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how many bagged plants to be useful

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chris m

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Hello when I plant outside . I will behind everyone got late start . So how many bagged plants to be useful for saving seed for next year and two to share with who will need them . Thinking five of each and bag two of them for seed and leaf for me. Wanted to find out so I will know will up it next year maybe ten of each .
 

DGBAMA

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One is more t than enough seed. But in case of bugs getting into a bag and ruining the seed, I always bag two plants.
 

Jitterbugdude

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One is definitely enough. When attaching your bag spray a little BT or Spinosad onto the buds. This will elimintae or greatly reduce the bud worms that would destroy your seed crop.
 

Knucklehead

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From the FAQ's: http://fairtradetobacco.com/links.php?ab_s=1

"29.How can I save my tobacco seed?
If more than one variety of tobacco is grown within a range of 1/2 mile, the varieties may cross-pollinate. This usually occurs from insect borne pollen. Wind pollination seems to be minimal. Happily, tobacco is self-fertile. In order to save seed of a pure strain, for yourself or for sharing with others, you should bag the bud head before the first blossom opens. An ideal fabric for a bag is a thin, spun fabric, such as Agribon-AG15. Some use organza or "wedding veil." You can sew your own bags, or purchase them from members who offer them. Some varieties of tobacco will produce a bud head that more than fills and stretches a 24"w x 30"h bag, though some bud heads are much smaller. Ideally the bud head is left on the plant until most or all of the 1/2" to 1" seed pods (there may be over 100 on a single plant) have yellowed or browned. This may require 4 or more weeks beyond harvest time. The bagged head can then be hung inverted to dry completely. It requires ~1 sq. ft to hang 1 full seed head. A single pod may contain no seeds, or up to 10,000 seeds. (Very few of the 1/4 million seeds will fall out on their own.) Once dried, the seed pods are crushed to release the tiny seeds. Dry, clean seed, in a tight container kept in a cool, dark place, will remain viable for 5 to 10 or more years."

One plant will produce plenty of seed for you to keep, trade, store for the future, etc. For safety's sake, I bag two. It's disheartening to lose the only bagged plant you have of a hard to find variety to high winds or bud worms. The most important part of selecting which plant to bag is that the plant hold "true to form" for that variety. The more plants you have of a variety, the easier it is to tell what that variety should look like. Once you know which plants hold true to form, you can then select based on other criteria such as shorter cycle, first to flower, one plant didn't seem to have as many bugs as another, etc. Selection over a period of time (several years) can influence future generations.
 

Knucklehead

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For cleaning your seed, these strainers from USPlastics work great. You will need the 400 and 600 micron screens for a 5 gal. bucket. http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/it...sionGUID=b5a26595-c464-da86-2468-ae12832d4027 A mature N. Tabacum seed is about 500 microns which will pass through the 600 micron screen but be caught by the 400 micron screen. Most of the chaff and pod remains will be trapped by the 600 micron screen. The seed trapped by the 400 micron screen will be fairly clean, but I still blow the rest of the chaff out with a hand blower (rubber squeeze bulb), swirling the seed around in the screen like a gold pan will cause the lighter chaff to rise to the surface.

To use them, set the 400 micron screen into the top of the bucket, then nestle the 600 micron screen into the 400 micron screen. Anything passing through both screens will be caught by the bucket. Aphid pieces, immature seed, small pieces of chaff, etc. The 600 micron screen will catch most of your seed pod pieces, while the mature seed will be caught by the 400 micron screen.
 
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