Bast

(Glossary Term)

The soft “inner bark” or phloem of some plants (such as hemp, ramie, jute, nettles, and flax), from which fibers can be extracted for making into yarn. Bast can also be used to make non-woven cloth (bark cloth) by softening it through soaking and beating it out into a flat sheet. The most commonly encountered bast fibre in the indonesian archipelago is ramie, which is derived from nettle plants.