Carrie's Madders, 1860-1880
Madder is a low creeping plant that will quickly cover an area of ground without a great deal of maintanence. The plant matures at fiveyears old, bearing small yellow/green flowers and berries. The berries are dark when ripe and can be used as seed stock to multiply the crop. The part of the plant used for the dye is the tuber type root. The plant is pulled from the ground after loosening the soil, the leaves are stripped from the plant and the roots are dried out until they can be ground up into a powder and put in a pot with some water. This mixture is heated to extract the bright red dye. If a copper dye vat is used, the color will be brighter.