Primitive cordage…from lemon grass...

DavoAnth

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I was just feeling like a mug of lemon grass tea, so went outside to cut off a stem, and realised that the bush was well overgrown and overdue for a cut back. The cut off stems usually are added to my green waste / compost pile, but on starting to cut I realised that they were the right length and consistency for cordage. So as the tea steeped, I had a play with it, and 20 mins later I ended up with about 4 feet of cordage. Not the prettiest cordage I have ever made, especially around the splices, which ended up way thicker than I'd like, but it's still very useable. It needs a bit of rolling to 'loosen' the plant material up before you start, and on some of the larger blades I removed the harder central vein to make it more flexible. The fine hairs on the blades weren't as much of an issue as I thought, and only a little bit of skin irritation was encountered.

And my hands smell a lot sweeter than they usually do when I have been playing outside…

cordage1.jpgcordage2.jpgcordage3.jpg
 

Wentworth

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Looks very uniform to me! Let us know how it ages, as I'm always on the lookout for cordage that doesn't go too brittle.
Nice job
 

DavoAnth

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Thanks Wentworth. I will be using this length to support a hanging plant basket outside, so it will receive a fair exposure to the elements. I will be watching for how long deterioration takes, and will update the forum then.
 

DeadWeight

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That looks awesome mate! I've got a huge bush of lemon grass- it seems that every time I look at it, it's grown another 2ft taller, so it might be time for a cutback and have a go at this. Thanks for the idea!
 

Blake

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I would hate to see your good cordage Davo! Your rough stuff is way better than my best! Really great job.

I will also add that its a great observation you have made regarding the material. Obviously you know from past experience what kind of properties lends itself to making cordage and have identified it in this plant. Great to see and I certainly learned something new from this. Thanks for posting.
 

DavoAnth

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Thanks Blake, I often have a play with different types of grass and bark where I can to see what works and what doesn't regarding cordage. I was pretty sure that this lemon grass version would work, but I was equally sure that I would get a lot of grass cuts and the usual itchy skin. But happy neither happened. Time will tell how it fairs, and I have it hanging outside holding up a 2kg hanging pot to see how long it lasts.

I would hate to see your good cordage Davo! Your rough stuff is way better than my best! Really great job.

I will also add that its a great observation you have made regarding the material. Obviously you know from past experience what kind of properties lends itself to making cordage and have identified it in this plant. Great to see and I certainly learned something new from this. Thanks for posting.
 
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