noun, often attributive
bam·boo | \(ˌ)bam-ˈbü, ˈbam-ˌ \
plural bamboos

Definition of bamboo 

: any of various woody or arborescent grasses (as of the genera Bambusa, Arundinaria, and Dendrocalamus of the subfamily Bambusoideae) of tropical and temperate regions having hollow stems, thick rhizomes, and shoots that are used for food also : the jointed stem of bamboo used especially for building, furniture, and utensils

Illustration of bamboo

Illustration of bamboo

Examples of bamboo in a Sentence

Bamboo grows in the grove near the house. We cut down some bamboos.

Recent Examples on the Web

Posh animals will find options like the timeless tuxedo and shirred dresses, while those who are normcore inclined are also covered (snoods and hoodies made of sustainable bamboo). Peter Haldeman, New York Times, "The Secret Price of Pets," 4 July 2018 Inside the city’s untamed culinary scene CIRCLE GAME A dish at Sojiki Nakahigashi features moroko (a freshwater fish), bamboo shoots, fiddlehead ferns and nappa flower. Tom Downey, WSJ, "Explore Kyoto With the Chefs Who Are Turning Culinary Tradition on Its Head," 28 May 2018 Bamboo straws Straws made out of all-natural bamboo sourced from sustainable forests are a lightweight and reusable alternative to plastic straws. David Carrig, USA TODAY, "Plastic straws are polluting our oceans. Here are some alternatives," 23 May 2018 By day, these guys polish the plaque—stoking the BBQ pit, wrestling with enormous woks, shuffling towers of bamboo dim sum steamers. Casey Quackenbush / Hong Kong, Time, "'We're Not Educated.' The Untold Story of Lung King Heen, the World's First Michelin Three-Star Chinese Restaurant," 12 July 2018 As of next month Alaska Airlines, which used 22 million plastic stir straws and citrus picks each year, now plans to use stir straws made from white birch and citrus picks made of bamboo. Tara Bahrampour, ajc, "How a Girl Scout got companies to cut down on using millions of plastic straws," 22 June 2018 When Claire moved in, the two took on projects together, including the front door, made of bamboo. Taylor M. Riley, The Courier-Journal, "Don’t let this Louisville farmhouse fool you. Inside it’s a nautical getaway," 12 Apr. 2018 One is a sparse, wispy drawing of bamboo from the 1960s. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Unseen Illustrations by J.R.R. Tolkien Are Coming to Oxford," 5 Apr. 2018 All About Bamboo McClelland became entrenched in the world of bamboo. NBC News, "Filipino-American Entrepreneur Is Building Bamboo Bikes to Improve the Planet," 5 Feb. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'bamboo.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of bamboo

1586, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for bamboo

Malay bambu

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Phrases Related to bamboo

bamboo shoots

Statistics for bamboo

Last Updated

13 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for bamboo

The first known use of bamboo was in 1586

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More Definitions for bamboo



English Language Learners Definition of bamboo

: a tall plant with hard hollow stems that are used for building and to make furniture, tools, etc.


bam·boo | \bam-ˈbü \

Kids Definition of bamboo

: a tall treelike tropical grass with a hard hollow jointed stem that is used in making furniture and in building

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Comments on bamboo

What made you want to look up bamboo? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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