There is no denying the beauty and durability of traditional hardwood flooring, especially ones with nice grain patterns and stained in warm colors. However, with the increased interest in conservation and concern for the environment, more and more people are looking for alternatives to hardwood flooring for their homes. There are many different natural and man-made flooring materials available today but none as unique as bamboo.
Bamboo is an ideal material to make into eco friendly flooring: It grows extremely fast; it is sturdy and stable; it is beautiful to look at; and it is cost effective.
Bamboo flooring is made from bamboo, which is a grass. Bamboo is considered a renewable resource because it is a fast growing plant that can be harvested again and again. Bamboo is the fasting growing plant on Earth. Some species of bamboo can grow up to three feet in a single day. Because of its rapid growth, bamboo can be harvested every 3 to 5 years, as opposed to oak trees which can take up to 10 to 20 years to grow to useful size. Quality bamboo flooring is usually made with bamboo that is harvested in its 7th year.
While bamboo is not wood, bamboo flooring is comparable to hardwood floors in sturdiness and durability. It is almost as hard as oak and maple, and tougher than many of the traditional hardwood flooring materials used in the average homes. However, bear in mind that the durability of bamboo flooring depends on the species of bamboo, the age of the plant when it was harvested, and the process used to make the flooring.
Bamboo can be stained and finished just like regular hardwood and thus, bamboo flooring kitchen
comes in a variety of colors and grains, just like hardwood flooring. Some people appreciate the more subtle grain patterns of bamboo as compared to the more pronounced ring like patterns of hardwood.
Another great benefit of bamboo floor is its cost. Time was when flooring using bamboo was hard to find and expensive.
However, thanks to its growing popularity and increased production, bamboo flooring prices have come down. The average cost of material for bamboo floor is between $2 and $4 per square foot, which is comparable to the price of oak flooring. And bamboo floor planks are no longer difficult to find as they are commonly sold alongside traditional hardwood flooring at all the hardware stores.
Installing bamboo flooring is easy too. Bamboo floors can be installed using any of the usual hardwood floor installation methods, which include free floating floor where the planks are simply glued together to form a single piece and float freely over the sub-floor, straight gluing a new floor to an existing floor, and a basic nailing method of nailing each plank to the sub-floor.
Bamboo flooring is proving to be a versatile and attractive alternative to hardwood flooring. It is unique in appearance, available in many different colors and grain patterns, and competitively priced.