Before you start the Grow Op, you need to get familiar with the law you are going to operate under. This article covers the initial steps to let you understand how to arrange the grow op in the USA.
Herein we try to cover the general requirements for those who in medical needs the medical treatment and rely entirely on it.
|1||Alaska||1998||1 oz usable; 6 plants (3 mature, 3 immature)|
|2||Arizona||2010||2.5 oz usable per 14-day period; 12 plants|
|3||Arkansas||2016||2.5 oz usable per 14-day period;|
|4||California||1996||8 oz usable per; 6 mature or 12 immature plants|
|5||Colorado||2000||2 oz usable; 6 plants (3 mature, 3 immature)|
|6||Connecticut||2012||2.5 oz usable|
|7||Delaware||2011||6 oz usable|
|9||Hawaii||2000||4 oz usable, 10 plants|
|10||Illinois||2013||2.5 ounce of usable cannabis during a period of 14 days|
|11||Louisiana||2016||One-month supply, amount to be determined|
|12||Maine||1999||2.5 ounces usable, 6 plants|
|13||Maryland||2014||30-day supply, determined by physician|
|14||Massachusetts||2012||60-day supply for personal medical use (10 oz)|
|15||Michigan||2008||2.5 usable, 12 plants|
|16||Minnesota||2014||30-day supply of non-smokable marijuana|
|17||Missouri||2018||4 oz dried marijuana per 30-day period; 6 plants|
|18||Montana||2004||1 oz usable; 4-plants (mature); 12 seedlings|
|19||Nevada||2000||2.5 oz usable; 12 plants|
|20||New Hampshire||2013||Two ounces of usable cannabis during 10-day period|
|21||New Jersey||2010||3 oz usable|
|22||New Mexico||2007||6 oz usable; 16 plants (4 mature, 12 immature)|
|23||New York||2014||30-day supply non-smokable marijuana|
|24||North Dakota||2016||3 oz per 14-day period|
|25||Ohio||2016||Maximum of 90-day supply, amount to be determined|
|26||Oklahoma||2018||3 oz usable; 12 plants (6 mature; 6 immature)|
|27||Oregon||1998||24 oz usable; 24 plants (6 mature; 18 immature)|
|29||Rhode Island||2006||2.5 oz usable; 12 plants|
|30||Utah||2018||118 gram of non-processed cannabis|
|31||Vermont||2004||2 oz usable; 9 plants (2 mature; 7 immature)|
|32||Washington||1998||8 oz usable; 6 plants|
|33||Washington, DC||2010||2 oz dried|
|34||West Virginia||2017||30-day supply (amount TBD)|
Disclaimer: Please verify this information per state before you proceed any further.
Growing marijuana at home (so-called “home grows”) is illegal under U.S. federal law. However, according to the U.S. Sentencing Commission and the FBI, 99% of marijuana arrests are made under state law rather than federal law. Furthermore, states aren’t required to enforce federal law. As a result, in most (though not all) situations, state laws effectively determine whether marijuana growers face a criminal risk for their home grows. And, state laws vary dramatically.
You can group states into essentially three groups, based on their cultivation laws:
- States where growing pot for recreational and medicinal use is illegal;
- States where you can grow pot for medicinal use
- States where you can grow pot for recreational use
States that allow recreational cultivation typically have restrictions on the number of plants that adults are able to grow. Many of these states loosen these restrictions for registered patients growing for medicinal use.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Alabama.
Adults aged 21 and older can legally grow marijuana at home. The grower does not have to register with the authorities. One person can grow up to 6 marijuana plants, although only three of the six plants can be mature and flowering at any one time.
If there are at least two 21-year-old adults in the same household, that household can grow up to 12 plants at the same time. However, the limit does not increase if there are more than two adults in the household.
A qualifying patient or the qualifying patient’s designated caregiver who has been approved by the Arizona Department of Health Services may cultivate medical marijuana, so long as the qualifying patient resides more than 25 miles from the closest dispensary.
Any individual who cultivates medical marijuana must do so in a surrounded and protected area. The individual can grow up to 12 plants.
There is no higher limit if there are more than two qualifying patients who reside in the same household.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Arkansas.
Anyone who is above the age of 21 can grow marijuana. Each residence is allowed to grow six plants, no matter how many adults reside there.
There is a difference in what Prop 215 and SB240 says about growing marijuana by a medical cardholder. The former states that a medical cardholder can grow as much as needed, and the latter states that only six mature plants or 12 immature plants can be grown.
Adults over the age of 21 can grow marijuana. The individual can raise up to 6 plants with three plants flowering at once. A house with multiple qualifying adults can grow up to a maximum of 12 plants.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Connecticut. There is no producer’s license for medical marijuana in Connecticut.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Delaware.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Florida.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Georgia.
It is legal for registered patients and registered caregivers to grow marijuana for medicinal purposes in Hawaii. However, growers must register with the state government, and they can grow a maximum of 10 plants
It is not legal to grow marijuana in Idaho.
While it is illegal to use marijuana for recreational purposes in Illinois, medical marijuana is allowed. However, it must be procured from a dispensary. Only companies have access to the medical marijuana cultivator license, making it illegal for individuals to grow marijuana for any purpose.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Indiana.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Iowa.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Kansas.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Kentucky.
While recreational marijuana remains outlawed, medicinal use is allowed. It is not legal to grow marijuana in Louisiana. The only legal growers in the state are the agriculture centers at Louisiana State University and Southern University.
Only adults who are above the age of 21 can grow marijuana. In each residence, a maximum of 6 mature plants and 12 immature plants can be cultivated
It is not legal to grow marijuana in Maryland. It is only allowed for medicinal use, and it must be purchased from state-licensed dispensaries.
Only adults who are above the age of 21 can grow marijuana. In each home, up to 6 plants can be grown. If there are more than two adults, 12 plants can be grown
Adults who are older than 21 can grow up to 12 marijuana plants at home. Medical caregivers can grow up to 12 plants for up to 5 patients, meaning that caregivers can grow up to 60 plants for patients and an additional 12 plants for themselves. Caregivers must register with the state.
It is not legal to grow marijuana in Minnesota. It is only allowed for medicinal use and must be purchased from one of the 8 Cannabis Patient Centers in the state.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Mississippi.
Growing marijuana for recreational use is illegal in Missouri. Beginning in July of 2019, Missouri will accept applications for medical marijuana cards. The state plans to allow medical marijuana cardholders to grow marijuana at home in “an appropriately secured facility”.
Patients who require marijuana for medicinal use can grow up to 4 mature plants or 12 seedlings. However, growing for recreational use is not allowed.
It is not legal to grow marijuana for either recreational or medicinal use.
Any individual above the age of 21 can grow marijuana at home, but only if there are no state-licensed retail marijuana stores within 25 miles of the home.
An adult can only grow up to 6 plants and a maximum of 12 plants per household. A registered medical marijuana user may grow up to 12 plants provided they live 25 miles from the nearest marijuana dispensary or if the person is unable to travel to a medical marijuana dispensary due to illness or lack of transportation.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Hampshire, for either recreational or medicinal use.
It is not legal to grow marijuana for either recreational or medicinal use.
A Qualified Patient who has a Personal Production License issued by the N.M. Department of Health can grow a maximum of 12 seedlings and four mature plants. A single location cannot have more than two personal production licenses
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in New York.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in North Carolina.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in North Dakota.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Ohio.
A registered medical marijuana patient who needs marijuana for medicinal use can grow it. Only six mature plants and six seedlings can be grown at a time.
It is legal to grow marijuana provided you are older than 21. For recreational use, four plants per residence can be grown. Patients registered with the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program can grow up to 6 plants.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Pennsylvania.
Qualifying Patients that register with the Rhode Island Department of Health can grow up to 12 mature plants. For residences with more than 2 adults, there is a limit of 24 mature plants per residence.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in South Carolina
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in South Dakota.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Tennessee.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Texas
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Utah.
Adults older than 21 can grow marijuana. The limits vary depending on whether the marijuana is for recreational or medicinal use. For recreational use, two mature plants and four immature plants may be grown per residence. For medicinal use, registered medical marijuana cardholders can grow up to 2 mature plants and seven immature plants
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Virginia
The cultivation of marijuana for recreational purposes is not allowed in the state of Washington. However, registered medical marijuana patients may grow up to 6 plants at home. If the healthcare practitioner determines the patient requires more than that, they may authorize up to 15 plants.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in West Virginia.
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Wisconsin
It is not legal to grow marijuana at home in Wyoming
Living with a greenhouse in your house is hazardous to your health
Living with a greenhouse in your home is hazardous to your health — so hazardous that adults who expose children to such an environment are guilty of child abuse. John Martyny, an associate professor for the University of Colorado Denver, said Sept. 10.
Martyny, working at the request of Colorado law enforcement agencies, led a research team that conducted environmental tests of 30 indoor marijuana grow operations in Denver. Of the grow operations tested, 20 had a “medical marijuana component,” and at least two were supplying medical marijuana dispensaries, authorities said. Researchers found such extreme levels of mold and spores in the homes, commercial offices, and warehouses they tested that Petri dishes and field-testing equipment “topped out” and couldn’t record the unexpectedly high levels, Martyny said. You can read the study’s findings here.
According to a press release jointly issued by the Colorado Drug Investigators Association (CDIA), National Jewish Health and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA):
(Martyny’s) research showed that in residential and commercial structures, it was difficult to control chemical contamination from pesticides and fertilizers. The study also showed that plant irrigation resulted in increased moisture that could damage building material, result in excessive mold growth, and pose a risk of fire and electrocution. The study shows that high-elevated airborne mold spores within these structures subject occupants, emergency personnel, and other individuals to significant potential health hazards. Potential health effects include hypersensitivity pneumonitis, allergic rhinitis, asthma, and other respiratory diseases. Another concern was elevated carbon dioxide levels, which, if generated using fossil fuel combustion, can result in carbon monoxide production resulting in significant health effects, or death, to exposed individuals.
As for those “other individuals” cited above, count unsuspecting neighbors and office workers — and renters and homebuyers — among them, Martyny said. Again, from the press release, the study shows
… others may be impacted as well, particularly in multi-family buildings, which may allow chemicals used and mold spores to be introduced into ventilation systems, exposing other residents.
… Since these operations may go undetected, an unsuspecting family buying the residence at a later date may be put at risk of adverse health effects due to residual mold contamination.
And then there are children. Martyny reported that he and his research teams found grow operations in homes where children lived — and he minced no words:
“I would consider it child abuse,” he said. “Children living in an atmosphere like this are very likely to develop asthma and pulmonary disease they will carry for the rest of their lives. …I would be happy to testify for the district attorney’s office (that) the dangers are too significant to have children be in the grow ops.”
While Martyny’s research in Colorado focused on indoor marijuana grow operations, he said the same environmental harms could result from the cultivation of similar densities of any plant, such as tomatoes or snap peas. But hardly anyone grows veggies in their basement. And while marijuana is legal to grow for medical purposes outdoors in Colorado, growers typically opt not to do so for several reasons. Chief among them:
- fears about theft and crime linked to their operations, and
- the difficulties of creating high-potency marijuana outdoors. Martyny cited numerous examples of indoor grow operations where utilities and air vents had been disconnected and/or reconfigured to adjust levels of carbon dioxide to increase the potency of the plants — bolstering assertions from law enforcement officers and medical researchers that much of today’s marijuana — especially once the use of pesticides, fertilizers and other chemicals is factored in — is not natural and contains harmful compounds unknown to users.
Martyny’s research is well respected in law enforcement circles. He has studied the environmental impact of illicit substance production — especially marijuana and methamphetamine (so-called “meth labs”) — for law enforcement agencies in Canada and the United States for more than a decade. First responders and officials charged with investigating and removing elements of indoor drug operations have experienced health problems from their exposure — one Colorado, law enforcement officer, was hospitalized in critical condition because of his work in a marijuana grow house — and also worried about long-term health risks associated with their work. Martyny’s research on indoor marijuana grow operations in Colorado — funded by a Justice Assistance Grant and money from Colorado’s police and sheriffs’ associations — also resulted in recommendations about how law enforcement officials should dress, equip and otherwise protect themselves while working in such environments.
How to Setup a Greenhouse for Cannabis Production
There are many greenhouses around. They are mostly dedicated to any type of perennials to grow in. However, the main purpose of this article is to specify what is really required for cannabis grow op, especially for medical needs.
First of all, marijuana growing is different with respect to the correct growing and how it’s arranged and furnished inside. Nevertheless, there are some aspects of greenhouse construction that most marijuana growers will want to include to provide the best environment for their crops.
With any greenhouse design, it is important to keep the end purpose in mind right from the start. Greenhouses are built to provide your crop, whatever it is, with the ideal growing environment. If you are growing annuals or perennials, you may need to build some flexibility in your greenhouse design to accommodate different plants with different climatic needs. If you are only growing tomatoes, your greenhouse can be designed built to focus entirely on maximizing the production efficiencies and yield of that plant.
Marijuana is a controlled substance, so assuming you have jumped through all the regulatory hoops to be awarded one of the coveted cultivation licenses, it is unlikely that your marijuana greenhouse will grow any plants outside the cannabis family. So for growing marijuana plants, you want to focus on the ideal environment for cannabis.
The Four Stages of Growth for Cannabis Production
The stages you grow marijuana to effect the zoning planning inside the greenhouse. These zones are:
Zone 1: Marijuana mother plants
Zone 2: Marijuana clones (cuttings)
Zone 3: Marijuana in the vegetative stage
Zone 4: Marijuana in the flowering stage
How to plan for expansion right from the start
If you are already growing crops successfully in a greenhouse, it is easy to focus your cannabis business energies on the crop growing side. But losing sight of this as a whole new business with different customers and different distribution channels will get you in trouble. Start your cannabis greenhouse sized for your near future customer demands but with scalability in mind to accommodate your longer-term business goals. We work with growers all over the world, designing greenhouses for multiple stage expansion plans. A little extra time, in the beginning, can save you months of headaches and additional costs down the road.
Balance Production Efficiencies Considering Medical Supply
Marijuana growers are used to growing in smaller spaces than most commercial growers. Greenhouse structures and modern horticultural growing technology offer enormous production benefits compared to typical indoor growing. But where large zones increase production efficiency, they also increase crop risk from disease or infestation spreading. When you consider the medical imperative of providing consistent medication to your patients, there is a reasonable tradeoff between production scale zones and isolation segmenting.
Zone segmentation can easily be achieved with inside gable walls and sidewalls, a properly designed greenhouse heating and cooling system, and good environmental controls. Blackout curtains (also known as light deprivation screens), irrigation, and fertigation systems are all designed by greenhouse industry experts to be centrally controlled for multiple zones.
We are setting Up the Ideal Environment—factors for considerations
- Geographic location. I cannot overstress the importance of this point. Not all greenhouse manufacturers or cannabis growing consultants have experience in different geographical locations. Many people will try and sell you the greenhouse that has been successful in Colorado, but if you are in Southern California, Puerto Rico, or Alaska, the greenhouse you need is going to be very different.
Your outside temperature fluctuations, wind speeds, humidity levels, snow loads, and light levels all factor into what equipment and the style of structure that is best for you and your crop.
We offer the polycarbonate greenhouses of different thickness depending on the geographical location and ASHRAE environmental data. These greenhouses can come furnished or empty for your convenience. However, we can provide you with a full set depending on your area required to set up and operate your production.
- Inside greenhouse temperature. Cannabis, like many crops, likes different temperatures at different stages of growth. As a generalization, you want your greenhouse temperatures between 65 to 85° F. Your greenhouse heating, and cooling systems need to consider the temperature needs and controls for each zone. Inexperienced consultants may tell you that you don’t need as much heating because the lights generate a lot of heat, but as you will see in the sections below, cannabis typically wants only 18 or 12 hours of light, so your coldest nighttime temperatures will still typically have no lights on at all.
We can provide all the required HVAC equipment to satisfy the indoor temperatures.
- Managing humidity inside a cannabis greenhouse. We all know the effects humidity has on plants. Too much, and you invite disease, too little, and you dry out the plant and hinder growth. As with any crop, knowing the humidity that the plant thrives in is important when designing a greenhouse. While cannabis in the vegetative stage actually likes a higher humidity level, it prefers lower humidity when in flower. Greenhouse manufacturers who understand this can help you build flexibility into your greenhouse designs. There are several dehumidification units on the market, and for areas needing the ability to add humidity misting systems can be added into the greenhouse design.
- Ventilation recommendations for greenhouses tie into temperature and humidity needs. Greenhouse ventilation breaks down into two main categories: 1) natural ventilation covers roof vents, sidewall vents and rollup sides, and 2) forced air ventilation requires mechanical systems like exhaust fans, and sometimes cooling pads. Please note that cooling pads are not a good option for high humidity regions. The evaporative cooling doesn’t work in high humidity areas.
In addition to ventilation to remove hot air from inside the greenhouse, most greenhouse growers put airflow fans inside the greenhouse to circulate air movement, which is good for keeping healthy plants. Greenhouse manufacturers can provide you with a greenhouse plan layout showing fan locations that optimize airflow coverage.
- Adjusting lighting levels will increase yields in a cannabis greenhouse. One of the biggest advantages that greenhouse growing offers over indoor growing is that greenhouse plants benefit from natural sunlight. Not only does sunlight naturally provide the plants what they need to grow, but it also doesn’t cost the grower any money to power. Having said that, when cannabis is in the vegetative state, it performs best with around 18 hours of light. For this reason, we recommend greenhouse growers include supplemental lighting in their cannabis greenhouse plan. Make sure your greenhouse lighting plans satisfy year-round production if you want to optimize yields.
- Flowering cannabis needs blackout. While the vegetative stage enjoys greater light levels, flowering longer periods of darkness are desired. Ensuring 12 hours of uninterrupted darkness inside your greenhouse will force the marijuana plants to flower according to your production schedule. This is best achieved by utilizing blackout curtain technology, also known as light deprivation in the marijuana industry. Blackout curtains can cover flat roof areas running truss to truss on gutter connected greenhouses, or they can be sloped to follow the roofline of freestanding greenhouses. Remember to cover sidewalls and door openings, and at GGS, we can provide light traps for the walls and shutters for the exhaust fans as well.
- Cannabis plants thrive with CO2 enrichment.
We are using the bottles/cylinders CO2 supply with a dosing regulator to provide an additional CO2 supply to promote your marijuana crop.
Additional considerations include connecting your greenhouse to warehouse and office facilities for packaging, shipping, and other support functions. There are other unique requirements for cannabis that you will not have encountered with typical horticultural crops, such as drying rooms and vaults. Work with a company that has the expertise to help you.
Please remember you have to work with a company that has experience in the field.