Bamboos are a diverse group of evergreen perennial flowering plants making up the subfamily Bambusoideae of the grass family Poaceae. Giant bamboos are the largest members of the grass family, in the case of Dendrocalamus sinica individual culms reaching a length of 151 feet (46 meters), up to fourteen inches ( 36 centimeters) in thickness and a weight of up to 990 pounds (450 kilograms). The origin of the word "bamboo" is uncertain, but it probably comes from the Dutch or Portuguese language, which originally borrowed it from Malay or Kannada. In bamboo, as in other grasses, the internodal regions of the stem are usually hollow and the vascular bundles in the cross-section are scattered throughout the walls of the culm instead of in a cylindrical cambium layer between the bark (phloem) and the wood (xylum) as in Dicots and Conifers. The dicotyledonous woody xylem is also absent. The absence of secondary growth wood causes the stems of monocots, including the palms and large bamboos, to be columnar rather than tapering.
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