The Tobacco Fields
FROM THE GROUND UP.
Prior to each growing season, before our precious new plants take root, the soil is tested for five key elements. Sufficient levels of Boron, Magnesium, Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphate are measured and mixed into the soil. The trademark of such highly nutritious soil is a beautifully dark, almost black color. Once the field is properly assessed, each tobacco plant is transplanted individually to ensure maximum quality.
PARTS OF A CIGAR
WRAPPER, BINDER, & FILLER
Tobacco plants are grown to provide the building blocks of every cigar. Once harvested, each leaf will be classified as a wrapper, binder or filler. These classifications pertain to the different layers that create a cigar. Filler tobacco is located in the center of the cigar and is responsible for the cigar’s taste. Binder tobacco wraps around the filler tobacco, holding the cigar together. A wrapper leaf is the outermost layer of a cigar, giving the cigar its color and feel.
SUN GROWN VS SHADE GROWN
Tobacco plants can be either Sun Grown or Shade Grown. Sun grown tobacco will only reach 5 ½ feet in height and its leaves will be used for the wrapper, binder, and filler.
Shade-grown tobacco will be grown under cheesecloth, blocking out up to 65% of the sun’s UV rays. These plants will grow up to 9 feet, and unlike Sun Grown, Shade Grown leaves will generally be used only for the wrapper.
REAPING THE BENEFITS
After 100 days, the plants are harvested from bottom to top in sections. These sections are classified as Seco the bottom of the plant, Viso the middle, and Ligero the top of the plant. These three sections are further subdivided by layer into smaller groups called primings. Each leaf of the plant can supply a slightly different flavor. By dividing the plant further into primings, Rocky Patel has greater control in pinpointing the exact flavor he wants from each of his plants.
Q. How tall can Shade Grown Tobacco grow to?