How to Farm Tobacco

There was a time in the United States economy when tobacco farming was at its best.

However, when the negative effects of tobacco were discovered especially to human health, the industry declined.

Yet, there are places where tobacco farming is the source of income and living.

If you are interested to start a tobacco farm, the primary thing that you should think into consideration is the right variety of tobacco plants. This plant is not only grown for cigarette production but also grown as ornamental plants because of its beauty. There are different varieties of tobacco available that offer agronomic features as well as resistance to nematodes, insects and diseases. It is ideal to select at least two varieties of tobacco to fulfill the farming operation. Here are some helpful tips to follow when planting tobacco.

Steps in Planting Tobacco

Plant the seeds in trays within 4 to 6 weeks before the last frost. The seeds are ready for transplanting after 60 days. Use individual seed trays for different varieties of tobacco. Prepare a mix of potting soil and peat humus. After the preparation of the mixture you should let the soil soak with water and drain off the excess water. Once drained, you can spread the tobacco seeds on the damp soil on the next day. The seeds will germinate within 14 days then you can transfer it into individual containers as soon as the leaves reach about ½ inch. Be careful in transplanting by scooping out the baby plants along with the surrounding soil.

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After 5 to 6 weeks, you can start taking the plants outdoor to get some sunlight. However, you should not take them out during cold frost. During the hardening phase you start preparing the outdoor bed where you can finally transfer the plants. The location should have good drainage and enough sunlight. You should not plant tobacco in a place already used for tobacco planting because there is a great possibility that there is no essential nutrients present in the soil. When the plants are about 8 weeks old and 6 inches tall, you can transfer the plants. Before planting you should add nitrogen-rich fertilizer.

Raising the Tobacco Plants

It is not enough to plant the tobacco seeds and let it grow. It is necessary to consider the temperature required in the growing season. Aside from giving the proper care you should also monitor the plant to avoid caterpillar infestation. Once you notice some insects you should remove it immediately through hand picking. Otherwise, it would damage the whole crop. You can only harvest the tobacco leaves once ripened. The harvesting period of tobacco is six times in the entire duration of the growing season. Proper maintenance of the plants would mean more production during the harvest period.

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50 Comments

  • yeukai said on April 27, 2012
    i would like to know the whole process, want to try and farm tobacco on 1 hectare in Zimbabwe and see how it goes. I have never done it. it is my first time please help me from the start... the best time to start and what to do
  • Lloyd said on June 4, 2012
    How many kg do you expect to harvest from 1hac, how many bags of fertilizer per hac. i am Banket (Mapinga) at Tramore Farm, the country Zimbabwe
  • ELIAS CHIFULO said on July 19, 2012
    I ALSO WANT TO START THIS BUSINESS TOBACCO IN ZAMBIA BUT HAVE NO IDEA HOW TO DO IT.
  • EDDIE said on August 31, 2012
    I am interested in Tobacco farming, am presently in Nigeria. I have about 5 hectares of land. what do i need to do please
  • chiko said on January 18, 2013
    I live Marondera and i have land to farm on. i need to farm 1 hectare of tobacco so i would like to know the information on how to start the project, what is required(fertilizers,chemicals e.t.c ) and the cost associated with the project.
  • james karichero said on February 21, 2013
    i have 1 & half hector of tobacco how many kgs are produce
  • Elvis said on March 4, 2013
    Can you help with this info; the cost of production on a 1 hector peice, the fertilizers, needed, and all the information coz i am a first timer, mhondoro , in zimbabwe
  • Pana said on April 2, 2013
    Would want to know the inputs involved in tobacco farming and the amounts required per hactare. i.e seed name, fertilizer types, other chemicals, average waterper plant and expected output according to your recommended input.. Centenary, Mash east province, Zimbabwe
  • Mpilo said on April 12, 2013
    I want to venture into tobacco farming in the coming season, i have some experience in tobacco growing however i would like to know the initial costs of growing 5 hectares of tobacco. I will be carrying out my farming activities in Rusape, Manicaland Province, Zimbabwe. Thank you.
  • eddington said on April 25, 2013
    i would like to venture into tobacco farming ,and would like to start with 1 hectare of land ,need to know what is required for me to start up , including the costs ,fertilizers ,chemicals ,and produce per hectare, when to start seedlings and quantity of seed required. i am from mashonaland east concession side in mazoe area
  • Godwin Bassopo said on April 30, 2013
    Want to venture into tobacco growing. Want to start with 1 hectare. Have no knowledge of tobacco. So may you help me from seedbed to harvesting with the required inputs & the expected yield. Live Mvurwi Zimbabwe.
  • Dylan said on May 2, 2013
    i would like to know the average price for tobacco for 1 ha of land and what is needed in order to grow the tobacco on a farm. for school assignment. live in australia
  • Lameck said on May 4, 2013
    My name is Lameck I am new farmer in Mazoe west I've tryed tobacco last year and it does pay off big time and its so ease most farmer do fail bcoz they do not plan try this (all inputs must be in place like now) and a must have water pump to supplement dry spell ZIMBABWE
  • masimba said on June 13, 2013
    I would want to grow tobacco on a 5 hactare piece of land in Chegutu, Zimbabwe. There is a dam on the farm. What are the requirements for this project?
  • BENSON GASURA said on June 17, 2013
    i would like to grow for the first time 1 hectare of tobacco in hurungwe mashonaland west in zimbabwe what are the requirements and what sort of yield should i expect (i.e seeding/planting time and fertilizers /chemicals required. many thanks
  • Respect said on July 10, 2013
    please help me want to grow tobacco for the first time have prepared 4 hacters so what are the quantities for all the inputs needed.
  • chikoto said on July 12, 2013
    i would like to grow 1 hacter of tobbacco in hurungwe,zimbabwe. please my i know how much fertiliser, chemicals etc required.
  • Zhou Taisekwa beginner adviser said on August 9, 2013
    We have vast land for dryland tobacco anyone interested in investing in this lucrative farming venture in Zimbabwe should contact taisekwazhou@gmail.com

    taisekwazhou@gmail.com || Potato Farming Expert

  • Audinance said on August 9, 2013
    I have got 1 hecter to farm Tobacco in Karoi,Zimbabwe. I need to know the correct timing, Inputs and the whole process until harvest time. Also the average costs for the 1hect project, if possible a cost and benefit analysis or a forecast financial statement of profit is essential to me.
  • Shadreck Chidhakwa said on August 10, 2013
    Rusape. Want to start tobacco farming but have no knowledge about the requirements in terms of fertilizers ,chemicals and other costs as well as expected output per hectare
  • blessmore said on August 13, 2013
    i have a field of 1 hectare how much yield can i expect, give me a detailed estimate of the total input cost
  • Kudzai Chiwundura said on August 15, 2013
    I want to venture into tobacco farming. I want to start with 1 hectare in Darwandale, Mashonaland west. May you help me from seedbed to harvesting with the required inputs so that i can budget for the costs.
  • Kudzai said on August 26, 2013
    Want to know about tobacco farming. The general cost per hectare. I'm based in Rusape Zimbabwe
  • PRIDE said on September 12, 2013
    i have a farm in the beatrice area, i want to know the cost of tobacco farming on a hectare and also how much harvest shd i expect. if you could provide me with tobacco prices per kg
  • FORTUNE said on September 13, 2013
    Hi, I would like to start tobacco farming in Lipompo South Africa would like to know more this is my first time.
  • CM said on October 24, 2013
    Hi Just got a piece of land to use so i was thinking of growing this cash crop, tobacco, the place is in Darwendale here in Zimbabwe, i need to start with a 1.5ha space, so i need to fully understand on the procedures to take like from the first step to the last step in detail with all the required inputs and also the expected quantity on that area of 1.5ha PLIZ, and also i need to know the type of tobacco that can go along with that area even if you provide another type for Marondera. Thank you
  • Jh said on December 8, 2013
    I have 2 hecters , tell me the total cost of all the inputs needed and how many kgs can I get from the out put.
  • Kevin Gunguvu said on January 1, 2014
    I've got 2 hactares of land in Hwedza, mash east, zimbabwe. I want to farm tobacco on this land and its my first time. The land is along Save river, please help me with all the details, ie, all inputs and (cheap) irrigation costs.
  • T. Madondo said on January 4, 2014
    I am interested in tobaco growing and am looking for anyone who has piece of land to offer near mutare or in manicaland. May you pliz contact me on the e-mail address taphydo2020@yahoo.co.uk
  • TAPIWA MARIMIROFA said on February 8, 2014
    My name is Tapiwa Marimirofa im currenly looking for a piece of land to grow tobacco. i live in CHINHOYI, As well as some knowledge on how to grow the crop email add tapszvazviri@gmail.com
  • Danson n. Zinengeya said on March 17, 2014
    Hie I would like to grow 1 hectare of tobacco in Marondera area in Zimbabwe ,could kindly help me with the list of in puts and quantities required per hectare
  • malvern kadenge said on April 6, 2014
    Hie I would like to grow 1 hectare of tobacco in murewa area in Zimbabwe ,could you kindly help me with the of in puts and quantities required per hectare
  • leeroy said on June 10, 2014
    Hi can I have the inputs needed to farm tobacco i am in zimbabwe mvurwi
  • kalipi laibu said on June 14, 2014
    i want to grow tobacco on one hectare of land, what are the required inputs and expected output
  • martin ngurunda said on July 24, 2014
    i want to know how many plants are needed in one hctr and also other related inputs.thanks pliz help me
  • tapiwa sithole said on August 22, 2014
    I want to know how many plants are needed in one hctr, and other inputs needed
  • alex said on September 17, 2014
    i am planing to grow two hecters of tobacco, please can u tell me what are the total cost that i might incure, from fertilizer until i harvest
  • bethuel maila said on October 15, 2014
    Please help I would like to start business of farming with tobacco in south africa around limpopo or mpumalanga please advise me if temperature soil etc is suitable for that business
  • kudakwashe tega said on November 27, 2014
    i would want to try it how many kgs should i expect per one hectare, how much fertilizer shd i use as well. zimbabwe mrehwa
  • Fungai Marufu said on April 27, 2015
    I would like to start tobacco farming on 2 hectares in mashonaland central Mvurwi Zimbabwe. What inputs do i require ?
  • moses sithole said on September 1, 2015
    hi I need to plant my 1ha tobacco this year in mid october using a pump . I wanna pre water the holes first with 5litres of water and then plant the tobacco and put another 5 litres of water. i'm planning to apply a 60 cup of compound C and a 20 cup of calcium while planting. the question is am I not applying to much fertilizer? will this help me increase my yield per ha?....and i'm also planning to apply a mixture of Ammonium nitrate and potassium nitrate with cup number 8 after 2 weeks of planting and lastly apply cup 5 before I top my tobacco. ..is this a good method to increase my yield this year ?..if you have any ideas I wl b glad t have them...I stay in harare Zimbabwe but my farm is in Tengwe hurungwe Karoi not( Mvurwi)..my email is mosesgagamel07@gmail. com
  • Abiodun said on November 1, 2015
    Hello, please I have 1 hectare of land and I wish to plant tobacco. I am a first-timer on that business. Kindly educate me on all the necessary details that are essential to becoming a successful tobacco farmer. I shall be gratified for your help. Abiodun
  • israel said on April 13, 2016
    Interested in tobacco production but l don't have knowledge about the crop. please help?
  • Mr. Roger Valle, said on May 11, 2016
    I am interested in investing my money into tobacco farming. Thanks Mr. Roger Valle, rogervalle22@hotmail.com
  • langton said on June 11, 2016
    i'm in wedza my issue is to know a number of fertilize needed in hectare and yield of T72 per hectare
  • shingirirai matambo said on June 12, 2016
    hi am shingie from zimbabwe would want to try tobacco farming about three thousand plants. what do i need as in inputs
  • Kipruto Timothy said on July 4, 2016
    I would like to start tobacco farming in Kanya on a 5 acre farm. How much will that cost?
  • Tshilidzi said on August 24, 2016
    hi my name is tshilidzi and i am very interested into farming tobacco; i live in south africa and i have at least 2 hectors of land i want to know how much per kg and where can i find tobacco seeds
  • CHRISTOPHER ZUZE said on February 6, 2017
    HOW MUCH FERTILIZERS DO YOU NEED PER HECTARE
  • Lovemore said on August 30, 2017
    I live Zimbabwe and i have land to farm on. i need to farm 1 hectare of tobacco so i would like to know the information on how to start the project, what is required(fertilizers, chemicals e.t.c ) and the cost associated with the project.

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