Flax has been used by people all over the world since primitive times
because of the strength of its fibers. The fibers are used for string
and cords, and for weaving cloth. The fabric that is woven from flax is
linen. The genus name, Linum is taken from this word.
Domestic flax, which is grown commercially, has a white blossom, but
otherwise is similar to the plant shown in the photos. The
blue species shown here is named after Captain Meriwether Lewis, of the
Lewis and Clark expedition.
It grows about two feet tall on the sides
of roads and on exposed hillsides, and can be found from the foothills
to the tops of the canyons in the Wasatch Mountains.