Artist’s depiction of woman undergoing Impalement by Bamboo Stalk. Unlike the more common Medieval European methods most are familiar with of allowing the weight of those tortured to slowly descend the length of a wooden pole, this Japanese version simply allowed the bamboo to grow into the body of the victim.
This may seem impossible until one realizes that some species of bamboo can grow in excess of 60 centimetres/24 inches per day. Very much suited to a very, very slow and painful death.
"While trees grow mostly from the end of their branches, bamboo is actually a grass, so it grows very differently. A bamboo shoot is split into segments which can all host cell division (ie growth), allowing the bamboo to extend a bit like a telescope.
Diabolically cruel and ingenious method indeed.