Oriental Papermaking Fibres

Tatami Rushes

Common Name Tatami Rushes Japanese Name Igusa
Scientific Name Juncaceae Juncus Effusus
Fibre Length Average 2mm (1-3mm) Fibre Width Average 70µm (50-90µm)
Fibre Ends Square Cross-Marking None
Associated Cells
Herzberg Colour Pink/Purple Graff 'C' Colour Pink/Purple


Woven into the final layer of tatami mats present on the floor of every Japanese house, Tatami Rushes often grow in the mud by riverbanks. With green shiny leaves, the majority of Japan's tatami mats are made in Kumamoto Prefecture. Found in clumps and colonies, these rushes grow from rhizomes in wetlands and by watersides.

Fibres are wide, thin walled, even in width and square ended (See Image 1 and 2). Associated cells are often filtered out to improve in manufacturing and working properties. Fine taxodiod and cupressoid pits to rays tracheids are present in mature fibres, rarely more than two or three across the fibre width.


Image 1 Image 2
tatami1 tatami2


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Contact email address: travtora@gmail.com
Centre homepage: www.culturalconservation.unimelb.edu.au
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