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Dark Tobacco Update. 2008 TN Tobacco Agent Training, February 19, 2008 Andy Bailey Extension Tobacco Specialist Univ. of KY / Univ. of TN. Agent Training Topics Dark Tobacco. 2008 crop outlook for dark tobaccos Nitrogen fertilization Sucker control Production differences for dark tobacco

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Dark tobacco update

Dark Tobacco Update

2008 TN Tobacco Agent Training, February 19, 2008

Andy Bailey

Extension Tobacco Specialist

Univ. of KY / Univ. of TN


Agent training topics dark tobacco

Agent Training TopicsDark Tobacco

  • 2008 crop outlook for dark tobaccos

  • Nitrogen fertilization

  • Sucker control

  • Production differences for dark tobacco

    • Plant populations and topping

    • Harvesting / housing / curing

    • Double-crop curing


Dark tobacco in kentucky and tennessee

Dark Tobacco in Kentucky and Tennessee

  • Approx. 1,500 growers

  • $78 million in revenue for KY

  • $44 million in revenue for TN

  • Some production in

  • non-traditional areas in 2008.

  • 30 counties: 20 KY, 10 TN

  • Approx. 17,950 acres (up 12% from 2006)

  • 4 Types:

    • Type 22 Eastern Dark-Fired

    • Type 23 Western Dark-Fired

    • Type 35 One-sucker dark air-cured

    • Type 36 Green River dark air-cured

KY

T36

Princeton

T35

T23

T22

Murray

Springfield

TN


2007 dark tobacco production estimate

2007 Dark Tobacco Production Estimate

  • KY/TN Dark Fired:

    • 37.6 million lbs (down 5% from 2006)

    • 13,300 acres (up 12% from 2006)

    • 2826 lbs/A (down 15% from 2006)

  • KY/TN Dark Air-Cured:

    • 12.3 million lbs (down 7% from 2006)

    • 4,650 acres (up 8% from 2006)

    • 2644 lbs/A (down 14% from 2006)


2008 crop outlook

2008 Crop Outlook

  • Dark tobacco acreage increase at least another 12-15% in 2008.

    • Huge demand and marketing opportunities

    • 2008 production estimate:

      • 45 to 47 million pound dark fire-cured crop

      • 18 to 20 million pound dark air-cured crop

  • Burley tobacco acreage decrease

    • Major decrease in dark tobacco areas

    • Steady or slight decrease in other areas


Dark tobacco update

Nitrogen Rate Experiment

Christian Co. - Crofton, KY


Dark tobacco update

Dark Tobacco Nitrogen Rate Trials 10 trials over 4 locations and 4 yearsVarieties: NL Madole, DF 911, KY 171, KT D4LC

Total Yield (lbs/A)

Total N Rate (lbs N/A)


Possible effects of excessive nitrogen

Possible Effects of Excessive Nitrogen

  • Increased amounts of green tobacco following curing

    • Delayed maturity from excessive N in plant at season’s end

  • Swelled or “fat” stems

    • Nitrate loading of leaf midrib causing decreased moisture loss

  • Possible negative effects on cured leaf chemistry

150

300

500

1000


Effect of n rate on quality and revenue dark air cured ky 171 hres springfield tn 2003

Effect of N Rate on Quality and RevenueDark Air-Cured KY 171: HRES, Springfield, TN - 2003

*Revenue values based on federal support price of grades

  • Revenue reduced by 51% by using 1000 lbs N compared to 150 lbs N


Kt d4lc bruce cline farm christian co 2005

KT D4LCBruce Cline Farm – Christian Co. - 2005

  • Very upright growth habit

  • Very high yield potential (4200+ lbs/A)

  • Good black shank resistance, no black root rot res.

  • Plant regulation on sticks critical

  • Stick spacing in barn critical (at least 12”)

  • Rough leaf texture

    • Differences in coloring, ordering


Dark tobacco update

PD 7302LC

New hybrid for 2008 from Rickard Seed

Good race 0 black shank resistance, no race 1 resistance

Resistant to black root rot and TMV

Yield and quality somewhat similar to NL Madole

PD 7302LC


Dark tobacco update

PD 7309LC

New hybrid for 2008 from Rickard Seed

Good race 0 black shank resistance, no race 1 resistance

No other resistance

Yield and quality somewhat similar to NL Madole

PD 7309LC


Production differences for dark tobacco plant populations

Production Differences for Dark TobaccoPlant Populations

  • Plant population: around 5,000 plants/A (+/- 250)

    • 40” row spacing, 30” plant spacing

      • 5227 plants/A

    • More leaf body in lower stalk positions

      • Heavier and more solid lugs, better seconds

    • Fewer plants to cut, spike, pick up, house, take down, strip

    • Less barn space required

      • 871 sticks/A (6 plants/stick)

      • 1,045 sticks/A (5 plants/stick)


Dark tobacco planting dimensions

Madole

VA 359

Dark Tobacco Planting Dimensions

  • Most common: 38 to 42” row spacing, 30 to 32” plant spacing

  • More upright varieties may respond differently to plant spacing (VA 359, KT D4, KT D8)

  • i.e. ‘Narrowleaf Madole’ vs. ‘VA 359’

  • 39” row spacing; 24”, 28”, 32”, or 36” plant spacing.


Dark tobacco hill spacing study hopkins co norris slaton farm 2003

At higher plant populations, yield/A , yield/plant

Dark Tobacco Hill Spacing StudyHopkins Co. – Norris Slaton Farm - 2003

Effect of variety (averaged over plant spacings)

Effect of plant spacing (averaged over variety)

(0.61)

(0.64)

(0.71)

(0.73)

Yield (lbs)/Acre (lbs/plant)

3979

3575

3480

3189

3273

3839

Variety

Plant Spacing


Dark tobacco topping and sucker control

Topping:

Dark Tobacco:

Topping stage:

Bud stage to 50% bloom

Topping height:

At least 16 leaves

May be most efficient to make 2 toppings

Dark TobaccoTopping and Sucker Control


Dark tobacco update

Comparison of Bloom Stages and Topping Heights for Dark Tobacco2006 – Chris Rodgers Farm – Graves Co., KY

  • Variety: Narrowleaf Madole LC, set June 1

  • Fire-cured

  • Bloom Stage at topping comparisons:

    • Elongated bud

    • 50% Bloom

    • 100% Bloom

  • Topping Height comparisons:

    • 12 leaves

    • 16 leaves


Dark tobacco update

LSD0.05 = 142 156 270 320 418 (total)

Total Yield (lbs/A):

4023 4253 3818 4214 3732 4184

Yield (lbs/A)

Bloom Stage – Topping Height

NL Madole

Comparison of Bloom Stages and Topping Heights for Dark Tobacco2006 – Chris Rodgers Farm – Graves Co., KY


Main effect of bloom stage on yield 2006 chris rodgers farm graves co ky

Total Yield (lbs/A)

LSD0.05 = 296

*Data averaged over topping heights.

Main Effect of Bloom Stage on Yield2006 – Chris Rodgers Farm – Graves Co., KY


Main effect of topping height on yield 2006 chris rodgers farm graves co ky

Total Yield (lbs/A)

LSD0.05 = 242

*Data averaged over bloom stages.

Main Effect of Topping Height on Yield2006 – Chris Rodgers Farm – Graves Co., KY


Topping style comparisons

Kerry Wiggins Farm, Graves Co., 2004

Topping Style Comparisons

  • Eastern district topping style: early topping, 12-leaves

  • Western district topping style: later topping, 16-leaves


Dark tobacco update

Influence of Bloom Stage and Topping Height on Dark Tobacco YieldKerry Wiggins Farm – Sedalia, KY - 2004

100% Bloom, 12 leaves

100% Bloom, 16 leaves


Benefits to harvesting mature tobacco

Benefits to Harvesting Mature Tobacco


When to harvest dark tobacco

When To Harvest Dark Tobacco?

  • Does not show obvious signs of maturity

  • Maturity signs:

    • Leaves show a faint yellow cast

      • Faint yellow spots, then over entire leaf

    • Upper leaves thick/oily

    • Crack readily when folded

    • Minimum of 5 weeks after

      topping for most varieties


Immature

Immature


Overmature

Overmature


Early maturity and physiological leaf breakdown

Early Maturity and Physiological Leaf Breakdown

  • Plants appear to ripen/mature early

    • 2 to 3 weeks in some cases

  • Appears to be precipitated by:

    • Warmer than normal temperatures in August

    • Intense sunlight


Holdability and harvest timing of dark tobacco

7

4

5

6

8

9

Holdability and Harvest Timingof Dark Tobacco

Narrowleaf Madole

Little Crittenden

PD 7312LC

PD 7302LC

PD 7309LC

DT 538LC

TR Madole

KT D8LC

KT D4LC

KT D6LC

TN D950

Burley

KY 171

VA 309

VA 359

DF 911

Weeks After Topping


Harvest timing after topping narrowleaf madole dark air cured

Harvest Timing after ToppingNarrowleaf Madole, dark air-cured

*Average 2005 dark air-cured price of $2.15/lb.


Dark tobacco update

Total Yield (lbs/A):

3114 3060 3434 3509 3606

Total Yield (lbs/A)

Harvest Timing (Weeks After Topping)

Effect of Harvest Timing on Dark Tobacco2006 - HRREC, Springfield, TNNarrowleaf Madole LC, dark air-cured


Dark tobacco update

Fire Curing


Curing

Top vents

End doors

Dark

Air-Cured

Bottom vents

Burley

Curing

  • Sticks placed 9 to 12” apart


Dark tobacco stick spacing

Dark Tobacco Stick Spacing

9-12” stick spacing for dark, 6” for burley

  • Older dark barns

    • 3 to 3.5 ft. vertical tier spacing: 18” spacing

  • Decreased risk of “sweat” or houseburn

    • Sweat = increased TSNA

    • Loss of cured leaf weight

    • Lower quality


Comparison of dark fired tobacco variety nitrogen rate and housing density 2007 ukrec princeton ky

Comparison of Dark-Fired Tobacco Variety, Nitrogen Rate, and Housing Density2007 – UKREC, Princeton, KY

  • Varieties: Narrowleaf Madole LC or KT D4LC

  • N fertility: 200, 300, or 400 total lbs N/A

  • Housing density: 6” or 12” stick spacing


Effect of variety n rate and housing density on dark fired yield 2007 ukrec princeton ky

Effect of Variety, N Rate, and Housing Density on Dark-Fired Yield2007 – UKREC, Princeton, KY

Total Yield (lbs/A):

3030 3269 3184 3140 3124 3192 3107

Dark-Fired Yield (lbs/A)

Total LSD0.05 = 221 270 221


Dark tobacco update

Effect of Variety, N Rate, and Housing Density on Dark-Fired Grade Index and Gross Revenue2007 – UKREC, Princeton, KY

Quality Grade Index (0-100):

55.5 38.3 50.1 45.3 45.3 42.2 51.6

*

*

Dark-Fired Gross Revenue ($/A)

Rev LSD0.05 = 786 963 786


Dark tobacco update

Effect of Variety, N Rate, and Housing Density on Dark-Fired Yield and Quality2007 – UKREC, Princeton, KY

  • KT D4 will yield at least 300 lbs/A more than NL Mad.

  • KT D4 has lower quality than NL Madole

  • KT D4 is more prone to sweat and quality will further decrease when spaced too tightly in barn.

  • Quality may also decrease at excessive N rates.


Fire curing

Fire-Curing

  • Curing stages for dark fire-cured tobacco:

    • Yellowing leaves

    • Setting leaf color

    • Drying down stalks and leaves

    • Applying smoke “finish” to leaves

  • Yellowing done with ventilation and no fires

    • Open vents and/or use fans for 5 to 8 days

  • Fires started when yellow spots begin to appear.

    • All vents closed except those in the top of the barn.

    • Hardwood slabs covered with sawdust.

    • Initial fires increase barn temperature to 95 to 100F,

      RH 85 to 90%.


Fire curing1

Fire-Curing

  • Color set when leaf midrib is still green but leaf lamina is uniform brown color.

    • 6 to 8 hrs to several days

  • Leaf drying

    • Increase ventilation (all vents open)

    • Heat increased to approx. 135, RH decreased to 75 to 80%

    • Lamina will crack when touched, bottom half of midrib brown (7 to 14 days).

    • Tobacco allowed to absorb moisture and then firing repeated until uniform color is achieved

  • Applying finish

    • Smoke deposits on the leaf add aroma and texture

    • Sequential low fires with no ventilation to maximize smoke levels and minimize temperature in barn.


Double crop curing

Double Crop Curing

  • Increased stick spacing requirements on some contracts limits barn space

  • Curing 2 crops of dark fired tobacco in the same barn and season

  • Major savings in barn capacity


Double cropping

Double Cropping

  • Time management:

    • Set 1st crop early May, second crop mid-June

    • Yield loss of 300-500 lbs likely on 2nd crop

    • Try to cure 1st crop in 5 weeks

    • Aggressive curing


Dark tobacco update

  • Must manage 2 crops separately

  • when double cropping

    • Variety selection (maturity characteristics)

    • Management practices

    • Weather


Double crop curing curing 2 crops of tobacco in 1 barn

Advantages:

Major cost savings for barns

Fewer needed

Easier to keep labor force occupied

Barns can be consolidated closer to tobacco

Companies receiving earlier to accommodate early crop stripping

Disadvantages:

More management required

Tighter window of opportunity

Operations must be timely

All barns will not work

Curing conditions may not be ideal, particularly 2nd crop.

Steamers or misting systems must be available for takedown

Still need 2 barns worth of sticks

Where to store 1st crop during second curing

Double-Crop CuringCuring 2 crops of tobacco in 1 barn

*See new UK / UT Extension publication: AGR-196


Black shank

Black Shank

  • Even with newer varieties, we still need to:

    • Practice good crop rotation

      • At least 2 years of grass between tobacco crops

    • Continue to use fungicides

      • Ridomil or Ultra Flourish

      • Preplant or layby or both

    • Use good equipment sanitation

      • Don’t wait until black shank spreads to start cleaning equipment

      • 10% bleach solution


2006 black shank fungicide experiment

2006 Black Shank Fungicide Experiment


Applications black shank fungicide trial christian co 2006

ApplicationsBlack Shank Fungicide Trial - Christian Co. 2006

  • PPI applications made June 21 prior to setting on June 22

    • Broadcast (BC) applied at 15 gal/A

  • 1st cultivation (July 10) and Layby (July 28) applications

    • Directed 15” band on each side of rows, 15 gal/A

  • Basal applications made August 2

    • 2 oz spray solution applied around base of each living plant

    • Approx. 81 gal/A if applied to all plants

    • Black shank already very severe at the time of Layby and Basal applications

  • Tobacco stand counts taken but trial not harvested due to black shank


First stand count july 10 2 5 wks after ppi and setting

First Stand Count – July 10 – 2.5 wks after PPI and setting


Second stand count august 2 6 wks after ppi and setting

Second Stand Count – August 2 - 6 wks after PPI and setting


Dark tobacco update

Effect of Ridomil on Dark Tobacco YieldIn Absence of Black Shank2007 Dark Tobacco Rotational Trial, HRREC, Springfield, TN

Total Fire-Cured Yield (lbs/A)

KT D6 LC

1 pt/A Ridomil

NL Madole LC

1 pt/A Ridomil

NL Madole LC

No Ridomil

KT D6 LC

No Ridomil

1st year tobacco


Dark tobacco update

Effect of Ridomil on Dark Tobacco YieldIn Absence of Black Shank – NL Madole LC2007 Ridomil/Quadris Trial, MSU, Murray, KY

Total Yield (lbs/A):

3567 3580 3779 3576 3673

Fire-Cured Yield (lbs/A)

1 pt Ridomil

1 pt Quadris

1 pt Ridomil

2 pt Quadris

1 pt Ridomil

3 pt Ridomil

2 pt Ridomil


Dark tobacco variety performance under black shank pressure kent boyd farm christian co ky 2006

Dark Tobacco Variety Performance Under Black Shank PressureKent Boyd Farm – Christian Co., KY - 2006

Varieties:

PD 302H

PD 309H

PD 318H

KT D4LC

KT D6LC

NL Madole LC

DT 538LC

NC 71 (flue)

RCBD with 4 replications

No Ridomil

Set June 26

44” rows, 29” plant spacing

Approx. 4916 plants/A

Stand counts taken throughout the season

July 10

August 2

September 14

Harvested October 23

Minimal frost damage


Dark tobacco update

Variety Performance with Black ShankPlant Survival During SeasonKent Boyd Farm – Christian Co., KY - 2006

LSD0.05 = 9 10 11

% Stand

By Variety

(7309LC)

(7302LC)


Variety performance with black shank dark fired yield kent boyd farm christian co ky 2006

Variety Performance with Black ShankDark-Fired Yield – Kent Boyd Farm, Christian Co., KY2006

LSD0.05 = 92 112 301 418 (total)

Total Yield (lbs/A):

2079 2190 2402 1632 1318 0 1858 2545

Yield (lbs/A)

(7309LC)

(7302LC)


Dark tobacco update

PD7302LC

PD7309LC

NL Madole LC


Dark tobacco update

KT D6LC


Dark tobacco update

PD 7302LC


Manual sucker control

Manual Sucker control

  • Very labor intensive

    • Manual stalk rundown

    • 2 to 3 applications

    • MH discouraged for dark

    • Average 5 man hrs/acre

  • Worker Protection Issues

  • Research/Extension:

    Develop spray methods

    • Effective long-term sucker control

    • Preserve leaf quality

      • Timing and coverage

      • Spray volume

      • Reduced MH rates


Sucker control

Sucker Control

  • MH is most effective sucker control chemical available

    • Leaf residue concerns

    • Leaf coloring problems when used on dark at high rates too early

    • Yield loss from applications made at topping?

  • Sucker control without MH

    • Multiple applications of fatty alcohols, use of local systemic

      • Fatty alcohol followed by fatty alcohol + local systemic

      • 2 fatty alcohol applications followed by local systemic

      • Applications made at least every 7 days

    • Coverage of all leaf axils critical

      • Timely applications on straight tobacco

      • Spray volume at least 50 gal/A

    • Stalk rundown applications (drop lines or backpacks) most consistent


Sucker control recommendations

Sucker Control Recommendations

  • Top on time, pull all suckers longer than 1 inch

  • If using MH:

    • Contact fatty alcohol at topping

    • MH (1.5 gal) + Butralin, Prime+, or Flupro at 7 days

    • Use coarse nozzles (TG5, etc.), at least 50 gal/A

  • If not using MH:

    • Option 1: dropline or back pack

      • Contact at topping, Prime+ or Butralin + contact at 7 days

    • Option 2: if spraying:

      • Spray contact at topping

      • Prime+ or Butralin alone or tank mix with contact at 7 days

    • Maximize coverage on all leaf axils, 55 to 70 gal/A


Don t treat dark like it s burley

Don’t Treat Dark Like it’s Burley

Yellowing, stunting,

and yield loss from

MH at topping.


Dark tobacco efficiency use of mh

Dark Tobacco EfficiencyUse of MH

  • MH application timing and rate

    • Do not apply at topping

      • Contact fatty alcohol at topping

      • Wait at least 7 days after topping before using MH

    • Rate: 5 to 6 qts/A (1.25 to 1.5 gal/A) of regular conc. MH

      • With or without local systemic (Butralin or Prime+ at 2 qts/A)

    • Allows upper stalk positions to fill out more

    • Prevents leaf discoloration

    • Increased yield compared to normal burley use pattern


Strip tillage practices for dark tobacco

Strip Tillage Practices for Dark Tobacco

Andy Bailey

Tobacco Specialist

Princeton, KY


Overview

Overview

  • 12-16” tilled strips, row middles no-till

    • 16” strip easier to stay on with transplanter

  • Ripper shanks and rolling baskets

  • Strips run in the fall is preferred, fluffed in spring

  • 2 or 4-row units

    • 2-row unit: $5600

    • 4-row unit: $11,000 - $12,000


Strip till p and k fertilization

Strip-Till P and K Fertilization

  • P and K fertilizer can be applied in the fall

    • Broadcast or banded

      • apply 1/3 less P and K with banded applications

    • Many sites in West KY in row crop rotations don’t require additional P or K every year.

    • Band fertilizer hoppers can be affixed to strip-tiller


Strip till nitrogen fertilization

Strip-Till Nitrogen Fertilization

  • Nitrogen applied in spring prior to transplanting and/or after transplanting

    • Broadcast ammonium nitrate

    • Broadcast Polymer-coated urea (ESN)

      • Slow-release: ~45 days for all to become available

      • Temperature and moisture dependent

      • $0.09 per pound N higher than normal urea

      • Soil pH dependent: need soil pH around 6.5

    • Could sidedress all nitrogen with UAN

      • 2 and 4 weeks after transplanting


Dark tobacco update

No-Till Transplanter

Dale Seay, Christian Co., KY


Strip till transplanting

Strip-Till Transplanting

  • Multivator run just prior to transplanting to freshen strips.

    • Small mechanical tillers on toolbar to match strips

  • Conventional transplanter can be used

    • Strip is much like conventional tillage

  • Small cultivators can be used to till edge of strips

    • Marginal benefit, usually not needed


Dark tobacco update

  • Dark tobacco has performed well with strip-tillage in the soils of west KY/TN.

  • 15 to 20 larger growers

    • Many exclusively strip-till

    • More growers each year

  • Yields comparable to conventional tillage in most years.

  • Larger benefit in dry years

  • Cleaner tobacco at harvest


2007 dark fire cured variety trial dale seay farm christian co ky strip till into corn residue

2007 Dark Fire-Cured Variety TrialDale Seay Farm – Christian Co., KYStrip-Till into Corn Residue

LSD0.05= 84 153 243 345 (total)

Total Yield (lbs/A):

3781 4137 4030 4213 3564 3637 4166 4024 3979 3948

Yield (lbs/A)

VARIETIES


Dark tobacco update

More flexibility in choice of residue in strip-till


Dark tobacco update

Strip-Till:

Sets like conventional tillage

Moisture conservation and cleaner tobacco like no-till


Air c uring burley and dark air cured

90

85

80

75

70

65

60

55

50

45

40

1

3

5

7

9

11

13

15

17

19

21

23

25

Air CuringBurley and Dark Air-Cured

RH %

Bacteria

Molds (more in dark air)

Yellowing

Browning

Stem drying

Color fixing

49

43

45

47

51

53

55

37

27

29

31

33

35

39

41

days


Dark tobacco update

Websites:

Dark Tobacco:

http://ces.ca.uky.edu/darktobacco

Dark Tobacco Agent’s site:

http://ces.ca.uky.edu/darktobacco/Agent.htm

Burley Tobacco:

http://www.uky.edu/Ag/Tobacco

Burley Tobacco Agent’s site:

http://www.uky.edu/Ag/Tobacco/Agent.htm


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