The seeds of success - Fourth Quarter 2009
Tobacco varieties to consider for 2010
TFQ Editorial Staff
It’s hard to believe that the huge, lush tobacco plants that get harvested to produce your livelihood start as the tiniest little seeds that weigh a fraction of an ounce. All the DNA needed for it to grow and flourish is contained in that minuscule package, though, and seed companies have devoted countless hours of research and invested millions of dollars to predispose each one to grow and behave in a predictable way so you can pick the variety that is perfect for you.
Thanks to generations of research in the labs and in the fields, today’s growers know exactly what to expect in terms of size, yield, grade, maturity time, curability and resistance to numerous types of disease and bacteria. It’s just a matter of understanding your land through experience and soil samples and getting it matched up to the seed that best suits your needs.
Each year several new varieties of seeds are offered on the market. Tobacco Farm Quarterly asked several of the industry’s largest tobacco seed dealers what new varieties they were bringing to the market and which seeds were still proving the most popular.
“We were working on improving the mosaic resistance of CC 67, and we produced a [flue-cured] variety that is also resistant to both black shank races and still produces a good yield. We kind of caught lightning in a bottle.”—Sam Baker, vice president, Cross Creek Seed
“For burley, KT 209 and KT 210 are both being released by the University of Kentucky/University of Tennessee by Dr. [Robert] Miller. I would say, though, that the most popular varieties for burley will continue to be KT 204 and KT 206.”—Richard Price, manager, Workman Tobacco Seed
“For the 2010 season, GoldLeaf Seed will be marketing a new flue-cured hybrid: PVH 1452. Farmers who grew PVH 1452 in test plantings across the flue-cured tobacco belt last season were extremely well pleased with its yield, quality and disease package. Data from its 2008 official variety tests [OVT] show it produced between 2,922 and 3,606 pounds per acre, and topped out at more than $5,600 an acre.”—Marion Hawkins Jr., president, GoldLeaf Seed Co.
“KT 209LC is a new burley hybrid release from the joint tobacco breeding program at the universities of Tennessee and Kentucky. It is a high-yielding, late-maturing variety with superior black shank resistance; it rates a 10 to race 0 and an eight to race 1. It also has resistance to black root rot, wildfire, tobacco mosaic virus, tobacco vein mottling virus and tobacco etch virus.”—Todd Taylor, general manager, Rickard Seeds
“NC 7LC has grown to be one of our better selling [burley] varieties the last two years. It produces that nice red color everybody is looking for. It’s a high producer with a very competitive yield and has been tremendous for its users.”—Richard Price, manager, Workman Tobacco Seed
“The CC 27 is still our most widely planted flue-cured variety. It’s one of the top yielding varieties and it has that bright cure that everybody wants.”—Sam Baker, vice president of Cross Creek Seed
“PD7305LC is a new dark-fired variety that we’ll be releasing for 2010. It is an early maturing variety with a very prostrate growth habit. It has excellent yield and good quality. It also has high resistance to black shank race 0 and moderate resistance to race 1 and is resistant to tobacco mosaic virus and black root rot.”—Todd Taylor, general manager, Rickard Seeds
For more information about any of these or other existing varieties, please contact your preferred dealer.