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Land of the Sky: River Cane in Cherokee, NC

cherokee rivercane

A grove of river cane on the Cherokee Indian reservation.  River cane (Arundinaria gigantea) belongs to the only genus of bamboo native to the eastern half of North America.  It was once an essential resource for making baskets, arrows, and structures and a stabilizing element for wetlands and streams.  It is now considered endangered, having lost an estimated 95% of its original habitat.