Lampakanay

Lampakanay (Typha orientalis) is widely distributed all over the Philippine archipelago.  It is abundant in low altitudes, wet places with shallow, stagnant water, and is harvested and processed as fiber by communities living in these kinds of areas all over the country.  Weaving or application of the fiber on a product is also done by communities.

The entire or split stem of lampakanay is used for making coarse bags, baskets and rope for furniture trimmings.  The round stems are immersed for several days in muddy water to darken them, forming black pattern material for bowl-shaped baskets.

The inner portion of the rootstalk has a fibrous material that is used as a pattern material.  The leaves are excellent for braiding.  Slender ribbons separated from the tough part of the leaves, turned flat or twisted, are used as weavers.  Bundles of split lampakanay leaves, which have little tensile strength, function as foundations for coiled baskets.

The short, fluffy, waste fibers from the protruding lampakanay heads are sometimes used for stuffing pillows.

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