Monday, September 19, 2011

Southern Maryland Tour - Part I - The Tobacco Farm

This afternoon we left to do a bit of touring. We decided to visit a winery, and the only one open on a Monday was Friday's Creek, up in Northern Calvert County.  However, on the way we stumbled upon one of the only working tobacco farms left in Southern Maryland:

A field of tobacco, with the tobacco cut and staked and ready to hang in the tobacco barn.
A tobacco barn, loaded with drying tobacco.  Southern MD still has lots of tobacco barns, designed so that boards can be swung out to allow air in to help dry the hanging tobacco.

You can see the tobacco better in this shot, hung on the tobacco stakes, still green, and starting to dry. 

Tobacco was the main reason that Maryland was settled back in the colonial era, when the British first became addicted to it.  It was an important crop until fairly recently, when the state started a buyout program to discourage it.
Tobacco was even hung up above the rafters.
A tractor with a load of staked tobacco, getting ready to be hung in the barn
A tobacco field in front, with field corn in the back.  According to the owner of the winery, a lot of the tobacco was knocked down by the storms, and the harvest may be damaged.  This batch looked lower than it should be

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