The bamboos are gaining increased attention as an alternative crop with multiple uses and benefits. These long-lived, woody-stemmed perennial grasses are usually evergreen in climates to which they are adapted; those of temperate regions grow a complete set of new leaves each spring, the old ones falling away as the new ones develop (1). Worldwide, approximately 87 genera and over 1,500 species of bamboo exist (2), with roughly 100 species comprising those of economical importance.