In nature, G. hirsutum and G. barbadense are perennial shrubs. However, in the agricultural system both species are cultivated as annuals, with destruction of plants after harvesting the fruit for seed and fibre. The plants are mainly grown for their fibre, cotton lint, which is used in textiles and clothing.
My sick heart shows That I must yield my body to the earth, And, by my fall, the conquest to my foe. Thus yields the cedar to the axe's edge, Whose arms gave shelter to the princely eagle; Under whose shade the ramping lion slept: Whose top-branch overpeer'd Jove's spreading tree, And kept low shrubs from winter's powerful wind.
There is an herb named in Latine Convolvulus ( i. e. with wind), growing among shrubs and bushes, which carrieth a flower not unlike to this Lilly, save that it yeeldeth no smell nor hath those chives within; for whitenesse they resemble one another very much, as if Nature in making this floure were a learning and trying her skill how to frame the Lilly indeed.pliny the elder