Kawayan - Bamboos in Philippines

In this post, you will get to learn many different things about the kawayan. Most of all you will get to learn about the Philippines and how bamboo plays a role in Filipino’s lives and culture.

As a kid growing up in the island Cebu of the Philippines, I always look up to our bamboo plant. I always loved that plant because it looks very unique compared to the other plants we have, and they look magnificent.

In the Philippines, in our language bamboo is known in our mother tongue as the Kawayan. The kawayan plant can be commonly seen in the Philippines. It is a tall sturdy plant that grows everywhere in the country. They are seen grown on gardens, the forest and there are also many bamboo farms in the country.

There are many things to learn about kawayan. Bamboo isn’t just a plant. It has many purposes. This article will provide an insight about Filipinos and their lives and way of living. For more information about bamboos, please go visit bamboo page.

Way of Living

The bamboo or the kawayan has so many uses. It is part of the Filipino’s daily way of living. Due to its abundance, availability, and low cost, it considered the practical choice for material to use on building various things.

The kawayan is used to build our homes, schools and establishments. Often you can see bamboo products inside people’s houses, including the living room, bedroom and kitchen.

It is used to prepare and cook our food. The wood can be used as firewood. There are also many kawayan made kitchen utensils, like spatulas, plates, table mats and many more.

In some cases, people’s profession and way of living is dependent on the kawayan. A lot of Filipino people depend on kawayan for their livelihood like farming.

In the farm it is used as material to make farming tools and different other instruments used for agriculture. In many farms, bamboo poles are used to make fences, sheds and used for plant support. Bamboos can also be transformed and made into baskets so it can be used for storage.

The kawayan is used to make electrical posts for certain areas. If you go to the ocean, seas, river or lakes. The fishermans uses bamboos to make various fishing instruments and tools in order to catch fishes. You can use bamboo to catch fish by turning them to fishing poles or making a fish trap.

Kawayan Houses

Traditional Filipino houses are called “Bahay Kubo” or commonly known as just “Kubo”. What is a kubo? The kubo is a Filipino house made of wood, leaves, and straws. It is designed to be very simple and humble house.

Filipino carpenters use the kawayan wood in order to build the bahay kubo. The structure of the kubo house is made using strong, sturdy and huge bamboo poles for making pillars and beams for roofing and support for the house structure. The kawayan planks and sticks serves as flooring for the kubo. The kawayan can be used to create shelves so the kubo can have a storage space.

A lot of Filipino raise livestock animals. The wood from kawayan can be used to construct fences and cages for the animals. Most of the chicken coop found in the Philippines are made using bamboos.

Kawayan Furniture

In the Philippines pieces of furniture made kawayan can be seen inside people’s homes. They are very popular because they look nice, comfortable and quite cheap.

Kawayan furniture are made locally by Filipino carpenters. They are all handmade with exceptional craftsmanship.

There are many people who likes these pieces of furniture made of kawayan material. I personally love the kawayan furniture because in the Philippines we have a very hot weather because it is a tropical country. Furniture made of bamboos are naturally cool because they are designed so that air can easily pass through.

There are many different pieces of furniture made out of kawayan. In the Philippines you can find many beautiful chairs, tables, cabinets, beds and many more that are all made of bamboos. They come in different shapes and sizes and also in different colors.

You can easily find these kawayan furniture for sale in many stores throughout the country. There are local furniture stores that you can find in most towns and cities in the Philippines. You may be able to buy bamboo furniture in many malls in the country. Also, you can easily find these sold and made typically by local Filipino carpenters.

If you like a better deal and purchase kawayan furniture in a good affordable price, it is better to buy from local sellers and furniture shops. These shops can be easily found on the town and cities.

The best thing about these local shops is that you can also request to make your own bamboo custom made pieces of furniture. Just provide what kind of furniture you want and specify the details you require, and the carpenters will build the furniture for you.

Kawayan Dances

In the Philippines there is this very famous traditional dance called the Tinikling. The tinikling dance is a very unique dance because in order to perform this dance it requires the use of kawayan or bamboo poles as props. This is what makes this dance distinct to any other dances around the world.

In order to perform this dance, there should be 2 people who are holding 2 kawayan poles that are held parallel to one another. The bamboo poles need to be long, approximately 3 meters or more in length. One person is positioned on the tip of the pole and the other will also be position at the other end of the pole.

They will have to crunch down while holding the kawayan poles on top of the ground. They will open and close the kawayan poles in unison while they time it on the beat of the songs playing on the background. Opening the poles means to set the poles apart, while closing means to set the pole side by side or next to each other. The 2 people will repeatedly open and close the kawayan poles while the music plays and as the dancers are dancing.

The dancers will try to dance by stepping between the bamboo poles when it is open and then step out right before it closes. They will do this dance while there is music playing. As they dance, they have to make sure that they don’t get hit by the poles.

The tinikling is still widely popular today. This traditional dance is performed where there are Filipino festivals. It is also sometimes being performed in schools during school festivities. Traditions are very important, and we should strive to continue these for future generations.

Kawayan Instruments

Filipinos loves and enjoys music. In the Philippines there are many instruments that are made using the kawayan. They all came from different regions of the country. Each of them are very unique and comes in different shapes and sizes.

The most known kawayan instrument is the Philippines are the bamboo flutes. You can easily find these flutes in the country. In some schools they teach you how to play the flute at an early age.

The flute is known as one of the easiest musical instruments to learn playing. Its good instrument to teach to kids and introduce them to music.

In the Philippines there are also many percussion instruments made out of kawayan. There are your xylophones, drums (tambul), claves, gongs and many more. All these bamboo musical instruments are used to make Filipino folk music

There are many tribes and ethnic groups in the Philippines. These tribesmen make tribal music using kawayan instruments. There are even some bands that plays Filipino music using only bamboo instruments.

In our website bambooinstruments.com we will try to cover as much of these bamboo musical instruments as we can. There are so many of these instruments. They not just from Philippines but all over the world.

There are many kawayan made products in the Philippines. They are too many to mention and I think it would be better if you experience it yourself by traveling to the country. If you have the time and right opportunity, why not visit the country.

Filipinos are very friendly and the whole country is wonderful. You will definitely enjoy the food. There are lots of beautiful beaches and many places to explore. I guarantee it is a place that anyone will enjoy. Just don’t forget to check out the many tropical plants and trees, most especially the kawayan plant. Lastly, never forget to take lots of pictures.

Bamboo Instruments