Cannabis Podcast The Real Dirt

Grower on Grower with Little Hill Cultivators Pt 2

This is the continuation of Grower on Grower with Chip and Jeff of Little Hill Cultivators. If you missed the first part, click here to listen.

In this episode, we’ll continue to learn about cannabis regulations, licenses, and how we can avoid potential pitfalls plus some tips and tricks in growing cannabis. So sit back, fire one up, and enjoy this episode of The Real Dirt.


I think I hit the ground running because I had done a lot of research, and I pretty much had my first grow all planned out. – Jeff


Download The Episode Companion For This Episode

Some Topics We Discussed Include

2:03 – Collapse of the Oregon market
11:50 – How to avoid pitfalls in the cannabis industry
14:45 – Tips in growing Urkle
22:36 – Transport license and liability insurance
27:45 – Trinity County Agriculture Alliance
33:07 – What is the ideal size of plant?

People Mentioned / Resources

Connect with Little Hill Cultivators

Connect with  Chip Baker

Transcript

Chip Baker: 

Thank you for joining me again here, with The Real Dirt with Chip Baker. On today’s episode, we have a Part 2 with Jeff from Little Hill Farms in Trinity County, California. You can follow Jeff on Instagram, and you can download this episode and others at iTunes, Spotify, and just run off our website, therealdirt.com

In this episode, we continue our conversation with Jeff. If you didn’t hear the first part, go back and get the first part first. You can listen to the second part and it totally makes sense. We just kind of babble and talk about weed. But, it’s a really great, great episode. We talk about the economy, and the business of California and Oklahoma, maybe some predictions that we have. We talk about drip irrigation. This second part of El Jefe in Oklahoma, it’s going to be great. So sit back, fire one up, and enjoy this episode of The Real Dirt.

We’re back Real Dirt, take a small little break there. You know the dogs bark out on the cannabis field, and you got to go. At least hear what they have to say. You’ve got several dogs out there?

Jeff: Yeah. I have one main dog, my main dog Sammy, a German Shepherd. She’s always on the lookout. German Shepherds are great watchdogs because they want to watch, and they have a loud bark, and when they’re charging, barking it’s intimidating, even if they’re the biggest sweetheart ever.

Chip Baker: She’s not though.

Jeff: She’s a sweetheart to people. If you’re on four legs, though, she’s not a sweetheart.

Chip Baker: Hey, don’t say don’t tell the–

Jeff: Yeah, no, she’s a killer. 

Chip Baker: She’s a killer. She’s a sweetheart to Jeff.

Jeff: But yeah, they post up in the window. If they’re in the house, they’re going to post up in the window and look outside. Wait for a squirrel or a burglar to run by.

The Collapse of the Oregon Market

Chip Baker: So we were talking about Oregon and the collapse of the Oregon market. I think it’s similar to what’s going on here with Oklahoma. So, let’s keep chatting about that. Everybody moved into Oregon.

Jeff: Everybody moved to Oregon, got legalized-

Chip Baker: California growers, growers from all over the country. 

Jeff: Cheaper land-

Chip: Cheap land, beautiful place to be. 

Jeff: Good climate and Southern Oregon, great climate. And they blew it out when they legalized, people needed to count on that crop to pay some bills, especially with the massive expansion and it collapsed the market. The price was just about cut in half. 

Chip Baker: Man, I heard as little as $100 on trim pounds. And I also heard like $190 trend light debt pounds. 

Jeff: Yeah, I never heard quite that low, but damn, that’s you’re losing money at that rate.

Chip Baker: Actually the people there making these hundred and $90 pounds, they’re a large commercial nursery, one of the largest country and they had $90 production, right? One pound.

Jeff: Wow!

Chip Baker: So to them, they’re like, we usually make 12%. Right? 

Jeff: Well, hey, that’s a that’s capturing the economies of scale.

Chip Baker: Yeah, that captures economy of scale and they but, you know what they actually have converted to hemp as so many Oregon growers converted.

Jeff: So that’s actually contributed as well because of the pollen increase.

Chip Baker: Well, in many ways, it’s contributed because many people quit growing, and quite grown ganja went into hemp.

Jeff: Growing tons of hemp.

Chip Baker: Poor selection of seeds. Dubious genetic salespeople. Right? There are several examples of lawsuits going on right now from Oregon.

Jeff: That’s created a lot of upset folks in Southern Oregon. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, totally. 

Jeff: That’s also contributed to the lower amounts of pounds circulate in the ecosystem.

Chip Baker: Yeah, so many people switch to hemp, especially the smokeable hemp idea. Which is yet to develop, it will develop, but so many people switch to that, you know you’re going for something that’s $50 I mean, I thought $13 pounds. Someone wanted about $13 pounds of hemp the other day, right? People think they’re gonna get $700 for smokable hemp. You can’t just take extractable quality hemp and say it’s smokeable just because you want $700 for it. Right? So similarities between the Oregon and Oklahoma market is the law regulations. Right? To like, no checkups, you can do pretty much whatever you want, here’s a loose list of rules, nobody ever comes up to check your shit out. Like it’s what happened in Oregon, right? 

Jeff: Pretty much. 

Chip Baker: They only had like 900 licenses when the market collapsed. Nine hundred cultivation licenses when the market collapsed for 3 million people in the state of Oregon.

Jeff: They thought they were gonna blow it out and fashion real quick, and they collapse the market. 

Chip Baker: There are thousands and thousands of cultivators here. Most of those people are small and don’t have historic knowledge. But I mean, out of the thousands, even if there’s 1% that guy, they’re shitting together. They could grow the whole market. I actually don’t think now Oklahoma is a place to be. If you’re coming in or want to set up new cultivation, I really don’t think Oklahoma is the place to come. I mean, you know, people can do stuff and make money everywhere. But if you’re not already here, you’re on your way here, I mean, all the prices have changed properties. Right. All the regulations now are harder. I mean, it’s still in its early days. But it’s gonna bust, 100% for the cultivator at some point in the next three years,

Jeff: That seems like it’s only inevitable. You ride these waves; you got to be in front of it. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, totally. Meanwhile, people are gonna like actually totally crush it for like until it happens, and the people that got it together doesn’t matter if they sold $500 pounds or $200 pounds are still making a profit.

Jeff: Right, what– that collapse a little be it’ll kind of just will send the herd, and it happens that’s why the price went back up. California has different forces, then the herd a little bit lowered supply and prices back up to very nice levels, maybe 2016-2015 levels may be even higher for some people.

Chip Baker: Yeah, now, man, I hear people sound $3,000 pounds indoor there in California.

Jeff: Yeah, for the Primo, and that’s pretty sweet, and now we’re talking 2010 levels. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, man, 2010, that’s about when you get your start.

Jeff: Maybe eight years prior to that, right, start starting the big leagues maybe.

Chip: Man, let’s talk about your first garden Jeff.

Jeff: 600 Watt light.

Chip:  If you were in modern-day Oklahoma, you could go for $2500 $3,000, have a commercial license, and start out just this way. 

Jeff: My first garden, they didn’t have grow tents back then, but that’s basically what I built out of 2x4s and plastic.

Chip: Plastic, yeah.

Jeff: Got a carbon filter.

Chip: Do you have to make that or? 

Jeff: No, they’re available.

Chip: They were available at that point.

Jeff: O2, six-inch fan, cooling the 600 watt light, air-cooled. Popped a bunch of Sweet Tooth #3 seeds.

Chip Baker: You got from Canada, Mark Emery?

Jeff: No, England, hold nine or 10 ounces. Pretty happy with that. 

Chip Baker: Oh yeah, one line? 

Jeff: Off of 5 plants, off of 600. It was a good plant, I found out. I realize now, is I grew the right strain. That thing, nothing was stopping it.

Chip Baker: No, totally great, great grow.

Jeff: The plant was surprising, it hasn’t come back yet, maybe I’ll bring it back. I got some seeds somewhere.

Chip Baker: Oh, yeah, I don’t remember it being like that great. 

Jeff: Man, I had one fino because I grew a lot of them out over the years. 

Chip Baker: Good rate, but like the quality– 

Jeff: Oh, it was pretty frosty, fruity-smelling, good density.

Chip Baker: Yeah, you need to break that back out.

Jeff: Yeah, I think it would be played, yielded really, really well. 

Chip Baker: So you just planted out some seeds, kind of random seeds. 

Jeff: I mean, I kind of researched it, but I didn’t– 

Chip Baker: It’s exactly what’s going on in Oklahoma right now. Right? PV, like 200,000 medical licenses have been issued. Did you have a medical license back then?

Jeff: No.

Chip Baker: I was right on the cusp of all that. 

Jeff: I got one shortly after that, but it was still like two or three years down the road I actually just decided it was worth it. 

Chip Baker: All right, and you got 10 ounces? 

Chip Baker: Smoked at all, I’m sure.

Jeff: Yup 

Chip Baker: Yeah, well, think you smoke me out on some of it. I know we probably didn’t even know each other right. So that was your first grow, did you immediately had this idea that you wanted to do it for a living?

Jeff: No, I never thought I would go full-time part grower. I always, I was in school. I was doing that. But I was definitely into it bare minimum on a hobby level. I mean, that’s really what I learned to do in college. So as time moves on, you move into a– you decide okay, I’m gonna my friends got this house right. I’m going to go rent this house out and either pull it off on that first crop, when this one was in the basement, pull off that first basement crop or go broke and pulled it off and say, okay, that worked.

Chip Baker: The margins were so high then you could re-selling for back in 2004.

Jeff: Or you could afford– four thousand pounds to my friends.

Chip Baker: Yeah, right. You could– that’s a modern-day, 3 pound a light price.

Jeff: Right? So yeah, and I wasn’t getting a pound light. But you could afford those that learning curve. 

Chip Baker: At $4000.

Jeff: Yeah, $4000, you could afford to make some mistakes the market wasn’t so saturated that if you had some lower quality stuff, you couldn’t sell it. You know, the market wasn’t saturated at all. So if you had weed even in California, even in Northern California, you could sell it.

Chip Baker: Yeah. No matter what seed, strains– that’s good. That’s exactly what’s going on in Oklahoma right now. You can grow whatever you want pretty much. Lots of indoor autoflowers. Right? And I’m not sure if people are selling weed, right but uh, I mean you know, my wife’s dispensary bakers medicals. She’s buying like, you know, top-notch weed for resale, indoor weed, not auto flower, it looks great.

Jeff: Yeah

Chip Baker: Right. Some of the best weed in the world even. You saw some of it. 

Jeff: Yeah. I mean, if you’re a skilled grower, you can grow indoor anywhere.

Chip Baker: Yeah, totally. Our vendors come from other places and actually say that they think their cannabis is ganja improved because of the humidity; they were going to really dry locations. And they think that the quality is improved because of the increased humidity– 

Jeff: A better house.

Chip Baker: Right? Let me go on from 20% to 40%, and it’s a big deal.

Jeff: Yeah, you can change the morphology of the plant too. It will grow a little different, you might find, “Oh, I like those broad leaves. I’m getting better growth rates.”

Avoiding Pitfalls in the Cannabis Industry

Chip Baker: At what point back then, like looking back on it. Was there a point where it wouldn’t have worked out if the price structure was different. 

Jeff: I mean, I think I hit the ground running because I had done a lot of research, and I pretty much had my first grow all planned out. I knew how the plant worked. I knew potential pitfalls. I had a good let’s say recipe I was following. I had put quite a bit of work into it–

Chip Baker: You get your recipe from the grocery store or from a buddy? 

Jeff: I got it from online, and it was a real simple organic soil mix. And a couple of additives that are pretty low MPK but like help the soil out a lot like plant ferments. And it was kind of hard to overfeed, hard to underfeed. I didn’t really have to worry too much about that. Just gave the plants water kind of learned about that and just growing a really vigorous strain that was a producer. Grind from seed also didn’t have any pest problems. So kind of all came together on that first grow.

Chip Baker: And you took clones?

Jeff: I didn’t take clones off that first crop, but I did, I planted more seed, and I took clones off that.

Chip Baker: Did you make seeds on the first one? 

Jeff: No.

Chip Baker: I mean, what you’re saying is if it had been $2500 a pound or $2,000 a pound, you still think you would have been dome forward with it?

Jeff: I still would have been okay. Just because it was successful, you know, there’s so much more access to things now. One nice, I mean, I just kind of locked out. I came into it like at a good time, really at the end of the good time because even the Bay Area got saturated with every rookie indoor grower trying to sell some weed or hurt the quality the general quality of weed. 

Chip Baker: I did go down. I mean [inaudible] for weed right scares. You got both super shitty weed, but that ended up being in a market place where it was you could get it or couldn’t get it, and then you got the fucking best ganja.

Jeff: Definitely. Things are relative. And, some batches you’d get were better than others. But, it was just at the beginning of the name game, and people knew what Trainwreck was terrible. Urkle wasn’t quite there yet. 

Chip Baker: But that was the next one. 

Jeff: But it was common. That was the big next one, was the Urkle. The Granddaddy, The Grape Ape, those purples became huge in the bay. That’s what everybody wanted, and boy, by that time that’s what I was growing.

Chip Baker: Right? What was that first purple strain?

Jeff: Urkle, yeah. 

Chip Bake: Urkle, yeah, well, difficult grower, Urkle.

Jeff: Yeah, I didn’t yield too much quality was outstanding, though.

Growing Urkle Weed

Chip Baker: If there’s any Urkle growers out there, tell us the best way to grow Urkle?

Jeff: There’s a couple of tricks. I’ll tell you a couple of tricks. 

Chip Baker: Okay, everybody, sit back, put your rolling papers down and pick up your pen and paper. 

Jeff: If you’re growing a really, really squat Indica–

Chip Baker: Like Bubba or Urkle? Something that doesn’t stretch–

Jeff: Yeah, something that’s really not gonna stretch. You got to veg it. You got to keep the humidity up as you veg it keeps the humidity up, through the stretch to get those branches to stretch out and the leaves are gonna get huge because it’s so humid, we’re talking 70-80%. De-leaf, all those giant families because you’re going to get no light penetration. Prune up everything underneath because it’s just going to be larf, those strands larf out real bad. 

Chip Baker: And they have this inner leaf to that’s the leaf. That’s close to the stem off the branches. That’s the real bottoms of Urkle or Bubba. 

Jeff: So do all those things. Keep your humidity up, cut your humidity up week three after stretch. And don’t overfeed. Let the leaves go from dark green to light green. Not super light, but just you don’t want that dark, dark green color or your nugs aren’t going to swell. And you’re going to end up with these little small sorts of grape and nuggets, and it’s not going to burn, right, it’s not going to taste good. But if you let that go from like dark green to like a nice rich emerald green. By backing off on your nutrients, you’ll find that the buds swell and ended up with these big golf ball rock hard nugs, and that’s where you’re gonna get your weight from, and it’s gonna smoke better because you didn’t overfeed it the whole time. It’s gonna be really tasty. You have become the more skilled grower because of learning those small manipulations.

Chip Baker: What’s perfect canopy density for Urkle? 

Jeff: For Urkle, I’d say let’s see 900 under or a 600 photo is good. Of course, I would top, which would make the plant wider, but it would even out your canopy.

Chip Baker: And you’re flowering these when they’re 16 inches 18 inches tall.

Jeff: You know, with 18 inches after you topped, let the rest of those tops reach the canopy strip off everything that’s not there 18 inches they might finish at 24 inches. But you’ve got 6-9 colas a plant, 9 plants a light.

Chip Baker: Are you still like pulling off the bottom third of the branches and leaves in the scenario? 

Jeff: After you top, if you just take the very tip and give it maybe another two more weeks to veg, you’ll notice well a lot of the side branches will reach the top of the canopy. That branches that reaching the top of the canopy cut it because it’s never going to.

Chip Baker: Good point, and you mean the top of the canopy to be like you with an inch or two the rest of the plants. 

Jeff: Yeah, I mean, if you’re looking at the plant from the very top-down if you can’t see the growth tip cut it because it’s not at the top and it’s not going to be seeing the light. And then, trim up those branches to get rid of any other side branches off those and should have a few nodes, four or five nodes on each top, and flip it. And you’ll end up maybe half ounce, maybe quarter ounce just depending on how you’re doing things per cola. And that’ll add up.

Chip Baker: [inaudible] Not a particularly heavy strain. You know, I like the other technique of it though. Right? The one plant per square foot in a 3-5 gallon pot. Grow it till it’s 18 inches, 24 inches. Bottom off. I mean, pull off the bottom, 1/3, and flower. Right. 

Jeff: Cut down on veg time a little bit. 

Chip Baker: Barely little. You just end up with more plants. The density gardening creases and those like little nuggets on the Urkle. Right, you get that same perfect nugget over and over again. It’s also like, in my experience, it was easier to make them purple where you had more purple.

Jeff: Interesting. 

Chip Baker: I mean, even talking about [inaudible]

Jeff: That’s the thing too. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, like these purple punches here, man. These are these you know, outside they’ve been brown, not purple because it’s so hot. Right? And indoors, they started turning purple as soon as you started to flush them if you’re growing hot like hydro. 

Jeff: You have never grown the strains. I know. It’s popular– 

Chip Baker: I thought I’ve never done this.

Jeff: Just aware of it. It’s been a really popular and beautiful plant.

Chip Baker: It’s a great weed, it’s tasty. People call it Purple No Punch, and that’s true, even though it has really high THC levels. It is known not to get people super [inaudible] if you smoke it all the time. Or, if you’re just a super cheaper.

Jeff: We were just talking about that it’s got the purple [inaudible] I would because it’s tasty. But it’s got the stretch from OG, which everybody’s always just wanted a purple plant that stretches so you don’t have to veg it for 6 months just to get to the size which has been the yield killer on those purple plants. 

Chip Baker: Til’ you veg them forever. 

Jeff: They got the terps, they got the plant structure. Even the THC is higher than what a Granddaddy will put out, but it just doesn’t pack that punch you’d think an OG would.

Chip Baker: Absolutely, it is not as strong as you want it to be for sure. I’ve been looking for that purple OG for years, man. I’ve been looking for both– we planted a few different company seeds and few reference seeds and yeah, still hadn’t found purple OG. If you’ve got that OG, that’s purple. 

Jeff: I think I saw it at Emerald Cup on here. Some Oregon grower showed me a jar, and I should have just asked him for a cut and just configure it to say no but should have at least tried, but he had it, man. He had some purple nugs with OG sort of gas nose on the back end but purple upfront, the nugs look proper smelled proper. I asked him about the plant structure. And if you’re out there, Oregon grower who was at Emerald cup maybe years ago, contact Little Hill Cultivators and see if we can’t work something out. If you’re in the California regulated industry, that is.

Chip Baker: Yeah, absolutely. Hey, man. You know lots of regulatory people listen to this show. Definitely listened to by some Maryland regulators some Oklahoma regulators some Colorado some California, Oregon, and Washington. That all these people have reached out to me. They listen to what we have to say. And they find that this show and others like it really allows them to hear and understand what’s going on in the cannabis growers thought pattern or business. And you know, they reach out, they reached out to us, man.

Jeff: If that’s the case, let me– I got a few. 

Chip Baker: Oh, hey, here’s the mic. Hey, now, here’s what I want to say before you start to write them. I know you guys are all working incredibly hard in a really difficult environment, but we got some problems.

Transport License and Liability Insurance

Jeff: Yeah, I know you guys have been overworked in a lot of cases. But just the way the regs go as a cultivator, I can’t bring my crop to market, and I’m in a remote location. I have to get a separate transport license which I’ve done, so I can transport my product to the market, and that’s fine, but some of the regulations for the self-transport only license are the same as if you’re a full-on distribution. And the most expensive thing that I have to pay for this transport license, which doesn’t bring any revenue. You know, the cultivation does, but the transport license is just transporting. I’m not running a business, separate business 

Chip Baker: You’re just hauling your weed at the market. 

Jeff: I need to find liability insurance. I don’t need for cultivation, but I’m required to have for the transport of a million dollars. And it’s really difficult, and it’s really expensive to find a carrier. I mean, the license is a $200 license. But you know, I’m going to end up spending 510 grand on insurance every year for a $200 license for as little as 10,000 square foot mix light cultivators, I think that’s a bit excessive. There’s certainly some other ones– 

Chip Baker: Do you think it’s regulation money, grab?

Jeff: Well, it’s not a money grab because the license is $200 fine, it’s the cheapest license there is in the whole structure, but to require me to have the same insurance as a full-on distribution, they’ve made some other sort of concessions where I don’t need, like. Literally, my premises are a woodshed with a filing cabinet. Nobody needs to go in there besides me. There’s no product store there. So I get– I don’t need security. I don’t need cameras. 

I mean, we’re just talking about a filing cabinet here. So in that sense, you know that that was a good work realizing that was that’s a bit excessive to protect a filing cabinet. But on the flip side, the insurances it’s not easy to get plus it’s like incredibly expensive that, man I don’t feel I need. Who knows maybe it’s good business sense to do it–

Chip Baker: You do need liability insurance, but hey, man, that people want to charge you, and you got it for $5,000 a year? 

Jeff: Yeah.

Chip Baker: Oh, you got to a good deal on it. Because many people pay $12,000-$18,000. Right? Like you got to a good deal on it. Like it is hard to get as expensive. People are taking advantage of the cannabis regulatory market, for sure.

Jeff: Sure. Yeah. I had to go through a few companies to figure that out. And definitely, some of them were definitely looking to cash in real quick. If I have more than one license on the same property cultivation license on the same property,

Chip Baker: This is all California, man?

Jeff: Yeah, I can’t have one nursery, or I can’t have one immature plant area and distribute plants to all those licenses to those separate gardens. I have to have a separate nursery license, which because of my County’s wisdom, I’ve become realize I’m not zoned for because they associate nurseries with retail nurseries traffic showing up. 

People come in to buy plants, and a retail business they’ve deemed my cultivation site isn’t appropriate now. So which forces me to either put up a silly wire fence all throughout my immature plant area to keep the spaces different, so I grow X amount of plants for each license, they’re in their own licensed area. It’s just stupid. If the licenses are on the same premises or the same property, you should be able to– under one entity they should be able to grow your immature plant area nursery veg area– 

Chip Baker: You’re talking immature plants and no buds, hardly any THC. 

Jeff: Hardly yeah, not a measurable amount anyways.

Chip Baker: That the economy of them is small.

Jeff: Right so yeah, there’s–

Chip Baker: I mean little money–

Jeff: There’s no money in it. I mean, my other choices to buy from a nursery and buy specific plants for each license type, but then, you know, that cost me more money. Right? You know, or I put these silly fences up dividing up my greenhouse, immature plant area, put these silly fences up and that’s just that’s over-regulation.

Chip Baker: That’s over-regulation–

Jeff: They could all be grown, you know, tracked through one license and then distributed through these other license types. They’re all owned; they’re all in the same people. The plants are, you know, flowering out right next to each other. I think that’s a bit silly, especially if you’re being forced to have a nursery license, which is another whole headache. 

Trinity County Agriculture Alliance

Jeff: On top of that, you don’t even intend to sell plants. You know, again, you do not intend to run it. [inaudible]. You know, there should be some type of separate way around this so that I can just grow plants for myself and distribute them two different license types, two different licenses on the property. For example, if I have two 10,000 square foot and a 10,000 square foot and mix slide or you know, just the way the property is divided up you– a lot of people end up with multiple licenses sometimes. I think that’s my main two right now. I’m sure if I was more prepared, I could have come with a list, but I say looking into like, what regulations are not necessary or their intended purpose. 

It’s not achieving their intended purpose is important to look at, and they have been receptive to some things big reason why a bunch of farmers in Trinity just started our trade organization, to start a having a louder voice. And that was the policy Trinity County Agriculture Alliance. We just started, I’m a founding member.

Chip Baker: TCA?

Jeff: Yeah. And so that’s why we finally got together, it’s been really hard to group together Trinity farmers, just because we’re spread out a lot. A lot of folks are really opinionated. But we all kind of agree that like this is the best for everybody. You know, it’s uh, so far so good. We’re it’s really neat to be the start of something, but hopefully, we’ll have an impact on not just Trinity regulations but state regulations. 

Chip Baker: And that’s great, man, we got to work together. We got to get together and have our voices heard the people that I often see that are speaking from for the cannabis community. They don’t really know what they’re talking about. Many of the people are uneducated; they’re not actual farmers, farmers are busy farming. So they just repeat some of the words they hear farmers say, and they might have the best heart in the world. 

But you know, they don’t realize like, Oh, well, I mean, you know, here in Oklahoma, for instance. Once a plant is over 18 inches tall, we’re just going to call it a seedling. Right? And, you know, they don’t know any better. That’s not exactly what that means, or that’s not the terminology, but now legally like we have here in Oklahoma when a clone is over eight inches tall, it’s now called a seedling.

Jeff: Interesting. You know, definitions are going to be different in every jurisdiction and fighting for what that definition is, like a mature plant and immature plant was a big one in California. They want to call it a certain height mature, and that’s just doesn’t work if you’re growing from seed because it hasn’t declared at sex yet. Yeah, a lot of issues that maybe they didn’t realize, but it seems like people were screaming at them, that you can’t do that. You’re gonna put my business plan out, you know, based on something that’s not a real thing. And I mean, there’s a lot of different ways people want to grow, and when you start over-regulating, you start limiting how a farmer sees fit to do his job and not really– 

Chip Baker: It’s hard to SOP all those people like SOP. And it’s hard to 

Jeff: There’s no right way to do it sometimes–

Chip Baker: Especially indoor gardens you can do that way, but like outdoor greens–

Jeff: Seems like the system– in Colorado was built on indoor principles and indoor sort of generalities. And then you try to apply that to a guy like me on the hills. It just doesn’t apply, especially the big plant growers, they want to grow big plants, and they should be able to do whatever they want or however they’ve sort of crafted their skills around, and that’s big plants for a lot of people. And it just makes harvest and tracks and trace a real real pain in the ass.

Chip Baker: Yeah, I’m not a big plant fan. 

Jeff: I like to walk amongst them. Since I grew big plants. 

Chip Baker: I like that one or two here today. 

Jeff: Without plant limits– I see the wisdom and having more plants for sure. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, totally. I mean, since I was a little kid, I want to grow a big plant like that, you’ve heard that and everybody said it–

Jeff: I still want to grow a big plant–

Chip Baker: Yeah, you have to do is like do it once or twice, though. And you’re like god damn, I mean, man, we had a 10,000 square foot harvest outside—short late-season plants. Everything was a two-three foot tall. Really high density, a great yielding technique for you know, bumper crop or late season ganja. And it took us less than I mean, less than 12 hours. Right to harvest at all. And I mean, we’ve had like, small 40 pound greenhouses that have taken five-six days because of these big plants. Oh, [inaudible] started the front plant and start working your way back, and it’s just labor-intensive to do it that way.

Jeff: It’s intensive for resources as well. Water nutrients– 

 Ideal Size of Plant 

Chip Baker: Oh yeah, those big plants just suck it– suck the nutrients up, suck the water up. What’s the ideal size plant for you? We were kind of talking about this earlier.

Jeff: I’d say four ounces to maybe six ounces. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, I love this. And hey, man you’re talking about greenhouses, outdoors? 

Jeff: I’m talking in greenhouses, indoor a bit be differently, maybe much smaller, probably two to four ounces.

Chip Baker: I like 2-ounce plants indoors. I like 1/4 and 1/2 pound plants in greenhouses, light dep, early season and late season. And then, just 1-2 pound full season plants, that you’d plant in June and pull at the end of the year.

Jeff: Yeah, 1 pounder and 2 pounders are pretty easy to deal with.

Chip Baker: Yeah, small [inaudible], but the quality is great. You don’t have to like dump a ton of nutrient or water and make it big enough that, you know you don’t get these huge Hawker nuggets that harbor mold and you know, look cool but like on the surface when you get them that big four-foot nugget just isn’t as high quality. Right as a smaller nugget, you know you just have to give it all that nitrogen to make it grow like that, man.

Jeff: Still nice to walk them in an orchard, but for efficiency–

Chip Baker: Yeah, no doubt, man. I don’t like smelling [inaudible] like I get it the ease of it like I get it the people who got that shit down. Like they’ll you know, are you and swear by it and there’s people that got it down for sure. Did you hear my latest episode? The Real Dirt with Chef Anna with The Pot? 

Jeff: I haven’t finished it yet.

Chip Baker: Okay. Yeah, big autoflower– 

Jeff: He’s growing them indoor, though. 

Chip Baker: He’s growing indoor, what do you think about growing autos indoor?

Jeff: Growing autos indoor seems like a complete waste of time to me. Because you can make plants, flowers whenever you want indoors, you don’t need to automatically flower. 

Chip Baker: Right? You know, many people grow them because they think it’s easier.

Jeff: Okay?

Chip Baker: You still gotta wait 90 days.

Jeff: Still gotta wait 90 days. I mean, you could grow a seedling and flip it immediately.

Chip Baker: I’m gonna give you a couple of things. My customers tell me, but you don’t have to have a timer with autoflowers indoors.

Jeff: Well, then you’re just wasting money.

Chip Baker: How is that? 

Jeff: You get your lights on all day.

Chip Baker: Yeah, trying to cost twice as much to flower it if you’re running your lights for 24 hours instead of 12. What about I don’t have to worry about light leaks?

Jeff: Why not? I’m sure autoflowers can hear me too.

Chip Baker: No, I think that is a legitimate thing people say is like can build rooms without having to like have worry about cross-contamination of light. It’s not that hard to build a light diagram.

Jeff: It’s not that hard to plug up light leaks. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, absolutely. Well, it’s just so easy I don’t have to worry about like, knowing how to grow, it just grows itself.

Jeff: Same can be said about regular life cycle genetics.

Chip Baker: You grow it under 18 or 24 hours light until it’s 18 inches tall and then turn it to 12 hours light.

Jeff: Pretty simple. 

Chip Baker: It’s autoflower. It’s really great weed. 

Jeff: I wouldn’t say it’s really great weed. I’d say it’s pretty good, suitable and it’s good enough. The good ones are good enough to sell as flower. They have potency; they have good looks. 

Chip Baker: The yield inside is incredible.

Jeff: No, it’s not. That would be my reply to that.

Chip Baker: No, it’s not, because it is the yield that does equal time and costs are right. I can flower this in just 90 days.

Jeff: You can flower pretty much and enclone in 60.

Chip Baker: Yeah. And we always– and one of my favorite things to say is you’re just 90 days away from your biggest crop ever. It is so true and you are just 90 days away from the biggest crop ever. If you have any problems growing the biggest crop ever just get in touch with us at Cultivate Colorado Cultivate OKC look at us online. We have everything you need. And if we don’t have it in one of our locations, we got it in another location and we’ll send it right to you. 

Jeff: Good plug. 

Chip Baker: Can you tell you shop at Cultivate Colorado?

Jeff: I have used them for my very minimal hydro store needs, flood tables, just bought some lights– 

Chip Baker: Good plastic stuff.

Jeff: Couldn’t find any used lights. I just missed one guy selling his basically gotten his room and selling all his lights for cheap. And then as soon as I buy the lights new I see another person selling 50 lights of exactly what I needed for cheap and it just had to be a folding press.

Chip Baker: Well, I’m a proponent of brand new lights, man, I like to buy new cars too, like buy that shit new, use it up, throw it away start over again.

Jeff: I don’t mind the savings on lights– 

Chip Baker: What kind of light do you run? 

Jeff: One did we get a Gavitas 6800s

Chip Baker: Oh the flexes that is my all-time favorite light–

Jeff: I got a little bit lower ceiling height in my one greenhouse, and I couldn’t go 4000s, and they come with a hood that will spread the light out more. And so we’re gonna put that reflector. [inaudible] it’s more of just a reflector nowadays. But that was my first purchase of double-ended lights. It’s 2019 in this greenhouse [inaudible] and we have double-ended lights, all this time. I thought was pretty funny.

Chip Baker: You’ll buy an LED one day.

Jeff: I’m sure it’ll come eventually, hopefully when the price comes down if not sooner. I’ve replaced my T-five bulbs with LED T-five bulbs, which is definitely a winner over those damn fluorescence. 

Chip Baker: You have a man of 1700 dollars for a light that covers the same areas at 650 flex. I can’t do it yet, man. Like I mean, I don’t see the quality difference. I don’t see the power– There’s no power difference. There’s no heat difference. Right like, you know, I don’t see why you would to pay– and I sell this type of stuff for I don’t see why you want to pay $1700for that.

Jeff: Yeah. I mean, 5 years from now it’s going to be half the price, with all the technology.

Chip Baker: I hope 5 years from now it’s $400. But man, they’ve really artificially kept the price of lights high. The price of the lights today is more expensive than they were 10 years ago. Right yeah, totally. We used to like have $100 light packages, magnetic ballasts, screw-in bulbs. Right cheap reflectors.

Jeff: Price on digital’s came down. Pretty sure ball–

Chip Baker: Yeah, I mean, I think we still sell $110 digital ballasts right now. All right. At Cultivate Colorado, cultivateoks.com– you like my little plugs, don’t you?

Jeff: Put it in there, it’s your shop–

Chip Baker: I know I used to feel guilty about it, but I’m like, No, come shop with me, man. Really do please come shop with us. We need your business. We rely on your business. We want to continue to be in this industry, and the way we do is with new customers. 

Jeff: They have knowledgeable staff, I’ll say, as a customer, who I can talk to, like I when I’m not talking to Chip, I’ll talk to his guide, Jacob, I believe, he knows what he’s talking about. So I can ask him a question and get some real information. He’s not just going to try and upsell me. He’s going to try and give me what the right thing is, or maybe make me aware of some technology or the new thing I haven’t seen yet because I’m not–

Chip Baker: He taught me into these drippers as a matter of fact, because they’re the ones we sell the most off. You gotta like, just think about that. Like, what’s everybody buying? Okay, how to use these two. It’s been an excellent, excellent episode here chatting with you. I feel like we’ve just covered such a range of topics. But we didn’t quite get it all if I have time like– I mean, this might even be a part two or part three. Still type of a podcast here. So yeah, thanks for coming. I really appreciate it, man thanks for your input on my drip system and not calling me out for using synthetic nutrients.

Jeff: Hey, man, I don’t judge do, it how you see fit. As long as the ganja is good at the end of the day, my ideology, I don’t hold other people to that ideology. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, no, agreed, man. There’s just time and place for it all– and 

Jeff: Just grow good weed. 

Chip Baker: Just go grow good weed. There it is.

Thank you for joining me on part two of the El Jefe podcast. El Jeffe, Jeff from Little Hill Cultivators in Trinity County, California. He always has a lot to say. I’m sure he and his crew are sitting back listening to this right now. Thanks for coming out and talking ganja with me. It was a great visit we had a couple of weeks ago, and I always like to see my friends from other states and other cannabis markets and hear what they got to say. And, you know, they gave me a few pointers here and there on what they think I should be doing differently. So always a great exchange of information. Thank you for lending your time and listening to this episode. 

Next week’s episode is going to be incredible. So I want you to go to iTunes right now subscribe, download all the episodes you haven’t heard, and engage with us on Instagram. Shoot me a DM, shoot me a private message on Facebook, The Real Dirt podcast we’d love to talk to you. We’re doing this because of you. We want to spread the knowledge of cannabis, hemp, medical cannabis, and adult-use cannabis to the world, and this is such a great way to do it. So thanks again for joining us and see you next time on The Real Dirt.

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