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How does organic cotton grow?

January 18, 2022 2 min read

100% biologisch katoen - de groei

Cotton is a soft, single-celled fiber, which grows from the epidermis of the seeds of the cotton plant (Gossypium). The fibers are typically spun into threadsand used as such to make soft, breathabletextiles. Both the textile fiber and the final textile are referred to as cotton.

100% biologisch katoen - de groei

Shrub of the cotton plant The cotton plant

is a stump-shaped one calledGossypium hirsutum.

It is a 1–4 m tall shrubwith weakly lignified twigs. All vegetative parts of the plant are covered with black oil glands. The petioles have rapidly fallingleaflets.

100% biologisch katoen - de groei

The flowering of the cotton plant

Theflowers are only in the axils of the leaf. The three outer sepals have a heart-shaped base and long, pointed teeth. They surround the cup-shaped, almost toothless calyx. The corolla is funnel-shaped. The flower usually has 5 petals. The flowers change color in the bloom from yellow to red. In the center of the flower there are stamens and stigmas.

100% biologisch katoen - de groei

The fruit of the cotton plant

Thefruits are ovoid, pointed, 3 to 6 cm long. The seeds are covered with half a million cotton hairs, which easily loosen. This is the coveted cotton that is picked to yarn from the spiders. The strong cotton hairs of cellulose are the means of transport of the seeds.

100% biologisch katoen - plukken

Hairs ensure that the wind gets hold of the seed and that it spreads. But it doesn't get that far. Before the seed has a chance to run off, a large machine rips the bunches of hair off the plant. A picking machine easily collects 80,000 kilograms of fluff per day. In poor countries, small cotton farmers sometimes still pick by hand. Experienced pickers can harvest 200 kilograms of cotton in a day.

100% biologisch katoen - plukken

Picking the cotton plant

Picking the cotton, which used to be done manually, nowadays often takes place mechanically. For this, it is necessary that the plant is first processed with adefoliant to facilitate picking or that the plant has been defoliated by incoming frost.

100% biologisch katoen


In the cultivation of organic cotton, the use of chemicals is not allowed, and picking is done manually. In the tropics, the cotton plant grows all year round, when it is not defoliated.

100% biologisch katoen - katoen veld
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