Common name: Flax, Linseed
Linum usitatissimum L. APNI*
Description: Annual herb, mostly 30–80 cm high; stems erect, usually unbranched, glabrous.
Leaves linear-lanceolate, 20–37 mm long, 1–3 mm wide, margins entire, surfaces glabrous.
Inflorescence loosely corymbose; pedicels 25–40 mm long. Sepals ovate, 5–8 mm long, margins membranous. Petals 8–15 mm long, blue or white. Anthers white.
Capsule ± globose, c. 9 mm long, 6–9 mm diam.; seeds c. 4 mm long, brown.
Distribution and occurrence: Cultivated; sometimes naturalized,in coastal districts south from Comboyne and inland south from the Boggabri district. Native of Eur. & possibly Asia.
NSW subdivisions: *NC, *CC, *CT, *ST, *NWS, *CWS, *SWS, *NWP, *SWP
Other Australian states: *Vic.
This species is widely cultivated for commercial flax fibres (from stems), oil-cake for stock-feed (from seeds) and linseed oil (from seeds).
Text by C. L. Gardner
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 3 (1992)
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.