Homegrown: Fears of Marijuana Growing
First, I want folks to understand that this is geared more toward the personal marijuana grower. These are people who grow under 10 plants at the most. So, I don’t go into the problems of a commercial grower. However, a lot of what’s said in this post will definitely apply to a commercial grower’s concerns.Intro to my world
Ever since I decided to grow my own marijuana, I’ve gone through many of the fears and paranoia of growing marijuana. But, I didn’t hide from the fears. I chose to investigate them. I wanted to know the reality of the situation. Growing marijuana is not legal and can result in jail time. But, there are so many marijuana growers in the United States that get away with it eventually. So, I wanted to understand it thoroughly. The best way to do that was to actually do it. So, from my fingers to your eyes, allow me to alleviate your fears.
Please ask questions if you don’t understand how to proceed about something.
The number one fear of any marijuana grower is, of course, getting caught. We always see someone getting caught in the news. Law enforcement tends to make a big deal over every marijuana grow they get their greedy little hands on. I always take the time to read those articles because I find those gems of security information to keep me aware. In other words, how in the hell did they get caught? From those lessons, I either add to or reinforce the knowledge that I have learned.
The best way to think about security is to draw three circles, one inside the other, with yourself as the core. Each circle represents a security concern. The inner circle represents your control over the grow room itself. The middle circle represents the home and includes close friends and family.The outer circle represents your community.
As a grower, your job is to be responsible for no one within those circles to reach the core. You’re responsible for a clean running grow room. You’re responsible for any friends and family that you entrust with knowledge of your activities. And finally you are responsible to anyone else who finds out that you grow. So, change your way of thinking.Recklessness will get you nowhere.
Inner Circle: Is your grow room snitching on you?
In a grow operation, you’ll have a lot of things going on – lights, fans, pumps, and so on. These can all be security concerns. It comes down to the planning and strategy of the grower. Just having the right space is a concern. Other concerns include lights which are bright and give off heat. Fans make a lot of noise. Odor control is major issue which can invade the home which is a bad thing if cops are at your door step. Electrical fires can happen with those Home Improvement/Tim Allen types who aren’t careful with wiring.
Usually, in the news, you hear about growers getting caught due to their own carelessness. Some homes are dead giveaways because the rooftops weren’t covered with snow during the winter due to the heat from the lights. Neighbors can smell your marijuana from inside their own homes. Someone may see a bright light that comes on at the same time every day. All a concerned neighbor saw was smoke coming from the basement so they dialed 911.
All of those lines are examples of things to keep in mind when growing. So, conceal the light, vent the heat, clean the air, and be very careful. You don’t want your grow room to snitch on you. Pay cash! Rip off barcodes/labels when done. Don’t stop there. Keep thinking of everything else you can do to keep your grow room from snitching.
Middle Circle: Home, friends, and family
The number one rule in marijuana growing is don’t tell anyone.
Unfortunately, this rule is always broken and probably leads to the most problems for marijuana growers. Human beings are social creatures. We do something, we talk about it. Marijuana growers are no different. We can’t live alone like some hermits. We have friends and we come from families. Law enforcement counts on that. The police will go after your friends and family like any criminal organization looking for blood. Keep your friends and family safe, and especially yourself, by simply keeping your mouth shut about what you’re doing.
Usually in the news, you’d hear about some grower going down because someone, an informant, told on them. It could be a jealous friend, an angry lover, a greedy partner, and even a “concerned” family member. Don’t tell anyone anything. Even if they seem cool at first. Things can change. Things always change. The best kept secrets are the ones you keep to yourself.
Although I try to remain approachable, I advise potential growers to join a marijuana growing forum – International Cannagraphic. You can get the best advice there from growers with way more experience than me and communicate anonymously.
Outer Circle: The Community
Unfortunately, we do not live in this world alone. It is important to be a good neighbor, employee, father/mother, etc etc etc. People are very suspicious, especially those suburban, conservative types. If something seems out of place, they will complain. A neighbor who never seems to be home or outside will arouse suspicion in a small community “where everybody knows your name.” Employers do drug tests and coworkers will take notice if you don’t act like everyone else.
The point is to keep up appearances as much as possible. You want to create an image for the community that if someone smelled something or saw something, they’d be willing to talk to you before outright dialing 911.
If you feel that you are not up to this.. perhaps it’s too much to deal with in your situation, then definitely postpone any growing until you feel you are in a comfortable space. For example, since this economy has basically been trash, I have a few friends who have moved back home with their parents. Another friend lost her house to foreclosure. They’re all interested in growing but want to be in a better situation – their own place. Some rather have a house because they’re worried about inspections.
A few more things
When I say ask questions, get an assessment of your situation. For example, those friends in an apartment waiting to get a home, you want a portable grow box. Simply put, you build a wooden box to whatever dimensions you need and outfit it to grow. Then you put wheels on it. Inspection day is here? Wheel it to a different location. Or, if the build was incredible, you wouldn’t need wheels because you could simply leave it in plain sight. It’s all about planning and strategy.
Lastly, no one gets caught from good police work. If that were in the news, I’d have to make sure I was reading the actual news and not some comedy. It’s hilarious. The police do not work. You will not hear a case where police infiltrated some network, went undercover, etc etc etc. I can’t recall a marijuana grow operation that wasn’t busted due to growers violating these unspoken rules. The last few cases I could think of were grower mistake – grower got caught smoking in the car, grower got pulled over for a busted tail light, grower’s house burned down due to electrical fire from grow room, and grower got caught after partner ripped off the grow to make it look like a robbery leaving the grower with liability. You stay within the circles and you’ll be fine.