Class 6 chapter three Natural Fibres
Fibres like cotton and jute are obtained from plants, so they are called plant fibres.
Cotton Plants: Cotton plants have fibres on their seeds. Their seeds are white fluffy objects, from where threads are made and cloth (cotton) is prepared. Some fibres from animals and their products are used to produce various types of clothes which are as follows:
(a) Silk: Silk is obtained from the silkworm. Silkworms are reared on mulberry leaves. Silk is used for preparing different types of clothing materials.
(b) Sheep: Sheep and rabbit hair is used to prepare woollen fibres. Woollen clothes of different colours and texture are prepared from these yarns. Now let us discuss the various types of fibres in detail.
Cotton was known to the ancient people for long, Cotton has first introduced in India 500 BC by the Europeans.
Cotton is a soft fibre that grows around the seeds of the cotton plant. The cotton plants usually grow best in warm areas with fertile soil and moderate rainfall. In India, cotton is cultivated in the central, western and northern parts – Punjab, Haryana, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Maharashtra.
Cultivation of Cotton
In India, the growing period for cotton is from March (spring) to November (winter).
• Cotton is planted in the early spring.
• Cotton requires little rainfall at the ripening of seeds.
• Cotton plants are usually grown in places having black soil.
• The cotton plant is bushy and 1-2.5 metres tall.
• The cotton plants start flowering in about 2 months. Cotton plants bear white or yellowish flowers, which turn pink or red after a few days.
• Cotton seeds grow readily. The fruits of the cotton plant are called cotton bolls. The cotton bolls mature and grow to the size of a lemon.
• After maturation, the cotton bolls burst open and the seeds covered with cotton fibres can be seen.
• The heat of the sun dries these fibres, turning them fluffy and as white as snow. During this time, the cotton field looks like a field covered with snow.
• Now, it is the time of harvesting. The cotton crop is mostly hand-picked.