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 Post subject: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 6:16 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:31 pm
Posts: 57
Location: Anniston, Alabama
I've only been in growing for one season so everything I'm doing is probably wrong but I'm trying to correct that by research and asking questions. Today my questions are: What type of tobacco makes the best wrapper leaf? Is there a special way I need to grow the plants to get leaf that are paper thin with small viens? The reason i ask that question is because i keep readind about "Shade Leaf". And finally what is the best part of the plant to get the leaf from, if any?
When I dried my leaf this year I didn't separate the bottom, middle and top leaves. (I know not smart, but rookie mistake). This year I wanna start fresh and most important do it right. Any help you would be willing to share would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you.
D


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 6:57 pm 
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Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:51 pm
Posts: 1130
Location: near Blacksburg, VA
Shade-grown wrapper produces larger, thinner leaves than the same variety sun-grown, but construction and maintenance of a shade structure can be a significant issue.

Florida Sumatra produces a lovely sun-grown wrapper, and I would recommend it.

Leaf from all positions on the stalk can make good wrappers. The lower leaves tend to be larger, lighter in color and milder. As you progress up the stalk, the leaves decrease in size, increase in strength, and kiln to a darker color.

Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Sun Feb 10, 2013 8:29 pm 
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:31 pm
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Location: Anniston, Alabama
Is there someplace I can find a more info on growing in shade or how to make shade structures?


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:03 am 
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Joined: Wed Feb 02, 2011 9:51 pm
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Location: near Blacksburg, VA
I don't know of a good discussion of constructing a shade structure. In general, the structure itself is made from metal conduit. It ideally is a minimum of 8' high, though for CT Shade, the structures are routinely 12' high. It is covered with 40% shade cloth on the top and all sides.

One source of shade cloth.

The cloth is laced onto the structure, and side panels are laced together at their junctions. Because CT Shade tobacco grows so tall and floppy, a thin, vertical wire reaches from the frame structure above each plant position, and is staked to the ground. As each plant grows taller, the wire is incrementally wrapped around the stalk for support.

Shade structures have to be large enough for you to work inside them, and sturdy enough to withstand wind gusts.

All this having been said, some members have successfully grown "shade" tobacco using the shade of trees. This approach works best if the planting soil is well beyond the limit of the tree canopy, in order to avoid the stunting effect of tree roots beneath the tobacco. Ideally, a row of tall trees in the distance shades the growing area for about half of each summer day. (The percent shade per day changes with the angle of the sun as the seasons change.)

Perhaps those with experience growing in shade could add comments and corrections.

Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:28 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:31 pm
Posts: 57
Location: Anniston, Alabama
Thanks Bob. I think what I may do to avoid the starvation effect from tree roots is plant 20 or so plants in 5 Gallon buckets. That way they will be relatively portable. That was like you said as the season moves on so can my plants. :-)
I have a stand of pines that I think will fit the bill perfectly. Just so I'll know I'm getting a good wrapper can you tell me roughly what the leaf will look like. I'm thinking they will be a little smaller, a little thinner and the veins will not be quite as prominent. Is that pretty accurate?
Thanks again Bob!!


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:26 pm 
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Location: near Blacksburg, VA
Shade-grown wrapper grows taller, with longer, wider, thinner leaves than the same variety when sun-grown. If you restrict shade-grown plants to pots, then all bets are off. In my limited experience with growing tobacco in pots, the leaf size is significantly smaller, and the resulting leaf is of a lower quality.

I grew 1 Shirazi (an Oriental that grows to ~5' in the ground) in an 18" wide, 15" deep pot. This was kept in full sun. The leaf length and width were about 2/3 that of the earth-grown, sun-grown Shirazi, as was the stalk height. Its growth was generally slower, finally reaching maturity after growing for nearly 1 month longer. In terms of leaf quantity, 2/3 the length and width comes to a decrease of about 1/2 the leaf surface area. The potted Shirazi was less flavorful, and seemed to have a lower nicotine level.

Bob


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Tue Feb 12, 2013 6:35 am 
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Joined: Fri Sep 07, 2012 9:31 pm
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Location: Anniston, Alabama
Wow!! I expected some differences but I would never have thought that there would be that much of a difference between the two. Especially the flavor. One would think that smaller plants would have more flavor but that just reenforces how sensitive tobacco plants can be in some areas while also being extreamly hardy in others at the same time. This has been what I've noticed in my limited growing anyhow. I guess with the info you just provided I'm gonna start looking for a naturally shady area that is as far away from roots as possible. Thank Bob!
Don


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Fri Oct 31, 2014 9:21 pm 
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Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:13 pm
Posts: 117
My $.02 ...

You don't need to bother with structures, cloth, and the fuss associated with shade grown tobacco just to get pretty cigars. Plenty of normal sun grown leaf will make very pretty cigars. I prefer sun grown wrappers anyway because all things considered they're tougher than super thin delicate shade grown leaf.


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 Post subject: Re: Wrapper leaf
PostPosted: Wed Nov 05, 2014 2:46 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 29, 2014 10:00 am
Posts: 556
Location: Richmond VA
I know this is way late but for the sake of the info...

I was able to grow some decent sized leaves about 15-20 feet from the treeline in my yard. The plants received about 4-6 hours of direct sun a day and the rest of the time were shaded pretty well from the house, trees and shed around the plants. No structures needed. It did however, take a long time for the plants to put on size. They stayed small for a few months then took off later in the season.


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