This View taken near Scarva in the County of Downe, representing Ploughing, Sowing the Flax Seed and Harrowing
18th centuryPreviousIndex of PlatesNext2

Because flax needs strong well-prepared ground it was usually grown after a potato crop which opened up the soil and cleansed the land of weeds, especially redshank, charlock and scutch grass. The land might require up to four ploughings and then harrowing to render it fine enough for the young shoots. The seed was sown broadcast in mid-April. Much of the seed was imported. It came in hogsheads (large barrels) from Holland and the Baltic countries but at the time of this picture much of it was being imported from New York and Connecticut.

Living Linen