Seeding Flax
Answered by: Conrad Richter
Question from: Lisa B.
Posted on: March 16, 2004

I want to order flax to plant for papermaking and spinning. Will the fiber flax be good for both?

Fibre flax is intended for making textiles, but it should be good for paper making also.

Your instructions indicate direct sowing in rows. Can the seeds be broadcast instead?

Yes.

I have a garden that is 120’ x 30’ and want to plant what I can afford to buy. Could you please tell me how much space one gram of seeds will cover when broadcasted or sown into rows (or both)?

Commercial fibre flax is sown at a recommended rate of 120 kilograms per hectare, or 48 kg/acre. This works out to about a gram per square foot. For your area of 3600 sq. ft. you are going to need about 4 kg. The dense sowing rate helps to keep the plants straight and long, and helps to suppress weeds.

By the way, there are 170 seeds per gram.

I live in central Iowa and was wondering when to plant the seeds and how long it is until harvest?

The seeds are planted as soon as the danger of heavy frosts is over, around the beginning or middle of May. They take about two weeks to germinate. Fibre flax takes 80 days to mature, and the plants are normally pulled in early August.

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