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JUST A FEW FEET . . . If left untrimmed, the most commonly-grown tobacco plants will reach a height of up to 9 feet. When grown in the shade of adjacent trees, they will be spindly and unstable, with a very weak stalk. But there are oriental varieties who top the growth chart at a demure 3 feet!

CHEAPER BY THE DOZEN . . . A tobacco plant may sprout 2 or 3 dozen leaves — more than that if not pruned — but not all are usable in the making of cigars. As an average, only a dozen leaves from each plant may be utilized by cigar makers.

WAY, WAY TOO MANY TO COUNT Ever seen a tobacco seed up close? It’s is not much larger than the dot at the end of this sentence. The “flower” of a tobacco plant has roughly 3,000 seeds making up its middle. How many seeds does it take to equal one ounce? Oh, just about a half million.

BUT JUST ONE IS NECESSARY . . . And that one cannot just be planted directly into the soil and expected to prosper. They must be nurtured in seedbeds and carefully tended. Then only the hardiest are chosen for planting. In days past, this was a time-consuming, risky and tricky undertaking. Today, lucky growers can buy trays with single vibrant seed plants coated with nutrients for easy transplant.

Not Created Equal

Think all leaves from the same species of tobacco plant will have the same flavor when equal in size and maturity? Nope. The upper-most leaves are always darker, thicker and fuller. The position on the stalk enters into the overall taste – the top ones are usually more robust in flavor.

Think all leaves from the same species of tobacco plant will have the same flavor when equal in size and maturity? Nope. The upper-most leaves are always darker, thicker and fuller. The position on the stalk enters into the overall taste – the top ones are usually more robust in flavor.

Take a Close Look at this Month’s Cigar Selections . . . Featured Countries of Origin from your Favorite Cigar of the Month Club: NICARAGUA, HONDURAS AND THE DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

SN# 31286: H. UPMANN MEDIA NOCHE GORDO

Nationality: Dominican   Appearance: MEDIUM bodied, 6.0; 60 ring; In a dark, oily Pennsylvania Broadleaf maduro wrap

Personality: This smoke is memorable, with a sweet, chewy profile that includes oak, leather, espresso. Extremely balanced, rich and  delicious, ending with smooth satisfaction through the last puff. She models  H. Upmann’s 170 years of cigar-making tradition.

SN# 31287: PUNCH GRAN PURO RANCHO

Nationality: Honduran  Appearance:  MEDIUM-FULL bodied, 5.5; 54 ring; Dressed in a spicy Havana-seed sun-grown cloak

Personality: This ancient Punch brand is a robust puppy! Rich and peppery, this treat will hold you captive well past bedtime!

SN# 31288: TIERRA DEL SOL TORO

Nationality: Nicaraguan Appearance: MILD-MEDIUM bodied, 6.5; 54 ring; Box pressed with a Habano maduro wrapper

Personality: No disguising its richness with a dark chocolate flavor and smooth/soft mellowness that gives way to rich toast and a slight cedar charcoal flavor at midpoint. Highly recommended, it ends with an interesting tangy aftertaste on the palate.

SN# 31289: ESPINOSA SEQUEL CHURCHILL

Nationality: Nicaraguan Appearance: MEDIUM bodied, 7.0; 50 ring; Topped off with a gorgeous Ecuadorian CT wrapper

Personality: Chock full of personality, this carefully curated lightly spiced blend is smooth and creamy, totally satisfying.

SN# 31290: SOL CUBANO CLASSIC TORPEDO

Nationality: Dominican  Appearance: MEDIUM bodied, 6.0; 52 ring; Dressed to the 9’s in a golden Habano 2000 wrapper

Personality: A good looking box of twenty thick, rich lovelies for an unbelievable price! Firm in the fingers, oily and supple, this well-packed cigar delivers a continually evolving flavor profile of coffee, nuts, cream and toast.

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Tracie Burket
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