Jute in Geo Textiles – Jute is a long, soft, shiny vegetable fiber that can be spun into coarse, strong threads. It is produced from plants in the genus Corchorus, which was once classified with the family Tiliaceae, more recently with Malvaceae, and has now been reclassified as belonging to the family Sparrmanniaceae. “Jute” is the name of the plant or fiber that is used to make burlap, Hessian or gunny cloth.
To grow jute, farmers scatter the seeds on cultivated soil. When the plants are about 15–20 cm tall, they are thinned out. About four months after planting, harvesting begins. The plants are usually harvested after they flower, before the flowers go to seed. The stalks are cut off close to the ground. The stalks are tied into bundles and soaked in water (retting) for about 20 days.
This process softens the tissues and breaks the hard pectin bond between the bast and Jute hurd (inner woody fiber stick) and the process permits the fibres to be separated. The fibres are then stripped from the stalks in long strands and washed in clear, running water. Then they are hung up or spread on thatched roofs to dry. After 2–3 days of drying, the fibres are tied into bundles. The suitable climate for growing jute is a warm and wet climate, which is offered by the monsoon climate during the fall season, immediately followed by summer.
Temperatures ranging from 70–100 °F and relative humidity of 70%–80% are favorable for successful cultivation. Jute requires 2–3 inches of rainfall weekly with extra needed during the sowing period.
Jute Geo-textiles are flexible, foldable, not very biodegradable, and water-resistant in nature, particularly suitable for rain-fed, flood-prone climatic conditions. They can be used as geo-technical engineering products like fibre drains, separators, filters and reinforcing materials.
Jute Hessian (Burlap) matting is extensively used in controlling land slides and soil erosion and usually laid along the river embankments, sides, canal banks and hill slopes:
Helps stop erosion damage
Act as an aid to good vegetation growth on difficult terrain
Easy to lay and to reposition
They are also called Erosion Control Matting. They are supplied in large quantities, throughout the world