Indian hemp (Apocynum cannbinum L.)

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Apocynum cannabinum in flower

Description

A bast fiber obtained from retting the stalks of cannabis plants. Indian hemp Apocynum cannabinum, is a perennial herbaceous plant that grows throughout much of North America - in the southern half of Canada and throughout the United States. All parts of the plant are poisonous and can cause cardiac arrest if ingested. Hemp fibers range from 1-2 meters long and are yellow to brown to gray in color. They have a high cellulose content with little lignin. Hemp is lustrous, strong, and durable with good resistance to water, salts, light, and insects. Hemp is used for cordage, fishing lines, sailcloth, canvas, and burlap. Wild hemp was also used for nets, snares and basketry.

Synonyms and Related Terms

"Apocynum cannbinum L; dogbane; amy root; hemp dogbane; prairie dogbane; rheumatism root; or wild cotton; cáñamo indio (Esp.) ; hennep (Ned);

Other Properties

Resistant to water and alkalis. Damage by weak acids and bleaches.

Fiber length = 1-2 m. Fibers have a smooth cell wall with horizontal striations that are often packed close together.

Hazards and Safety

Combustible, may ignite spontaneously when wet.

Fiber Identification

47861db19c71dc5496909587b4efc699.jpg

IH-019-06-24-09-BF-400X-PM-3-9

Source bast
Accession Number 6/18/91-AE.7.5.1-4.1.2.-3.6/24/91 (o) #2
Title Indian hemp, water boil stem, peel fiber
Processing treatment boil in water
Image Identification information IH-019-06-24-09-BF-400X-PM-3-9
Image capture digital
Microscope Zeiss Axioplan
Mounting agent and RI RI: permount 1.515
Microscopic technique Brightfield
Lumen type narrow lumen diameter relative to fiber diameter
Dislocations few dislocations
Fiber size medium fiber diameter, narrow fiber diameter
Surface folds surface folds present
06e00c403db45062b07808dbfa718cfa.jpg

IH-020-06-24-09-DF-400X-PM-3-9

Source bast
Accession Number 6/18/91-AE.7.5.1-4.1.2.-3.6/24/91 (o) #2
Title Indian hemp, water boil stem, peel fiber
Processing treatment boil in water
Image Identification information IH-020-06-24-09-DF-400X-PM-3-9
Image capture digital
Date of image capture 06/24/09
Microscopist l. Crawford
Date of image capture 06/24/09
Microscopist l. Crawford
Microscope Zeiss Axioplan
Mounting agent and RI RI: permount 1.515
Microscopic technique Darkfield
Lumen type narrow lumen diameter relative to fiber diameter
Dislocations few dislocations
Fiber size medium fiber diameter, narrow fiber diameter
Surface folds surface folds present

Additional Information

T.Collings, D. Miller, 'The Identification of Oriental Paper Fibers' The Paper Conservator, vol 3, 1978. Woodlands Fibers

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