Processing Hemp Fiber the 18th Century Way – Podcast

On this week’s hemp podcast, we talk to Brother Johannes Zinzendorf from the Hermitage, a Harmonist spiritual center and working farm in Schuylkill County, where life is lived as closely as possible to an 18th Century lifestyle of self-sufficiency, which includes growing fiber plants to make cloth. Flax had been the main fiber crop until the 2018 Farm Bill made it possible to grow hemp in the United States. 2020 was the second year they grew hemp at the Hermitage, and in this podcast episode, Zinzendorf describes the methods and tools they use to grow, harvest, and process the hemp fibers.

“A quarter acre of either flax or hemp would supply basically one person with about 20 yards of cloth,” he said. “You get enough clothing for a year from a quarter acre, but let’s say you have eight people in your family, you’re going to need to grow two acres of hemp or two acres of flax. There was a mathematical formula that you would use.”

To listen to the full podcast and see more great photos of the fiber making process using hemp: here.

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