-flammable surface to avoid fire.
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  1. 1 Prepare a storage area. If you’re curing a large amount of bamboo, you need a storage area. Proper storage assures your bamboo will dry out in a healthy, safe fashion.
    • Keep the culms away from direct soil as this prevents fungal or insect infestations.
    • Make sure you do not dry culms in direct sunlight, as this can lead to quick changes in moisture that causes bamboo to crack and dry out. Try covering your bamboo with a tarp.
    • Make sure culms have decent air ventilation. This can prevent damage while drying.
  2. 2 Decide between vertical or horizontal stacking. When drying, bamboo is usually stacked either vertically or horizontally. There are pros and cons to each stacking option.
    • The main upside to vertical stacking is that it lessens the chance of a fungal infection. However, a sturdier support system will be needed for vertical stacking to prevent poles from bending.
    • Horizontal stacking works better for large stacks. You will need to stack bamboo on large platforms and place a thick, plastic sheet under stacks to prevent fungal infections. Keep on eye on the culms on the lower part of the platforms. They’re susceptible to cracking.
    • Regardless of whether you choose horizontal or vertical stacking, rotate poles every 15 days. This assures culms will dry in a uniform fashion. Bamboo should be dry in 6 to 12 weeks.
  3. 3 Take measures to prevent damage. Even when stored properly, bamboo polls are subject to some damage when drying. There are steps you can take to prevent damage.
    • Bamboo sometimes splits when drying. You can prevent this by tying wires around the ends of bamboo polls.
    • When bamboo finishes drying, it sometimes loses some of its glossy appearance. You can restore this by gently oiling and waxing the bamboo once the drying process is finished.
  4. 4 Consider soaking the bamboo first. While the above method is the most conventional method to cure bamboo, some people soak bamboo before letting it air dry. This may make fungus and mold slightly less likely depending on where you live. In this method, you soak the bamboo for 90 days and then set out to dry for 2 weeks in a sunny area. This method may not work well in areas subject to extreme heat.
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  1. 1 Collect bamboo during the proper season. If you plan on curing bamboo, you need to collect bamboo first. Understand which seasons are best when it comes to collecting bamboo.
    • The best time to harvest bamboo is at the end of the dry season in your area. Starch content is at its highest during this season, making parasite and fungal attacks less likely.
    • If you have a rainy season, avoid harvesting bamboo during this time. In general, bamboo is most susceptible to damage during this season.
  2. 2 Cut bamboo properly. Use a machete or saw to cut bamboo. Make sure to cut just above the first or second node above the ground. This is the best place to cut bamboo to prevent damage during storage and transportation.
  3. 3 Transport the bamboo with care. Once you’ve cut bamboo, make sure you transport it properly. Improper transportation techniques can lead to damage.
    • Carry the bamboo above the ground or transport in a wheelbarrow or truck. Dragging bamboo across the ground can cause damage.
    • Do not throw bamboo culms on hard ground. This can cause damage. When you reach the storage area, set the bamboo culms down gently.
  4. 4 Harvest only mature bamboo poles. When you harvest bamboo, culms should not be too young or too old. Aim for bamboo poles between 4 and 7 years old for best results.
    • Bamboo tends to grow in clumps. Poles that are inside the clump are older than those growing outside.
    • Talk to an experienced bamboo harvester. He or she will be able to tell the age of bamboo by knocking on the culm and observing the different sounds.
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Add New Question

  • Question How would I preserve and treat bamboo? An architect who designs large elaborate bamboo homes and buildings says they soak the bamboo in Borax and water before heat-treating it, followed by it drying out then sealing or varnishing it, and it should last a lifetime.
  • Question Roughly how tall should good bamboo be to harvest? Many species of bamboo grow to their full heights in the first season, so height is not a determinant of age. If the bamboo still has a shiny green look or its growing sheath, it most likely is too young to harvest (thin walled).
  • Question Does wood glue work on bamboo? Is it okay to use polyurethane on harvested bamboo? Wood glue works well on breaks, moderately well on the inside of the culm and not at all on the outside of the culm. Polyurethane will flake off the slick exterior of the culm as it naturally swells and contracts with temperature and humidity, so it’s not a good idea to coat bamboo in polyurethane.

See more answers Ask a Question 200 characters left Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Submit Advertisement Thanks for submitting a tip for review! Article Summary X To cure bamboo, start by cutting it into pieces that are about 4 feet long.

Next, remove the racks from an outdoor grill and place the bamboo pieces one at a time inside the grill. Then, turn the heat to high and watch for the bamboo to change color slightly, which indicates the resin is rising to the surface. After that, take an old rag and rub the resin into the bamboo until it turns from a deep green color to mint green.

Finally, set it aside to cool and poke holes through the bamboo to speed up the drying process. For more tips, like how to cure large amounts of bamboo, read on! Did this summary help you? Thanks to all authors for creating a page that has been read 272,165 times.

How do you mold proof bamboo?

How to Clean Mold from Bamboo? – The most effective way to instantly remove mold on bamboo are commercial products such as Mold Armor or RMR-86, Alternative methods with lemon oil or vinegar as described below could also do the trick. Remove bamboo mold, white spores and mildew with a soft brush and clean up the area with a damp cloth.

  1. Use lemon oil or a solution of vinegar and water to remove the mold.
  2. For bamboo furniture it is recommended to apply 3 coats of water-based polyurethane after the mold is removed.
  3. This can be time consuming but will ensure the conservation of the furniture.
  4. Make sure though, to first clean the furniture with turpentine and to dry it out completely.

If you don’t, mold might grow underneath the polyurethane finish and cause blisters.

Can you use wood oil on bamboo?

Oiling – To extend the life of your bamboo cutting board and keep it looking new, oil it at least once per month, To do this, apply mineral oil directly to the surface of your board and rub it in using a clot h, Let the oil sit on the cutting board and soak in for at least a few hours and ideally overnight. How To Treat Bamboo For Construction You shouldn’t use anything other than a food-grade mineral oil to oil your bamboo cutting board. Other types of oil— like vegetable, olive or avocado oil— will eventually go rancid and cause your cutting board to have an unpleasant smell. Our Revitalizing Mineral Oil is a safe and effective option to use for both bamboo and wood cutting boards.

Should you varnish bamboo?

WHICH PROTECTION FOR A PIECE OF BAMBOO FURNITURE: OIL OR BAMBOO VARNISH? – You can alleviate some inconveniences, especially scratches, by protecting your bamboo furniture with a bamboo varnish, The varnish is a product that creates a durable protection on the surface of your bamboo worktop, making it shock and scratch resistant and impervious to water and grease stains.

The protection created by the varnish will last for several years without requiring any special maintenance. If you subsequently wish to apply another finishing product and carry out a renovation, the bamboo furniture will need to be lightly sanded. We do not recommend the application of an oil on bamboo furniture exposed to scratches, water and food splashes as for furniture in a kitchen.

This is because bamboo oil is a non-film-forming finish and will not create sufficient resistance to these stresses. On the other hand, bamboo is a material that is very little impregnatable by oils. An oiled finish will therefore be very fragile and not very resistant over time.

So, if you have a bamboo worktop in a kitchen, it is best to use a bamboo varnish because even if you are very careful you will have to rub, scratch and clean your worktop very frequently. You may ask yourself: can you varnish bamboo? Well yes, varnish is still the best protection for bamboo furniture,

We recommend the Bamboo Furniture Varnish VMB500, It is very easy to apply in two to three coats and dries very quickly (2 hours minimum and 24 hours maximum).

Does bamboo rot or mold?

Bamboo is susceptible to mould and attack by fungi because of its high content of starch and sugar.

What is the durability of bamboo?

Without any protective treatment, most bamboo species have an average natural durability of less than 2 years. Stored under cover, untreated bamboo may last 4-7 years. These variations in bamboo durability strongly depend on the species, the length of the culm, the thickness of the wall, but also, and equally important, the time of harvesting,

The lower portion of the bamboo culm is considered more durable, while the soft inner part of the wall deteriorates faster than the outer harder portion. This is related to the anatomical and chemical nature of the woody cells. Although some of the characteristics of bamboo resemble those of wood, its growth characteristics and microstructure is different.

Unlike timber varieties like teak, the structure of bamboo is void of toxic deposits, The large amounts of starch present in bamboo makes it highly attractive to mold and fungi, termites and powder-post beetles. They cause much damage during drying, storage, and subsequent use.

  1. Tests have also shown that bamboo is more prone to soft rot and white rot attack than to brown rot.
  2. Bamboo consists of 50-70% hemicellulose, 30% pentosans, and 20-25% lignin.
  3. The lignin present in bamboos is unique, and undergoes changes during the growth of the culm.
  4. Bamboo is also known to be rich in silica (0.5 to 4%), but the entire silica is located in the outer layer (1 mm), with hardly any silica in the rest of the wall.

Bamboos also have minor amounts of waxes, resins and tannins, but none of these have enough toxicity to improve its natural durability.

How do you make bamboo grow stronger?

Give your bamboo a sunny spot for faster growth – Photosynthesis and growth comes from sunlight. The more sunlight your bamboo gets, the more “food” it receives, the faster it will grow. There are a few species of bamboo which prefer filtered light, but for most bamboo, they are sun loving plants which thrive on that extra energy.

Is bamboo treated with chemicals?

Why isn’t bamboo sustainable? – Bamboo fabric is a regenerated cellulosic textile made from natural cellulose extracted from bamboo. That is why it’s often marketed as eco-friendly. But it may be harmful to the environment and human health as it requires toxic chemicals for its fabrication.

Bamboo fabric production involves the same processes as rayon and is very chemically intense using harmful chemicals such as carbon disulfide, sulfuric acid, ammonia, acetone, or caustic soda. Bamboo fabric generally is rayon made from bamboo. The man-made cellulosic fibers are regarded as a potential source of contamination for marine environments, as reported by faculty scientists,

Cellulosic fibers were also reported as an important share of microfibers in a 2011 study, Microfibers facilitate the transfer of pollutants, monomers, and plastic additives to organisms with uncertain consequences for their health. Bamboo contributes to the number of synthetic fibers escaping through our plumbing and sewage systems.

The water expelled from our washing machines transports these fibers to rivers, lakes, and oceans. The amount of microfibers entering the world’s oceans is increasing at an alarming rate. Bamboo as a plant is considered natural and eco-friendly. It has amazing properties as a very sustainable crop, fast-growing with almost no fertilizer, pesticides, labor, or additional water.

However, sustainable forest management is a primary concern with bamboo and other man-made cellulosic fiber production. The global textile and apparel industry is responsible for huge deforestation, destruction of ecosystems, and greenhouse gas emissions.

How do you increase bamboo strength?

From figure 5(a), improvement of strength can be expected by freezing better than mixing. Also, freezing the bamboo fiber gradually with the freezer can expect the improvement of strength. From figure 5(b), improvement of strength can be expected by freezing better than mixing.