Ramie fibre the perennial stalk producing plant has been cultivated in eastern Asia for fibre since prehistoric times. 3-8 feet high, with heart-shaped leaves, the plant’s texture was used in the fabric in ancient Egypt and was known in Europe during the Middle Ages.
Retting is a microbial process that breaks the chemical bonds; it allows that hold the stem together, and separation of the bast fibres happen. This separation needed if linen, flax or hemp fibres are to be used in textile. The two traditional types of retting are field and water retting.