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Whole Leaf Tobacco

The most fragrant Oriental?

istanbulin

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#21
Bursa fits in Black Sea category (as planting density) but everybody knows that it fits in Marmara (as growing region).

You're right Jitterbugdude, even if Bursa planted same as Maden (actually yes, they're planted same) its leaves will be bigger. Here's the comparison of Bursa (a) and Maden (b) (both cured leaves);

comp.JPG

Actually these are actual sizes of the 3. Ana (approx. 16th-17th-18th) leaves but I guess this "actual" size may change according to your screen.
 

Planter

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#22
When I grew Bursa it was a very big plant but I planted it on 3 ft centers. When I grew Maden it was also a big plant but I also initially grew it on 3 ft centers. When I planted Maden on 8 inch centers it was a nice small plant, like a Turkish should be. I suspect that if Bursa where to be grown at about an 8 inch spacing it too would be small, not as small as Maden though but considerably smaller than if planted 3ft apart.
Did you notice a difference in aromatic intensity?


Last season I planted some of the Baffra Basmas with 1/2ft spacing into airy, humus-rich soil, exposed to direct sunlight for just half of the day. They grew 5 feet tall, with such a mass of leaves that it was almost impossible to get a hand in there without breaking something off. Basically, leaf length was equivalent to planting distance. They took long to appear ripe, but ended up curing well.


Others were planted in a comparably desertlike spot with hard, dense soil, in full sun the whole day. They looked a few times so close to death that I (against the original intention) watered. Spacing was 2 feet, the plants never took advantage of that. Leaves were extremely sticky, just 2-3 inches long, plant height less than 2 feet. Some leaves cured directly on the plants.


A third group was growing in pots (soil from the bed for group one) and came out in size and appearance somewhere between the two former. Container size didn´t seem to matter much. Actually, single plants in bigger containers did not use all available space, growing more or less to the same size as two plants sharing a small pot. They looked the most "normal" if I take some tobacco-growing pictures from Turkey as a standard.


A fourth group was planted as "filler" in borders, surrounded by vigorous mint and roses. Outcome: Very similar to container-grown.


Xanthi: Same observations.


I have not come to conclusions aroma-wise.


Most Tik Konlaks got a bed with 1ft spacing and rich soil like the first Baffras above. Much larger leaves than the Xanthis in the same bed with the same spacing (Tik Konlak leaves have a different shape and a distinct stem). Final height 6 feet. As mentioned earlier, curing and cured leaves exhibited a distinct odour.
Tik Konlak plants grown in small pots and under competition in borders did not do very well. Fewer and much smaller leaves, which, I can already say that, are at least not more aromatic than the large leaves from the "good bed".


So I wonder if soil and environmental conditions do not matter more than intentional spacing, or, in case one can not provide the ideal conditions of a stony mountain field in Turkey or Greece, there´s a local optimum in the balance of yield and quality, which can not be manipulated further.
 

Planter

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#23
Bursa fits in Black Sea category (as planting density) but everybody knows that it fits in Marmara (as growing region).

You're right Jitterbugdude, even if Bursa planted same as Maden (actually yes, they're planted same) its leaves will be bigger. Here's the comparison of Bursa (a) and Maden (b) (both cured leaves);

View attachment 9413

Actually these are actual sizes of the 3. Ana (approx. 16th-17th-18th) leaves but I guess this "actual" size may change according to your screen.
Istanbulin, if a Turkish tobacco farmer dramatically increased spacing, would the plants grow MUCH bigger (all other things being equal)?
 

istanbulin

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#24
Plant will grow bigger up to a certain point. Industrially, if leaves get bigger they're generally considered as "low" quality. For example the limit for Oriental type (there're some exceptions) leaves is approx. 20 cm, bigger than 20 cm leaves are classified as "lowest" quality. They may still smoke good but rules in Oriental market is strict. It's better to know how professionals doing this work (densities, curing etc.) but I think homegrowers should find their own way to grow them and set up their own specific rules.
 
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