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Encyclopedia > Flax
Flax
cotton flax
cotton flax
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Malpighiales
Family: Linaceae
Genus: Linum
Species: L. usitatissimum
Binomial name
Linum usitatissimum
Linnaeus.

Flax (also known as common flax or linseed) is a member of the genus Linum in the family Linaceae. The New Zealand flax is unrelated. Flax is native to the region extending from the eastern Mediterranean to India and was probably first domesticated in the Fertile Crescent.[1] It was extensively cultivated in ancient Egypt. Flax may mean or refer to: Flax (Linum usitatissimum) Hemp (Cannabis sativa) Flax (color) This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Image File history File links Koeh-088. ... For other uses, see Scientific classification (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Plant (disambiguation). ... Classes Magnoliopsida - Dicots Liliopsida - Monocots The flowering plants or angiosperms are the most widespread group of land plants. ... Magnoliopsida is the botanical name for a class of flowering plants. ... Families Family Achariaceae Family Balanopaceae Family Bonnetiaceae Family Caryocaraceae Family Chrysobalanaceae Family Clusiaceae Family Ctenolophonaceae Family Dichapetalaceae Family Elatinaceae Family Erythryloxaceae (coca family) Family Euphorbiaceae (spurge family) Family Euphroniaceae Family Goupiaceae Family Humiriaceae Family Hypericaceae (St Johns wort family) Family Irvingiaceae Family Ixonanthaceae Family Lacistemaceae Family Linaceae (flax family... The Linaceae are herbaceous or rarely woody plants, large trees in the tropics. ... Species Linum bienne Linum lewisii Linum pubescens Linum usitatissimum about 200 more Linum is a genus of flowering plants in the family Linaceae. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Carl Linnaeus, Latinized as Carolus Linnaeus, also known after his ennoblement as  , (May 13, 1707[1] – January 10, 1778), was a Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist[2] who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of nomenclature. ... Species Linum bienne Linum lewisii Linum pubescens Linum usitatissimum about 200 more Linum is a genus of flowering plants in the family Linaceae. ... The Linaceae are herbaceous or rarely woody plants, large trees in the tropics. ... Species New Zealand flax describes common New Zealand perennial plants Phormium tenax and Phormium cookianum, known by the Māori names harakeke and wharariki respectively. ... The Mediterranean Sea is an intercontinental sea positioned between Europe to the north, Africa to the south and Asia to the east, covering an approximate area of 2. ... This map shows the extent of the Fertile Crescent. ... The pyramids are the most recognizable symbols of the civilization of ancient Egypt. ...


It is an erect annual plant growing to 1.2 m tall, with slender stems. The leaves are glaucous green, slender lanceolate, 20-40 mm long and 3 mm broad. The flowers are pure pale blue, 15-25 mm diameter, with five petals. The fruit is a round, dry capsule 5-9 mm diameter, containing several glossy brown seeds shaped like an apple pip, 4-7 mm long. Peas are an annual plant. ... Look up foliage in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Bluish-green ... Lanceolate refers to a narrow oval shape that is pointed at both ends. ... For other uses, see Flower (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Fruit (disambiguation). ... Flowers and fruit (capsules) of the ground orchid, Spathoglottis plicata. ... A ripe red jalapeño cut open to show the seeds For other uses, see Seed (disambiguation). ... This article is about the fruit. ...


In addition to the plant itself, flax may refer to the unspun fibres of the flax plant.

Contents

Uses

Flax is grown both for its seeds and for its fibers. Various parts of the plant have been used to make fabric, dye, paper, medicines, fishing nets and soap. It is also grown as an ornamental plant in gardens. A ripe red jalapeño cut open to show the seeds For other uses, see Seed (disambiguation). ... Petunia This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see Garden (disambiguation). ...


Flax seed

Flax seed
Flax seed
Flax seed
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 530 kcal   2230 kJ
Carbohydrates     28.88 g
- Sugars  1.55 g
- Dietary fiber  27.3 g  
Fat 42.16 g
Protein 18.29 g
Thiamin (Vit. B1)  1.644 mg   126%
Riboflavin (Vit. B2)  0.161 mg   11%
Niacin (Vit. B3)  3.08 mg   21%
Pantothenic acid (B5)  0.985 mg  20%
Vitamin B6  0.473 mg 36%
Folate (Vit. B9)  0 μg  0%
Vitamin C  0.6 mg 1%
Calcium  255 mg 26%
Iron  5.73 mg 46%
Magnesium  392 mg 106% 
Phosphorus  642 mg 92%
Potassium  813 mg   17%
Zinc  4.34 mg 43%
Percentages are relative to US
recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient database

Flax seeds come in two basic varieties, brown and yellow or golden, with most types having similar nutritional values and equal amounts of short-chain omega-3 fatty acids. The exception is a type of yellow flax called Linola or solin, which has a completely different oil profile and is very low in omega-3. Although brown flax can be consumed as readily as yellow, and has been for thousands of years, it is better known as an ingredient in paints, fibre and cattle feed. Flax seeds produce a vegetable oil known as flaxseed or linseed oil; it is one of the oldest commercial oils and solvent-processed flax seed oil has been used for centuries as a drying oil in painting and varnishing. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1048x786, 103 KB)I took this picture of flax seed in July of 2005 and grant its use under the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1048x786, 103 KB)I took this picture of flax seed in July of 2005 and grant its use under the Creative Commons Attribution-Sharealike 2. ... Lactose is a disaccharide found in milk. ... Dietary fibers are the indigestible portion of plant foods that move food through the digestive system, absorbing water and making defecation easier. ... In chemistry, especially biochemistry, a fatty acid is a carboxylic acid often with a long unbranched aliphatic tail (chain), which is either saturated or unsaturated. ... A representation of the 3D structure of myoglobin showing coloured alpha helices. ... Thiamine mononitrate Thiamine or thiamin, also known as vitamin B1, is a colorless compound with chemical formula C12H17ClN4OS. It is soluble in water and insoluble in alcohol. ... Riboflavin (E101), also known as vitamin B2, is an easily absorbed micronutrient with a key role in maintaining health in animals. ... Niacin, also known as nicotinic acid or vitamin B3, is a water-soluble vitamin whose derivatives such as NADH, NAD, NAD+, and NADP play essential roles in energy metabolism in the living cell and DNA repair. ... Pantothenic acid, also called vitamin B5 (a B vitamin), is a water-soluble vitamin required to sustain life (essential nutrient). ... Pyridoxine Pyridoxal phosphate Vitamin B6 is a water-soluble vitamin. ... Folic acid (the anion form is called folate) is a B-complex vitamin (once called vitamin M) that is important in preventing neural tube defects (NTDs) in the developing human fetus. ... This article is about the nutrient. ... For other uses, see Calcium (disambiguation). ... General Name, symbol, number iron, Fe, 26 Chemical series transition metals Group, period, block 8, 4, d Appearance lustrous metallic with a grayish tinge Standard atomic weight 55. ... Introduction Magnesium is an essential element in biological systems. ... General Name, symbol, number phosphorus, P, 15 Chemical series nonmetals Group, period, block 15, 3, p Appearance waxy white/ red/ black/ colorless Standard atomic weight 30. ... General Name, symbol, number potassium, K, 19 Chemical series alkali metals Group, period, block 1, 4, s Appearance silvery white Standard atomic weight 39. ... General Name, symbol, number zinc, Zn, 30 Chemical series transition metals Group, period, block 12, 4, d Appearance bluish pale gray Standard atomic weight 65. ... Reference Daily Intake (RDI) is the daily dietary intake level of a nutrient considered sufficient to meet the requirements of nearly all (97–98%) healthy individuals in each life-stage and gender group. ... See Nomenclature of essential fatty acids for terms and discussion of ω (omega) nomenclature. ... Linola is the trademark name of solin, a mutant strain of flax (Linum usitatissimum) developed in the early 1990s by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization of Australia (CSIRO), the Australian Federal Governments research organization. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with cooking oil. ... Flax oil (in bottles) and coconut oil (in jars in the middle) Linseed oil, also known as flax seed oil, is a yellowish drying oil derived from the dried ripe seeds of the flax plant (Linum usitatissimum, Linaceae). ... A drying oil is an oil which hardens to a tough, solid film after a period of exposure to air. ...


One tablespoon of ground flax seeds and three tablespoons of water may serve as a replacement for one egg in baking by binding the other ingredients together. Ground flax seeds can also be mixed in with oatmeal, yogurt, wafer (similar to Metamucil), or any other food item where a nutty flavour is appropriate. Flax seed sprouts are edible, with a slightly spicy flavour. Excessive consumption of flax seeds can cause diarrhea.[2] Chicken egg (left) and quail eggs (right), the types of egg commonly used as food An egg is a body consisting of an ovum surrounded by layers of membranes and an outer casing of some type, which acts to nourish and protect a developing embryo. ... In the United States and Canada, oatmeal means any crushed oats, rolled oats, or cut oats used in recipes such as oatmeal cookies. ... Yoghurt Yoghurt or yogurt, less commonly yoghourt or yogourt, is a dairy product produced by bacterial fermentation of milk. ... Metamucil is a bulk-producing laxative and fiber supplement manufactured by Procter & Gamble. ... Mixed bean sprouts Sprouting is the practice of soaking, draining, then rinsing at regular intervals seeds until they germinate and begin to sprout. ... Diarrhea, also spelled diarrhoea (see spelling differences), is a condition in which the sufferer has frequent watery, loose bowel movements (from the Greek word διάρροια; literally meaning through-flowing). Acute infectious diarrhea is a common cause of death in developing countries (particularly among infants), accounting for 5 to 8 million deaths...


Though flax seeds are chemically stable while whole, ground whole seeds or oils become rancid much more quickly upon exposure to oxygen, and require special storage (generally refrigeration or in sealed packaging) to remain nutritious for even a short period of time.[3]


Possible medical benefits

Main article: Linseed oil#Nutritional supplement

Flax seeds contain high levels of lignans and Omega-3 fatty acids. Lignans may benefit the heart, possess anti-cancer properties and studies performed on mice found reduced growth in specific types of tumours. Initial studies suggest that flaxseed taken in the diet may benefit individuals with certain types of breast[4][5] and prostate cancers.[6] Flax may also lessen the severity of diabetes by stabilizing blood-sugar levels.[7] There is some support for the use of flax seed as a laxative due to its dietary fiber content[2] though excessive consumption without liquid can result in intestinal blockage.[8] Consuming large amounts of flax seed can impair the effectiveness of certain oral medications, due to its fiber content.[8] Flax oil (in bottles) and coconut oil (in jars in the middle) Linseed oil, also known as flax seed oil, is a yellowish drying oil derived from the dried ripe seeds of the flax plant (Linum usitatissimum, Linaceae). ... Not to be confused with Lignin. ... See Nomenclature of essential fatty acids for terms and discussion of ω (omega) nomenclature. ... Not to be confused with Lignin. ... Breast cancer is cancer of breast tissue. ... HRPC redirects here. ... Laxatives (or purgatives) are foods, compounds, or drugs taken to induce bowel movements or to loosen the stool, most often taken to treat constipation. ... Dietary fibers are the indigestible portion of plant foods that move food through the digestive system, absorbing water and making defecation easier. ...


Raw flax seed contains the chemical hydrogen cyanide (HCN) or cyanogenic glucosides which can be toxic if consumed in large quantities.[9] R-phrases , , , , . S-phrases , , , , , , , , . Flash point −17. ...


Flax fibers

Flax fibers are amongst the oldest fiber crops in the world. The use of flax for the production of linen goes back 5000 years. Pictures on tombs and temple walls at Thebes depict flowering flax plants. The use of flax fibre in the manufacturing of cloth in northern Europe dates back to Neolithic times. In North America, flax was introduced by the Puritans. Currently most flax produced in the USA and Canada are seed flax types for the production of linseed oil or flaxseeds for human nutrition. Fiber crops are field crops grown for their fibers, which are used to make paper, cloth, or rope. ... Torn linen cloth, recovered from the Dead Sea Linen is a material made from the fibers of the flax plant. ... Thebes Thebes (, Thēbai) is the Greek designation of the ancient Egyptian niwt (The) City and niwt-rst (The) Southern City. It is located about 800 km south of the Mediterranean, on the east bank of the river Nile (). Thebes was the capital of Waset, the fourth Upper Egyptian nome... It has been suggested that Textile be merged into this article or section. ... An array of Neolithic artifacts, including bracelets, axe heads, chisels, and polishing tools. ... The Puritans were members of a group of radical Protestants which developed in England after the Reformation. ...


Flax fibre is extracted from the bast or skin of the stem of flax plant. Flax fibre is soft, lustrous and flexible. It is stronger than cotton fibre but less elastic. The best grades are used for linen fabrics such as damasks, lace and sheeting. Coarser grades are used for the manufacturing of twine and rope. Flax fibre is also a raw material for the high-quality paper industry for the use of printed banknotes and rolling paper for cigarettes. Flax mills for spinning flaxen yarn were invented by John Kendrew and Thomas Porthouse of Darlington in 1787.[10] Bast are the strong fibers in the phloem of some plants. ... For other uses, see Cotton (disambiguation). ... Torn linen cloth, recovered from the Dead Sea Linen is a material made from the fibers of the flax plant. ... Italian silk damask, 1300s. ... For other uses, see Lace (disambiguation). ... A spool of twine. ... Coils of rope used for long-line fishing A rope (IPA: ) is a length of fibers, twisted or braided together to improve strength for pulling and connecting. ... A £20 Bank of England banknote. ... Rolling papers are small sheets, rolls, or leaves of paper which are sold for rolling ones own cigarettes either by hand or with a rolling machine. ... Unlit filtered cigarettes. ... Flax Mills are mills concerned with the manufacture of flax. ... Yarn Spools of thread Yarn is a long continuous length of interlocked fibers, suitable for use in the production of textiles, sewing, crocheting, knitting, weaving, embroidery and ropemaking. ... John Kendrew was a Darlington optician who invented the process of the mechanical spinning of flaxen yarn in a flax mill. ... This article is about the town in England. ...


Cultivation

Developing flax
Linseed output in 2005
Linseed output in 2005

The major fibre flax-producing countries are Canada, USA and China, though there is also significant production in India and throughout Europe. In the United States, three states, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Minnesota, raise nearly 100% of this plant. Image File history File links Question_book-3. ... Image File history File links Developingflax. ... Image File history File links Developingflax. ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 351 pixelsFull resolution (1425 × 625 pixel, file size: 59 KB, MIME type: image/png)This bubble map shows the global distribution of linseed output in 2005 as a percentage of the top producer (Canada - 1,082,000 tonnes). ... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 800 × 351 pixelsFull resolution (1425 × 625 pixel, file size: 59 KB, MIME type: image/png)This bubble map shows the global distribution of linseed output in 2005 as a percentage of the top producer (Canada - 1,082,000 tonnes). ... Motto: (traditional) In God We Trust (official, 1956–present) Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner Capital Washington, D.C. Largest city New York City Official language(s) None at the federal level; English de facto Government Federal Republic  - President George W. Bush (R)  - Vice President Dick Cheney (R) Independence - Declared - Recognized... For other uses, see Europe (disambiguation). ... Official language(s) English Capital Bismarck Largest city Fargo Area  Ranked 19th  - Total 70,762 sq mi (183,272 km²)  - Width 210 miles (340 km)  - Length 340 miles (545 km)  - % water 2. ... Official language(s) English Capital Pierre Largest city Sioux Falls Area  Ranked 17th  - Total 77,116[1] sq mi (199,905 km²)  - Width 210 miles (340 km)  - Length 380 miles (610 km)  - % water 1. ... Capital Saint Paul Largest city Minneapolis Largest metro area Minneapolis-St. ...


The soils most suitable for flax, besides the alluvial kind, are deep friable loams, and containing a large proportion of organic matter. Heavy clays are unsuitable, as are soils of a gravelly or dry sandy nature. Farming flax requires few fertilizers or pesticides. Within six weeks of sowing, the plant will reach 10-15 cm in height, and will grow several centimetres per day under its optimal growth conditions, reaching 70-80 cm within fifteen days. Loess field in Germany Surface-water-gley developed in glacial till, Northern Ireland For the American hard rock band, see SOiL. For the System of a Down song, see Soil (song). ... Alluvium is soil land deposited by a river or other running water. ... Loam field Loam is soil composed of sand, silt, and clay in relatively even concentration (about 40-40-20% concentration respectively). ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For other uses, see Clay (disambiguation). ... Gravel (largest fragment in this photo is about 4 cm) Gravel is rock that is of a certain particle size range. ... For other uses, see Sand (disambiguation). ... Spreading manure, an organic fertilizer Fertilizers (also spelled fertilisers) are compounds given to plants to promote growth; they are usually applied either via the soil, for uptake by plant roots, or by foliar feeding, for uptake through leaves. ... A cropduster spreading pesticide. ...


Flax is harvested for fibre production after approximately 100 days, a month after the plant flowers and two weeks after the seed capsules form. The base of the plant will begin to turn yellow; if the plant is still green the seed will not be useful, and the fiber will be underdeveloped. The fiber degrades once the plant is brown. The mature plant is pulled up with the roots (not cut), so as to maximize the fiber length. After this the flax is allowed to dry, the seeds are removed, and is then retted. Dependant upon climatic conditions, characteristics of the sown flax and fields, the flax remains in the ground between 2 weeks and 2 months for retting. As a result of alternating rain and the sun, an enzymatic action degrades the pectins which bind fibres to the straw. The farmers turn over the straw during retting to evenly rett the stalks. When the straw is retted and sufficiently dry, it is rolled up. It will then be stored by farmers before scutching to extract fibres. Retting Retting, n. ...


Flax grown for seed is allowed to mature until the seed capsules are yellow and just starting to split; it is then harvested by combine harvester and dried to extract the seed. A CLAAS Caterpillar LEXION Combine. ...


Threshing flax

Flax tissues, Tacuinum sanitatis, 14th century.
Flax tissues, Tacuinum sanitatis, 14th century.

Threshing is the process of removing the seeds from the rest of the plant. Image File history File links Size of this preview: 558 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1000 × 1074 pixel, file size: 288 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Tacuina sanitatis (XIV century) Abbigliamento lino Linen clothing Faithful reproductions of two-dimensional original works cannot attract copyright in the U.S. according to the rule... Image File history File links Size of this preview: 558 × 599 pixelsFull resolution (1000 × 1074 pixel, file size: 288 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) Tacuina sanitatis (XIV century) Abbigliamento lino Linen clothing Faithful reproductions of two-dimensional original works cannot attract copyright in the U.S. according to the rule... The Tacuinum (sometimes Taccuinum) Sanitatis is a medieval handbook on wellness, based on the Taqwin al‑sihha (Tables of Health), an Arab medical treatise by Ibn Butlan; it exists in several variant Latin versions, the manuscripts of which are profusely illustrated. ...


The process is divided into two parts: the first part is intended for the farmer, or flax-grower, to bring the flax into a fit state for general or common purposes. This is performed by three machines: one for threshing out the seed, one for breaking and separating the straw (stem) from the fibre, and one for further separating the broken straw and matter from the fibre. In some cases the farmers thrash out the seed in their own mill and therefore, in such cases, the first machine will be unnecessary.


The second part of the process is intended for the manufacturer to bring the flax into a state for the very finest purposes, such as lace, cambric, damask, and very fine linen. This second part is performed by the refining machine only. For other uses, see Lace (disambiguation). ... Cambric is a lightweight cotton cloth used as fabric for lace and needlework. ... Italian silk damask, 1300s. ... Torn linen cloth, recovered from the Dead Sea Linen is a material made from the fibers of the flax plant. ...


The threshing process would be conducted as follows:

  • Take the flax in small bundles, as it comes from the field or stack, and holding it in the left hand, put the seed end between the threshing machine and the bed or block against which the machine is to strike; then take the handle of the machine in the right hand, and move the machine backward and forward, to strike on the flax, until the seed is all threshed out.
  • Take the flax in small handfuls in the left hand, spread it flat between the third and little finger, with the seed end downwards, and the root-end above, as near the hand as possible.
  • Put the handful between the beater of the breaking machine, and beat it gently till the three or four inches, which have been under the operation of the machine, appear to be soft.
  • Remove the flax a little higher in the hand, so as to let the soft part of the flax rest upon the little finger, and continue to beat it till all is soft, and the wood is separated from the fibre, keeping the left hand close to the block and the flax as flat upon the block as possible.[citation needed]
  • The other end of the flax is then to be turned, and the end which has been beaten is to be wrapped round the little finger, the root end flat, and beaten in the machine till the wood is separated, exactly in the same way as the other end was beaten.

The thrashing machine, or, in modern spelling, threshing machine (or simply thresher), was a machine first invented by Scottish mechanical engineer Andrew Meikle for use in agriculture. ...

Diseases

Main article: List of flax diseases

This article is a list of diseases of flax (Linum usitatissimum and other Linum spp. ...

Preparation for spinning

Flax stem cross-section, showing locations of underlying tissues. Ep = epidermis; C = cortex; BF = bast fibres; P = phloem; X = xylem; Pi = pith
Flax stem cross-section, showing locations of underlying tissues. Ep = epidermis; C = cortex; BF = bast fibres; P = phloem; X = xylem; Pi = pith

Before the flax fibers can be spun into linen, they must be separated from the rest of the stalk. The first step in this process is called "retting". Retting is the process of rotting away the inner stalk, leaving the outer fibres intact. At this point there is still straw, or coarse fibers, remaining. To remove these the flax is "broken", the straw is broken up into small, short bits, while the actual fiber is left unharmed, then "scutched", where the straw is scraped away from the fiber, and then pulled through "hackles", which act like combs and comb the straw out of the fiber. Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1300x1030, 241 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Flax ... Image File history File links Download high-resolution version (1300x1030, 241 KB) Summary Licensing File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Flax ...


Retting flax

There are several methods of retting flax. It can be retted in a pond, stream, field or a container. When the retting is complete the bundles of flax feel soft and slimy, and quite a few fibres are standing out from the stalks. When wrapped around a finger the inner woody part springs away from the fibres. Retting Retting, n. ...


Pond retting is the fastest. It consists of placing the flax in a pool of water which will not evaporate. It generally takes place in a shallow pool which will warm up dramatically in the sun; the process may take from only a couple days to a couple weeks. Pond retted flax is traditionally considered lower quality, possibly because the product can become dirty, and easily over-retts, damaging the fiber. This form of retting also produces quite an odor.


Stream retting is similar to pool retting, but the flax is submerged in bundles in a stream or river. This generally takes longer than pond retting, normally a two or three weeks, but the end product is less likely to be dirty, does not stink as much, and because the water is cooler it is less likely to be over-retted.


Both Pond and Stream retting were traditionally used less because they pollute the waters used for that process.


Field retting is laying the flax out in a large field, and allowing dew to collect on it. This process normally takes a month or more, but is generally considered to provide the highest quality flax fibers, and produces the least pollution.


Retting can also be done in a plastic trash can, or any type of water tight container of wood, concrete, earthenware or plastic. Metal containers will not work, as an acid is produced when retting, and it would corrode the metal. If the water temperature is kept at 80 °F, the retting process under these conditions takes 4 or 5 days, and if the water is any colder it takes longer. Scum will collect at the top, and an odour is given off, like in pond retting. For other uses, see Wood (disambiguation). ... This article is about the construction material. ... Earthenware is a common ceramic material, which is used extensively for pottery tableware and decorative objects. ... For other uses, see Plastic (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Acid (disambiguation). ... Corrosion is the destructive reaction of a metal with another material, e. ...


Dressing the flax

Dressing the flax is the term given to removing the straw from the fibers. It consists of three steps, breaking, scotching, and hackling. The breaking breaks up the straw, then some of the straw is scraped from the fibers in the scotching process, then the fiber is pulled through hackles to remove the last bits of straw.


The dressing is done as follows:

Breaking The process of breaking breaks up the straw into short segments. To do it, take the bundles of flax and untie them. Next, in small handfuls, put it between the beater of the breaking machine ( a set of wooden blades which mesh together when the upper jaw is lowered- it looks like a paper cutter but instead of having a big knife it has a blunt arm), and beat it till the three or four inches that have been beaten appear to be soft. Move the flax a little higher and continue to beat it till all is soft, and the wood is separated from the fiber. When half of the flax is broken, hold the beaten end and beat the rest in the same way as the other end was beaten, till the wood is separated.
Scotching In order to remove some of the straw from the fiber, it helps to swing a wooden scotching knife down the fibers while they hang vertically, thus scraping the edge of the knife along the fibers and pull away pieces of the stalk. Some of the fiber will also be scotched away, this cannot be helped and is a normal part of the process.
Hackles In this process the fiber is pulled through various different sized hackles. A hackle is a bed of "nails"- sharp, long-tapered, tempered, polished steel pins driven into wooden blocks at regular spacing. A good progression is from 4 pins per square inch, to 12, to 25 to 48 to 80. The first three will remove the straw, and the last two will split and polish the fibers. Some of the finer stuff that comes off in the last hackles is called "tow" and can be carded like wool and spun. It will produce a coarser yarn than the fibers pulled through the heckles because it will still have some straw in it.

Bales of straw bundles of rice straw Pile of straw bales, sheltered under a tarpaulin Straw is an agricultural byproduct, the dry stalk of a cereal plant, after the nutrient grain or seed has been removed. ... -1... A hand-turned spinning wheel in action Cones of yarn for industrial use Z-twist and S-twist yarns Spinning is the process of creating yarn (or thread, rope, cable) from various raw fiber materials. ...

Flax as a symbolic image

Perennial Flax flower
Perennial Flax flower

The logo of the Northern Ireland Assembly, a six flowered linen or flax plant. ... The circulating British one pound (£1) coin is minted from a nickel-brass alloy of approximately 70% copper, 24. ... Northern Ireland (Irish: , Ulster Scots: Norlin Airlann) is a constituent country of the United Kingdom lying in the northeast of the island of Ireland, covering 5,459 square miles (14,139 km², about a sixth of the islands total area). ...

Flax in popular culture

  • In English, blond hair is traditionally referred to as "fair" or "flaxen".
  • The expression "tow-head" or "toe-head," used to describe a person with blond hair, comes from the name for the fine, oft-tangled fibers left behind in the hackles, when processing flax into linen.

Young man with naturally blond hair. ...

See also

Irish linen is the brand name given to linen produced in Ireland. ...

Notes

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
  1. ^ Alister D. Muir, Neil D. Westcot, "Flax: The Genus Linum"., page 3 (August 1, 2003)
  2. ^ a b Mayo Clinic (2006-05-01). Drugs and Supplements: Flaxseed and flaxseed oil (Linum usitatissimum). Retrieved on 2007-07-02.
  3. ^ Weil, Andrew (2006-09-01). Get the Facts on Flax. Retrieved on 2007-11-23.
  4. ^ Chen J, Wang L, Thompson LU (2006). "Flaxseed and its components reduce metastasis after surgical excision of solid human breast tumor in nude mice". Cancer Lett. 234 (2): 168–75. doi:10.1016/j.canlet.2005.03.056. PMID 15913884. 
  5. ^ Thompson LU, Chen JM, Li T, Strasser-Weippl K, Goss PE (2005). "Dietary flaxseed alters tumor biological markers in postmenopausal breast cancer". Clin. Cancer Res. 11 (10): 3828–35. doi:10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-04-2326. PMID 15897583. 
  6. ^ "Flaxseed Stunts The Growth Of Prostate Tumors", ScienceDaily, 2007-06-04. Retrieved on 2007-11-23. 
  7. ^ Dahl, WJ; Lockert EA Cammer AL Whiting SJ (December 2005). "Effects of Flax Fiber on Laxation and Glycemic Response in Healthy Volunteers". Journal of Medicinal Food Vol. 8 (No. 4): 508-511. Retrieved on 2007-05-14. 
  8. ^ a b Flaxseed and Flaxseed Oil. National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine. Retrieved on 2008-01-03.
  9. ^ Schilcher, H. and Wilkens-Sauter, Zietschr. Fette-Seifen-Anstrichmittel, pp. 113-117, Aug. 1986
  10. ^ Wardey, A. J. (1967). The Linen Trade: Ancient and Modern. Routledge, 752. ISBN 071461114X. 

Image File history File links Commons-logo. ... is the 213th day of the year (214th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Main campus in downtown Rochester, Minnesota. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 121st day of the year (122nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 183rd day of the year (184th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Dr. Andrew Weil (born December 19, 1941) is a world-famous United States physician. ... Year 2006 (MMVI) was a common year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 244th day of the year (245th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 327th day of the year (328th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... A digital object identifier (or DOI) is a standard for persistently identifying a piece of intellectual property on a digital network and associating it with related data, the metadata, in a structured extensible way. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 155th day of the year (156th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... is the 327th day of the year (328th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era in the 21st century. ... May 14 is the 134th day of the year (135th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 2008 (MMVIII) is the current year, a leap year that started on Tuesday of the Anno Domini (or common era), in accordance to the Gregorian calendar. ... is the 3rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ...

References

External links

  • University of Arizona Text: Flax Culture and Preparation; Bradbury, Fred; Sir Isaac Pitman & Sons, 187 pages; copyright estimated 1895-1912, file sz 11.1 MB (PDF). On-Line Digital Archive of Documents on Weaving and Related Topics.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Flax - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (946 words)
Flax fibre is extracted from the bast or skin of the stem of flax plant.
Flax fibre is also a raw material for the high-quality paper industry for the use of printed banknotes and rolling paper for cigarettes.
Flax grown for seed is allowed to mature until the seed capsules are yellow and just starting to split; it is then harvested by combine harvester and dried to extract the seed.
New Zealand flax - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1104 words)
Flax roots were boiled and crushed and applied externally as a poultice for boils, tumours and abscesses, as well as to varicose ulcers.
Flax leaves were used as bandages and to secure broken bones much as plaster is used today, and the pulp of pounded leaves was applied as dressings.
Flax seed oil that can be bought in many countries (aka linseed oil) is extracted from the seeds of the European flax, a plant that belongs to a different plant family.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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