Cotton fibre and plant, genus Gossypium, one of the world’s most important crops, produces white fibrous bowls manufactured into a highly versatile textile. The plant has white flowers, which turn purple about two days after blooming, and large, divided leaves.
The length of fibre ranges from 3/8 to 2″ Egyptian, Sea Island. The longer the fibre, the higher the price and the more luxurious the fabric. Cotton withstands high temperatures, can be boiled and hot pressed. It is resistant to abrasion has good affinity to dyes and increases in strength 10 per cent when wet. The world’s leading producers of cotton are China, the United States, India, Pakistan, Uzbekistan, Brazil, Turkey, Australia, and Egypt. See Sea Island cotton and organic cotton.