Prescriptions for Bamboo Working of Forest

The flowing cutting Rule of Salia and Daba Bamboo have been prescribed for systematic working of Bamboos in all the Division of the State of Odisha.

Silvicultural System : The silvicultural System prescribed is culm Selection-cum-Clump-improvement combined with simultaneous cleaning and cultural operation for Saila Bamboos. & Clump Improvement combined with simultaneous cleaning and cultural operation for Daba Babmboos.

Felling Cycles : A felling Cycle of 4 years is adopted both for Saila as well as Daba Bamboss.

Regulation of the Yield : Yield will be regulated entirely by area and the coupes in each felling series are to be worked out by rotation.

Agency of Working : As Bamboo has been nationalized, the State Government shall decide the Agency of working.

Estimation of the yield for fixation of Target : Basing on the clump quality, treatment types as well as enumeration by stratified sampling the estimated yield (target) shall be arrived at by the Agency for working. This work should start by June-July and completed by August for the coupe due for working so that new Karadies (Karlas) are taken into account.

Sequence of Felling : A definite sequence of felling in Bamboo Coupe is essential. The Coupe should be divided into four Sections running along the contours. The Sections from the uphill side should be worked first and the first section should be completed in all respects before the work commences in the second Section and soon.

Demarcation : The Bamboo Coupe should be demarcated by giving double coal-tar ring at the breast height on all the trees, which are distinctly visible from each other. The Section line should be identified by giving single coal tar line. Signboard shall be displayed on compartment lines. Road Crossing, Nulla crossing and other strategic points mentioning the details of working.

Treatment Maps :

  • Having completed the demarcation of Bamboo Coupes and before taking it up for working, a Treatment Map will be prepared by the Agency for working on a copy of the available Management Map in 1:25, 000 scale indicating Salia and Daba bamboos area separately.
  • Treatment types to be distinguished shall be based on the assessment of the standard Salia bamboo quality classes and actual clump condition.
  • Treatment Types of Salia Bamboos : The following Treatment Types have been identified for Salia Bamboo areas. Salia Bamboo forest will be categorized for different Treatment as described below :

Treatment Type  A: Areas with healthy and well-stocked Bamboo clumps consisting of Clump Quality- I : Clum height of Bamboosa : 9 m and up Clump Quality -II : Clum height of Bamboos : between 6 to 9 m. Clump Quality - III : Clum height of Bamboos below 6 m.

Treatment Type – B : Areas with well-stocked but degraded, damaged, congested and / or fire burnt clumps

Treatment Type – C : Areas wherein bamboo clumps are sparse and scattered If necessary, these Treatment Type B & C may be further classified into the above three clump quality classes.

Cutting Rules for Salia Bamboos : Salia Bamboo (Dendrocalamus strictus) will be worked as per the following prescriptions.

Rules, which are uniformly applicable to all the Treatment Types:

  • Karadi (culm upto one year of age) and the bamboo culm over one year but under two years of age will not be cut under any circumstances. Such more than one year old culms and the clums which are older than 2 years but less than 3 years of age are to be retained in the clump and their number should not be less than number of Karadis.
    The minimum number of culms to be retained in a clump is fixed on the basis of quality of the clump and it is as follows : Clump Quality - I : 20 Culms Clump Quality - II 15 culms Clump Quality - II : 10 culms.
  • Clumps having the minimum or less than minimum prescribed number of culms shall not be commercially exploited. Only broken, dead, dry, badly damaged and malformed bamboos will be felled.
  • A clump will be distinguished, as an independent clump where its periphery is easily discernible from others. Only where such a distinction is not possible, two clumps within one-mater distance will be regarded as one.
  • While retaining culm against felling in a clump they should remain well spaced and preferably at the periphery and in the order of preference as follows : (a) Karadi Bamboos (b) Kasi Bamboos (older than one year but less than 2 years) (c) Pakala Bamboos (Young green Bamboos) (d) Older live Bamboos. (e) Others as may be available.
  • Rhizomes will not be dug.
  • The height above which culms are cut shall not be less than 15 cm or more than 45 cm from the ground level and in no case below the first prominent node from the ground.
  • The cut shall be made with a sharp instrument to ensure that the stump remains in tact without splitting.
  • Lops and tops of bamboos will be simultaneously cleared to avoid fire hazard at least to a distance of one meter away from the periphery of the worked clumps.
  • Climbers shall be cut from all the Bamboo clumps during working of the coupe.
  • Bamboo strips will not be used in tying bamboo bundles.
  • Bamboo felling will not be done from 1st July to 30th September each year. However, all fellings and transport of Bamboos in the Sanctuaries shall be completed by the end of April positively. In case of gregarious flowering in Sanctuary areas, working period will be extended up to end of June.
  • If sporadic flowering of Bamboo clumps is observed, such clumps will be clear felled once the seeds from such clumps have fallen.
  • In case of gregarious flowering of bamboos, on the shedding of ripe seeds, the clumps will be clear felled and extracted early so that bamboos may not dry or deteriorate or become prone to fire damage. Disposal of such bamboos should be expeditiously arranged to prevent deterioration in quality and the prescribed treatment as mentioned below shall be adopted in the gregariously flowered areas.
  • Lopping of bamboos either for feeding livestock or otherwise is strictly prohibited.
  • As far possible, bamboo felling should be completed by the end of May (except in Sanctuaries where it should be completed by April.)
  • Bamboo forests should be rigidly protected from fires and in any case forest fires should not occur during the year of working and the year following it.
  • No grazing is permitted during rains in bamboo forests, which have been worked in the previous season.

Rules applicable to Specific Treatment Types :

Treatment Type -A :

Commercial felling will be done in those clumps which have more than the prescribed minimum number of clums

Cultural operations will be carried out in clumps having less than the prescribed minimum number of culms. In such clumps commercial fellings will not be done.

Treatment Type - B :

There will be no commercial fellings in any clump.

Only cultural operation will be carried out which will include : (i) Felling of all dead, dried, over-mature, burnt, broken and grossly damaged bamboos. (ii) Broken or cut bamboos or high stumps in green condition having length of 2.5 meters or more may be retained, if necessary, to maintain size of the clumps. (iii) The minimum number of clump, as prescribed in foregoing paras for various quality classes may not be strictly followed if necessary so arises. (iv) The congested bamboo clumps should be clear felled by forming segments. The maximum number of segments, under which a congested clump should be worked, will be three and at each working not more than on segment will be cut. Where three segments are found, the middle segments will be in the shape of triangle having apex at the periphery. Only this middle segment should be felled at the first working. In subsequent cycles, side segments should be felled. Diagram showing divisions of the clump in these segments is given below :

Treatment Type - C :

Only cultural operations will be carried out in the existing bamboo clumps

The bamboo potentiality of such forests will be augmented by raising bamboo plantation. The minimum areas to be planted annually will be 40 hectares or one third of the area under this type
Tending and cultural operations in the area planted with the bamboos will be done as per the standard practice.

Cutting Rules for Daba Bamboos (Bambusa arundinacea) :

All bamboo culms in a clump which are more than 3 years old shall be harvested on culm selection basis provided the number of culms left uniformly distributed in a clump shall not less than 10.

In case of congested clumps where culm selection is not possible the clump should be carefully felled by forming segments as per any of two diagrams given below and depending on the interlacing of the bamboos with a view to provide support to the remaining segments against wind damage. The maximum number of segments under which a congested clump should be worked will be three and at each working not more than one segment will be cut. Stumps higher than 50 cm or more than two internodes should not be left un cut. Where three segments are formed, the middle segment will be in the shape of a triangle. Only the middle segment (I) should be felled at the first working. Two Diagrams showing divisions of the clump in three segments are given below :

Simultaneous Silvicultural Operations :

All cutting debris shall be removed from the clump and the clump shall be left cleaned. Where possible, the exposed rhizomes shall be covered with soil scrapped from the surrounding in plain areas and preferably from the uphill side of a hilly or undulating terrain. Both these operations shall have to be done along with the main cutting operation.

No damage shall be caused to rhizomes and rootstock.

Treatment of gregariously flowered areas :

  • Bamboo seedlings at an espacement of about 4 m x 4 m are to be adopted and retained and the rest are to be thinned out.
  • Cleaning, soil working and weeding is to be done around the adopted bamboo seedlings upto a radius of 50 cm.
  • To maintain the continuity, planting up of bamboo rhizomes is also to be resorted to especially in big gaps.
  • All the flowered clumps are to be worked up following the prescription of the working plan.
  • The area should be closed for grazing.
  • Elaborate fire protection measures are also to be taken.
Sporadic Flowering
Gregarious Flowering
Scattered nature of flowing only Few clumps are involved in flowering. Flowering occurs almost in the entire areas.
Only few culms flower in a clump It involves almost all or some proportion Flowering takes place in all the culms in clump.
The culm may or may not die after flowering All the culms of a clump die after flowering.
The clump does not die. Flowering is followed by the death of the clump
It takes place usually irregularly almost every alternate year. If follows a cycle of long interval 20 to 65 years.
  It progress in a definite direction like an epidemic wave.
  It takes 2 to 4 years to completethe flowering in the area.


In Selection forest, the age of clump varies and accordingly varies the intensity of gregarious / sporadic flowering. The delay in flowering in poor sites is due to the effect of site quality, which is related with the growth, and storage of starch, sugar and other substances in the clump, which help flowering. In a well-managed forest intensity of flowering is less in comparison to a un-worked forest consisting congested clumps. Intensity of flowering is more in area having more biotic interference in form of grazing and fire in comparison to protected area. It is important to identify the characters of flowering in Salia Bamboo to decide appropriate management technique.

The main threats to be management of bamboo forest are :

  • Indiscriminate cutting of bamboo by tenants and artisans.
  • Annual forest fire.
  • Excessive grazing and
  • Clear felling of Daba bamboos.

These factors require to be checked on one hand and techniques are to be developed to improve the quality and quantity of the clumps in order to conserve the deteriorating Bamboo forests. Decreasing trend in production of Bamboo has already indicated the deterioration of Bamboo forest. Appropriate silvicultural techniques to manage the Bamboo forest will, therefore, be essential in restoring the valuable Bamboo forests of the state.

Distinguishing Morphological characters of the Culms of different age :

Culm age

Morphological Character

Karadi (the first year clum)   

Culm sheath present on lower half of culm. Branches present through out the length of culm. Green uniformly, bloom is abundantly present and comes off easily on finger. A fresh cut just under the node shows the same fresh coloration even after one or two minutes

Kasi (the second year clum)

Culm sheath mostly absent except some remnances. Culm dark in colour. Branches present practically at all nodes. Bloom is partchy, gray. Ish-white in colour and comes off less easily on finger. A fresh cut just under the node shows the same fresh coloration even after one or two minutes

Pakala (the 3rd & 4th year clum)      

Culm sheath absent. White bloom absent. Blackish gray or dark blotches appear which come off on finger slightly on rubbing. A fresh cut under the node shows reddish-brown coloration after one or two minutes.
Mixed bamboo forest      17,794 square kilometres
Mangrove forests             219 square kilometres