Virtual museum of Canada
Collections from Storage: A Visit to our Hidden Treasures

Flowers of the cotton plant

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This flower is from the cotton plant, a shrub that grows in tropical or subtropical regions. It is the most exploited plant fibre in the world, and from it cotton is produced. The large flowers of the cotton plant may be yellow or white. They slightly resemble the hollyhock or mallow, cousins of the cotton plant.

After flowering, the shrub produces pods with thick, hard sides. At maturity, these pods open to allow the seeds and the cotton balls made of whitish fibres to escape. It is this fibre that is harvested to be woven into fabric. China, the United States and India are the main cotton producers. This flower is a donation from the Brome County Historical Society.

Three flowers of the Cotton Plant

Credits : Musée de la nature et des sciences, Sherbrooke

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