Image: Emerging flax seedlings 11 days after sowing. Image courtesy of Rob Velker.
The first day of the flax season, on the 23 April 2022, the Linen Stewards of The Linen Project sowed the flax field to begin the growing cycle. The flax seeds were sown in rows using a manual seed drill into clay soil. The rows are placed just under 12 cm apart to encourage even growth and the development of long plant stems.
Image: sowing flax seeds using a manual seed drill. Image courtesy of Rob Velker.
Over the course of a year, as a group, Linen Stewards grow and harvest the flax and process the fibre. Without this community and Shared Stewardship, the project would not exist. Subsequently, it is the Linen Stewards' flax field, with each steward contributing to the flax cycle. The production of linen and other fibres has long relied on a community effort and The Linen Project is returning to community work to regenerate a once thriving linen industry in the Netherlands.
Image: field of sown flax seeds - the start of the flax cycle. Image of courtesy of Rob Velker.
From sowing, the flax takes approximately 100 days until it is ready to be harvested. Nature is in charge of the flax cycle and so, over the course of the next few months, we will follow The Linen Project as they monitor the growing of the flax until it is ready to be harvested.
In July we will film the linen harvest via a Slow TV experience. It is a free event that will streamed live on the Slow TV page of our website.
Follow The Linen Project as their project develops HERE.