The miniscule seeds are planted in flat nursery beds, usually above ground, so they can be better maintained. The seedbeds are covered by cheesecloth, similar to what is used to grow shade-grown corojo wrapper tobacco. The seeds need a temperature of around 65 degrees (18 C) to germinate. The time of germination is about six to eight days. As the seedlings pop out of the ground they are intensively monitored. Weak and diseased seedlings or those partially bitten by insects are rooted out, to give space to the heartier, luckier seedlings. Each seedling is checked daily. Veguros make many more seedlings than they can grow for their land, as the veguro can only select the best seedlings for transfer. Each square yard in the seedbeds produces enough seedlings for 200 square yards of farmland. A seedbed that is 100 yards long by 3 yards wide would produce enough seedlings so as to cover a field of farmland the size of a football field.
Seed Beds (The Beginning)
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