Tackling bamboo shortage through plantation in Pasaphu-Peydung Chiwog, Trashigang

Pasaphu-Peydung Chiwog in Trashigang’s Kangpar Gewog is known for its bamboo products. People sustain their livelihoods by weaving bamboo products and earning a good income. However, they have been facing a shortage of raw bamboo materials for years. To address this problem, they started planting bamboo species in a nursery.

A group of villagers has been nurturing Neomicrocalamus bamboo, locally known as Ringshu, for almost a year in this nursery located in Peydung village.

Around 8,000 saplings were sourced from Khar Gewog in Pema Gatshel.

With the plants now reaching almost a metre in height, plans are underway to transplant them into the community forest by the middle of this year.

With such an initiative, the shortage of bamboo is likely to be solved within a few years.

For now, some villagers even travel to nearby districts to collect the bamboo species.

Using bamboo, the people of Pasaphu-Peyung Chiwog weave bamboo baskets, bangchungs, and other products.

“In Pasaphu- Peydoong Chiwog, we cannot cultivate chilli like other farmers. So, we earn by selling bamboo products but the number of Ringshu plants has decreased and it has been almost 4-5 years now. So, we have planted this Ringshu plant expecting that it will benefit us in the future,” said Rinchen Norbu, a resident.

“When it comes to this plant, it bears fruit in 100 years. After that, the plant dies. So, that is why we need to preserve the species we have planted it in the nursery,” said Melam Dorji, another resident.

The Kangpar Gewog’s forest ranger said the nursery was started to ensure the availability of Ringshu plants in the forest and preserve their age-old tradition of weaving bamboo products.

He added that they have plans to introduce machinery for bamboo weaving.

The government and the Asian Forest Corporation Organisation supported the farmers in establishing the nursery.

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