STEP BY STEP GUIDE TO CULTIVATING TOBACCO
You need to get seed to start your tobacco plantation. Seed can be purchased online.
The seed are very small and it is best if you propagate them in small shallow trays. Lay a thin bed of leaf mold compost and sprinkle the seed on top. Leaf mold compost is used to activate the seed it has plenty of phosphorous which a seed needs to come to life. Usually national parks and gardens collect there leaves and store them in a large pill allowing the leaf to break down so it can be used. If you can locate such a park with a leaf mold mound, happy days.. .. .
When your seeds start to sprout you'll need to transfer them into a separate growing pot. You will need to use compost from the garden or buy a bag from your local garden center. The hemp shop excellent organic potting compost. Don't panic tobacco plants are slow to establish themselves but once they have, watch 'em grow.If you have sufficient space with plenty of light, south facing, you should be fine establishing your plants indoors. If not you can build a cold frame of a south facing wall. This is a easy wooden construction using the wall as the main support for your structure. Clad the frame with plastic.
HARDENING OFF, a very important process used by gardening who start their seeds of in doors. The plant need to get used to the harshness of the Irish climate so everyday for a few days place your young tobacco plant outdoors. take inside during the evening. Then you can lant your pant outdoor after you have conditioned it.Tobacco plants are pest repellent so you could plant your plants near or next to your veggie patch. If you haven't got a lot of growing space or none at all, Guerrilla garden them. They grow quite tall too up too 6".
Cultivating, some growers cultivate tobacco during july and september. This way you get a lot more leaf. My advice is to experiment, I personally like to let the plant grow to its fullest and harvest the leaves in august. You can also cut the flower of the tops of the plant so it wont go to seed BUT make sure to let a couple of plants go to seed for next years crop and you can share the seed with your friends.
Once you harvested your leaf, you need to hang them in a airy room with two windows and pray for dry weather. You do not want your leaves to go brittle, your looking for a soft leather like feel to your leaves. this process might take a few weeks, weather pending.The curing process is easy enough all it takes is patience. You can role your tobacco into cigars and store them in a warm hot press. I stored last years crop in my mothers hot press. My house is quite cold and i didn't want to take any chances. I found the rolling process hard work, you can also compress your tobacco. Just lay out the leaves on top of each other and place them into wooden press then store in a hot press.
One little trick i picked up this year is that you can mix up a paste from whiskey and honey, you then brush each leaf before you role it or compress it. This process adds flavour to your tobacco.Then a year later if you can wait, role and smoke or stick it in a pipe.. happy days..
i hope this is of help, if you need other info please just ask.