Whole Leaf Tobacco

Traveling Piper Grow Log 2019

Traveling Piper

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#1
Well, here we go.
Hopefully this will go well. I know there's bound to be slips, trips and mishaps along the way. I will make mistakes--this is my first time growing tobacco.

There are 8 varieties on this summer's roster:
Yellow Twist Bud Tobacco - Burley Type
Del Gold - Flue Cure Type
Cherry Red 401 - Flue Cure Type
Herzegovina Flor - Oriental
Prilep P66-9/7 - Oriental
Duzce - Oriental
Havana 608 - Cigar Type
Little Dutch - Cigar Type



I'm germinating in small Rubbermaid containers with a thin layer of fine moist vermiculite. I feel like my process is explained through the pictures.

IMG_0496.jpg
IMG_0499.jpg IMG_0502.jpg IMG_0504.jpg IMG_0505.jpg

NOTE: I was especially careful to clean and sterilize the counter between seed applications so as to not cross contaminate pathogens or seeds. Rest assured that all varieties were marked accordingly once sown.
The containers are sitting in the kitchen windowsill. It is south facing and predominantly shaded with the exception of some intermittent light throughout the day. I will keep a check on them to be sure they don't get too hot--I don't think they will.
I merely want to sprout them for transfer to seedling trays.
That's about all I've got for now.
I will try to get some pictures of my planting area posted soon.
 

Traveling Piper

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#3
Nice start. You may wish to also add an identifying label to the seed containers, in addition to the labels on their lids.

Bob
Good thought there, Bob. I'll do that.
As for the pictures--I'll post them as thumbnails henceforth. The full size inserted pictures are slightly obnoxious.
 
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#5
Well, here we go.
Hopefully this will go well. I know there's bound to be slips, trips and mishaps along the way. I will make mistakes--this is my first time growing tobacco.

There are 8 varieties on this summer's roster:
Yellow Twist Bud Tobacco - Burley Type
Del Gold - Flue Cure Type
Cherry Red 401 - Flue Cure Type
Herzegovina Flor - Oriental
Prilep P66-9/7 - Oriental
Duzce - Oriental
Havana 608 - Cigar Type
Little Dutch - Cigar Type



I'm germinating in small Rubbermaid containers with a thin layer of fine moist vermiculite. I feel like my process is explained through the pictures.

View attachment 26903
View attachment 26904 View attachment 26905 View attachment 26906 View attachment 26907

NOTE: I was especially careful to clean and sterilize the counter between seed applications so as to not cross contaminate pathogens or seeds. Rest assured that all varieties were marked accordingly once sown.
The containers are sitting in the kitchen windowsill. It is south facing and predominantly shaded with the exception of some intermittent light throughout the day. I will keep a check on them to be sure they don't get too hot--I don't think they will.
I merely want to sprout them for transfer to seedling trays.
That's about all I've got for now.
I will try to get some pictures of my planting area posted soon.
Dang it!! I wish I would have seen this several days ago. I didn't use a sterilization protocol during to move to the countertop grow dome I'm using. I have found mold starting to grow around some of the sprouts. :(
 

Traveling Piper

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#6
I have (already) been met with aggravation.
Upon opening one of the containers this afternoon, I detected a vile odor. On checking the other containers, they smelled the same way. When investigated further, I found the bucket of vermiculite (that’s open) had been being used as a litter box by the stray neighborhood felines.. Apparently the cold and open air last night allowed the odor to slip under my radar. So, I took all the lids off and saturated the media with hydrogen peroxide. This seemingly killed all the aroma for now, but I know many nasties will be left behind. I will allow them to stay open to evaporate much of the water then cap them off to face their destinies. These seedlings will likely die quickly after emerging if they arent promptly removed due to the uric acid and whatever else comes with cat piss. I left behind about 1/3 of all my seed packets, so they will get the ziplock and paper towel tek tonight—hopefully I can get a fair amount of plants from those. Will be interesting to see how much of the cat piss baccy I can salvage.
 

Traveling Piper

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#7
Dang it!! I wish I would have seen this several days ago. I didn't use a sterilization protocol during to move to the countertop grow dome I'm using. I have found mold starting to grow around some of the sprouts. :(

Spray them with a diluted hydrogen peroxide solution. It will not kill them if they are anythingnlike other garden plants.
 

Traveling Piper

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#8
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#9
I know it's common, but I don't recommend lids, specifically in regards to increased mold risk.
I'm sure there are studies about it, but my experience is that seeds should be grown in an environment with some air exchange, at around 70% max relative humidity. Sterilization certainly does increase the amount of moisture you can safely add.

We have a valid fear of these little seeds drying out, resulting in over watering, so we walk the tightrope until they sprout. Remember, because seeds have plant cells, they are particularly good at holding the water they have absorbed. They do not dry out as quickly as the surface of the soil. And, once they have a couple leaves, you can be assured that the roots go significantly further down than the plant height, and can withstand the soil not being as wet as before.
 

Traveling Piper

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#10
I know it's common, but I don't recommend lids, specifically in regards to increased mold risk.
I'm sure there are studies about it, but my experience is that seeds should be grown in an environment with some air exchange, at around 70% max relative humidity. Sterilization certainly does increase the amount of moisture you can safely add.

We have a valid fear of these little seeds drying out, resulting in over watering, so we walk the tightrope until they sprout. Remember, because seeds have plant cells, they are particularly good at holding the water they have absorbed. They do not dry out as quickly as the surface of the soil. And, once they have a couple leaves, you can be assured that the roots go significantly further down than the plant height, and can withstand the soil not being as wet as before.
I can certainly sympathize with this. With my previous germination methods i have always used peroxide and sterilization as a buffer to the stagnant environment that tends to promote mold. But I definitely agree that free air exchange is the best preventive measure. Emulating Nature does often proves the most effective. In this case—I will give them free air and make sure they have some moisture.
Thanks man
 

GreenDragon

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#11
How many plants / how large a plot are you planning for this year? That's a whole lot of baby 'baccies you have there!

I never sterilize or use H2O2 on my seedlings. The garden is not sterile, so I want to Darwin out any weaklings right from the start. As long as you have good light, air movement, and keep the soil damp - not soggy, you shouldn't have mold issues. Also, many people mistake the very fine root hairs on a seedling's hypocotyl for mold. As long as the plant does not look stress, it's probably not mold. As for the cat pee, same thing happened to me last year! Except it was my large bag of potting soil. Used it anyway - no problems.

Good Luck!
 

Traveling Piper

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#12
How many plants / how large a plot are you planning for this year? That's a whole lot of baby 'baccies you have there!

I never sterilize or use H2O2 on my seedlings. The garden is not sterile, so I want to Darwin out any weaklings right from the start. As long as you have good light, air movement, and keep the soil damp - not soggy, you shouldn't have mold issues. Also, many people mistake the very fine root hairs on a seedling's hypocotyl for mold. As long as the plant does not look stress, it's probably not mold. As for the cat pee, same thing happened to me last year! Except it was my large bag of potting soil. Used it anyway - no problems.

Good Luck!
I plan to do 8 beds that will be sized/planted according to the patches I've seen on here (5' x 12' or so). I also plan to give some plants to my dad.

I, too, have mistaken those fine root hairs for mold in the past.
I do know there are many beneficial microorganisms and fungi that are huge for plant health. I'm just really skittish due to being burned several times by damping off. My preventive measure has since been to mist them routinely with peroxide solution. Seedlings seem to like it.
That said, I think I'll go with the counsel of my peers and let them breathe.
 

Traveling Piper

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#13
Here's The latest. I have several Longleaf pines in the yard that dropped hundreds of large pine cones and straw. I also had several dead and dying trees in the yard--all of which I cut down. The pictures don't show all the brush I have cut up. There's still probably about the same amount (unpictured) to be dragged, piled and burned. As you can see, the brush, cones and straw is being evenly divided into 6 piles to be burned.
[I'm sure the neighbors are wondering what the hell I'm up to--being I have six peculiar piles to burn.. and the City will haul the debris off for the small fee of taxes.] *I refuse to send such a rich source of Potassium to the landfill.
These will be my baccy patches. They were stepped off as approximately 10' x 5' beds with 6' gaps between them. I will add some compost (hopefully soon) and rototill that into the soil.
That's about it for now. I hope everyone has a good weekend!
IMG_0521.jpg
IMG_0539.jpg
 

GreenDragon

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#14
Sigh, I do miss pine trees. I always used the needles for mulching my flower and vegetable beds. Do I spy a beautiful pink Camelia tree in the background?
 

Traveling Piper

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#15
Sigh, I do miss pine trees. I always used the needles for mulching my flower and vegetable beds. Do I spy a beautiful pink Camelia tree in the background?
Indeed. We have a plethora of old southern goodies strewed about the grounds. Fortunately for me the previous owner was big in the local garden society!
 

Traveling Piper

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#16
The vermiculite seed sowing was a bust. I don't know if it was the cat urine or the h2o2 concentration (to kill the cat urine bacteria) that did it, but not a single seed showed any signs of germination.
Additionally, I have but a few sprouts from the ziplock method and nothing else, thus far. Perhaps the moisture was too high in the bags, but it doesn't seem to be. At any rate, I won't repeat the ziplock method for tobacco. The seeds are FAR too miniscule in this application (for my liking).
There's a lot going on at the house between remodeling the nursery (baby due first of April) and helping keep up with our other (very spirited) little fella'. I also have a couple hundred cacti seedlings (sacred trichocereus) that MUST be repotted before it gets warm--I've been working on this intermittently.
Therefore, I've been less proactive than I should in the baccy' dept. Bear with me--I promise I'll grow some leaf (at some point).
I have some more seeds coming (yes, I shot my wad and seemingly squandered the majority of the initial seeds) and will sow them directly onto the soil and keep them (lightly) misted until germination. I'm not too concerned with the eternally late start, as I know my plants will have plenty of time. I don't know about the soil temp. for tobacco, but my experience with tomatoes, peppers etc. in the past is that the soil being warmer tends to give later transplants a vigour and robustness that will, for all practical purposes, cause them to parallel the ones I'd set out early. I'm practicing under the same hope and assumption that tobacco is the same way.
Hopefully I've gotten some of my frustrations out of the way with these misfortunes. I don't dwell too long in my failures---there's no need to discourage myself. Rather, I'll chalk it up to a learning experience.
It is all due to the moon being full during sowing, that's my story and I'm sticking to it ;)

Bob had said something to the effect of; the first year (growing and curing tobacco) tends to be fraught with aggravations and the ensuing years feel routine. Therefore, I will not tarry too long in any BS that comes out of this season.
Hope everyone's week is good!
 

GreenDragon

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#17
I'm shocked at your low germination rate. What is the temperature of the room in which you have your seeds? I believe they need a minimum temperature of 75F to germinate. If it's too cold you may want to use a mat heater for seed trays.
 

Traveling Piper

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#18
It's typically 70ish at night. They're in the kitchen windowsill. During the day they get some good sunlight and the temp is typically 80-85 range.
I do have a couple of heating mats or order so I can germinate out in my shop.
 

Charly

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#20
I am sure your second germination trial will be successful ;)
As you said : you have still a lot of time (I will start my seeds in about one to two weeks)
 
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