Nicotiana tabacum, or cultivated tobacco, is an annually-grown herbaceous plant. It is the most commonly grown of all plants in the genus Nicotiana, and its leaves are commercially grown in many countries to be processed into tobacco.
Tobacco is an annual or short-lived perennial, erect, unbranched plant with a well-developed taproot. It can grow 70 - 250 cm tall. The most widely grown tobacco species, it is a rich source of the alkaloid nicotine and has a long history of use as a medicinal plant and social stimulant. It was cultivated in the Americas well before the arrival of the Europeans and is now widely grown in many other parts of the world including the USA, India and China. Originally used as chewing tobacco, later smoking tobacco varieties were selected. It is a plant of moderate elevations in the tropics, where it is found at elevations from 800 - 1,800 metres.