Posts Tagged ‘outdoor grow


Support your local cartel

How many of us need to admit that the war on drugs is lost before we finally declare defeat and go home?  Does anyone in law enforcement or government seriously believe that keeping marijuana illegal does anything but enrich drug cartels?

The latest news from – of all places – Wisconsin:  ‘Marijuana Megafarm’ Hidden In Wisconsin National Forest

Cheesehead weedgrowers in the forest?   Nope.

Drug investigators believe Mexican cartels are largely responsible…Growing the drug here helps them get it to major American markets more quickly. They often import unskilled laborers from Mexico to help find the best land and tend their crops.

But why go all the way to Mexico when you can find good help right here?  The feds found evidence of money being wired to Modesto.  And then there’s this:

An unnamed informant arrested at the Seymour house told detectives on Wednesday he was in San Jose, Calif., several months ago when he was approached by a man who asked him if he wanted to work at a ranch. This person arranged for the man to travel to Green Bay, where he met Nunez-Guzman.

The informant said he helped dry marijuana at the house and Nunez-Guzman, also known as “Green Bay,” was the boss. He came to the house every 15 days to check on the operation and sent a runner into the woods every three days to check the crop.

Yep.  It’s that easy.  Time to declare “Mission Accomplished” and stop all this foolishness.


The Ungreen Movement, or, How Green was my Chronic?

It was reasonably easy to maintain the pose of the green smoker in Los Angeles, being so far removed from the production end of the process as I was.  The top-shelf medicine my partner brought home from the dispensary to treat her crippling migraines was organic and therefore, earth friendly.  Because organic weed must be good for the planet, right?  I mean, it’s organic.  Ipso facto, green.

I may have also taken it for granted that the top shelf stuff in L.A. would have to be indoor-grown because…well…it’s L.A.  Where else would you grown a plant in a city, especially in a city whose architectural style might best be described as neo-Death Star?  Not the most inviting locale for the cultivation of a living crop requiring such esoteric conditions as soil, water and air.

I’m both happy and sad to report that living in the Emerald Triangle has, once and for all, shattered my illusion of integrity.  But city tastes rule the market, concrete or no.  In the months that I’ve lived here, I’ve heard the same story repeated by growers (both indoor and out) and buyers (both wholesale and retail):  indoor is the bomb, and that’s what commands the top prices.  Don’t believe me?  Look at the “Walmart of Weed” set to open in Oakland, CA; a 15,000 square-foot space dedicated to Operation (closet) Overgrow.  Lights, chemicals, action!

As I look out the windows of my cabin in the woods, onto an edenic scene of tall redweeds, brilliant green mosses, fairy circles ringed with mushrooms and the forest primeval, I can’t help but feel as though a horrible misjudgment has come to rule the industry that owes a big part of its existence to this place.

The Emerald Triangle didn’t rise to mythic status in the world of weedcraft because it has the best subterranean grow rooms.  The baristas in my L.A. pharmacy didn’t whisper in hushed tones about Mendo weed or Humboldt fields of green because of the lighting fixtures.  Beyond the reservoirs of knowledge, beyond the fabled genetics, the Emerald Triangle has a reputation because of what and where it is.  I hope that doesn’t get lost in the hunt for more and more wasteful high-tech highs.

It may be too late to roll back the tide, but I can’t help but be a little sad that, in place of the connoisseur’s celebration of terroir, the emphasis is on the machine-like regularity of a stony fordism.

Hey Emerald Triangle growers: I really hope you’re looking to Napa and not Modesto for your inspiration.

Hey L.A. smokers (and other urban tokers): I really hope you don’t want to celebrate  the ganja-equivalent of Thunderbird, especially at the expense of regional distinctiveness and environmental sustainability.

Because the worst part of this elevation of hothouse flowers as the pinnacle of the industry is that it rests upon a hidden foundation of electric lies.  After touring one of the pristine, state-of-the-art indoor grow-ops in my new neighborhood, I asked the owner about his PG&E bill.  Mine averages about $70-$100 – that’s for every electrical appliance in my home (lights, well pump, fridge, oven, dishwasher, water heater), as well as the 4-6 plants that my partner grows legally (indoors, mind you, using an environmentally-friendly system that she came up with all by her super-genius self – more on that later, if there’s any interest).  I expected the mid-sized grow-op to have a high electrical bill, but I was blown away when this grower said that he claims a disability to get a break on his bill (at tax-payer expense, I thought to myself but didn’t say out loud), and still pays something between $1,500-$2,000/month.  It’s easy to forget when the power magically arrives at the flip of a switch, but using that much juice ain’t green.

A big part of this enviro-problem is the result of prohibition, but tastes being what they are, I’m not sure indoor growers can be easily tempted back out into the light of day once the “all clear” sounds, at least, not without some serious pressure being imposed from the community.

If the laws in California change – and based upon the most recent reporting on proposed ballot initiatives, it looks like that’s a strong possibility – and if this hidden industry is allowed to come out of the shadows, let’s hope it comes all of way out, into the sunshine.  One way to keep the jobs associated with the Emerald Triangle’s newly-traditional industry in the Emerald Triangle is to build a market base for the product that can only grow here.  You can hang a grow light in a SoCali basement as easily as in a Humboldt grow house, but you can’t replicate a redwood forest terroir in a concrete jungle.

I guess what I’m saying is: Do you even know what you have here, stoners?  I don’t know if the Emerald Triangle’s good  reputation comes from the ground or from the culture that grew here like the weed I like, but this area is magic.  I’m not the wizard that some of the growers I’ve met are, so I don’t know where the magic comes from – some combination of history, tradition, microclimate, soil chemistry…high CEC Montmorillinite Clay?  Whatever it is, I don’t think it comes with a bill from PG&E.

Legal Disclaimer:

This blog is for entertainment purposes only. We neither engage in nor endorse any illegal activity; any and all indications to the contrary are purely fictional. Purely fictional.