Thursday, July 31, 2014

Beautiful Blue Flax Fields!

Last week driving a short distance north of here, I saw two beautiful blue fields of flax in bloom.  We hardly ever see flax as a crop around here, and the chance of driving by when a field is in the peak of its startling blue bloom is even less.  It's been ten years since I last saw one.

Flax is a remarkable crop when you see it in bloom.  Around here, most crops are green, with some like wheat and barley turning golden brown when mature, but flax is actually a flower, and its blue colour is striking.

Flax is used for linseed oil, an important ingredient of paints and similar products, for textiles - linen has been widely made from flax fibres for centuries - and for human consumption.

I was surprised to learn that Canada is the world's largest producer of flax; it's a northern crop that grows very widely on the Canadian prairies.  I remember driving west from Winnipeg on the Trans-Canada Highway, seeing alternating fields of bright yellow canola and beautiful blue flax, quite a sight.

For anyone interested, this is a flax plant in bloom.  It's an oil seed plant, so both for human consumption and linseed oil, the production comes from the tiny oil seeds.  Fibres for textiles are from the stems, and were some of the oldest fibres used to make textiles in the world.

And this is a close look at the beautiful little blue flower.

Among all our crops here in southern Ontario, a field of flax in bloom is pretty unique!


Linking to:
http://skyley.blogspot.ca/

17 comments:

  1. Wow - very cool to see the huge fields of blue flowers!

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  2. Wow! Beautiful ~ Great shot of the flax fields for SWF ~

    artmusedog and carol (A Creative Harbor)

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  3. It certainly does make for an appealing alternate colour in field. Beautiful shots!

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  4. Absolutely beautiful. The color reminds me of the blooms of wild chicory which was used here in lieu of coffee during the great depression.

    I love when I learn something new.

    Thanks for dropping by to visit.

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  5. Wow---those photos are amazing... Love the field of flowers --along with the pretty blue skies and puffy clouds... Gorgeous.. Thanks for sharing.

    Thanks also for identifying my big Puff Ball.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  6. Oh wow isn't that beautiful!!!! Really like the barn too.

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  7. It's grown in a few fields around here and I love the misty blue colour that seems to hang over these fields.

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  8. That is a sight to behold, beautiful sky and amazing fields of flax.

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  9. I tell you, this is a piece of heaven. I would love to stumble upon a place like this. What a gorgeous field of blooming flax! Naturally, I haven't see anything like this first hand and am a bit awed because I just never thought about flax having a flower. I take flax seed oil in supplement form. Now every time that I do, I'll think of these beautiful pictures. Thanks for sharing on SWF!

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  10. WoW!!! What a find, these images are so gorgeous!! It must have been stunning to see in real time!!! A very beautiful barn as well!!

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  11. Absolutely beautiful!! Some of these should be postcards, or featured in calendars! I adore blue flax (and flax seeds, we eat ground flax daily!) We had a little hill covered in them at our previous home, where we'd cast a bunch of flax seeds my grandmother had given us. When we sold that place three years ago (several years after my grandmother had passed away), those blue flax flowers were one of the hardest "things" to leave behind! Thank you for these lovely photos!

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  12. Oh my, what a sight! Thanks for the photos and for all the fascinating information about flax and its many uses.

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  13. That is stunning! Blue is my favorite color and I would love to come across a flax field. Thanks for sharing!

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  14. I have seen just a few flax fields. One, in North Dakota fooled us into thinking it was a lake in the distance till we got closer. Beautiful!

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  15. We were away for 10 days and I saw some fields of flax in bloom. They are beautiful. Even before they open, the foliage produces an interesting color.

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  16. Those fields are breathtaking for one like me. Was able to have flax in my flower beds for a couple of years and the color was unbelievable!

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