Tobacco belongs to the plant family Solanaceae, which includes tomatoes, eggplant and peppers. There are several species of Nicotiana, including Nicotiana tabacum—smoking tobacco. Named cultivars of Nicotiana alata and Nicotiana sylvestris are grown as garden flowers prized for their deep shades.
Different Cultivar Heights
Each type of Nicotiana has its own growth habit and yearly height. Some types are common garden varieties and others are wild plants. Smoking tobacco is grown as a crop and as a garden plant.
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Garden Variety Yearly Heights
Flowering tobacco cultivars of Nicotiana alata are annuals that usually reach heights of between 12 to 24 inches. They have been bred to fill beds and borders. Nicotiana sylvestris is the tallest of the flowering tobacco garden cultivars. It reaches a height of 5 feet during a year.
Wild Variety Heights
Nicotiana glauca is an evergreen perennial with a shrubby habit that eventually grows to the size of a small tree—up to 25 feet. It can grow up to 10 feet in one year. Coyote tobacco is a strong-smelling wild annual that grows from British Columbia to Baja California. It can reach 40 inches in one year. Depending on climate Nicotiana obtusifolia (Desert Tobacco) behaves as an annual, biennial or perennial. It grows throughout the southwestern states and reaches up to 3 feet in one year.
Smoking Tobacco Height
Nicotiana tabacum is grown in tubs for its showy flowers. When field-grown as a crop the tops are cut back to enlarge the bottom leaves. It grows up to 10 feet in a year.
- Univ. of Illinois Extension, Urbana: Ornamental Flowering Tobacco
- University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture: Plant of the Week, Ornamental Tobacco
- Santa Monica Mountains Trails Council: Tree Tobacco
- Fine Gardening Magazine: Nicotiana glauca (Tree tobacco)
- Washington State Department of Natural Resources: Nicotiana attenuata
- Southeastern Arizona Wildflowers: Nicotiana obtusifolia – Desert Tobacco
- Cal's Plant of the Week: Nicotiana tabacum
- University of Florida IFAS Extension: Growing Tobacco in the Home Garden
- U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service: Nicotiana