The bamboo sea is a world of bamboo. When a breeze blows, tens of thousands of bamboo dance like surging waves of the sea.
The bamboo sea is located in the extension of the Liantian Mountain in south Sichuan Province, with a total area of 120 sq. km. More than 20 mountain ridges and over 500 peaks and hills in the region are all covered with bamboo. The boundless bamboo sea is so intoxicating that Huang Tingjian, a famous poet of the Song Dynasty, was deeply touched and left the inscription “Wan Lingqing,” which means “large groves of bamboo on 10,000 mountains.”
The majority of bamboo in the Southern Sichuan Bamboo Sea is the Nanzhu bamboo, a common species bamboo that can be found in many Parts of China. Nanzhu bamboo is tall and upright, and often gather densely together in a grove. Wandering in a Nanzhu grove, the sight of smooth bamboo stems reflecting sunshine can be enjoyed, along with the unique fragrance of bamboo leaves and the sound of the “whispers” of bamboo leaves shivering in the breeze.
Besides the Nanzhu bamboo, which can be seen everywhere, the bamboo sea also accommodates more than 50 other kinds of bamboo, which all have their own characteristics. The black bamboo is an “alien” of the bamboo family; light green with dense, tiny hairs on its stem when it is young, and gradually turning dark purple and even ink black when it is fully grown. The black bamboo is not tall and looks delicate in the green sea of bamboo. The fishpole bamboo has small but dense leaves, and the greatest characteristic of this bamboo lies in its joints-the joints of the upper half are straight and regularly shaped, but the joints close to the ground are unique and delightful in all different, irregular shapes. Also growing in the bamboo sea are peaceful fishscale bamboo, pretty Chinese goddess bamboo, and Chinese affinity bamboo, which feature the co-existence of adult and baby bamboo. Many bamboo in the bamboo sea belong to rare and precious species.
The bamboo is a favorite plant in traditional Chinese culture. With such features as being hollow and upright and remaining green in all seasons, the bamboo are often personalized and taken as a symbol of personal integrity and righteousness by Chinese artists and gentlemen in ancient times. Many people believe that a tour in the bamboo sea can help them better understand the essence of life, and that they have much to learn from the bamboo, say, the unyielding spirit of the old bamboo and the pioneering spirit of bamboo sprout, the lofty pursuit of the tall bamboo and the humility and confidence of short bamboo.
No matter how seasons change and how people view it, the Southern Sichuan Bamb Sea is always green and tranquil, lying still in deep mountains.