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weed life

It’s not an Operating Room, not a Clean Room. via

Where real life and weed life cross.

The scene:

Six hundred sq ft, two bedroom duplex on West 420 and Avenue J with the co-owner living on the other side.

One bedroom is rigged as a marijuana grow room with every state, city, and county license, permit, and certificate posted on the door.

Their motto: “If you’re going to grow, grow right.”

It’s the same motto of every farmer who ever planted a seed.

Regular farmers and weed life farmers have more in common than you’d imagine.

Both count on the weather. One uses the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the local weather channel, and a bunion on their big toe to predict the weather.

Weed life takes environmental control.

They install an array of lights, fans, filters, humidifiers, air conditioners, and ducts rigged with ropes and pulleys from the ceiling. The lights lift as the plants mature.

They fill notebooks full of data related to watering, feeding, trimming.

All farmers care for their soil. From root rot and microbial infestations, bad soil means a bad crop. Customers on the medical side of weed life don’t want to hear about a bad crop any more than they want to hear their local pharmacist say their drugs have uncertain production runs.

The next time I read a report on Vicodin made on a hangover Monday being different than Vicodin made on TGIF will be the first.

Don’t we all want to believe we’re getting what we think we’re getting? A Buick Riviera is not an Oldsmobile 442. No one gets fooled on that one, at least they shouldn’t get fooled.

Weed life won’t get fooled again.

Like farmers gathering at the local grange, weed life gathers in social clubs to learn the latest growing techniques and trends.

How’s the lobbying effort? Who are the investors on the horizon? When will the industry normalize enough for standard banking?

A few years into weed life develops the sort of relationships you find in any community. Some are business, some are social, and some are romantic.

When things warm and grow on their own, weed life couples generate a special glow.

Master grower meets a business manager from one of the local sports industries and magic happens.

The grower has seen enough sketchy interest in weed life industry, and the business manager has seen enough upturns and downturns, that they sign contracts with money people as regular employees.

Starry eyed innocents on a floating vape cloud they’re not.

Weed life takes vision.

As growers and business advisors with enough dirt on their hands to smear three tea towels, they adhere to state requirements, no matter how mundane.

“Where will you put benches,” was one requirement for the first of many new greenhouses in the region.

“The state needs to know more than they want to know because it’s a new industry. This isn’t a nursery with nursery rules, though I don’t know why not. We’re just growing plants,” one grower said.

“In many ways we’re on the leading edge here. Some people still see a skinny stalk poking out of a milk carton on some college kids dorm window when they hear about marijuana grow sites.

“They don’t understand that it takes three phase power, the stuff that powers up shopping centers, on-site propane tanks, back up power, and hundreds of thousands of dollars in state of the art structural greenhouses.

“We do the same industrial site dirt-work to set foundations and get things rolling as any building site. It’s all purpose built, but we share common standards. The bigger the investment, the bigger the risk.

“Money people need to know what they’re getting. They’re nervous to begin with, but when they sink a few hundred grand into what still feels like a speculative market, look out. This isn’t your buddy picking up a $40 eighth from the men’s room in Goose Hollow. It’s industrial agriculture.

“Investors want returns, but we’re just the growers this time. No more, no less. We don’t want the problems we’ve seen. The tax problems, the legal problems, the personal problems. We’ll worry about the water problems and power problems, the soil problems and air problems. That’s enough.”

Stay local, check the network, ask the right questions, and avoid the crash and burn nature of Oregon’s cut and run past.

About David Gillaspie
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