sowing with a hand-driven seed drill
This season, the flax fields at both of The Linen Project locations were sown using a hand-driven machine known as a seed drill. When pushed forward, the front wheel drives a wheel lined with brushes inside the funnel that feeds the seeds down to the soil. Simultaneously, the funnel pipe cuts a groove for the seeds to fall in, while the smaller back wheel presses the soil down over the seeds. Using a hand-driven seed drill is both physically demanding and rewarding. The choice to do so connects with the Shared Stewardship’s priority for ‘manual’ practices and an embodied experience, as well as the Netherlands Open Air Museum’s daily use of traditional tools and practices. The size of the fields, based on needs and capacity, along with the availability of willing participants, meant this was manageable.