Its very hard to space out updates about tobacco correctly: Long spells of nothing happening and then a sudden flash and you are in a jungle. But I think long enough time has passed and its time to update whats going on in the garden!
In the crossover between February/March there where a bit over 300 seedlings of tobacco plants and that stock have shrunk down to 120 due to general Alex-stupidity, experimentation, gifting and natural “disasters” (they call it weather here).
“My personal grow rule: Grow as much as you can to give more room for error. Too many seedlings isn’t really a problem, worst case its compost, best case you can make new friends.”Tweet
Tallest plant is about 40 cm (15 inches) so just about halfway to where its supposed to be. I’m expecting this to go very fast from here on out, especially after I used today to fertilize the guys with yummy worm casting and watered it in. Its a bit snug in the 9 grow beds (and pots) spread over the deck.
Its hard to know if the marigolds I grew as guards for the tobacco have done their job properly, but I know that I haven’t seen a single leaf being snacked on and that’s good enough for me. I quite like the sparking yellow flowers too, it brightens up the garden quite a bit.
A simple upgrade for next year is going to be to grow more support plants like the marigolds (and more different varieties, I have my eyes on the Court Jester version which looks magical) but have them in separate containers so the tobacco gets more elbow room and don’t have to compete for nutrients. And I need to get better at cutting them as they grow to get more of them.
Speaking of flowers, I’m allowing some of the Nicotiana Rusticas to finally bloom (after snipping their tops off a couple of times) to practice seed catching, which will come in handy later when I’m saving seeds from the strongest plants for next growing season.
When I sent a couple of pictures from the process to one of my friends he suggested I’d take the opportunity with all these interesting mixes of things growing to capture some wild yeast and make beer out of it. Not a bad idea actually. A creative way to get another use out of the garden that I hadn’t thought about. A truly unique yeast. I’ll let you know how that goes, but Tobacco Field Flavored Yest has a nice ring to it.