Giant nettle

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A large nettle plant (Urtica ardens) native to Europe. The giant nettle has been cultivated for centuries as a source of fibers. Nettle fibers are light-color, soft and strong. They are used for twine, rope, canvas, sailcloth, and paper. Nettle fibers are also used as substitutes for flax and hemp.

Synonyms and Related Terms

Urtica ardens

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Fiber width = 6-24 microns with thickness variations.
  • Striations are well-defined often giving the appearance of nodes.
  • Parenchymal cells are elongated with small surface markings.

Resources and Citations

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