Patricia: maybe this will help
Here's an idea using what looks like newer bamboo, but I don't see any reason why you can't do it with old bamboo. I hope this helps with your research for your project. Wishing you the best.
Here's a video on making six simple bamboo planters to get you started:
My experience has been is that old bamboo is very hard to cut and drill and that it is prone to splitting when trying to do those things to it.
You are so right about that...what types of saws have worked best for you?
Find a container you can face them up with. Cut to size and either Stick them with a glue gun or wire them up together (like in a fence) and secure with Wire, Twine, nail or screws.