Murray State University

Poster Title

STUDY 3: Dark Tobacco Cured Leaf Response to Foliar Calcium Supplements

Institution

Murray State University

Abstract

In collaboration with the University of Kentucky, Murray State University set 12 plots of dark tobacco in an attempt to determine if the leaf quality for cigar wrapper tobacco could be enhanced with the use of foliar calcium. Cigar wrapper leaves serve as a niche market for dark tobacco. Currently, the dark fire tobacco grown in Tennessee and Kentucky provide a secondary vein that is quite large, leading to an unappealing yellowish stripe in the leaf wrapper when the cured leaf is used. Calcium is known to interact with cell wall structure, and is believed to impact color and size of the secondary vein upon curing. Calcium chelate, a dry form calcium supplement, and Helena, a liquid form calcium supplement, were used throughout the treatments. The Narrowleaf Hybrid Madole variety was set on June 10, with 4,900 plants per acre. Spacing consisted of 40 inch rows and 32 inch plant spacing. There were three total treatments used for the experiment. Treatment 1 was an untreated control. Treatment 2 used calcium chelate at a rate of 1 lb/acre, with four different applications throughout the growing process. Treatment 3 used Helena calcium supplement at a rate of 1 quart/acre with the same four applications as treatment 3. A four nozzle boom with 15 gal/acre capacity was used for the applications. Once the tobacco has been cured, the results will demonstrate whether applying either one or both of these calcium sources is beneficial to producers in terms of enhancing uniformity in leaf appearance.

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STUDY 3: Dark Tobacco Cured Leaf Response to Foliar Calcium Supplements

In collaboration with the University of Kentucky, Murray State University set 12 plots of dark tobacco in an attempt to determine if the leaf quality for cigar wrapper tobacco could be enhanced with the use of foliar calcium. Cigar wrapper leaves serve as a niche market for dark tobacco. Currently, the dark fire tobacco grown in Tennessee and Kentucky provide a secondary vein that is quite large, leading to an unappealing yellowish stripe in the leaf wrapper when the cured leaf is used. Calcium is known to interact with cell wall structure, and is believed to impact color and size of the secondary vein upon curing. Calcium chelate, a dry form calcium supplement, and Helena, a liquid form calcium supplement, were used throughout the treatments. The Narrowleaf Hybrid Madole variety was set on June 10, with 4,900 plants per acre. Spacing consisted of 40 inch rows and 32 inch plant spacing. There were three total treatments used for the experiment. Treatment 1 was an untreated control. Treatment 2 used calcium chelate at a rate of 1 lb/acre, with four different applications throughout the growing process. Treatment 3 used Helena calcium supplement at a rate of 1 quart/acre with the same four applications as treatment 3. A four nozzle boom with 15 gal/acre capacity was used for the applications. Once the tobacco has been cured, the results will demonstrate whether applying either one or both of these calcium sources is beneficial to producers in terms of enhancing uniformity in leaf appearance.