Wednesday, 29 August 2012

A whole lot of roll-ups!!

Driving to north from Braye today towards Assay, we noticed a farmer out harvesting a 'leafy' crop, so we stopped off on the way home to take a closer look.

The 'leaves' turned out to be tobacco.

Colin recalls seeing this grown further south, near Bordeaux, some years ago but we haven't seen it before in the Indre-et-Loire region.

There again, we've travelled this road many times and it was only the tractor in the field which caught our eye today. We hadn't noticed the crop previously, so tobacco growing could be more common here than we think.

Could anyone 'give us a light' on this please?

and NO Stephen you can't go and get some tomorrow!!!


Loire Valley experiences said...

Its also grown just outside Barrou. Every year the grower shares it with the village as it drops of his trailer going along Grande Rue.

Tim said...

An uncle of mine... now long departed... used to grow his own in his back garden in Surrey, all perfectly legal.... as opposed to cannabis, you are allowed to grow your own 'baccy. I used to help with the curing of the dried leaves. Paint the leaves with a mixture of saltpetre and molasses [actually he used black treacle watered down with tea for the molasses], cut out the central leaf stem [similar to preparing spinach] and fold into a little wooden box about 5" square on the inside. When the box is full.... put a 5" block of oak on top... and then a 10lb weight... this was in the late 60's... no metric equivalents in those days.
You then leave the box and weight to do its stuff for two years... store it in a cool dark place. At the end of that there is the ritual emptying of the box and the careful shredding of the block with the household carving knife and packing of it in old 'baccy tins. He used to sit in his greenhouse to smoke it... and there were never any white fly!!

Susan said...

I saw the Barrou crop last year and another in the Brenne (where we later photographed cranes). I haven't seen any this year.

Colin and Elizabeth said...

Thanks for the description, bit time consuming just to get rid of the whitefly!!!