Japan is a country where bamboo can be found growing everywhere. Bamboo is widely used for a number of uses in the Land of the Rising Sun, but strangely enough it is rarely or used for flooring.
Bamboo plays an important part in Japanese culture. It is planted around shrines to ward off evil. It is frequently used for fencing and to make bamboo matchstick blinds. Bamboo charcoal is used in Japan as a natural fertilizer for the better cultivation of green tea.
As with China, bamboo in Japan is seen as representing an ideal – the perfect man stands resolute and does not succumb to the vicissitudes of fate and bamboo is the only plant that remains after a strong storm. Where trees are uprooted by strong winds the bamboo will bend but will not be overcome.
Considering the importance of bamboo to Japanese culture it might thus come as a surprise that the country doesn’t use strand woven bamboo flooring or any other type of bamboo flooring. For more information about bamboo and flooring in Japan follow the link. The article points out that nearly all homes in Japan have engineered flooring consisting of plywood with a hardwood veneer. For a country that gave us the Kyoto Protocol and the hybrid car it is very disappointing to discover that they have not done more to bring sustainability into the home, especially considering how bountiful the renewable resource of bamboo is in the country.