A while back, I had some trouble with the government about buying cigarettes from outside the country (USA), it
is WAS perfectly legal (at the time) to order cigarettes for import into the USA for personal use. I assure you that the cigarettes I ordered WERE for personal use, I did not trade, sell, barter or in any other way distribute these cigarettes. After receiving a threatening letter from the Dept of Homeland Security, a very scary thing to find in your mailbox, especially for a law abiding citizen! I decided that I needed to find a better way to get smokes without having to pay an arm and a leg, or having the threat of the government over my head. I found an alternative way, it’s legal and it should be doable by nearly anyone.
Another note of interest, in the USA, the government is trying to make it illegal to buy cigarettes through the mail, so no matter what your source, whether you are buying overseas or buying domestically or from Native American reservations, if the powers that be have their way, this way of buying cigarettes is about to become illegal. So what can you do about this?
You can grow your own tobacco plants. I immediately started a search for information on how to grow your own, as well as how to process it to make a smokable product. It turns out that there are not many sources with good info readily available on the internet. Fortunately I was able to find this source, it not only teaches you how to grow your own tobacco plants, but how and when to harvest, how to dry and cure your tobacco, and much, much more. Here is my review on this book. I hope to have a follow up interview with the author, when I have it, I’ll post a part 2 to this article. The link to the book can be found at the bottom of this article.
Growing Tobacco in the Home Garden
The Little Handbook
As a smoker, you go out, you buy a carton or pack of cigarettes, (after you get over the sticker shock!), you open the cellophane, tear off the foil, you tap out a cigarette, you put it to your lips, you light it and inhale deeply. You fill your lungs with smoke and it’s good… or is it? What are you getting besides the nicotine your body craves? There is a whole laundry list of chemicals and toxins that you are also inhaling, what’s worse, these chemicals and toxins are not naturally found in the tobacco, these things are ADDED to the cigarettes by the cigarette companies. Why is that?
What if there was a better way? If you grow a vegetable garden or grow plants in containers, then you are already half way to a better and healthier way to smoke tobacco. If you have been following my cigarette saga, then you already know the troubles I have had with the government about buying cigarettes overseas, so in an attempt to work around the problems, I investigated growing my own tobacco. It turns out that it is perfectly legal to grow your own as long as you are not selling, trading or bartering with the tobacco.
I found a seller on eBay who sells tobacco seeds and promptly ordered a set of 3 different types. I still didn’t know how to grow tobacco, how difficult (or easy) is it to grow? What are the best conditions to grow tobacco? How long do you allow it to grow, when do you harvest it? What do you do after that?
It turns out that the tobacco plant is fairly easy to grow, it is related to tomatoes, peppers and potatoes, it’s in the nightshade family, if your local conditions permit you to grow these plants, then you should be able to grow tobacco as well. But there are some steps that need to be taken to grow the best plants and know when to harvest them, and most importantly, to know how to dry and cure the leaves to get the most out of your tobacco plants.
I searched the internet and I found only one source that gives you step by step information on growing tobacco, everything from where to get your tobacco seeds, how to choose the varieties of tobacco plants to best suit what you want in a smoke and your growing zone, how to get the seeds started, how to transplant them, how to care for the plants (fertilizing, pest control…), when and how to harvest the leaves, how to dry and cure the leaves for the best quality in the finished tobacco.
This information is not a big dark secret, nor is it impossible to do, the hard part is just FINDING the information, the big cigarette companies don’t want you to know how this works. They have huge farms with proprietary processes, not to mention all the chemicals and garbage they add to the tobacco. Wouldn’t it just be better to grow tobacco in your own backyard or on your patio? Yes, you can grow tobacco in containers. It is a pretty, tropical plant with showy flowers and large leaves; many people grow it for purely decorative reasons. Another reason besides smoking to grow your own tobacco, it is used for natural, organic insect repellent in gardening.
I found a great illustrated eBook that explains all you need to know about growing your own tobacco plants.
Where to get your seeds
How to start your tobacco plants
How to transplant them
The best conditions for them to grow
How and when to fertilize
How and when to harvest the leaves
How, when and IF to prune
How to dry and cure the leaves for the best flavor
You will learn how to choose from the different varieties of tobacco
You will learn about the different blends of tobacco for flavor
What to do differently if you want to harvest the seeds for next year’s plants
How to troubleshoot common problems and issues
One question that many people ask is how many cigarettes or cartons worth of cigarettes will I get from one plant? This is a good question to ask as you will want to determine how many plants you need to grow to accommodate your personal smoking needs. You will learn the answer to this all important question within this eBook.
In this eBook you will find (table of contents)
1. Introduction to Tobacco
2. Different Types of Tobacco
3. Choosing Good Tobacco Seeds
4. Germinating Tobacco Seeds
5. Soil Types for Growing Tobacco
6. Planting Tobacco
7. Maintenance and Fertilization
8. Harvesting Tobacco
9. Drying and Curing Tobacco
10. Different Tobacco Uses
11. Interesting Facts about Tobacco
Thanks so much to Benjamin for sharing this invaluable information with us, I have searched high and low for the info contained in this eBook and so far, this is the only place where I have everything needed to grow your own tobacco plants and everything else involved in the process. With this information, you will save a lot of money by growing your own tobacco, not to mention the fact that the tobacco you grow is free of additives.
I do not condone smoking or tobacco use in any form, if you are not a smoker or tobacco user, DO NOT START! I can’t emphasize that enough, there is no such thing as healthy tobacco use. If you are already a smoker or tobacco user, of legal age, then please consider growing your own, it is “healthier” for you in the fact that it will not contain additives or extra chemicals, you KNOW what is in the tobacco that you grow yourself.
I almost forgot to add, the author of this book is also inculding a free book on homebrewing your own alcohol, it’s an infomative book all about the ins and outs of homebrewing.
If you smoke cigarettes, you need the information in this book.
Click here to get your copy of this informative book.
There is some benefit to smoking pipe tobacco.
You just don’t inhale. I will see if I can find the information.
Could anyone give me useful information about the regulations regarding growing and producing tobacco and tobacco products for small-scale production in the state of Maryland? Thank you for your time.
I am considering growing tobacco at home (garden) in Maryland-Eastern Shore. I would like to grow tobacco for the following reasons: 1. Tobacco was grown in Maryland in historic times and was once the basis of the Maryland/Virginia economy-now the tobacco industry (especially in Southern Maryland) is dying out. 2. Although my wife and I are obviously European American (German/Scottish) my wife’s great-grandmother was a full-blooded Nanticoke Indian, and there are certain Native American traditions that I would like to honor by growing tobacco. 3. Although I am not a smoker myself, I would like to help friends and relatives who are smokers by producing quality home-grown tobacco free of additives and other harmful carcinogens.