So You Want to Grow?
Part 1: Before you Grow- state and local regulations, and issues to consider for your home.
As a resident of Colorado, I have discovered the joy of producing my own cannabis indoors using my small grow tent. In a space that takes up 8 square feet (48 cubic feet when you factor in tent height), I am able to produce a variety of strains to keep me stocked and smiling for several months of the year. With a little investment of time and money, it is simple to create an environment conducive to producing top-quality buds in a space the size of a spare bedroom closet.
In the first installment of So you want to Grow? we’ll focus on the preparation and planning stage of your first home grow, and discuss the main issues to consider before you start growing your own cannabis in Colorado.
Though it is legal to grow cannabis for personal consumption, there are several state and local regulations to consider before you plant your seeds or purchase clones. State and municipality regulations can conflict, so it is extremely important to know the laws before you set up your grow. For example, the state allows each individual in a household to grow 6 plants (3 flowering plants, 3 in vegetative stage), but the city of Denver only allows 12 plants per household regardless of the number of adults occupying a dwelling. Also, if you are a medical patient, regulations surrounding your personal grow will be different. The state and local laws of Colorado will dictate how you set up your grow, thus it is imperative that you understand these regulations before you begin setting up your grow.
The following links provide information on state and certain municipality regulations concerning growing cannabis for personal consumption.
Home Grow Guidelines- State of Colorado
Safety Guidelines for Home Growing -State of Colorado
Cannabis Regulations, including personal cultivation- City of Fort Collins
Cannabis regulations, including personal cultivation - City of Greeley
The next set of issues to consider are where you intend to grow and the utilities needed to grow. Again, to emphasis the importance of knowing the laws, one cannot grow cannabis outdoors legally. If you live in an apartment, duplex, or any type of building with shared units, you are prohibited from growing cannabis for personal use. If lucky enough to have a house, one should make sure the electrical system is up-to-date, and the area that you selected for your grow is located near a reliable power source, and said power source can handle the electrical needs of your growing setup.
Like any other plant, cannabis needs air, water, and nutrients to grow, and depending on your grow setup, each of these items may require electrical energy to adequately supply your grow space. Will your space require fans for ventilation and air movement? Will you be running pumps for watering? What type of light do you plan to use, and what are the power needs? Can your circuit handle your electrical load? Best to find out beforehand, or you could risk an electrical fire. Also, clean running water nearby your grow space (or better yet, in the same room) helps in maintaining your grow in the long term (or putting out fires in the short term).
We have only scratched the surface of preparing for your grow.
In the next installment of “So you want to Grow?” we will examine some of the equipment you may want to consider for your home grow, including lighting, tray tables, fabric pots, and hydroponic equipment. Did you know that some forms of lighting, such as HID lamps like Metal Halide or High Pressure Sodium lamps can no longer be used in certain municipalities?
These topics will be discussed in the next installment of So You Want to Grow?
The following links and book suggestions are for those eager to learn more on their own! Happy Growing!
Jorge Cervantes Ultimate Grow DVD- Beginner’s Guide to Growing Cannabis
Closet Cultivator by Ed Rosenthal : Easy to ready cultivation guide. This was my first book about cultivation, and still serves as an excellent guide to growing cannabis for personal consumption.
Ready, Set, Grow – High Times Growing Guide .