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Use of flood resistant materials: Mud, Lime and bamboo

Use of flood resistant materials: Mud, Lime and bamboo

Importance and properties of mud, lime and bamboo

            Mud, lime and bamboo are commonly used building materials. The have special properties that make them durable, long lasting and shock resident in terms of earth quake, floods and related catastrophic circumstances. These materials have unique special properties; therefore, architectures are home makers prefer to use these materials in the buildings (H. Panda 2011).These materials are also being used in Pakistan. Particularity, the materials are used in flood affected areas which indicates their durability, long lasting nature and strength. For that purpose, it is important to understand their properties.

            Lime is an inorganic material that contains elements such as carbonates; oxides as well as hydroxides predominate. These substances provide strengths to lime. Moreover, lime is calcium and it also the name of the natural mineral that is denoted as native lime.is explosion also produce greater amount of lime from inside ( Ghosh 2012).The volcanic abruption contains lime that spreads afterwards.  The word limehas long history of being used in buildings. It originates with its earliest use in building ass mortar. It has a property of sticking and adhering. Therefore, this material is still used in large quantities to construct the building.

            The heavy engineering works pertaining to the construction use lime materials that also include limestone products along with concrete and mortar. It is also used with chemical feed stocks as well as sugar refining. The history of the lime is very old. The lime in the industries and its use dates from prehistoric periods. The reason behind the use of lime in flood-affected areas is its properties to treat the water (Scheer 2005).  Therefore, the lime is used extensively for the treatment of the wastewater through the ferrous sulfate.

            The lime is derived form the rocks and minerals from which the lime develop its properties. Majorly, the limestone is composed of calcium carbonate. This is an important component of the limestone.  The lime can be cut, crushed as well as pulverized and can be chemically altered. It is important to note that the burning of calcination converts the calcium carbonate into the highly caustic material. This caustic material is known as quicklime, which is also known as calcium oxide. The light lime can also be developed with the solvent of the water.

            Therefore, lime can be used in both hard and relatively less hard form. The subsequent addition of water is added into the less caustic that develop slaked lime which is also known as hydrated lime. This process is also called slaking of lime. Therefore, the lime is used in those areas that are affected with water and the drainage of water is required (Kingston 2016).

            Mud is also used in the building and it is materials that are a mixture of water and the combination of substances such as soil, clay and salt. It is usually forms after the rainfall. Moreover, it is also formed near the water sources. It is not directly used in building as plaster on the walls and the bricks. However, it is used in internal and external development of the building such as roof.  It is to be noted that the ancient mud deposits have property to be harden over the geological time. Therefore, it forms sedimentary rock. For instance, these rocks are the shale or mudstone (Waite 2011).

            The bamboos are the plants and a subfamily of flowering. This flowering is perennial evergreen plants that are available in the grass family. The bamboos are considered as the largest members of the grass family in the world. This is the fast growing plants and the intermodal regions of the stem of the bamboos are usually hollow in shape. Moreover, the vascular bundles of the bamboos are in the cross section. The cross section of the bamboos is scattered and diverse throughout the stem. Therefore, these properties of the plants are essential for the constructing purpose. In addition, the dicotyledonous woody xylem is property that is also absent in the plants and that is important for construction as well. In addition to this are the absence of secondary growth which causes the wood and the stems of monocots. This also includes the palms and large bamboos in the plant family.

            This property of the plant made them columnar rather than tapering surface. Therefore, the structure of the tall buildings suites the plants for the use and it is the property of the bamboos that they grow fast and it includes some of the fastest growing plants on the planet. It is due to the unique rhizome dependent system that’s suitable for the planets (Weissman 2015). It is also to be noted that the certain species of the bamboo tree can be up to grow 91 cent meter. This is about within a twenty four hour period. This is up to a rate of almost four cent meter. This growth is very fast and the building structure can be essentially maintained through such a fast growth and the availability of the material.

            The bamboos trees are of the notable economic and cultural impacts and therefore it is very significance in South Asia and the Pakistan as well.  It is therefore used in the building materials and a food source. Moreover, it is a versatile raw product for the buildings. The bamboo has a higher level of compressive strength as compare to wood, concrete and steel. The detailed properties of both bamboo and mud are given as follows. The building material made up of mud and bamboo has following properties.

Stability Very good
Resistance to insects Low
Economic aspects Cost efficiency
Resistance to flood Very good
Resistance to hurricane Low to medium
Special properties Self-help construction with the use of the local materials
Level of Skills required Semi-skilled labor force
Resistance to earthquake Very good
Resistance to rain Low to medium
Suitability in climatic All except extremely wet

Table 1: Earthquake and flood resistance mud and bamboo structures

            The building materials that are made up of bamboo and mud have good stability. They are resistance to flood and economically they are cost efficiency. Therefore, these are used in those areas. Where there are floods and earthquake. Their ability of resist the insects are low. However, they are extremely strong in the flood (Philips 2012). Their level of resistance to hurricane is low to medium. Moreover, they are able to be self-help construction with the use of the local materials. This is also an important property of such materials. The low level of skill is required and they are easy to develop.

Use of mud, lime and bamboo in flood affected areas in Pakistan

            The mud, lime and bamboo in flood-affected areas in Pakistan are very common. Yasmmen Lari is famous architecture of Pakistan that has developed single mud houses. They are left standing in the state to accommodate large number of people that are affected. The Pakistan witness floods every year and the large number of people in Sindh, Punjab and other areas of Pakistan get affected (Aljazeera.com 2016).Therefore the building of mud houses that are resistance to harsh weather is suitable for the people. The building of such houses gives those in rural areas a good shelter.

             A small amount of money is needed to replace their damaged houses due to earthquake and the floods.  The YasminLariw was rebuilding their mud house that was adversely affected due to floods. These mud houses were developed and made of natural materials (Gla.ac.u 2010). These natural materials such as mud and bamboo and leave are the vital part of such construction. Mud is also used in the building and it is materials that are a mixture of water and the combination of substances such as soil, clay and salt. It is usually forms after the rainfall. Moreover, it is also formed near the water sources (Chinadialogue.net 2014).

            The bamboo is also used by the Yasminlari. This is the fast growing plants and the intermodal regions of the stem of the bamboos are usually hollow in shape. The Yasminlari has developed 40000 low cost mud houses for the people. This is huge number of houses that served large number of people ( Gillin 2012). Even in flood and earth quake, these houses are stable and able to provide the protection and the shelters to its residence. The above mentioned properties are essential to maintain construction durability and the long lasting impact.

            The construction of the 40,000 low-cost houses and the shelters are made up of just mud, lime as well as bamboo and these areas have provided good shelter and the protection for the victim people. These materials are easily available, one does not need the wood, cement, and steel to build the strong homes, as they are available in the cities (Tribune.com.pk 2016) .She was the first woman to qualify as an excellent architecture in Pakistan. She has utilized her architecture skills affectively to maintain its exposure in the rural and flood affected areas.

                It is to be noted that her team of architects and the related people are very talented and engineers have started the experimentation for the development of the new houses. The new materials are used in the in disaster relief (Peacepak.pk 2015). The food factor is important. The occurrence great flood of 2010 was an important and alarming event. Approximately 2,000 people dead. Moreover, hundreds of thousands of where people homeless on and there was a dire need of the construction of the buildings and the use of such equipment that is suitable in the flood conditions.  That was a bitter situation. The shelters in the Sindh Province has witnessed flood after flood. Nothing is done in order to make sure that the people are safe.

                The prominent work of her is in Darya Khan Sheikh. There is a village in that area which is located on the banks of the Indus River. This area is also very rich in heritage and the foundation of her helped to rebuild that was occurred due to the devastation of the year 2010 (Frameweb.com 2014).The village was badly damages and the flooded with up to four feet of water which is considerable depth in the wake of such floods. The houses in the region were intact, their grain and water was safe ink, and that was a good sign. She built lot of houses in the region, her efforts were worth considering, and the same efforts are needed to  do on other areas of Pakistan. One would like to conclude with the famous phrase that where is there is will there is a way. The phrase actually well applicable while using flood resistant material. The flood resistant material is suitable way using by many countries against flood notably by Pakistan. 


Ghosh, G K. Bamboo: The Wonderful Grass. APH Publishing Corporation, 2012.

Gillin, Jaime. Q&A with Pakistan’s First Female Architect. 2012. http://www.dwell.com/interviews/article/qa-pakistans-first-female-architect (accessed May 9, 2016).

Aljazeera.com. Pakistan: A Traditional Future. Appril 2016. http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/rebelarchitecture/2014/06/pakistan-traditional-future-201462911924137552.html (accessed May 9, 2016).

Chinadialogue.net. Pakistani architect pioneers fresh approach to disaster relief . 2014. https://www.chinadialogue.net/article/show/single/en/7242-Pakistani-architect-pioneers-fresh-approach-to-disaster-relief- (accessed May 9, 2016).

Frameweb.com. Rebel Architecture: A Traditional Future. 2014. http://www.frameweb.com/news/rebel-architecture-a-traditional-future (accessed 2016).

Gla.ac.u. Glasgow projects secure £112,000 for victims of flooding in Pakistan. 2010. http://www.gla.ac.uk/news/archiveofnews/2010/september/headline_173205_en.html (accessed 2016).

H. Panda. Yasmeen Lari has built over 40,000 low-cost shelters using just mud, lime and bamboo. “You don’t need wood, cement and steel to build strong homes,” she says. Asia Pacific Business Press Inc, 2011.

Kingston, William. Tales of the Sea. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2016.

Peacepak.pk. Get Introduced to the First lady of Pakistani Architecture-Yasmin Lari. 2015. http://www.peacepak.pk/get-introduced-to-the-first-lady-of-pakistani-architecture-yasmin-lari/ (accessed May 2016).

Philips , Andy . So You Want to be a Mud Engineer: An Introduction to Drilling Fluids Technology. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2012.

Scheer , Jo . How to Build With Bamboo: 19 Projects You Can Do at Home. Gibbs Smith, Publisher, 2005.

Tribune.com.pk. Pakistani architect calls for radical rethink on rebuilding after disasters. 2016. http://tribune.com.pk/story/1034930/pakistani-architect-calls-for-radical-rethink-on-rebuilding-after-disasters/ (accessed May 9, 2016).

Waite, Tom . WILD with Latitude: An Ecologist’s Years with Bush Bums, Anarchists, and Other Arctic Wildlife. Booklocker.com, Inc, 2011.

Weissman, Adam. Clay and Lime Renders, Plasters and Paints: A How-To Guide to Using Natural Finishes (Sustainable Building). UIT Cambridge Ltd, 2015.

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