An historic election that was bitter, divisive, and a huge stress to everyone but it had a clear winner, cannabis. Legalized in some form in every state it was on the ballot for, it gave us Arizona Prop 207. The passing of 207 has been seen as both a positive and negative, but passing of prop 207 has allowed for home cultivation; I have decided to embrace it. Frequent collaborator, Glorious Extracts representative @glorious_extracts and cannagar extraordinaire @smokeeejcannagars (@Smokeeej) spoke with me about a collaborative effort to educate the cannabis community. After an enthusiastic smoke session, we decided that teaching home cultivation was going to be our focus. With 15 years of professional cultivation experience between us and the desire to remove fear from the prospect of growing your own cannabis, we will embark on this journey as a community. The goal is to equip anyone with the knowledge to get started, and hopefully succeed in home cultivation. We will help guide and entertain anyone willing to invest the time, effort, and resources to succeed.
I have about five years of combined cultivation experience from consulting here in Arizona, and also full-time for an OMMP (Oregon Medical Marijuana Program) Farm. Beyond that I have been in the cannabis industry as an inventory manager buying pounds, in an edible kitchen infusing, and as a consultant for several dispensaries as well as a supplier. The excitement of educating and using our platforms to help others to start cultivating is a joy. We are working hard, and combining forces with a few sources of knowledge that can provide the tips, tricks, and secrets to your successful grow. We start at our seeds, and thanks to @Smokeeej, we have our first round of seeds that his followers helped to choose. We get a breakdown from him!
The goal is to equip anyone with the knowledge to get started, and hopefully succeed in home cultivation. ADRIan Ryan
Let’s talk with @Smokeeej to understand his background in cultivation and his time in the medical cannabis industry.
I had dabbled in growing a few plants here and there, but in 2012, I got my first cannabis patient as a caregiver in Arizona and started cultivating cannabis on a whole different level. My first experience was growing a cool little Blue Moonshine plant that I took on as an adoption. It was in a 2-gallon pot and I vegged it for about 4 weeks under a $50 LED light that I got off of Craig’s List inside a closet in my house. I was so scared that it would smell, that the neighbors would find out… I was on a paranoid level and needed some indica. That little Blue Moonshine plant piqued my interest in growing cannabis and a marijuana monster took over our house. I have grown in many sized tents throughout my grow career, started from seed, taken clones, and sold cannabis on the legal wholesale market. My largest grow was a 60 plant grow (5 patients x 12 plants = 60 plants). We procured a 3-bedroom house in midtown Tucson and after school every day (I was teaching 4th grade at the time) we built this grow house and successfully flowered 60 plants. We used the full Advanced Nutrients line and produced some of the most amazing marijuana I have ever seen. I finally lost my grow rights in April 2019 when my patient moved back within the 25-mile zone and I have been aching to grow ever since.
My industry experience started in 2014 when I was the assistant manager of Nature Med in Tucson, Arizona and I got my first feel for educating patients in cannabis. It wasn’t until May 2018 when Nirvana dispensaries took over a small spot in Northern Tucson and I got my chance to sell cannabis on a whole different level. We were uber successful at that little Oro Valley spot; however, we were so successful that we were kicked out of Oro Valley at the end of August. From there, I helped design the user interface of WeedWare, a seed-to-sale software and helped implement the software around the country. At the same time, I was selling Zonka Flower, Zonka Rosin, Glorious Extracts and Pura Earth cartridges. I was hustling. In January 2020, I started working exclusively with Glorious Extracts and we became partners, working side-by-side to get Glorious Extracts and @SmokeeeJ‘s Cannagars to market.
Over the years, I have been ordering seeds and getting seeds from many people and vendors. I got some TGA and SubCool Seeds back in 2013 from an order through a homie. Deep Purple, Chernobyl, Spacebomb, and Jacks Cleaner II make up some of the amazing TGA seeds I am running. I also grabbed some LSD and Pineapple Chunk from Barneys Farm back in the day. However, one of my favorite stories is when I received a bunch of seeds from Crockett’s Farm via my growmie (grow homie) down in San Diego and when my Underchunk turned out to be male (and I didn’t know it until it was WAYYYYYY too late), it pollinated all of my different strains and it made up new strains like Purple Chunk (Deep Purple x UnderChunk) or Space Chunk (Mars OG x UnderChunk). The last breeder that I met, and received seeds from was Swamp Donkey Seeds. Most of their genetics use Cherry Mountain as the base for their genetics. I have grown all of the seeds at least once, except for the chunk series. I only grew Space Chunk once. It was small, bushy, and purple.
Don’t let yourself feel overwhelmed with the idea of starting your own home grow operation… @smokeeej
Questions and planning to ask yourself like…
Smokeeej, how will you grow these plants?
If you use seeds, you have to start them, sex them, and grow them through the vegetative phase. This whole process is long because the seeds take time and if you have a male, unless you are breeding, that is a wasted plant and must be killed. If I am allotted 6 plants, I will plant 6 seeds and hope for 3-4 females.
How you will grow is more than the number of plants, we also have to think about the medium we are choosing to grow in. Soil, coco, deep water culture, rock wool, ebb and flow… all of these options have a plethora of equipment and problems that come along with them. For a first-time grower, go small and start with a 3×3 or 4×4 tent that you can throw an LED light in, and then start growing with minimal heat.
Where you will grow is a very important piece of the puzzle. A 4×4 doesn’t take up much room, but you also need a spot for running a few plants in vegetative mode so that they are ready for the next flowering cycle. And clones/seeds need a special place to grow as well.
Because of the varied light cycles of the flowering and vegetation schedule, you should have the flowering area completely dark with zero light leaks during the 12-hour dark period every night.
Ok, the takeaway here, is we need to look at a space to germinate, grow seedlings, clones, getting everything to the vegetative state. I will be going over exactly what gear I start with in my propagation/veg area in next month’s issue, but we will be posting to our cannabis cultivation forum on our Cannabis Cactus app as well, or you can follow @smokeeej and myself @drogado_del_gato for updates on Instagram. I will also be updating to our app forum, in the connect area which you can join in our cultivation topic. Aside from my updates, you can also follow @smokeeej on his website Smokeeej.com, Instagram, YouTube, Weedtube, and when he joins me for our Cactus App content.
1. Find flavors and smells that interest you 2. Keep it simple, do your research and stick to your plan 3. Look for traits, growth, THC, and yields
We discussed seeds on Instagram live, and those are the cliff notes from Umami. He might be coming at us with something cool further in our journey. Follow @Umamiseedco where you can catch drops, and core values of flavor over everything. He provides us with some of his top suggestions for new growers looking to start and when finding genetics.
Let’s see what another source for seeds has to say. Welcome @SeedSquatch, what would you say matters when it comes to choosing seeds and genetics?
Know your source.
Know what you want.
Find something that produces well.
We thank SeedSquatch for the insights, and providing readers a special of 5 seed packs for $250 over the holidays, so you can shop for SeedSquatch seeds to get started.
The truth is that anyone can grow cannabis at home, and finding out if it interests you can only be to your benefit. adrian ryan
Let’s go to Smokeeej on some of what we have coming up for clones, and germination.
Get clones. I hate clones because they bring in disease and pests… but they are already proven winners, and already female. But to me, the hardiest plants come from seed.
To pop beans, I do a couple different methods.
1. Wet paper towel in a zip lock bag. Throw a few beans in a wet paper towel sandwich and then slide that into a zip lock bag. They should sprout out the tap root within a few days. Store the bag in a warm dark place. Plant in your chosen medium when they sprout.
2. Rooting Cubes – Soak in PH 5.0 water for 24 hours and then stick them in a humidity dome and store in a warm dark place. Stick your beans in the hole and come back and check every day. As they sprout and come out of the cube, plant in a small pot and stick under a light.
3. Put some soil in a small pot/red solo cup, plant your seed, wet well and cover in cellophane until it sprouts.
I’ll be using method 3 for my seeds!
The assumption is that, with any of these methods, you can find success in starting your seeds. We are looking to get some amazing clones, perhaps some exotics in time but let’s start with some of the basics. When you pop your seed, depending on the method will have some tips to secure your seedling, and you can get it into the veg area in about two and a half weeks. You will be watching how it roots, looks, and behaves to track the health of your plant so pay attention to the roots. The medium we are using will be soil, and we are not using much beyond that. I will be using the second method described and building a veg area to suit my space. I will start my seeds and get them into a dark area with a heating blanket, with moving to my veg area not long after. I will write more on how I did this in the near future, as well as the equipment I used.
The truth is that anyone can grow cannabis at home, and finding out if it interests you can only be to your benefit. Do research, ask questions, and join us in learning more about cannabis. We will be partnering with some suppliers to get our Cactus crew cultivating. Check in on our next issue to learn more, find exclusive deals, and start you at home cultivation today. Thank you to Umami seeds, and Seedsquatch for their insight and be sure to check them out for exclusive seeds to start growing. Download the Cannabis Cactus app to follow our posts of future grow activity, and check out @smokeeej on Instagram or smokeeej.com for more resources.
Adrian Ryan was born in New Mexico and attended school since elementary in Arizona, his time growing up split between the two states. He hopes to work towards recreational cannabis, enjoys reading, writing, film, music, and also writing music.