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Lokta:

Lokta botanically known as Daphne Bhoula or Daphne Papyracea, is an indegenous plant of Nepal. It is found at the altitude of 6500 feet to 9500 feet from the sea level. The bark of the Lokta is used as raw materials for the purpose of making since ages. Lokta plant is harvested by cutting its stem at ground level without destroying the main root. Lokta regenerates naturally and normally takes 2 to 3 years of time. Hence, there is no adverse effect on the forest ecology.

Paper Making process

Paper making process first begins by cleaning the bark of Lokta with sharp knife and chopped it into small pieces. Those small pieces are then soaked in plain water for 5-6 hours.

Lokta Plant

Stripped Lokta Bark

It is then, cooked in a soaking solution of hot water and soda for 1-2 hours and washed in cold water.

Cooking Lokta

Washing


Finally, it is hammered and converted into pulp. The pulp is then poured into wooden frames for drying into sheets of paper.

 

Hammering lokta

pouring pulp onto wooden Frame

 

Drying Sheet

Lokta Paper is unique in many ways. It can be preserved for very long period of time. The papers made from Lokta are non-perishable in the water, free from germs and highly resistant to insects like silverfish, paper crawlers etc. Lokta paper is also excellent for wrapping precious stones as its soft fibers do not scratch the stones. These papers are easy to dye in water with colors and are ideal in production without using any machines in entire process. The scraps of these papers are highly potential for easy recycling.

 

In Nepal, Lokta paper is being used in the Government office for the official purpose . 

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