Virginian tobacco

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Virginian tobacco
Virginian tobacco

Virginian tobacco

Euasterids I
Order : Nightshade (Solanales)
Family : Nightshade family (Solanaceae)
Genre : Tobacco ( Nicotiana )
Type : Virginian tobacco
Scientific name
Nicotiana tabacum

The Virginian tobacco ( Nicotiana tabacum ) is a species of the tobacco genus in the nightshade family (Solanaceae). It is the most economically important type of tobacco industry and is grown in a variety of varieties. The species itself originally emerged from a natural cross between forest tobacco ( Nicotiana sylvestris ) and Nicotiana tomentosiformis .


Seeds of the tobacco variety "Burley"

Virginian tobacco is an annual plant that grows 1 to 3 m high and is sticky hairy on all parts. The stems are thick and not very branched. The larger leaves are over 50 cm long, the shape of the leaf blade is ovate to elliptical or vice versa. The leaves are pointed or pointed towards the front, at the base they run down the stem or are sessile and encompassing the stem.

The inflorescences are multi-branched panicles . The flower stalks are 5 to 15 mm long. The calyx reaches a length of 12 to 18 mm and is covered with 4 to 8 mm long, narrow-pointed, unevenly shaped calyx lobes. The calyx lobes are shorter than the calyx tube. The crown is saucer-shaped, the coronet is colored white, pink or red, the corolla tube greenish-cream, pink or red. The corolla tube has a total length of 3.5 to 4.5 cm and is 3 to 5 mm wide in the lower part and widens to 7 to 12 mm in the upper part. The coronet is lobed or pentagonal. The stamens are unevenly designed, they start below the center of the corolla tube. The anthers of the four longer stamens are close to the opening of the corolla tube or are slightly above it. The fifth stamen is significantly shorter than both longer pairs. The stamens have a length of 2.5 to 3.5 cm and are therefore significantly longer than the anthers. The stamens are hairy at the base.

The fruit is a 1.5 to 2 cm long capsule that is narrowly elliptical to egg-shaped. It can stand out over the chalice or be enclosed by it. The seeds are spherical or broadly elliptical and are up to 0.5 mm long. Their surface is wavy like a network.

Chromosome number

Genetically is Nicotiana tabacum tetraploid , so he has four sets of chromosomes . The number of chromosomes is 2n = 48, less often 24 or 96.


It is believed that Virginian tobacco originated in western South America , but it was introduced to Central America and Mexico before Christopher Columbus discovered America . Today the species is widely cultivated and is occasionally encountered as a cultural refugee.

Virginian tobacco ( Nicotiana tabacum )


The Virginian tobacco is placed within the genus ( Nicotiana ) in the monotypical section Nicotiana . The species is a natural, allo tetraploid hybrid; the parent species identified were Nicotiana sylvestris as the maternal parent species and Nicotiana tomentosiformis as the paternal parent species. Nicotiana tabacum is the maternal parent of Nicotiana × digluta , the paternal parent of this hybrid is Nicotiana glutinosa .


The cultivated tobacco is usually divided into groups, the most important of which are:

  • Virginia tobacco : The taste when smoked is described as sweet, straw-like, and hay-like.
  • Burley tobacco : The taste is spicy, bitter, earthy and woody.
  • Oriental tobacco : the taste is sweet, heavy, sweaty and grassy.

See also

supporting documents


  • Johnnie L. Gentry Jr. and Paul C. Standley: Flora of Guatemala. Solanaceae , Fieldiana: Botany, Volume 24, Part X, Numbers 1 and 2. Field Museum of Natural History, 1974. (Description and Occurrence)

Individual evidence

  1. a b James J. Clarkson et al .: Phylogenetic relationships in Nicotiana (Solanaceae) inferred from multiple plastid DNA regions . In: Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution , Volume 33, 2004. pp. 75-90.
  2. ^ Erich Oberdorfer : Plant-sociological excursion flora for Germany and neighboring areas . With the collaboration of Angelika Schwabe and Theo Müller. 8th, heavily revised and expanded edition. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart (Hohenheim) 2001, ISBN 3-8001-3131-5 , pp.  823 .
  3. Nicotiana tabacum at In: IPCN Chromosome Reports . Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis
  4. Mechthild Busch-Stockfisch: Practical Guide to Sensor Technology in Product Development and Quality Assurance . Behr's Verlag, 2002, ISBN 978-3-86022-958-3

Web links

Commons : Virginian tobacco  album with pictures, videos and audio files