Hello,I have read with interest the discussion regarding linen threads. I know 
I have missed part of it since I don't subscribe to the digest, so please 
forgive me if I am repeating something that has already been said. 
I seem to remember many years ago reading that the cultivars of flax that made 
the finest threads were deliberately destroyed during the French Revolution, 
along with any saved seeds. However, all may not be lost! Flax is a diploid 
plant with perfect flowers, an inbreeding system, and an annual habit. The 
means it should  (theoretically) be fairly easy to identify, isolate and breed 
new varieties. 
I decided last spring that I wanted to play around with developing new 
varieties of some garden veggies, and thought it would be fun to try flax as 
well. It was too late to start this season-- flax needs to be planted as soon  
as the ground can be worked and it was already late spring when I started 
thinking about it. I had hoped to begin  in spring of 2017, and wanted to 
start with several different varieties of seeds. But it is very difficult to 
find more than 1 or 2 varieties. So I will play around with what I can find and 
see what happens.
It's important to remember that we don't have to wait for some big research 
facility to get us better linen threads. Anyone with a home garden and a cool 
climate can jump in and do their part for horticulture and lace!
Elise in Maine where the fall colors are spectacular this year!

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