Whole Leaf Tobacco

Arizona Latakia attempt

PressuredLeaf

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So, I’ve been following the various Latakia threads with interest, since Latakia blends are some of my favorite. After doing some research, I’ve found many of the woods and plant species reported in Latakia production are pretty common landscape plants here in the valley. For instance, Aleppo pine grows like a weed here. Additionally things like mastic and Myrtis communis are also very common. I went to the nursery today and grabbed a few myrtle plants, some are dwarf, and the others are more vigorous. I’m in the process of sourcing a holly oak and mastic tree, but my goal is to turn some of my up coming Prilep into “Arizona Latakia “15B3AD94-4ADA-486C-9006-92FC9A4FB4B9.jpeg18FF23DD-93B4-4876-ACC8-AB3E52EEEDB7.jpeg
 

PressuredLeaf

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My fire cured tobacco in the kiln smells almost exactly like Lapsang souchong. I cured it with a blend of white cedar from my property, and compressed pine pellets.
What’s lapsang souchong?
How long did you smoke it? I’m thinking of using mainly Aleppo pine, live oak, and small amounts of Mediterranean Cyprus, myrtle, mastic, and laurel as aromatics.
 

TigerTom

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One of my neighbors has a large Myrtle tree and it's throwing off seedlings like made. I suppose I'll have to transplant a few.

My other neighbor used to have a few pistachio trees, related to mastic, but they were removed because they never produced a crop in over 10 years of growing. Had I known they were going to be removed, I'd have asked for the wood.
 

deluxestogie

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Myrtus communis: true myrtle (biblical myrtle). Note the opposite leaves.


Lagerstroemia sp.: a genus of ~50 different species commonly called crepe myrtle in landscaping. Note the alternate leaves.

I would imagine that none of the many species of crepe myrtle are used to make Latakia in the eastern Mediterranean. Neither true myrtle nor crepe myrtle are toxic. I have no idea what you might expect from using crepe myrtle. Bay laurel is probably a closer species to true myrtle.

Bob
 

ChinaVoodoo

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I had several runs. The process was pretty experimental. One got too hot, one emulated flue curing temperatures, and two were in the 120° range. I wasn't just smoking it. I was working with uncured leaf.
 

TigerTom

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It’s a good point to clarify, even if no one directly mentioned crepe myrtle. I know I generated some confusion when asking nursery employees for “myrtle”.

I’m not sure how the smoke will translate, but the Myrtus communis plant smells very nice, a bit like eucalyptus.
Ya, you're right.

Myrtle and Eucalyptus are from the same plant family, as are Bottlebrush, so it makes sense they have similar aromas.
 
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