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Realising maximum benefits from bamboo culms in Nigeria and other developing countries are presently constrained by their almost non-acceptance for application in structural and construction purposes owing to their susceptibility to biodegradation. Therefore, there is the need for value-addition to these culms using low cost preservatives, particularly the environmentally benign ones, in order to ensure sustainable utilisation. Split-bamboo samples conditioned to 11.76% moisture content were converted to test specimens for Percentage Weight Loss (PWL) and treated with mechanically extracted neem seed oil at two different treatment temperature regimes by completely soaking a set in oil at ambient room temperature of 25 ± 2oC for 24 hours and soaking the other in hot oil at 60oC for 4 hours with untreated samples serving as control. The oil-treated and control samples were initially weighed and inoculated with cultured P. sanguineus and monitored in an incubating room maintained at ambient temperature of 25 ± 2oC and 65 ± 5% relative humidity for 84 days. After the 84 days incubation period, the test specimens were then reweighed and the PWL determined. Results obtained showed that mean values for PWL was highest for those obtained for control samples, lower for samples soaked in oil at 25 ± 2oC for 24 hours and lowest for samples soaked in oil at 60oC for 4 hours.
Keywords: Bamboo, Neem, Oil-treatment, Basidiomycetes, Environment, Weight loss