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Charly's journey - 2017

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Charly

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Thank you guys for the kind words ;)

Even if many plants are infected, I know I will still have some good leaves to discover and enjoy !
And with all the strains I tried this year, I found some that seems to be more resistant to these diseases, that's a good thing (I will wait for the end of the season to see which strains are really resistant !)

The main thing that make me sad is that nearly all the cigar varieties I tried seem to have real troubles with PVY :( (only Nostrano del Brenta and Bahia seem to have little to no problems).
I will have to find some good solutions for next year, and I will try many other strains, in order to find the strains that works the best in my place.

Yes, even imidacloprid would not be enough... the only solution I can see for the PVY is to have a good repellent (I hope neetle manure will work... but I won't know before next year).
 

Tutu

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Your Amersfoort seems to be healthy. In the early days these leafs were dark air cured and used for cigar leafs in the Netherlands. Maybe not such a bad idea with many of your cigar varieties not making it to more healthier days...
 

Charly

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Thanks.
Yes, this year gave me some challenges ! :D

I know I will still have some good leaves, but curing is not easy this year either... I have some strains that doesn't want to color cure correctly (Jalapa for example, which is drying green...) and some others who have already some mold on it...
I am discovering that the right conditions for some are not good for some others... well, I am learning :)

The Amersfoort are doing pretty well (compared to other cigar varieties), I hope they will cure correctly (I will air cure them).

I will have fun mixing varieties to try to make some good smoke ! :)
 

Youn

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Hello Charles!
I hope that the weather has improved in your region.
I searched the forum for a picture of leaf with starting mold (mold that come early during color curing) but didn't find it. Could you upload one, if you have the time and if you can make a picture representative of what you are used to observe?
I have a piece of leaf that has become dark before turning yellow and that seems suspicious.
Of course, I do not wish you to have any new examples but… !!
 

Charly

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Thank you for your messages.
I am sorry, I did not publish a lot these last weeks, it s just because I have been really very busy... so my tobacco was on its own... I have some mold issues because of high humidity and no time to deal with it, but I will have a little bit more time next week, so I will try to take better care of my crop, and I will post some news ... I promise ! :)
 

Charly

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Are you ready for some horror pictures ?
If no, please skip my message !

The last weeks have been very busy for me, and I did not find enough time to take care of my curing tobacco... with so much humidity, I got a lot of mold... and I loose many leaves.
For those of you who are not scared yet, let's see some picture of mold :

ccrop1.jpg crop2.jpg crop3.jpg crop4.jpg crop5.jpg crop7.jpg crop11.jpg

I hope these picture will help people to identify mold ;)

I managed to save the less moldy leaves, by removing the bad parts and by exposing my leaves to sun and wind (yes we had a little bit of sun some days this week... not enough but more than nothing.

A few weeks ago, a lot of leaves were really very (too much) mature, I did harvest them and put them in piles, but again : no time to take care of them = trash (not all hopefully !)
Take a look at what you get when you let your tobacco in piles for too long :

crop9.jpg crop10.jpg crop8.jpg

...
 

Leftynick

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Sorry to hear that Charly. Hopefully you have something left. Look like it been a tough year for you. I have my own problem also this year so I feel you my man.
 

Gavroche

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Charly, aired the leaves of the last photos you will be surprised with the taste!



Charly, faites sécher les feuilles des dernières photos... vous serez surpris du gout !
 

deluxestogie

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Mold that is limited to the central stem can just be wiped off, then the leaves must be fully dried (enough to make the stems crispy dry). If you have a seedling heat mat, it will do a good job of drying the stems. Afterwards, just add enough moisture to prevent the leaves from crumbling when handled, then store them.

Many times, I've used a scissor to cut off moldy parts of lamina, then saved the rest of the leaf.

Bob
 

ChinaVoodoo

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Charly, I wouldn't worry about stem mold. That tobacco looks fine to me. Just be sure to follow Bob's advice and cut off anything that is colonized.
 

Tutu

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And if stem mold is a big issue, just frogstrip your leafs. That will probably prevent the problem coming back at you later on.
 

Charly

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Thank you all for your kind words ;)

Don't worry, as I already said, I had some troubles this year, but I think I have enough leaves to play with and the good news is that next year will certainly be better :D (well... I hope ;) )

I learned a lot of things this year, I feel like I understand better how to grow and cure tobacco, I found some things that works and some that don't.
All I need is to make things right next time ! And I will.
One important thing is to have enough time to take care correctly of all the plants/leaves.

It seems that I have two main diseases in my place : PVY (potatoe virus Y) and blue mold.
I tried a lot of strains to see if I can find some "resistant" varieties and it was not useless : I found a few strains that seem to be somewhat resistant to PVY : Bolivian Criollo Black, Adonis, Xanthy, Nostrano del Brenta, Bahia, Symbol 4.
Blue mold is still a problem, but not on all varieties (it seems to attack bright leaves plants more than cigar varieties)... we'll see what we get next year.

@ Gavroche :
I already kept the leaves that were in good condition in the piles (that is : when the lamina is not falling apart when you touch them) they are drying, some are smelling very good :)
Jalapa is a strains that seem to really enjoy pile curing : the leaves have already a "cigarish" smell (that's the first time that I have my own leaves that smells really like commercial cigar leaves :) )
I did put jalapa in pile because I have real struggles color curing them... when I hang them as the others, they dry flash green.

@ Bob / ChinaVoodoo / Tutu :
I did not show the ugliest leaves ;) And of course, I did as you : I used scissors to remove the moldy parts on the less ugly leaves. But many leaves were so moldy that I discard them completly.

@ Tutu :
I remove systematically the main stem of ALL the leaves that I take in my house, that's a lot of work, but this way I don't have to worry too much about mold in my stock :) (this main stem takes too long to dry correctly without molding when I try to air cure my leaves)

@ GreenMonster / LeftyNick :
Don't worry I am not giving up :D
We had not a great year, but we will do better next time ! No doubt !
Good luck for your next crop too !
 

Youn

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Thanks for sharing that, it's useful.
What you have on pictures 4 and 7, small black spots, intrigues me, I have a little of that but I doubted it was mold because it does not evolve and look quite dry (unlike the white velvet looking mold).
I don't know if removing it or not…

Be brave to remove all the main stems! I'm currently busy with that too :)
 

Gavroche

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Charly, you can also dry on a thread or a cable in heap, it is what I'm doing ... I put all the sheets squeezed on the cable then as soon as the yellow arrives, I rule out them on the cable ... I find that colors are more uniform so.


Charly , vous pouvez aussi sécher sur un fil ou un câble en tas, c'est ce que je fais... je mets toutes les feuilles serrées sur le câble puis dès que le jaune arrive, je les écarte sur le câble... je trouve que les couleurs sont plus uniformes ainsi.
 

Charly

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@ Youn :
About the small black spots on the lamina, it's not always easy to identify, sometimes it seems that it's just some chlorophyll spots (if that's the case, you see the spot on both sides of the leaves), and sometimes it's some sort of mold (dark green or nearly black), often only visible on one side of the leaves.

@ Gavroche :
Last year I did this (drying the leaves on the wire, close together, separating them as soon as they yellow), it works well, but this year, I have some strains (jalapa for example) that dried green even when the leaves were close together...
I did pile curing to test and the failure came from my own fault : I did not check the piles often enough.

The pile curing method is really interesting and works quite well. I think next year I might do more pile curing, then, as soon as the leaves show enough yellow I'll put them on wire to dry.
This method helps harvesting leaves even if they are not mature enough.
With PVY, the leaves begin to dry and mold on the plant before they are mature. With pile curing, I will be able to harvest them before they are too uggly and let them mature in piles.
 

OldDinosaurWesH

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Such is the nature of farming. Fortunately there is always next year. Good luck and may your skies be clear and your weather warm.

Wes H.
 
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