Milkweed fiber

Revision as of 13:17, 25 June 2020 by MDerrick (talk | contribs) (→‎Sources Checked for Data in Record)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Common milkweed Asclepias syriaca


Fibers obtained from the seeds of any of several milkweed plants of the genus Asclepias. Milkweeds are a native perennial in North America. The seed pods produce a silky lightweight fuzz, called silk or floss. The lustrous, soft fibers are yellowish white in color. Milkweed fibers are too brittle to spin and are used for upholstery padding. They also have good buoyancy and were used as substitutes for Kapok in lifebuoys during World War II.

Synonyms and Related Terms

Asclepias; vegetable silk; milkweed floss; milkweed fibre (Br.); asclépiade (Fr.); zijdeplant (Asclepias syriaca) (Ned);

Common milkweed Asclepias syriaca

Other Properties

Fiber length = ~ 2 cm

Hazards and Safety

The sap and leaves of the plant are toxic to all mammals.

Additional Information

  • G.Cook, Handbook of Textile Fibres:I. Natural Fibres, 5th edition, Merrow Publishing Co., Durham, England, 1984.
  • R.King, E.Hartley, "Unusual Fibers Used in Northwest Coast Ethnographic Textiles, Their Preparation & Their Structure", Technology & Conservation, 1/79.

Additional Images

Sources Checked for Data in Record

  • J.Gordon Cook, Handbook of Textile Fibres:I Natural Fibres, Merrow Publishing Co. , Durham, England, 1984
  • Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  • The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998