Left photo: The Philippine Bambusetum located at the WWRRDEC Compound, Loakan Road, Baguio City. Right photo: The bamboo flowers sighted at the bambusetum.

Bamboo is known for its economic and ecological importance.  However, there are some species of bamboo that bear flowers and eventually die which seldom occurs in the plant kingdom.

This rare phenomenon of bamboo flowering was sighted in the Mindoro bamboo (Cephalostachyum mindorensis Gamble) which started last January 2020 after 32 years of planting at the Watershed and Water Resources Research Development and Extension Center (WWRRDEC) – Philippine Bambusetum. The bamboo is used for various handicrafts.

After six months of planting, it was also observed that seeds of the said species started to fall on the ground.  Fallen seeds were observed to have almost 100% germination due to moist ground condition.

The Philippine Bambusetum at the WWRRDEC Compound, Loakan Road, Baguio City houses sixty-eight (68) species of bamboo.  It was established in 1988 as an ex-situ project initiated by Dr. Fred M. Schlegel and For. Fatima T. Tangan funded jointly by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB).  The Philippine Bambusetum is a much- visited component of the Learning Eco-park for Advocating Resources and Nature (LEARN) by bamboo enthusiasts like farmers, researchers, professionals and LGUs from all over the Philippines.  Imelda T. Ngaloy/Special Projects Section, WWRRDEC