Bamboo Trails at Koreshan

A view of the bamboo trails.

The extensive history of Koreshan State Park is quite intriguing. Individuals from all over the country travel to the small Village of Estero to uncover who the Koreshans were and see what is left of the Koreshan religious unity settlement. During their time living in the area, the Koreshans introduced many non-native plants and to the area. Some of these plants and trees were for aesthetic purposes, while others were introduced as a form of sustenance to feed the members of the settlement. Among the different types of vegetation introduced, bamboo was one of the main plants that the Koreshan grew. It is even speculated that it was donated by Thomas Edison, the famous inventor.

The bamboo is a highly invasive plant and over time it has taken over much of the park’s hiking trail, along the Estero River. It can also be found in large bunches around the historic Koreshan settlement. Since it was an integral part of the Koreshan history, the Florida Park Service considers the bamboo a cultural resource, which allows a controlled amount of bamboo to grow and be protected. Many visitors to the park enjoy the sight and sounds of the towering swaying bamboo, walking the same trails that the Koreshan once did. With ample picture opportunities, the bamboo forest provides one of the most interesting living historical features of Koreshan State Park.