Bamboo Kitchen Cabinets - How Bamboo Can Work in Your Kitchen
Bamboo at Home and in Your HomeClick thumbnail to view full-size
When looking at your kitchen remodeling needs, one of the hot kitchen design trends is to reduce the overall impact our choice has on the environment. A popular choice these days is bamboo kitchen cabinets. But how good is bamboo as a wood product, and why is it better than traditional hardwoods in its impact on the environment?
How Does Bamboo Look As Furniture? How Well Does It Hold Up?
The looks of bamboo are what you might expect. The color of bamboo varies somewhat depending on the variety and the location that it was grown, much like any hardwood. But it is versatile and can be stained to a wide range of finishes, so can be made to match almost any home decor. It has a light colored edge grain, tending towards a neutral blond.
Bamboo as a wood is quite hard, harder than many traditional hardwoods like walnut or oak. When it is cut and built into a furniture product or used in kitchen cabinets it will not warp or shrink (this is known as dimensional stability and once again it is better than many traditional hardwood products). This of course is important since the fit of your doors and drawers won't degrade with the passage of time. Surprisingly, even though it's technically a grass, its nickname is "green steel" because it is so hard.
Where Does Bamboo Come From and How Is It Harvested?
Technically, bamboo is a grass, and is thought to be the fastest growing plant on the planet. There are many varieties of bamboo, and the ones used for furniture generally come from the varieties known as timber bamboos. It grows in a large number of areas in the world, mostly in tropical climates. Some areas like Costa Rica have developed plans to enhance sustainability, but other areas like China are still catching up in that arena. There are efforts to grow it in the United States, such as the state of Alabama. It's usually grown without chemicals and pesticides, and can be harvested after only five or six years.
Where Can You Find Bamboo Cabinets?
AlterEco is a company in the business of selling bamboo cabinets for a number of years. They offer not only kitchen cabinets but other bamboo products like bathroom cabinets. They have a retail store in the San Francisco area.
California has several sellers of bamboo products. Another is Laguna Cabinets, based in Laguna, California. They do a lot of custom design work, once again they handle bathroom cabinets, too.
Grasswood Cabinets makes a number of modular kitchen cabinets, giving a great look at a lower cost than a fully custom design. They are based in San Jose, but ship over a large part of the country.
In the Midwest, Mister Bamboo has introduced a line of kitchen cabinets.
Bamboo cabinets will look great in your kitchen. While the environmental impact is not as straightforward as you would like, the reality is that bamboo has the potential to be a very eco friendly product, and there is little question that as a hardwood replacement, it is an excellent choice.
There are many items on the market to compliment your choice of bamboo cabinets. Some for storage, on the counters or in plain sight. As expected, this type of accessory would last longer than a cheap version from a discount store.