Medical marijuana is now legal in 18 states and the District of Columbia, recreational use is legal in Washington and Colorado, and many states are decriminalizing possession of small amounts of weed. With commercial sales already topping $1.5 billion in the U.S., pot is well on its way to becoming a big business concern. An ex-Microsoft manager is trying to create a Starbucks-style weed franchise, and big tobacco companies are rumored to be plotting marijuana sales in future.
But if you’ve got a green thumb, and want to get ahead of the curve, you won’t have to shill your hard-earned loot for someone else’s product. The savvy home grower can start their very own pot farm!
“Do you also think it’s time for a new challenge in your life?” asks PotFarm.com. “Are you thinking about setting up a marijuana farm? Growing marijuana is quite easy if you know how to do it. Luckily, we provide you with lots of information on this topic.”
The site, which has a link to Pot Farm, a Facebook game the site bills as “the most popular underground farming simulator around the globe,” is a sort of Helpful Hints compendium for growing weed. It abounds with advice like, “Germinate the marijuana seeds within a bunch of paper towels,” “plant the seeds into moist soil,” “don’t forget to buy a lamp,” and “make sure everything goes well.” The latter is accomplished by, well, looking at your plants on a regular basis, but have no fear: “Luckily, there aren’t many things that can go wrong, because growing marijuana is very easy.”
Pot Farm also includes a link to the Nirvana Shop, a U.K.-based website that ships worldwide (except to Australia) and offers “stealth packaging.” There, you can purchase indoor, outdoor, feminized, and medical marijuana seeds with names like Northern Light, Urban Poison, and White Castle. You can also buy nutrients that will “make your grow room thrive”; seeds cost in the neighborhood of ₤20 to ₤30 for five to 10 seeds.
You can connect to Hannah the Cannabot, a ‘bot for all your cannabis-related questions’ who wears a bikini top.
The Nirvana Shop is part of the Weedportal, a site that serves the cannabis community. There, aspiring farmers can use the Weedportal Knowledge Base to answer questions like, “how do I germinate seeds?” and connect to Hannah the Cannabot, a “bot for all your cannabis-related questions” who wears a bikini top. The site will also connect you to HowtoGrowWeed.us, which is, well, exactly what it sounds like. The site provides insight about topics like whether to grow marijuana inside or outside (both have their pros and cons; growing indoors, for example, is less likely to result in a visit from law enforcement, but outdoor plants tend to be much bigger than their indoor counterparts), and the differences between regular or feminized cannabis seeds. (Only feminized seeds produce harvestable weed, so you need to be able to recognize and cull male plants before they fertilize the females.)
Understanding strain selection is another prominent feature of the site; like any other crop, cannabis has numerous genetic variants; its most common strains are sativa and indica. Where the former is taller and offers a “headier” effect, the latter is dense, short and has a “body effect.” Essentially, there is little difference between trying to decide which kind of pot to grow and deciding whether to grow plum or cherry tomatoes; it’s all in the eye — and palate — of the beholder.
How to Grow Weed also features a link to Pot Law, a site that provides arguably the most valuable resource to aspiring pot farmers: legal advice. It contains, among other things, a list of lawyers who handle marijuana cases, marijuana usage fines and sentences by state, and a guide to where recreational and/or medical marijuana usage is legal.
Resource-wise, there has never been a better time to be a marijuana farmer: the sites mentioned here are just a handful of the many that have sprouted around the Internet. Of course, there are still considerable challenges; no one growing kale or zucchini has to consider the relative safety risks of growing outdoor plants. But the winds of change are gathering strength and scattering their (feminized cannabis) seeds across the land.