Posted by: hoz49 | April 17, 2008

The Bamboo Village

Traveling down Gorordo Avenue from JY Square, somewhere in the vicinity of the University of the Philippines, I noticed a stretch of sidewalk that looks like a showroom for bamboo products. Everything from beds, chairs, loungers, sofas, tables, cabinets, vanities, cribs and even ladders are displayed, all made of bamboo. One afternoon I went there for a visit

Coming from the Midwest USA I have never seen so much bamboo in one place before. I have a good friend who occasionally brings in a small quantity from Arkansas for me, but it isn’t this thick walled tropical species and is prone to split as soon as it dries out. I wish I had some of the good Philippine stuff back home for my garden and sail canoe projects.

A small barangay extends down an alley from Gorordo. There are stacks of bamboo on one side of the street, some over 20 feet high. It’s a bamboo world back there. The workers live in bamboo huts, eat at bamboo tables, sleep on bamboo beds and their kids play in bamboo cribs. Even their chickens are kept in bamboo cages with bamboo feeders and water cups!

Painted bamboo? Oh NO!

All work is done by hand with knives, saws, chisels and wooden mallets. It is interesting to watch them lay out the rungs for a ladder and cut the holes with a chisel. A few whacks and the rung is ready for insertion. Probably not an OSHA approved ladder though.

Proud Mama and Baby

I asked a fellow standing next to a Sala set of two chairs, sofa and table how much they cost. As he started to size me up I stepped closer and said, “No Kano price, Cebuano price!” He screwed his face up and started wiggling around and I thought I was really working the bargain when he said, “Please sir, you’re standing on my toes.” Most people in the Philippines wear flip flops so I think maybe my 200lbs smashing his foot didn’t feel too good. That’s one negotiation technique Fe’s sister Lisa hasn’t thought of !

After I removed my foot from his he said “2800.00 Sir”. Thats PESOS people not US dollars. At current exchange rates around 70 bucks. Seventy dollars for a bamboo sofa, two armchairs, and a coffee table.
They are comfortable just as they are but if you want cushions you have to have them made elsewhere. Maybe there’s a cushion village somewhere…



  1. We bought are for 2500 pesos in Mercado here in LApu Lapu

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