As a general rule the removal of the " bolls " or capsules by the process of rippling immediately follows the pulling, the operation being performed in the field; but under some systems of cultivation, as, for example, the Courtrai method, alluded to below, the crop is made up into sheaves, dried and stacked, and is only boiled and retted in the early part of the next ensuing season.
One part was retted at Millisle by the patent-system of Loppens and Deswarte; the other was sent to Courtrai and steeped in the Lys.
Both lots when retted and scutched were examined by an inspector of the department and by several flax spinners.
That which was retted at Millisle was pronounced superior to the other " " To summarise results up to date '.
There the flax is dried in the field, and housed or stacked during the winter succeeding its growth, and in the spring of the following year it is retted in crates sunk in the sluggish waters of the river Lys.