Whole Leaf Tobacco
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  1. #1
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    Getting started for the first time

    I am new to growing of any type, so I might need some help from experienced growers out there on how to get started.

    So I informed myself by watching some videos aswell as lurking this forum for some time now, and I've found that for cigarette making, the best blend is made of roughly 40% Virginia, 40% Burley and 20% Oriental, please correct me if I'm wrong or if you have a better ratio for these three types of tobacco. I want a fairly mild smoke in taste with medium Nicotine, similar to Marlboro Lights / Golds.

    So I went and bought these three types of tobacco. As it's really cold right now where I live (Eastern Europe, southern part) all I'm really doing right now is gathering the means of growing tobacco. So right now I have the following questions:

    - I'm not quite sure how to correctly store tobacco seeds. I went by the opposite logic of germinating them so I store them in a dark, cold place (About 10 degrees celsius) that is also dry. Some people on the internet have suggested to store the seeds in a refridgerator. Is it safe to do so?

    - I have purchased some LED Growlights that apparently produce UV light. Link here
    Will these work for the time the plants will have to be indoors?

    - Can plastic cups be used instead pot trays, provided I make holes on the bottom?

    - Is it adviseable to place the cups I mentioned in water, effectively using the holes for the potting mix to suck it up so it can stay moist? If so, do I have to do anything else to ensure a good drainage?

  2. #2
    Senior Member ChinaVoodoo's Avatar
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Quote Originally Posted by MM-TD View Post
    I am new to growing of any type, so I might need some help from experienced growers out there on how to get started.

    So I informed myself by watching some videos aswell as lurking this forum for some time now, and I've found that for cigarette making, the best blend is made of roughly 40% Virginia, 40% Burley and 20% Oriental, please correct me if I'm wrong or if you have a better ratio for these three types of tobacco. I want a fairly mild smoke in taste with medium Nicotine, similar to Marlboro Lights / Golds.

    So I went and bought these three types of tobacco. As it's really cold right now where I live (Eastern Europe, southern part) all I'm really doing right now is gathering the means of growing tobacco. So right now I have the following questions:

    - I'm not quite sure how to correctly store tobacco seeds. I went by the opposite logic of germinating them so I store them in a dark, cold place (About 10 degrees celsius) that is also dry. Some people on the internet have suggested to store the seeds in a refridgerator. Is it safe to do so?

    - I have purchased some LED Growlights that apparently produce UV light. Link here
    Will these work for the time the plants will have to be indoors?

    - Can plastic cups be used instead pot trays, provided I make holes on the bottom?

    - Is it adviseable to place the cups I mentioned in water, effectively using the holes for the potting mix to suck it up so it can stay moist? If so, do I have to do anything else to ensure a good drainage?
    Welcome to the forum,

    The cigarette proportions you referenced may be more of an American style cigarette. I don't doubt that you would enjoy it, but it's really a stress free exploration of what proportions you do like. Maybe you'll find satisfaction in variety.

    Cool and dry is good for seed storage. Dry is more important than cool, so a refrigerator is a bad idea because they tend to be at least moderately humid.

    Plastic cups with holes works, but you can run into poor drainage issues because they stick to the tray they are sitting on. It helps to keep them on a mesh of some sort so they don't just suction to the bottom of your tray. Maybe holes on the corners, rather than the bottom is better. Also, the amount of root space in a proper square pot is 27% higher, compared with a cup of the same width and height. Circular pots is a waste of space.

    Don't keep your cups standing in water. That's too much.
    Now all them things that seemed so important, well mister they vanished right into the air - The Boss

  3. #3
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Thanks for the reply, I'll keep that in mind when I'm starting the seeds mid-february. About the variety, I'm sure I'd like some variety as time goes by aswell, but since this is my very first time I'd like to kinda keep it "safe" with blends I'm already familiar with. =)

    What about the LED Growlights I bought? Anyone got any experience with those?

  4. #4
    Senior Member Alpine's Avatar
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    I live on the Alps, and cannot start my seeds outside. The first two years I simply kept my seedlings trays on the most sunny window I have, but the results were less than satisfactory in terms of growing. Last year I bought a led lamp very similar to the one you linked, and it made a world of difference: seedlings were twice as big than previous years. I understand you’re worried about posting your exact country, but if you simply write “Bosnia” for example, without an exact location it would be impossible for the government to reach you. Rainmax in Slovenia grows a lot of tobacco with no problems, but maybe your country’s rules are different.
    Back to the led lights, IMHO you’ve done a good buy.

    pier

  5. #5
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Quote Originally Posted by Alpine View Post
    I live on the Alps, and cannot start my seeds outside. The first two years I simply kept my seedlings trays on the most sunny window I have, but the results were less than satisfactory in terms of growing. Last year I bought a led lamp very similar to the one you linked, and it made a world of difference: seedlings were twice as big than previous years. I understand you’re worried about posting your exact country, but if you simply write “Bosnia” for example, without an exact location it would be impossible for the government to reach you. Rainmax in Slovenia grows a lot of tobacco with no problems, but maybe your country’s rules are different.
    Back to the led lights, IMHO you’ve done a good buy.

    pier
    Thanks for the info, friend. And the location's Croatia.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Alpine's Avatar
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Ah, what a beautiful country! We go there twice a year for our holidays, I have friends in the Pelijesac peninsula. Great tradition of tobacco growing too. Dobro došli!

    pier

  7. #7
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Welcome on FTT

    ChinaVoodoo already told you : be sure not to put too much water on your seeds/seedlings, the soil has to be just moist. Watering from the bottom is very good, but let the soil dry a little between waterings.

    I never used growing lamps, but a lot of people have great results with them (like Pier).

    Good luck with your first grow

  8. #8
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Quote Originally Posted by Alpine View Post
    Ah, what a beautiful country! We go there twice a year for our holidays, I have friends in the Pelijesac peninsula. Great tradition of tobacco growing too. Dobro došli!

    pier
    Glad to hear that, neighbor! Bienvenuti. =)


    Quote Originally Posted by Charly View Post
    Welcome on FTT

    ChinaVoodoo already told you : be sure not to put too much water on your seeds/seedlings, the soil has to be just moist. Watering from the bottom is very good, but let the soil dry a little between waterings.
    Would a mist bottle also suffice, just to be on the safe side and not water too much?

  9. #9
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    Re: Getting started for the first time

    Quote Originally Posted by MM-TD View Post
    Would a mist bottle also suffice, just to be on the safe side and not water too much?
    I use mist bottle as well as watering by the bottom.
    With mist bottle, it will be hard to know when to stop misting, because you will put a lot of water on top, and not many below.
    Watering from the bottom is better because you don't hurt the baby seeds/seedlings.

    When you water from below, just watch the soil, it sucks water up above, and you will see the top becoming wet, once done you can stop watering and wait until the top soil becomes dry again before watering again.
    Usually (it depends on you weather/humidity) you only need to water your cups once a day or once every two days.

    For watering, take your cups and put them in a plate filled with water (not to high), wait until the soil becomes dark, then remove the cups and put them on an empty plate, so they can release excess water.

    Just avoid too much water, or you will get mold and your seedlings will die.

    If you want, you can try to germinate some seeds right now and see if you can get them to become small plants, this way you will be more confident when you will start your "real" seeds in february

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