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Common Flax

Linum usitatissimum

Grown by: Run Rig Farm Project in Hudson, NY

  • $5.00

Slender stems with delicate leaves branch near the top to produce handfuls of small sky-blue flowers, and later, spherical seed pods. A modest plant alone, when planted in mass, flax creates a striking display and unmatched movement in the breeze.

Common flax is an annual plant native to Europe and Central Asia. It has been cultivated since ancient times and treasured for its use as a fiber, medicine, food, and ornamentally. Medicinally, linseeds have been used since the times of the ancient Greeks for their anti-inflammatory and soothing properties. As a food source, linseed oil and flax seeds are both incredibly nutrient rich, notable for their omega-3s. And of course, flax is an important fiber plant; people in the UK have been cultivating flax and crafting linen from it since the 11th century, making linen an important cultural symbol of Ireland.

Days to maturity: 100-120

Seeds per pack: 100

Germination rate: 81% on 12/4/2023

Planting / harvesting notes

Flax is easily direct sown. Broadcast with approximately 2 inch spacing and tamp into the earth, around the time of the last spring frost. Flax enjoys full sun. Once growing, it is not a finicky plant and requires very little.

Seed keeping notes

Harvest when pods are brown and you can hear the seeds rattle in their pods when shaken. Stems and leaves should be browning, but can still be tinged green. Harvest before plants lodge. Harvest by uprooting the whole plant, and tie in bundles to hang to dry for a couple additional weeks.

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