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The Revolution of Solventless Cannabis Extracts

The Revolution of Solventless Cannabis Extracts

live rosin cannabis extracts colorado

We’ve come a long way from hand rolled hash balls tossed in with some tobacco.

While basic concentrated cannabis products are still a popular product in places like Europe, in legal cannabis hubs like the U.S., the competition driving extraction has produced the next generation of cannabis extracts. Chris Williams with his new craft cannabis extract company Souly Solventless is at the forefront.

 

The Evolution of Cannabis Extracts

If you walked into a legal cannabis dispensary in Colorado in 2013, there were only a few options when it came to cannabis extracts. Wax and shatter were the two most prevalent extractions at the time. Both are produced using Butane as the solvent, where it is then heated over time to vaporize the solvent, leaving the extract behind.

Through pouring out the mixture and letting it sit and harden, extractors could produce shatter. By whipping the mixture for a time after pouring, wax was formed. Over the next few years, extractors would hone these methods, creating more efficient processes, and new processes to manufacture new solvent based products.

Eventually extractors began to use a method called distillation, where similar to alcohol, producers could separate the specific cannabinoids they wanted from the plant and create homogenized, purified cannabis extracts. While distillate has much higher THC levels compared to wax and shatter, the distillation process isolates THC from other cannabinoids and terpenes, making the extract nearly odorless and flavorless. This would eventually be made better by reintroducing the desired terpenes for better flavor profiles.

The introduction of more flavorful extracts led to a branching off of consumers. While many still sought high THC cannabis extracts, a new desire for terpene-rich extracts with unique flavor profiles and processing methods became prevalent.

The Hair Straightener Method

Around 2016, a wise extractor decided to try putting some cannabis buds in a hair straightener. With heat and pressure, the oils inside of the cannabis were pushed out, creating the first solventless cannabis extract. Being more flavorful, cleaner and easy to produce, this method would develop over time.

Extractors would introduce hydraulic heat presses, making it even easier to press large amount of cannabis flower to produce higher quantities of the extract. The greater amount of trichome content on a cannabis plant typically meant higher production of solventless cannabis extracts, which led breeders to try and produce the most trichome rich cannabis possible. Others learned that by harvesting their cannabis plants earlier than average when trichomes are still in their final maturation, one could produce extremely clean solventless extract that looked nearly white in presentation.

This new, clean, solventless extract would become known as Rosin. When the plant is picked and frozen straight from harvest and then extracted, it may be called Live Rosin due to the plant being frozen in its “live” stage.

Using the old to make the new

As knowledge about Rosin production has grown over the last few years, extractors decided to bring back an age old extraction method to make it better.

Ice water hash is one of the original cannabis extracts, created by simply adding cannabis flower into a bucket of water full of ice and stirring. The cold water separates the trichomes from the plant matter.

By separating the trichome/liquid mixture and allowing it to dry, you’re left with a cannabinoid and terpene rich, powder-like extract. Pressing ice water hash into rosin created an even cleaner and tastier product, making it the most popular method today.

What Does the Future Hold?

Cannabis extracts have evolved exponentially over the last 5 years alone, with no signs of slowing down. Rosin vape cartridges and rosin edibles are just the tip of the iceberg. When live resin exploded onto the scene, many thought it was the as good as concentrates could get. With Rosin at the front of the pack now, consumers are anxious to see what comes next.

Chris Williams has been making his own Rosin since its inception, and formed Souly Solventless in 2019 to bring it to the public. Now he’s sharing his knowledge and predictions for the future of cannabis extracts.

In This Episode of The Real Dirt Podcast

This week on The Real Dirt, Chip and Chris talk about rosin and the revolution of clean cannabis extracts. The two discuss different methods of extraction and how they have evolved, the new products being made from the latest extraction technologies and what the future holds for cannabis extracts.

Roll one up, heat up the rig, turn on the PuffCo Peak, and sit back and enjoy another awesome episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker!

Transcript

Chip: What up! This is Chip from The Real Dirt Podcast. Man, today we are talking about one of my favorite subjects of all time. That is solventless extracts. That’s right water-based extracts. Today, I’m talking with my good buddy Chris from Souly Solventless out of Denver. And man, he’s been really like pushing the bounds of extraction, water extraction, and rosin extraction in the Colorado area. If you’re around Denver, or coming to Denver, definitely check it all out. Hey guys, if you haven’t joined already, please join us at therealdirt.com, subscribe on iTunes, and check out our new YouTube channel. You know, we’re just working on it, but should be all of our episodes loaded up there real soon. I believe that is The Real Dirt Podcast on YouTube. Thanks again for joining us today. And as always, sit back and fire the largest joint you can, and enjoy this episode of The Real Dirt. This is chip from the real dirt. Good morning. Hello, one and all, another episode of The Real dirt Podcast. This is 2021, and today we’re going to talk about extracts, concentrates, how they’re kind of made, and what they are. The first time I ever heard of a concentrated course, it was it was called hash. We didn’t quite know what it was. This guy, Kevin Price, was like, “Hey, I got some hash.” We looked at it, and we’re like, “Man, this looks like rabbit shit. Are you sure this is hash?” And to this day, I’m pretty sure he sold me rabbit shit as hash. We didn’t know any better, so we smoked it. But it’s come a long way. As soon as I got real extract, which was Jamaican Hash Oil back way long time ago, I realized the potential of extracting the trichome and extracting the molecule from cannabis. I have really been fascinated with it since then, in all its forms from traditional, hand-rolled hash, to sieved and pressed hash, to bubble hash, to subcritical CO2, butane, propane solvent lists. I’m really fascinated and interested in it all. And today we have Chris from Souly Solventless. Chris is a good friend of mine. Say hey, Chris.

Chris: How you guys doing out there? Thanks for having me, Chip.

Chip: You know, Chris is an unsung hero. He has some of the finest extracts on the market. They’re boutique and rare to find. And if you ever see them, absolutely scoop them up. They may be a little bit more expensive than the one sitting next to it. But you know what, it is absolutely worth it, isn’t it? Chris?

Chris: I appreciate all those nice words there too. Yeah, I’m just paying attention to detail and really having a love and appreciation for this plant and its power that it entails. You know, we’re small, small batch; we’re just starting out. If you do happen to catch us on the show, like Chip is saying, you definitely got to give us a shot. You won’t be disappointed. And we like to take our time. Like I said, attention to details is important when it comes to solving these extracts. It’s a few things you definitely have to pay attention to, as far as the input, or the material you’re using to get that output that we all desire, or what the customer desire in these days. 

Chip:  One of the biggest things about extract is quality material and get exceptional quality out. Many people just use the trash, you know, to make it, and you can absolutely do that. But to make the best gear possible, you use the best buds possible.

Chris:  That’s right, my friend. Yeah, a lot of credit goes to the actual cultivators first. The flower has to be top notch. the flowers hanging, and at some point, usually, the hash comes out what you would like. As far as quality, numbers, that can all vary from a few different things. Different genetics may yield different numbers in those areas. You know, it’s all interesting; it’s all experimental. It’s just great to learn every day, whether it’s something that really throws down a lot of hash. You know, it’s in the family of the GMOs or the cakes, or something like that. Something that doesn’t really throw it out as much as more of, you know, on the turf side. I mean, that’s all important, you know. It depends on what you’re looking for.

Chip:  What are you starting off the day with? Do you smoke weed at the beginning of the day? Are you one of those people? 

Chris:  I mean, probably like three or four times at the beginning of the day.

Chip:  Four times at the beginning-

Chris:  I mean, the weed I had this morning. I had a little bit of some of my rosin; I made them myself. I call it the Gumbo Mix, or you know, my term for the mix. 

Chip:  That’s right because Chris is actually from Louisiana.

Chip:  Yeah, you’re right. 

Chip:  He’s also our resident go to have anything Southern cooking food as well. He holds the Gumbo and Shrimp and Grits title at cultivate Colorado currently, right? Nobody competed.

Chris:  I mean, I take that pretty proudly. Anybody want to step up? Right on; I’ll take it, you know. But- 

Chip:  Oh man, when you made shrimp and grits down here in OKC, my friend here never had it. And literally the other day, they were like, “Man, that time you guys made Shrimp and Grits.” He actually said, “Chip, you made Shrimp and Grit?” I didn’t take credit.

Chris:  I mean, it was a team effort, man. Come on.

Chip:  We watched you do it. Extracting hash is just like cooking. You can be a cook, or you can be a chef. You got all the right ingredients. You got all your temporaries together. You prepare everything properly, then you got something. Right?

Chris:  Yeah, a hundred percent. You know, a lot of people may not go along with the mix material washes, but I particularly like those because as you were saying, I like cooking, flavor profiles, and things like that. You take two different hashes and mix those together. You never know what you’re going to get, man. You can be in a mood this day. Take a hit of the same hash that you hit two days ago and get different flavor profiles because you might be in a different mood or something. You know, it just really depends. Like today, a mix of Tropicana Banana and Monkey Berries, and I really like that. That’s my gumbo mix for this morning, Tropicana Banana and Monkey Berries. They’re pretty well. They’re about 4% together, so not bad numbers –

Chip:  You’re mixing these you’re mixing these flavors in the bag?

Chris:  Yes, I like to actually mix material together and wash it together at the bag. You can do it separate if you’d like, and then mix the resin at the end, and press it like that if you want. That’s a preference thing, man. Everybody got their own way to do it. The way I like to do it, you know, so it works out well for me. I don’t have any issues with it. It tastes fire, love the taste.

Chip:  So, we’ve been babbling a little bit here. I realized there’s a lot of people that listen to these podcasts that don’t really understand what hash, or, extract, or rosin, or resin, or solventless, or bubble, or co2 or any of this stuff is. Let me get your opinion of it. Let’s start at the beginning. Let’s have like a 101 basic extract course from Chris.

Chris:  I will tell you this. I’m honestly, you know, definitely knowledgeable in the extracts. But as far as an extract connoisseur, as someone who is going to go to a store and buy an extract over flower, that was not me three or four years ago. I would say the hydrocarbon extractions or CO22 whatever you want to call it- those extractions you know, we’re not really that interested in them as far as like dabbing them. But definitely using them for edibles or things like that in which they would come up really well in edibles. So, you know, never really downplayed or anything like that, but – 

Chip:  Let me pause you right there and explain to people what’s going on. So, most of the extracts you see on the shelf at a dispensary say in Colorado or California. It’s mostly some sort of wax, Goo, oil, or shatter. Most of that is made with butane or propane, some type of hydrocarbon mixture. They’re literally just combining all of the plant material. They’re mixing it with the hydrocarbon, and then they’re separating out the plant material and the hydrocarbon. They’re recollecting the solvent, the hydrocarbon, and what’s left is the extract. Right? That’s what mostly is on the shelf. When you have a pen, what’s in most pens, Chris?

Chip:  You get a mix of a few things these days, I’ve seen. You get your distillate pens mixed with terps; I would say. You get your sauce pens, I’ve seen. Lately, you’re starting to see some live rosin pins, kind of new on the market. But mostly distillate and terps, I would say, in which distillate would be just your pure THC. No flavor profile, and then being able to take different terp profiles, and then add that to the distillate –

Chip:  They are some sort of solvent. Those are all mostly solvents. 

Chris:  Yes, correct.

Chip:  But you mentioned rosin. Tell me what the difference is between solventless and the non-solvents? 

Chris:  You know, as you mentioned earlier, with the actual process of collecting the trichomes using hydrocarbon with a non-solvent extraction or a solventless extraction, you’re actually going to be using water as the solvent, or as the carrier, or the lubricant, whatever you want to call it. But like super cold water, so you’re going to use a combination of ice and water to actually collect those trichomes opposed to the hydrocarbon. A healthier way or healthier method, I would say as far as like, approaching the extraction process, but each process equally has benefits for whatever end product or whatever way you want to do with it. But if you ask me, water and ice seem pretty safe and clean to me. Using that to actually strike the trichomes, solventless just really stuck with me when that started coming around. I think nicotine probably is the guy to give respect to that. Started that term from what I understand, and he’s been around for a minute pushing out some great product. Just learning and discovering that really got me really interested in that. And these days, you’re starting to see it. There’s starting to be rosin cartridges popping up, you know, rosin and budder, live jam, sauce, and diamonds. People started to make diamonds in solvents, which is crazy, because that’s like mechanical separations and things like that. 

Chip:  It costs more for a reason, though. You have to put more raw material. You have to take more care in the solventless extract than just a hydrocarbon extract.

Chris:  The material 100% matters. You can do it from trims and things like that. Well taken care of trim reveals some great results, but it’s ideal to actually use your prize buds. When something that your cultivator does really well, you know, you’re going to wash it. You got to collect it. Run it through the bags, then take it from the bag. (It) goes to the freeze dryer. That’s in there for 24 hours. (It) comes out of the freeze dryer, then you have to sieve it. But then you have to, collect it again into your screen bags, and then now you have to press it. So, you know, you press it, then you collect it. And then now it has to cure, whether you want to heat cure, cold cure, room cure, whatever it may be. There are all these different ways you can approach it. There’s no wrong or right way, in my opinion. It’s all great. – 

Chip:  It’s all technique.  

Chris:  Yeah, it’s all technique and preference. You know, some people swear by full spectrum, or like, some people swear that, “Oh, no, it’s got to be the 90 120 or only 90. Man, that’s cool. You know, that’s great. That’s your preference. You can like that. But it’s all out there, everybody like some a little bit different. And it’s great that you have the options with rosin, and you can do that.

Chip:  Also, when you use different material, you get different results. And it’s really hard on the commercial market to have this same exact material over and over again. And that’s the importance of what we’re talking about. You got to watch it; see what’s going on because even one strain grown by one guy might collect differently than the same strain grown by someone else.

Chris: A hundred percent. 

Chip:  Right. And you’ve seen this over and over again, “Wow, man, those crystals are really small. Those crystals are really fat. This is nothing but glands. This is nothing but stalks.” You know? –

Chris: Yeah man, I’ve seen two different growers with two same exact strains, (have) like almost one and a half percent difference, which is crazy. That’s a decent amount of difference, but still great outcomes on that on that particular strain. But you’re right, environment that it’s actually grown in maybe, I’m starting to notice, has a play into that too, and maybe appearance of the actual rosin; whether it’s going to be a little bit lighter, whether that person maybe pulled that product a little bit early, or harvested it a bit early, and things like that. But you know, kind of go into it too. I never really know, so having a good relationship with your suppliers, or where you’re getting your material from really helps. Consistently knowing that you’re dealing with these guys, so it’s going to be this every time. You know that it’s going to put out. You know these guys’ grower perfectly, and boom, everyone does good.

Chip:  Yeah. Well, it takes a slightly different mentality to go for high quality extracts. I mean, many people grow for extract, but they’re just literally trying to grow biomass, or just trying to grow weight. Man, the highest quality stuff though; it comes from when you really take care, just like you would ganja.  Buy all the way to the end, and you finish it the same way. And you dry it, store it, and package it all the same way. I mean, you don’t have to trim it necessarily, but there’s a little bit of processing going on.

Chris:  Yeah, you definitely would like to prep it, I mean, you don’t want to put any leaves that doesn’t have any, any sugar in there. You definitely don’t want that here, in there, you know, so you got to prep it a little bit. But definitely, as far as taking care of it and growing it with the utmost attention to detail. I know you don’t have three IPMs, but you have to minimize those things like that. That really carries over into your end product. Later in your flower cycle when you come up with an issue, that stuff matters, so you got to be on it from the beginning and take care of the growing environment. 

Chip:  You know, many people are familiar with this term, bubble hash or water hash. But let’s talk about how this solventless is different from just a crude extract with water.

Chris:  With bubble hash in the cycle route, to get rosin you pretty much get bubble hash first. But like you said, most people are used to seeing the bubble hash in the form of sand, almost kief rather, than people familiar with the grinders. And you have to keep catchers. But typically, whenever you’re washing the material, collecting it, in bubble bags before the whole freeze dryer thing, at this point, you take them out of the bubble bag, so you got to pretty much dry it at the perfect condition to get it to not mold or anything. To be able to go from the bubble hash process like we’re all used, that’s a pretty intricate process to get that right. For freeze dryers, I guarantee you, I would have failed plenty of times. I mean, I, maybe, tried a few times when I first moved here from Louisiana. Trying to do some bubble hash before rosin was even a thing, and, you know, it came out well.  But that whole drying process is tricky, and lucky out here it’s dry, so it was relatively easy. The learning curve was easy out here. It’s that lack of humidity, but I don’t know if that would happen in Louisiana. But I ended up with some moldy hash, man, you know. A few times, I’m sure.

Chip:  Yeah. You got to control your dry environment- 

Chris:  Yeah, you should, but you know- 

Chip:  But now with freeze dryers, it’s a different story.

Chris:  Yes. Freeze dryers, definitely different story,

Chip:  Pull it out of the bag wet. Press out water out a little bit. Put it in freeze dryer.

Chris:  And even with using freeze dryers, you could press sooner, rather than a lot of people keep it as melt too. You separate, use your bag and use that 90 bags, and get some full melt. People really love that nice full melt these days, it seems like. Different strains are going to give you different meltability of the heads, but usually that 90 through 119 seems to be the one that people love for that good bubble hash melt. Super clean heads, barely any specs of anything in it, but it’s got to be clean. That’s got to be taken care of properly to get to that point. And using the freezer-

Chip:  Man, just freeze-dried bubble can be incredible.

Chris:  Oh, yeah. The few times I’ve had it, it’s been ridiculously good.

Chip:  But to get that high quality, dabbable bubble at that point, it’s really strain specific. You hardly get any yield out of your batch when you do it that way. Kind of like what you’re doing, and you’re extracting as much quality material out of the leaf as you can with water. You’re taking it; freeze drying it, right? And then what happens?

Chris:  Well, from that point, once it comes from the freeze dryer, we take it, and we put it between these nice plates via these Lowtemp plates. I like to use those plates, but they’re great. Heat the plates, Lowtemp, heat and pressure. The bubble hash goes into filter bag, and then between the two plates. That presses out the rosin. You go from the bubble hash, and then those two plates create almost like an environment of pretty much that protective layer on the resin head. You know that the bubble hash burst from the heat and pressure and oozes out all like oil-rosin. Then you collect it into your cigar, or into your bank, or whatever. I’ve seen people do some crazy stuff-

Chip:  So basically, we’re using water –

Chris:  Yeah.

Chip:  And then we’re freeze drying it. And then we’re using a press with some heat on it. 

Chris:  That’s right- 

Chip:  Right. And this is all just water and heat?

Chris:  Natural man, that’s it. Water, heat, a little bit of pressure, and boom, you got some rosin. You got some beautiful extract that you can then take from that state and cure it how you’d like, or you can keep it in the fresh press state. Take it into cartridges. Take it into edibles, which makes some beautiful edibles. Tastes so good. I love that. Some people complain about that weed tastes or whatever. I like a nice rosin taste and edible. In my opinion, it tastes good.

Chip:  Me too. Yeah, I prefer all the edibles with more basic extracts: kief, water, rosin. 

Chris:  Oh, yeah. 

Chip:  Right. I prefer those as extracts for sure. Hey, all of you edible companies out there, man. Don’t just use distillate. Make some with kief. Make some with rosin.

Chris:  Yeah, I know. Your clientele will love it too, I’m sure. They’re start learning to experiment with different inputs. The education of all this stuff will definitely keep growing with more states becoming legal here. As we keep seeing almost weekly, it seems like a state is passing some medical cannabis or recreational laws, which is great, man–

Chip:  Hawaii today. Yesterday, Alabama, Tennessee, people in Texas, New York, New Jersey, like it’s going everywhere.

Chris:  Right? It’s happening, and that’s great. People are going to want to go and learn about it, different states. That’s how it is man. 

Chip:  You know, the thing about private market cannabis and that industry is we always tried to squeeze as many dollars, as many cents out of a square foot or out of a plant as possible because it was gray market, or it was totally illegal. And now, we have these legal markets that allows us to do research and experiment with cannabis on a different scale. Even though solventless, you know, might be twice as much on the shelf, it might be $60- $80 a gram on the shelf. The manufacturer still is not really making a ton of money at that price. Literally, he’s making less money that way than he would if he was doing butane, propane, or CO2. Right? He’s making less money that way than he would if he was actually probably selling the buds for flower too. Right? Solventless extract, it really defines, to some degree, a different segment of cannabis production because it’s not just like the biggest bang for the buck or get the most money out of the square foot. It’s like, I want to make this product, and this is how we make it. The market bears the price.

Chris:  A hundred percent. Yeah, it’s definitely a special product. Like you’re saying, there’s multiple steps to it, man. You know, so-

Chip:  So complex. I mean, it should be worth $120 a gram.

Chris:  I mean, I was just out in California, and that was what it was. 

Chip:  Well, yeah. It’s $120 a gram there, though because of all the taxes that go on.

Chris:  Yeah. And it was a tag. I like to say it’s not for everybody. But if you want to get into it, it’s definitely something that takes a little bit of diving into. There are a few steps to it, few things that you definitely got to pay attention to detail. That’s what this is, man. It’s more like-

Chip:  Like a food or laboratory like environment, right?

Chris:  A hundred percent. Other extraction techniques as well, not to say that’s not how you would treat it with that one. But just particularly with the solventless, like you said, you grow all your flower. You could take this flower and sell it as flower, or you can take it and throw it in this water with this ice, swish it around, and hopefully some trichomes come out. I mean, that sounds crazy. 

Chip:  Yeah, it does.

Chris:  The research and the groundwork that a lot of people have done in the past few years, I would say, have definitely built that confidence. Definitely for curious minds like me, for sure because it was definitely tough for me to dive into it too. I remember thinking about this more than a few years back. I’m like, “Man, that’s crazy. Just take the flower and throw it in there.” I’m like, “Really? Okay.” Now, you learn, and you get educated. You’re like, “Okay, now it makes sense. Okay, cool. I’m definitely going to go take my flower and throw it in there.” Do that because this rosin thing just tastes really good.  [inaudible 24:46] tastes really good too.

Chip:  Sorry, I just had to break for a second. 

Chris:  You guys are over at this door, right?

Chip:  Yes. You got to have security up in the studio, man. All kinds of motherfuckers bowl up here. I mean, Tupac learned it the most. I know,

Chris:  I know, dude. That’s right. I just was watching a couple episodes on Hip-hop Evolution about that sad story, man. 

Chip:  Sad story. Yeah, you know, greatness often is snuffed out too early man. You know, I lost a couple friends this year. Danny Smallwood and Rob Cox. It’s always sad when the flame goes out too quick, man.

Chris:  That’s right. Yeah, man. My condolences. I’m sorry to hear that. 

Chip:  Both those guys, Danny and Rob, loved extract, loved bubble. I was making it with both of those guys in literally 2002. And we got super high on more than one occasion on a handmade bubble that we just made with literally pantyhose and silkscreen.

Chris:  Taking it back, man?

Chip:  Right, but you don’t have to have all the equipment. You can do it at home. You can do simple extractions at home, and people should try. If you’re a home grower, definitely try to do that. Yeah, go to the store. Go to the dispensary. Buy some and see what theirs is like, and then try to mimic it. Right? 

Chris:  Yeah, a hundred percent. There’s a lot of information out there on the web these days. You can follow an array of guys on Instagram too that are really interested, it seemed like, in letting people know how to do this. I gathered a lot of information just from perusing Instagram and following people that I look up to that I know we’re doing big things out here in the industry. If you’re familiar with Colorado’s rosin scene, you know what I’m talking about? You can find some information out there. Don’t be scared of it, man. You can get the equipment relatively easy, and it’s relatively easy to use. Learning curve with anything, don’t expect and just get it. All of a sudden, you got what you- but it takes a little bit. But curiosity, man, you got to want to do it. You know, you got to be about it. That’s all I’m going to say. You know like, do it. –

Chip:  Yeah, no doubt. 

Chris:  If you like extractions or you like smoking extractions, and you have access to flower, and you have opportunity to do it, and you’re in a state that allows you to do it, I say do it. 

Chip:  Absolutely. I believe that state can be a state of well-being.

Chris:  A hundred percent. 

Chip:  Yeah, get out there, grow some weed, man. Make some extracts of it. Roll some joints with it. Pass it along to your friends and your family, and then grow some more. Do it again.

Chris:  Keep it going, man. Keep it going –

Chip:  Just a great chat with you, man. Yeah.

Chris:  Likewise, man. I really appreciate you having me. It’s really an honor being on the show and sharing the information that I possess here, which, you know, take it for what you want. But yeah, man –

Chip:  You know what I love about you is next year you’re going to be on a totally different plane with this. We should do another one next year and see where you’re coming out with it. You just learned so much like a sponge, man.

Chris:  I’ll come out there though. I’ll come see you in OKC next year. We’ll do that –

Chip:  Oh, yeah. Absolutely. We’ll make some. We need to make some this year, and make it work out- 

Chris:  Yeah, we’ll get it going. No worries. We’ll come and do some fishing as well. 

Chip:  I don’t know, man. You tear it up a little bit too much. I need my fish in my pond, catching them all. I look forward to Chris, man. I miss you guys.

Chris:  Likewise, man. 

Chip:  It was good chatting with you this morning. Thanks again. This is Chris with Souly Solventless. How can people look you up, Chris?

Chris:  Oh, you can find us on Instagram. We’re souly.solventless, and that’s s-o-u-l-y-dot-solventless. Pretty easy to find. Check us out. We got some good things happening in here very soon. Yeah, be on the lookout for us.

Chip:  Thanks again, Chris. Man, I appreciate it. 

Chris:  Thank you. Have a good one too.

Chip:  Oh, man, I tell you after that episode, I want to sit back and vape up some good solventless extract, or maybe even go back and get myself some bubble hash and sprinkle some on a nice large joint. You know, I think I might have ruined myself that extract years ago by making a train wreck kief joints and train wreck bubble hash joints. I probably lost a couple of years smoking those. Man, I hope you guys learned a lot about extracts and solventless extracts today. You know, they’re not dangerous. They’re safe. It’s just water. Not that like hydrocarbon products are dangerous either, but that many people have an aversion to them. If you’re interested in you know solventless extracts or bubbles, you should try so. If you can make it at home, you can buy a lot of materials online. You can always check us out at cultivatecolorado.com, cultivateokc.com. Hey, if you haven’t already subscribed to our podcast, please do. That’s The Real Dirt Podcast with Chip Baker. Check out our YouTube channel, man. We’re going to put all of our episodes on there from the past. We’re going to have all our new episodes on there, so you’ll be able to listen to all 70/ 80/ 90 episodes on YouTube at your will. So, thanks a lot for joining us again today. The next time you’re out there in the world, the next time you’re at a dispensary, ask the dispensary about solventless extracts. Ask them their opinion. Ask him to show some. It’s been Chip with the Real Dirt. Thanks again.

The Real Dirt on Controlling pH

The Real Dirt on Controlling pH

How to fix cannabis pH problems

Cannabis pH is important. Everybody knows that.

Knowing the importance of pH and how to keep it under control however, are two sides of the same coin. In order to stay on top of your pH, you need to understand how it works. From how acidic or basic your medium is, to the water you add in, it all needs to be measured and monitored constantly.

What happens if you don’t pay attention to pH? You might notice a range of issues that resemble your average nutrient deficiency. But you can supplement every nutrient under the sun and never solve the issue if it has to do with pH.

“Well, you know, it depends whether you’re feeding the plant, or whether you’re just, you’re adding amendments in the soil. And growing in the soil, in the ground, or whether you’re growing and saving your soil mix, and you’re adding amendments to that, and you’re just watering. Because if you’re using liquid fertilizers, it’s naturally going to go be pulled down temporarily. The plant itself adjusts pH, you know?” – Uncle John

pH means potential hydrogen. Plants will pull up water, they make their own sugar, and are able to have enough energy to split water. So they split water off from hydrogen and oxygen. With that situation, you get extra oxygen. And that’s why plants emit oxygen, we can breathe.

But the hydrogen and some of the oxygen are used with carbon in order to make the plant’s body. There’s additional hydrogen ions that are emitted out the roots of the plant as well. The plant does that to break down minerals in order to suck the nutrients or minerals back up. So when you’re measuring pH, pH means potential hydrogen ions.

So there’s already hydrogen ions in the soil. And that reading that you get where seven is absolutely neutral means that that’s the difference between hydroxyl ions, which would be a buffer and give you high pH, and hydrogen ions, which would give you low pH. So really, what you’re looking at when you look at pH, you’re looking at what the plant can feed itself right away. And if it’s too high, you know, it’s not going to get certain minerals. And if it’s too low, then only, then it’s not going to get other minerals.

More Scale, More pH Problems

“We pH-ed every single, you know, gallon of water that went into the plants. And I mean, it is incredible at how vigorous like when you, when the whole combination comes together. Right? It is just incredible how vigorous the plants grow, how much better they are.” – Chip Baker

One of the benefits of growing on a smaller scale is that pH is much easier to control. Some growers may never even look at their pH and grow perfect plants. The issues start to arise when you scale up.

Managing an outdoor operation with plants in the ground takes a new level of commitment, and a lot more consideration for your pH levels. Through his years of farm visits and seeing what growers are doing right, John noticed that most growers who have a large scale operation use a Dosatron to control their nutrients and pH.

“Dosatrons aren’t really that expensive, but some people want to use one doser. And I had a customer in an heirloom tomato greenhouse in the central coast in California, and they wanted to be able to use one doser, that was it. And so you can mix our fertilizer line times 13 in that heavy concentration. And it will all go through, and you could set one D40 Dosatron to that. They make a D3000 now, and that can take one ml per gallon. So you can dial it in, say for 10 mLs per gallon really accurately. So you get one of those, and you get a maybe a D15 or a D40. And then you can put the others stock nutrient in through that.” – Uncle John

In This Episode

If you haven’t already guessed, this episode is all about pH! From what it is and how to monitor it, to the most common pH problems and the most complex, and how to solve them. Get the real dirt on pH and why it’s important in another awesome, educational episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker!

Transcript

Chip: Alright, look at who joined us, man.I tell you, I got two of my favorite people in here. I’ve got the famous Jessica Baker of Baker’s Genetics, Baker’s extract. How are you doing, Jessica?

 

Jessica: I’m doing well. How about you?

 

Chip: Oh, I’m doing excellent. I’ve also got a John Piccirilli here of Cutting Edge Nutrients. How are you doing, John?

 

John: I’m doing very well.

 

Chip: Well, I’ve gathered both you guys here today, because I want to show you something. 

 

Jessica: Okay.

 

Chip: Yeah, I’ve got some weed over here. 

 

Jessica: I see the weed.

 

Chip: Yeah, I’ve got some weed over here. This is all grown with Cutting Edge nutrients. These are Baker’s Genetics. What does that mean, Baker’s Genetics?

 

Jessica: I guess it means a lot of different things. For this purpose, this just means that you know, the cannabis that we have grown and are here, we’ve chosen the phenotypes from these seeds and decided which ones we want to keep.

 

Chip: So Jessica runs a clone nursery, and a dispensary, and extraction facility in Oklahoma City. Why don’t you pick out some weed and tell us about it over there, Jess?

 

Jessica: Okay, so this big jar is Lemon G 13 crossed with Do-Si-Doe. This is an archive seed that we have planted out and kind of chosen the ones that we liked the best.

 

Chip: Hey Pat, why don’t you pass the smaller jar over here? Here’s some Oklahoma greenhouse, John. What do you think? ‘Cause you’ve been all over the world, seen some of the finest weed in the world.

 

John: Whoa. I just, I picked out what I thought was gonna be a decent size, but it’s gigantic. 

 

Chip: [inaudible 1:41].

 

John: Terpenes.

 

Chip: Terpene.

 

John: Love this stuff.

 

Chip: I mean, G13 Do-Si-Dos from archive seeds, as part of this moonboat collection, I believe.

 

John: Definitely has a lemon and crystal.

 

Chip: Yeah. Yeah.

 

John: So what, is this being passed off as indoor? Don’t say that on the radio.

 

Chip: Just don’t say that on the radio.

 

Jessica: We have some indoor late G13 and some greenhouse.

 

Chip: You know, you know, we get to do it all. Indoor, outdoor, light dep, greenhouse, right? But you can tell, you can tell. You can tell the difference. You know, and you know how you tell, is the greenhouse nuggets are huge. 

 

John: Indeed.

 

Jessica: That’s mold resistant. The G13 was really mold resistant.

 

Chip: This was a really good strain for us here. Hit really well. Hey, could you pass over the –

 

Jessica: I’m rolling this one up as we pass.

 

Chip: Cookies and Cream? That’s the ball jar.

 

Jessica: Oh yeah, that’s right. This is the ball jar. This is a really good one, too. So this was Cookies and Cream, exotic genetic seeds. We planted a bunch of seeds. And then, we chose a couple phenotypes. Right now, there is, we’re in debate on which of the two top phenos we actually like the most. So to be determined on that one.

 

John: Has Ice Cream to it.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. 

 

John: I like that.

 

Chip: It’s very vanilla-like, almost.

 

John: Mhmm.

 

Chip: Right?

 

John: Smooth.

 

Chip: Mhmm.

 

John: And when you crush it, it’s got more of the Cookies.

 

Chip: More, yeah. More of the Cookies. These are a great, great, great strain. Yeah, these were all Cutting Edge Nutrients – 

 

Jessica: Growers soil.

 

Chip: Growers soil. Hey dude, do we have any of our, the previous light dep crop, Jessica? The outdoor crop over there?

 

Jessica: I don’t think so.

 

Chip: I don’t think so either.

 

Jessica: Does not appear to be, we do at the dispensary, but –

 

Chip: Okay, too bad. Well, because of you know, one of the things we noticed, John is, we kind of got a large, fairly large operation. 30,000 square feet, you know, auto flower, 60,000 square feet of outdoor, then you know, another 8,000 square feet of this greenhouse, and 8,000 square feet of that greenhouse. And man, it’s a little overwhelming.

 

John: A lot of work.

 

Chip: It’s a lot of work, you know, we don’t have that many people that work out on the farm. And it’s also just, you know, we were talking about scale on one of the last episodes, it was hard to set the pH, right? And we worked on pH within the soil, and we tried to just balance it that way, and I think we did a pretty good job. Because our source water coming out of the well is 7.8 and that’s just straight well water here. And we’ve got a really kind of high parts per million. But, we were just adjusting the soil with enough acidity, where the pH would be balanced. And I feel like we did a pretty good job that way. And we did it in both like, the ground and in pots. But these crops right here, containers and we control the pH perfectly. The mold, the color, like, all of it improved, you know? It was dramatic. And you know, I’ve always seen what pH can do, but I’d like to talk to you about like, the importance of pH, and why we should think about it in our gardens, and how we should we should deal with it.

 

John: So, you took the pH of the water, but did you do a soil test to take the pH of the soil?

 

Chip: Sure, sure. 

 

John: What was that? 

 

Chip: Sure. We did it right. We sent it off to a lab, the water and the soil. And then the lab gave us a formula to adjust it down, right? The original pH of the soil was like, the 7.2, or something like that.

 

John: So you adjusted it down.

 

Chip: Down, yeah, yes.

 

John: With sulfur?

 

Chip: You know, we used, Jessica, do you remember what we used?

 

Jessica: You guys are being all serious over here. I’m like, coughing as I smoke this.

 

Chip: I think we used two things. Sulfur and acidic fertilizer, chicken shit, bat guano, and fish emulsion.

 

John: Did you use Plant Amp?

 

Chip: Well I mean, you’re just talking of a few acres of stuff here.

 

John: Right, right.

 

Chip: Right. Well, that’s why it was so hard like I’m saying. And that’s why we could only control specifically the pH on this one 8,000 square foot greenhouse. We could control it every single watering and how much better it did.

 

John: Right. And that wasn’t in soil that was in your soil? 

 

Chip: Correct.

 

John: Right. 

 

Jessica: The plant bags.

 

Chip: And to tell you it was even, I mean, the pH issues were in the potted plants that we were feeding on pH water. It was significant. The stuff in the ground, you could hardly solve the problem, right? I mean, it came out in the mold and the health of the plant, I think in the long run, right? As we get like, next to no mold, no bug problems in our perfectly pH-ed gardens. 

 

John: And you really saw a difference between that and the soil that wasn’t pH-ed? Yeah.

 

Chip: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah, big time. The stuff in the container’s not pH-ed. It’s kind of just crap, honestly. Like we ended up extracting it. You know, I’ve got a bad opinion. If it’s not great, great, great, great weed, I don’t even want it. It’s awful. Throw it away, you know?

 

John: Yeah, I can see that.

 

Chip: But you know, it’s a controversy to check your pH or not. Oh, you don’t have to check your pH. I never do anything for it. But you got to do something, right?

 

John: Well, you know, it depends whether you’re feeding the plant, or whether you’re just, you’re adding amendments in the soil. And growing in the soil, in the ground, or whether you’re growing and saving your soil mix, and you’re adding amendments to that, and you’re just watering. Because if you’re using liquid fertilizers, it’s naturally going to go be pulled down temporarily. The plant itself adjusts pH, you know? pH means potential hydrogen. So plants will pull up water, they’re pretty amazing. They make their own sugar, you know, and are able to have enough energy to split water. So they split water off from hydrogen and oxygen. With that situation, you get extra oxygen. And that’s why plants emit oxygen, we can breathe. But the hydrogen and some of the oxygen, oxygen are used with carbon in order to make the plant’s body. But there’s additional hydrogen that are hydrogen ions that are emitted out the roots of the plant. And the plant does that to break down minerals in order to suck the nutrients or minerals back up. So when you’re measuring pH, pH means potential hydrogen ions. So there’s already hydrogen ions in the soil. And that reading that you get where seven is absolutely neutral means that that’s the difference between hydroxyl ions, which would be a buffer and give you high pH, and hydrogen ions, which would give you low pH. So really, what you’re looking at when you look at pH, you’re looking at what the plant can feed itself right away. And if it’s too high, you know, it’s not going to get certain minerals. And if it’s too low, then only, then it’s not going to get other minerals. When it’s lower, it’s going to get calcium, iron and manganese, which is key for cannabis. So pH is important. But really being able to feed, like when you’re adjusting the water, the pH of the water and you’re adjusting it down, you’re giving the plant a chance to pull up some nutrition really quick. So it’s good to adjust the pH of the water when – adjusting the pH of the soil, that’s a long term process. That’s why I always used your soil.

 

Chip: Right. Well you know, and we do that too. I mean, I make potting soi. So of course, I love the potting soil. But like, we use all the technologies. I’d love to grow in the ground. It’s a little difficult to, you know, make containers for the thousands of plants we’re growing. We got a small operation. I like growing in the ground.

 

Jessica: I like growing in the ground too.

 

Chip: So what does this mean? You look like you came in here, Jessica, you fired up a joint, now you’re leaving?

 

Jessica: I basically have an appointment I have to go to. You know, I basically just came in here to make an appearance, to smoke you guys out, to make both of you look good today. Sorry about that.

 

Chip: I wanted – oh, okay. Well, maybe next time you’ll come out and we’ll have more of an in- depth conversation about pH.

 

Jessica: More profound conversation?

 

John: And she takes excellent photos, look at that.

 

Chip: I’ve been training. We’ve been training.

 

Jessica: I’ve been training. Chip’s been training me on photographs since the 90’s, back before digital photography.

 

Chip: She’s an excellent photographer now.

 

Jessica: And you know, I can, I’m okay. Sometimes I’m okay. Quite.

 

John: Oh, that was great. I mean that’s great on the IG.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, totally.

 

Jessica: Straight to IG, yo.

 

Chip: I mean, just a little bit of cropping, maybe a little color and trust me, you’ll be fine.

 

Jessica: Totally. Well, it was good seeing everybody. I’m good on that joint. I’ll leave that with you.

 

Chip: Okay. Hey Jessica, and if anybody’s interested in getting in contact to find out more about your live resins, batters, butters, sauces, diamonds and pearls, how do they get in touch with you?

 

Jessica: No pearls, but they can get in touch with me at jessica@bakersbrands.com. Or if you are interested in clones, clones@bakersbrands.com. 

 

Chip: You’re on Instagram, Facebook? 

 

Jessica: Instagram, @cannabis – no, hold on. Instagram is bakerscannabisoklahoma. Facebook, I believe is just @bakerscannabis. And, you know, I’m an acupuncturist and herbalist. So if you care about other plants @baker_botanica on Instagram. 

 

Chip: Alright, excellent. I’m glad we had that. That excellent visit with Jessica. She’s always so busy with stuff she’s doing.

 

Jessica: I’m always so busy. I’ve got important things to do. 

 

Chip: Okay.

 

Jessica: Bye. 

 

Chip: Bye.

 

John: Bye. 

 

Chip: Oh wow, she’s great. She always comes in in a tornado. She like, throws weed everywhere. She smokes the place out, and then she leaves. It’s like, the Lone Ranger or something. The Stoned Ranger. 

 

John: Absolutely.

 

Chip: Who was that masked woman?

 

John: And to you there in audience land, she was wearing a mask.

 

Chip: She was wearing a mask with that shirt. This crop here, you know, I really wanted to make it great. And so you know, we spared no expense. We used you know, your full directions of Cutting Edge fertilizer, your supplements, even your, some of your organic stuff. We pH-ed every single, you know, gallon of water that went into the plants. And I mean, it is incredible at how vigorous like when you, when the whole combination comes together. Right? It is just incredible how vigorous the plants grow, how much better they are. Man, you have to sacrifice like either the nutrition, or the pH, or the potting soil, because of the volume or the scale of it.

 

John: Yeah, I mean, pHing water is pretty important. A lot of people get this side benefit. So you know, in the western United States, you have a lot of calcium bicarbonate that comes up in the water. And by using phosphoric acid, it binds with the calcium causes to fall out, and then the bicarbonate gases off as CO2. You can do that. It’s good to also aerate. Even if you have a 5,000 gallon water tank, if you get a massive 5 horsepower air pump or something, and blow air into there, just big old bubbles, it’s going to cause the, if you pH down to 6, it’s going to cause all the calcium bicarbonate to fall out. And you have to have a Y at the bottom of your tank with two valves. One goes to your field, the other you know, runs off to somewhere where you’re going to create a lot of clay slop, because it’s going to take out the, the iron is going to take out the calcium. And, those two things in the forms they are in will tie up the fertilizers. 

 

Chip: So wait a second, you’re suggesting that, because I think I can use this on our farm.

 

John: Yeah.

 

Chip: Yes, because we have five capacity on tanks. And that’s probably why you said that to me. So subliminal there.

 

John: A lot of people have copied you and they have 5,000 tanks too. 

 

Chip: So I should drop my pH to 6, and then bubble the water vigorously. And then do you –

 

John: In 24 hours.

 

Chip: 24 hours either you turn the bubbler off, let it sit and then you drain out the sediment?

 

John: It’s already had a chemical reaction.

 

Chip: So it’s already settled.

 

John: Right. So by turning it off in an hour, the rest of it that’s maybe coming up from the bottom will all settle out. And you’d be surprised, you know. When your water is 7.2, when your water is 7.6, there’s so much more of that calcium. You turn on that waste valves –

 

Chip: It’s unusable to the plant. 

 

John: Right.

 

Chip: Right. 

 

John: It’s unusable to the plant. It’s just, it helps buffer the soil. It’s one of the reasons why you have higher pH soil. I mean, you see that a lot of red clays. And, you buffer it more. It’s not necessarily good for the plant, for the type of plants we’re growing. And when you turn on that waste line that comes from the tank, maybe nothing will come out. You’ll have to kick that line. And then slowly, you’ll see like, this extruded clay coming out. That’s all junk that’s tying up your nutrients. And you can add more nutrients and overcome this, but I’m not trying to get rich on this radio show. I’m trying to tell you how to save money.

 

Chip: No, you know, and that’s where we’ve always really aligned, John is like, we just want to help people grow. And you know, people will come in, and I’ll give them the easiest way to solve their problems. But they want to spend some money. And so they like, buy a problem solver, right? But I always offer the mechanical solution to people first, if there’s one. Something they can easily do by hand or, this  is great. ‘Cause we’ve kind of talked about this before, I’ve had bad water in the past for sure. And not that our water is just awful, but it does come out of the well at 400 parts per million?

 

John: Yeah, you’re right there with calcium bicarbonate.

 

Chip: Yeah, that’s calcium carbonate, for sure. For sure. So alright, well, I’m gonna try this man. And now will this change the pH, will this change the EC or the ppm of the water?

 

John: Yeah, it’ll definitely change the ppm of the water coming out. And you’ll see that you’re going to use less fertilizer to be able to get to the same point. And then if you use compost tea, you’re going to use less fertilizer. I have customers that I’ve told this to, when they followed that through, they came back and I said, “I pretty much can guarantee you’re gonna be able to cut your fertilizer bill by 30%.” But they used tom tea enough and they cut it by 50%. And I was like, that’s great. And he looked at me like I was crazy. But you know, it’s not about –

 

Chip: Oh yeah, yeah. No actually, I want people to be more effective with the fertilizers and the products we sell. And they’ll be better businesspeople, they’ll make more money, they’ll be better growers. And, you know, they’ll remember that. They’ll come back and do more business with us.

 

John: Right, and what one of the groups of people that we’re always focusing on is phenotype hunters. You really need to have your program dialed in to see what the genetic potential is of what you’re working with. And there’s quite a few people out here in Oklahoma doing that now. It’s pretty exciting.

 

Chip: Oh, Oklahoma is the pheno hunting capital of the world right now, I think. With what’s happened with the cannabis seed industry, right,  at the same time, and the light regulations in Oklahoma allowing for no square footage issues, no plant issues, you plant as many seeds as you want. Right? We just got off a 4, 500 – it seems like we plant about 4,500 seeds for 10,000 square feet. So it’s been working for us. And we just have been doing it over and over again. Auto flowers, traditional male, female plants, feminized, photo sensitive plants, it’s been great, man. It’s just really, really been incredible to see all the different genetics, all the different phenotypes, to see the breeders that are for real.

 

John: Right, yes.

 

Chip: Right? And the ones that aren’t, because they’re out there, man. They’re out there. Hey then, I’ll tell you this. CSI and Archive, I know you guys have heard me talk about, I know you guys know these guys are my friends. But man, they got the best shit. Like, we planted 20,000 seeds out probably this year, and theirs were the best. Absolutely. The strongest, the most vigorous, the most what they said they were gonna be. Just the quality of the flower like, it was just incredible. So CSI, Humboldt, Archive Seeds.

 

John: Yeah, and Finest is right there too.

 

Chip: Oh, man, we’ve planted a bunch of Finest. I mean, there’s a lot of great, great breeders out there, don’t get me wrong. But I mean, we planted out Brothers Grimm Seeds this year. We planted out Exotic Seeds. We planted all the bests, but of everybody’s, dude. CSI and Archive’s. They were the best.

 

John: Yeah, and there’s breeders that came from California here like Brandon Rust, who won third place in the Cowboy Cup with Death Breath. It’s an amazing flower. I’m sure now it’s probably unobtainium because it really is that good? 

 

Chip: Unobtainium. I’m gonna write that one down. Unobtainium.

 

John: You cannot find it probably.

 

Chip: Unobtainium. Yes, scale is going to be one of Oklahoma’s biggest problems, right? And this water quality, this pH issue has absolutely been one of my biggest problems. But there’s this bro science with the, you know, with limited success comes this like,  enforcement on something that’s actually didn’t, was a negative but since, you know, it worked out for you, you thought it was a positive. Right? And I literally just this past week got in just two different like, conversations with people on pHing their containers, right? They’re growing inside, they’re small growers, they’re not even at scale. And, their argument is, “I’ve never pH-ed my plants, and my plants are fine.” And they’ve just never had a pH problem. And it’s easy not to have a pH problem when it’s small like that, but when it scales, that’s really, really when you, really when you see it. I know you’ve seen some big farms here and in California. Like, you know, what are some of the ways that people deal with fertilizer injection and pH control? 

 

John: Well, there’s a whole range of ways to deal with pH and injectors. And it seems like – 

 

Chip: Let’s keep it with container-grown.

 

John: Okay. Yeah. Yeah, okay.

 

Chip: Okay. Since I’m make potting soil and all.

 

John: Dosatrons. Dosatrons are really popular. You know, they’re powered by water. You put a clipboard up and just clean it no matter what, every month. And they’re easy to take apart, easy to clean, no reason not to use them. You know, all our fertilizers go through those. 

 

Chip: You know, I see Dosatrons being used two different ways. We’ll get to the nutrient first, and then we’ll go to the pH, because this is the pH show. I see way number one is where you have five different components. And so, you have five different Dosatrons. The best way to do this is to dilute all of your nutrients with distilled water, at least by half, and then you can use a large volume to come through the Dosatron. Right? And in my opinion, the most success I see people doing really well, this well. And you know, it’s a siphoning unit. So, it just works better if more volume goes through the unit. And when you’re talking about a mL of a nutrient, like, it really is better to have two mL go through the Dosatron than one or even five, honestly. And then the same thing with the, any of the NPK. But the other way, is people take one large stock tank, they mix like 55 gallons, right? And they fill it halfway full of water, and then they put all the stock nutrients in the tank, all their 5 or 10 different components. And then they have one Dosatron. Is there any preferred method or any reason to use one over the other?

 

John: Well, the cost. You know, Dosatrons aren’t really that expensive, but some people want to use one doser. And I had a customer in an heirloom tomato greenhouse in the central coast in California, and they wanted to be able to use one doser, that was it. And so you can mix our fertilizer line times 13 in that heavy concentration. And it will all go through, and you could set one D40 Dosatron to that. They make a D3000 now, and that can take one ml per gallon. So you can dial it in, say for 10 mLs per gallon really accurately. So you get one of those, and you get a maybe a D15 or a D40. And then you can put the others stock nutrient in through that. Because you don’t want to mix calcium with everything else. Otherwise you get locked out, right? So –

 

Chip: Even if you dilute it halfway with water?

 

John: Yeah. You can’t take that chance because then, somebody does that inside, and then they do it in their greenhouse and they want to do it in the field, and they get evaporation in the field. And then you get that problem again. And they, you know, by the time they’re out in the field, they’re hiring so many people and they have other operations going, they’re not watching things closely. 

 

Chip: So I mean, what you’re saying is you really suggest at least two Dosatrons.

 

John: Yes. Two.

 

Chip: Two Dosatrons. One for your major calcium component, and then the rest could go all mixed together. Now if I’m using your three part, how would I,  put the micro under one dose, and then mix the grow and the bloom in a stock solution with 50% water?

 

John: Yeah, you don’t even need 50% water. 

 

Chip: Oh, you could just mix it straight. 

 

John: Mix it straight. Yeah, I made it that way for that reason, because I using dosers.

 

Chip: I didn’t realize I could I mix it straight. I’ve diluting it for years.

 

John: Oh really? I just did all this for myself.

 

Chip: Yeah. That’s why I developed all this stuff, dude.

 

John: That’s why you develop your soil right?

 

Chip: Oh yeah, hey man, this new plant in bags I have, the five gallon plant in bags. I mean, they made it to where I’ve just got three people that work with us. And we just ran 8,000, 10,000 square feet greenhouses, like over and over and over and over again, all summer long, I did it with three people, right? Three different sets of 8,000 square foot greenhouses pull, you know, multiple times over the course of the summer. The only way we could do it is with those plant in bags, the absolute only way to be able, to like, finish the crop. Take the old potting soil old bag out, and replace it immediately with a fresh bag plant in bag like, the labor savings was incredible. Incredible. And yeah, I knew that. And so that’s [inaudible 26:21] myself.

 

John: You know, we make our own mistakes on our own, on our own money, right? And then we try to come up with a solution, and then it becomes the product for your friends. And then it goes. Now, probably people listening are friends of our friends of our friends of our friends. It’s really gone out there now, but a lot of people doing it.

 

Chip: Oh, man. Everybody that comes in my shop’s so friendly. Rarely do I have someone who’s uncool.

 

John: Yeah, yeah. I mean, they go somewhere else for a reason.

 

Chip: So how do we deal with the pH with the dosers? How do you see people dealing with the pH?

 

John: So you don’t have to worry about the pH using our fertilizers, but there are other fertilizers that you want to adjust the pH. The actual, organic –

 

Chip: Because when you use your, just your three part, it adjusts appropriately?

 

John: Yes. You don’t have to adjust. It’s available from a pH of 3.5 to 9.

 

Chip: So it’s not that it adjusts the pH in the water, even though it will change the pH, it’s just available at the large ranges.

 

John: Right, right. They’re food grade components that are meant to use, you know, mountain spring water, Fresno ditch water or, you know, water sources from anywhere in Oklahoma. 

 

Chip: Sure, no, I set mine just to let you know, I set mine religiously at 5.8 if I can with your nutrient. And I suggest everyone do that too. You know, I hear people do it all kinds of ways.

 

John: Yeah. Well, so many people, you have to plan for people who don’t do anything at all.

 

Chip: Yeah. And so that’s how you did it.

 

John: Right. And then so – 

 

Chip: And hey, that’s how all of our other crops like I was saying earlier in the conversation is, you know, we weren’t able to pH it. We just put the nutrient in the tank, put it in the Dosatron and didn’t pH the water at all. You know, and it went out there. And we grew a lot of great, great, great weed. I should say good weed that way. But like, wow, man, it just got great as soon as I controlled all the nutrition, all the pH,.

 

John: Right. Well, in that case, you’re cutting out the calcium bicarbonate right? So you are gonna get a benefit all those fertilizers are available. And you know, that’s a side benefit of adjusting the pH and then aerating it even further does that. And that’s why people used to aerate their reservoirs.

 

Chip: Sure. I’ll be missing that. Yeah. Well, you know, we did use some. I have seen some really bad water here and the interaction with cheap fertilizer, right? I have seen it fall out. I’ve seen it clog. Like, we’ve had so many calls from customers who was like, “Oh, that drip irrigation, the filter’s not working,” right?

 

John: Or it’s working too well. 

 

Chip: And that’s what it is. It’s actually like, it’s clogging all the time. And you talk to people and it’s like, oh, man, they’ve got really bad water. And they’re putting all this cheaper, you said it earlier, salt fertilizer in it. And it’s just creating this sludge at the bottom of the tank. Sludge, like in their lines, a paste or a clay, you said it. 

 

John: Yeah, the calcium.

 

Chip: Yeah, on the inside of the filters. And we of course suggest everybody use the oversized Netta thin filters and promote the bigger ones, right? But yeah. Here, it’s a problem. We’ve seen it.

 

John: Yeah. I mean, a lot of people out here are pumping out of ponds, and they really need to use a sand filter. But you asked me about it, adjusting the pH on these other doser systems like, like doser system like Agritech from, that Mike has over in Colorado.  Great doser system, uses peristaltic pumps. So it turns in, it turns out exact amounts. So you could do it when you’re –

 

Chip: Set up a siphoning unit, it has the paralytic pumps that proportionally pull it out, and then add it.

 

John: And then add it. And you can add as many of those pumps as you want. So you could have 12 different inputs, if you would like.

 

Chip: And that’s the best way to deal with the pH is with a paralytic pump, right? Instead of –

 

John: Well, they still have pH dosers. I mean, pretty much even Dosatron has pH dosers. I go to a lot of places and I see super high tech doser systems that either inject with air, actually use 100 psi air to inject the fertilizer into the line as it passes by. And I feel like that mix is best. Here in Oklahoma, there’s Andersen injector systems. 

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, yeah. We’re a dealer for Andersen.

 

John: Oh, really? 

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

John: Interesting. Do you have one in your store right now?

 

Chip: No, we don’t. But I’m going to put one in my greenhouse this next year.

 

John: Yeah. Those are –

 

Chip: I think Chris has got one in his greenhouse.

 

John: Oh, really? 

 

Chip: Yeah. 

 

John: Oh, cool. 

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

John: Yeah. 

 

Chip: He brought them in. They met together somehow. But yeah, really great systems. Nice people. Good, good customer service.

 

John: Oh yeah, great customer service. They’re right here in Oklahoma. And they, it’s all metal, right? So it’s really, it’s stainless. At least the ones I’ve seen at trade shows. I actually haven’t been to a facility that uses that. Other people have gotten so far in a different direction, where their doser systems are $120,000. And they’ve got a touchscreen interface and a number of different things. And it seems like people touch them wrong, and they don’t, and they’re so sensitive, they don’t like to be touched. Because they, in an A and B tank situation that was both supposed to go at the same time, it might forget, it might now have been taken offline for the B tank. And now your whole fertilizer program is out of whack. So I mean, surely there’s safeguards for all these things. But sometimes in doser systems, I like to see people just keep it simple. And I think Anderson, although it looks sophisticated, you know, it looks complex, I think it’s simple. And Agritech is still simple, and Dosatron is still simple. Other injector systems, you know, run off the entire, the environmental controller. and that’s interesting. But that’s more complex, and that would take another, a complete show to describe. But just sticking to the simple stuff of, should you be using pH up and down, I never recommend, okay, using pH down, as instead of using pH up. Always just use, bring the pH down, never try to bring the pH up. That –

 

Chip: Leave it where it is.

 

John: Leave it where it is, because that locks things out.

 

Chip: Even if it’s like really low? Or, you know.

 

John: I mean, what’s really low? Some people run our Plant Amp really low and then our pH will be going into the plant will be 4, and will panic. We get these calls all the time. And we go, “Look. It says do not adjust the pH.” Read it on our –

 

Chip: Oh, we’ve had the calls to the shop too.

 

John: Yeah, right. And I just say, “Well, look, why don’t you measure the pH of the water coming out the bottom or the fertilizer?” And they’re like, “Well, it’s 6.2 or 6.4.” I’m like, “Isn’t that perfect coming out of the bottom?” It’s like the plant is pulling out organic acids and converting and taking up the calcium. 

 

Chip: So don’t adjust up, just adjust down. I preferred this for years anyway. I mean, there’s more than one type of pH down too, right? We’ve got you know, nitric acid, phosphoric acid, sulfuric acid, citric acid, which is their preferred product –

 

John: On Plant Amp, we have some other complex acids from the biochelation process but you know, just sticking to the ones you mentioned, you know, nitric acid, well you got nitrogen. Sulfuric acid, you know, sulfur get locks up with calcium, and you get calcium sulfate, which is gypsum wallboard, right? And you really don’t want that. And citric acid, you know, it’s a partial key later, but you can only use so much of that. Phosphoric acid, it’s kind of the choice of the industry.

 

Chip: Sure. I’ll have to say I use nitric. Because it’s so much more effective.

 

John: It is.

 

Chip: I used it when I can get it. Actually, this year, we just had to use the, for half the year we used phosphoric acid, right? Because we couldn’t really get the nitric.

 

John: Really, I wonder why.

 

Chip: I mean, it’s just a rough year on supply this year. 

 

John: Oh, yeah, that too.

 

Chip: Right? I mean, you know it. I mean, we had so many, you know, issues, just shipping stuff around, or like, you know, warehousing issues, or people manufacturing issues, and then demand issues, everybody wants the product.

 

John: Well, they want it more and your customers that buy a normal clip, all of a sudden, they doubled that. Because they’re like, what if we can’t get it? I mean, that’s why I got another warehouse and filled it full of product. And got another warehouse and filled it full of inputs, because in the beginning, I saw it coming down.

 

Chip: You’re kinda in Oklahoma a lot these days. I mean, I’ve seen you a bunch lately. What’s going on with you here?

 

John: I’m just following the herd, like the bison.

 

Chip: Follow the wind, man.

 

John: You know, you’ve got a lot of, a lot of my customers from Michigan, Washington, Oregon, California, other states, but those four primarily, who our legal operators have moved to Oklahoma, to open up. And, you know, there’s a number of reasons for that. I mean, look at the transportation. I’m in Tulsa right now. Well actually I’m here in OKC talking to you, but you know, even here, you just look at the map, and you’re like, “Well, I’m two hours from 40.” And that’s where all the rail lines run, you know? You’re really close to Norm and where it’s like the highest rail traffic in the country, you know? You go two hours from here, and you’re at 70. Two hours further, and you’re at 80, you know? Going back down south again, you know, there’s the railhead in Norman, you could send things down to the Gulf. Now you’re shipping them all over the world. So, you know, what is someone going to do? Well, it would be a good idea to have a growing facility here in Oklahoma.

 

Chip: R&D.

 

John: Right. You can do a big pheno hunt, for one. It seems like the state is just encouraging that.

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, it’s great man. Like, Oklahoma is right off the center of the country, we really are here. It’s a great place to measure what the rest of the country is. I know there’s lots of stereotypes about it here. But, you know, this is like average America, really. Right? This is, it’s average, it’s new to the cannabis industry, and they’re really embracing it great. It’s incredible, right? As opposed to like, the other markets we’ve been involved in, you know, it’s this whole exclusive market scenario. And man, I just like that weed’s for all, and it should not be exclusive. Anybody should be able to get involved with it, in my opinion.

 

John: Yeah. Well, you know, I’d like to say people are friendly and accepting. But I think we’re going too far in boosting Oklahoma. Being a Californian, people would say, Northern California, I don’t want to go there. There’s gardens everywhere, there’s farms, there’s violent people. And then when they get there, they find people friendly and accepting and open and a big community.

 

Chip: It can be.

 

John: And then people started moving to California. So now, it went from when I first got my driver’s license and it was about 11 million, to now, there’s 40 million people. So I was in Colombia earlier this year. And, you know, I was warned about going to certain places, and trying to look for seeds, or doing anything that would stir up locals, because they’re hostile. So I went down there and it reminded me –

 

Chip: So you went down there and you were like, “Hey, man, you guys got any weed seeds?” Right?

 

John: I was invited down there. I was invited down there by some hemp farms. And I got down there. And then I realized, you know, it was like being in California 30 years ago. And they’re very friendly and open, and they’ve got great food, good attitude. But in the end, I had to tell them. I said, “Look, when I go back to California or the United States, I gotta tell people that you’re violent, crazy people, because if they do to Colombia what they did to California.”

 

Chip: I’m just gonna change here, too. This is similar to Oregon. Similar things are going to happen here that happened in Oregon. I think that Oregon was a good dry run for that. I think we need to be prepared for all of those things here.

 

John: Right. Well, you know, and how do you prepare people, right? So in Colombia, how do you know how do you prepare people there? California, well, they’re already there. You know, I live in Sonoma County. So I haven’t looked personally at the number of lawyers in Sonoma County and actually know the number, but I think it’s the same number as the entire state of California. So, you know, in an earlier realtor program, we were talking, you know, I was introducing myself and a little bit about my past. So, in ’78, you know, part of the reason I ran away from home in Berkeley was because in the Bay Area, 1 out of 82 people were lawyers. And if you study history, Rome, a 1000 year Empire fell when one 1 of 4 people were lawyers. So I thought, you know, I was only 14, what did I know?

 

Chip: Alright, alright, alright. Right now, I’ve got like, 10 fucking attorneys in my life. And I love you all. I love you. I love you all. Don’t listen to what John’s saying.

 

John: Okay. I have to say. I’ve got a great tax attorney. I’ve got a great business attorney. And I’m good to, I’m good with just that. But to negotiate, because I’m sure Chip’s talking about California and not Oklahoma that he has these lawyers.

 

Chip: No, I’ve got attorneys here too, man.

 

John: Oh, really? 

 

Chip: Come on, bro. You know, I’m always seeking extra knowledge and attorneys, especially cannabis space attorneys are a great place to get it. 

 

John: Right. 

 

Chip: Right? I’m always doing business. Different states, different people. And you kind of end up with like, different attorneys for different things you know? So I’ve got like, a great set of attorneys for any major issue or problem. There are my Cultivate Colorado attorneys. I’ve got a west coast attorney, right? Because you got to have one, that’s rough ground over there. 

 

John: Oh, sure. In each state, they can only practice once.

 

Chip: And man, you know, I’m currently in some litigation. You know, I’m fighting the good fight here. And so I’ve got some aggressive attorneys, right? And they’re fighting, helping me fight for my rights and our rights as cannabis farmers in California. And then I’ve got some attorneys that just tell me what all the rest of the attorneys are doing. This is no shit. This is a great thing to do, John.

 

John: Well you see, you’ve gone through a lifelong selection process of attorneys.

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, yeah. Oh, man. Cedarburg, Brian, Josh, Christian, those guys, I’ve been with them 10 years. You know my guys over at Fairchild and Roth field or something like that.

 

John: Big firm.

 

Chip: Big firm. I’ve been with those guys for 15 years. You know, I mean, you know, my people in California, I’ve been with them for 10 years. I mean, in business, you need an attorney. Doesn’t matter where you are, you’re gonna need one. You need somebody to write contracts for you, you need somebody to be able to ask questions to. Like, “Hey, is this,” you know, “Can I? What do you think about?” Because you’ve had your fair share of legal issues? 

 

John: Oh, sure. Of course, and being in business –

 

Chip: Business legal issues, man. Oh, I don’t like the way you did this, John, I’m suing you for it. You know?

 

John: Right. Right. And you’ve got to have an attorney with decades of experience to get it, to turn it back from that to, “Let’s negotiate this, let’s arbitrate this. This is gonna go to court.” And yeah, Ray Erlach is my business attorney in California. And Geoffrey Titus is my tax attorney. And you know, these are really good attorneys that have been practicing for 45 plus years. And I don’t know whether they selected me, or I selected them. But there’s been a lot of other attorneys in between that didn’t do what they were saying that they were going to do. So I was talking about when I said –

 

Chip: I’ve had some bad ones too, man. Oh, 100%. I’ve had bad advice by attorneys. And actually, that’s why I have a group of attorneys that just tell me what the other people are trying to say. And they know their position too. I’m like, “Hey, I need you to give me a clear view of this guy, what he’s saying and doing for me.”

 

John: Right.

 

Chip: Right. Because man, I’ve picked bad attorneys in the past. I chose bad, I chose badly. And I didn’t have any review over dealing with it.

 

John: Right. And they don’t review. They –

 

Chip: They don’t review themselves. 

 

John: No, you don’t, you don’t – 

 

Chip: [inaudible 44:19].

 

John: Yeah, let’s see. Go online and go to a blog that reviews attorneys. Oh, wait, there isn’t one. Wonder why, wou know?

 

Chip: Well, I mean, just an individual opinion, man. You know, like attorneys, they’ll have this idea of how to approach a problem, or a subject, or a negotiation, right? If you’re purchasing a business or selling a business, I mean, all of these has different ideas. And it’s just like in a doctor, they say, get a second opinion. Same thing with a legal opinion, get a second opinion.

 

John: Right? They’re practicing. The doctor is a practice, which is a little frightening.

 

Chip: I never really put that together. 

 

John: Oh yeah. They’re practicing theory.

 

Chip: Your law practice, you keep, when are gonna stop practice? Can you do this shit for real?

 

John: Well, it’s all based on theory, right? That’s too funny, but yeah, you know, my point before was the number of lawyers, well, these are the number of people that might be unnecessary and unnecessarily creating more legal issues. Because that later they become legislators. And, you know, it’s just the number of bad people, I guess, scum rises, you know. And it’s not necessarily lawyers, but just people in general. And the people that latch on to something –

 

Chip: Hey man, I’m gonna say, again, I love my attorneys, [inaudible 45:41] lawyers.

 

John: No, and I love my attorneys too.

 

Chip: I’m just making my liability, my libel statements here.

 

John: I know you’re going to cut all this part out anyway. 

 

Chip: No, I try. No I try to like, let it roll, man. I try to let it roll. Because we were talking about pH and I mean, you know, attorneys are kind of like pH adjustment for life. Life problems.

 

John: Right. Or you’re already in acidic water and you don’t really know it, and they are the litmus test, you know? They are the piece of paper that they dip into the liquid you think she can swim around in, and they go, “Hey, guess what? It’s not acidic. It’s basic. You know that pool you see in the desert with a cattle skull? That’s a pH 10. You’re at 9. You need some help. You need a handout. You need some advice.”

 

Chip: Alright, so back to pH. I got one more pH question for you, John, Google of all things cannabis nutrition. Man, I tell people this all the time. Demand, there’s a huge range that cannabis can grow with pH, right? What do you think the limits are? At what point is there really starting to be problems?

 

John: You’re gonna have to talk to my attorney. No. You know, that’s a funny thing. You know, if you have a pH tester, and a meter one, that can test a pool of liquid, you can take a bunch of leaves, and squeeze the juice out of them and measure that. And you’ll be surprised what the pH is. The EC could be 10,000, because there’s a lot of activity in the plant. But the pH generally will be 6.5. 

 

Chip: Mhmm, no matter what. 

 

John: Yeah. 

 

Chip: Right. 

 

John: So the plant does, the plant is, it’s stuck in one place for life.

 

Chip: The plant is. But like, is the availability of nutrients that’s coming in at the root zone that’s the issue, though?

 

John: Well, you know, it’s a fluctuating pH.

 

Chip: See, you can’t ever just ask John a yes or no answer. See, I wanted a like, “Hmm. 4.2 and 9.0,” right?

 

John: Talk to my attorney.

 

Chip: Yeah, talk my attorney.

 

John: Yeah well, if you look at the pH availability of all the nutrients that plants need, you see that they don’t line up anywhere. I mean, they kind of line up between 5.5 and say, 6.5. But ones, some have to be really low. Like, you know, one of the most important ones, manganese. Manganese, the pH has to be 4 in order for the plant to pick it up. Well, how’s it going to do that? Well, the plant adjusts its own pH. So you know, when people want to be this pH perfect, they’re trying to be at 6 to 7, so that the plant has an easier time, going up to 7 to get certain elements, or down to 4 to get certain elements.

 

Chip: Right. You’re just in the middle, so it’s easier for the plant to go either way.

 

John: Right. Right, and be able to pick things up.

 

Chip: Mhmm. So – 

 

John: And that’s in the soil.

 

Chip: So the further ranges from neutral make it more difficult.

 

John: Yes.

 

Chip: Right. ‘Cause the plant, ’cause I’ve personally seen a 8.5, you know, I’ve seen 4.5, you know plants. And they might not be the healthiest, but they grow. The buds don’t get so dense, you know, they might not be the heaviest, right? But they grow.

 

John: Yeah. I mean, you don’t want to keep it at 4.5, or you don’t want to keep it at 8.5. And if a plant is vigorously growing, it can, if you can measure right at the root zone, if you can take a sample where you’ve got a pipe and you can plug it right where the root is, so you can pull it up intact, and then you test right where the root is, you’ll see that the plant is already adjusting one way or the other. But you know, I mean, I have a $6,000 Metzker pH meter in the lab. This is not something you’re gonna –

 

Chip: Carry around out into the field.

 

John: It’s under glass. We’re not glass, but –

 

Chip: Beep, beep, beep. Bring it over here, back it up. Back it up, back it up.

 

John: It has its own table, you know?

 

Chip: Well, I’m not sure if any of our listeners understand pH anymore after our ramblings today, John, but I hope so.

 

John: Yeah, well, I think we told them that they can pH adjust their water down to 6, aerate it, and pull out the potassium.

 

Chip: Now, there’s a great tip. That’s a great tip.

 

John: You have the calcium carbonate, and then they’re gonna save money on fertilizer. And the plant will use that water and that fertilizer better, and you saw it. You did it yourself. And that was your field test right there.

 

Chip: Yeah, I’m all about the anecdotal evidence.

 

John: Right. Yeah. Well, I’m a show me guy. 

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. 

 

John: Missouri’s a show me state.

 

Chip: One state over.

 

John: Right. 

 

Chip: Yeah, totally. Well, and we also talked about a couple mechanisms to adjust the pH, right? 

 

John: Use nitric acid.

 

Chip: And, use nitric acid and there’s phosphoric acid. All the tomato growers, they’re on the sulfuric acid, you know. I think because you only have to put a little bit in or it’s so  cheap, or I’m not really sure. I’ve never used it myself.

 

John: Yeah, well, I mean, it depends. The tomato growers that are using it in greenhouses, and they’re still growing in soil. They’re doing off cycle of calcium feeding. So they have a doser system set up so that they’re feeding calcium. And that’s not being, that water isn’t being adjusted. 

 

Chip: Right.

 

John: And then if they’re in soil doing that on a big scale, they’ve already put a lot of calcium, like, you know, some kind of oyster shell or something in the soil.

 

Chip: So, last big question. Do I have to pH is I’m all organic? I’m container growing and all organic, do I have to pH?

 

John: Yeah, organic has a broad range of things, right? You know, if you’re using –

 

Chip: Thumb water only, and all my organic nutrition is in the soil.

 

John: Okay, that’s a good one. Because you know, some people do living soil beds, and they want to use all amendments, and keep it steady like that. So then you would pH adjust the water if it’s too high. And you’re going to benefit from that, because you won’t have calcium bicarbonate going into the soil, and stabilizing and keeping the pH too high. Because remember, you’re growing cannabis. So you want quality flower. So you have to be able to pull up manganese, iron and calcium, even though you’re putting in calcium, bicarbonate, it’s not available to the plant.

 

Chip: Right. So you’re saying for the water only growers, we need to adjust our pH.

 

John: Right. Well, that’s why I developed over the last couple of years a plant-based organic grow and an organic bloom.

 

Chip: Oh, Accent. Great, great product, we used a bunch this summer.

 

John: You can use, it’s CCF certified, and also the calcium that you would use be Plant Amp and that automatically lowers your pH because of the organic acids. So you put that first in a doser, and then the grow or the bloom after that. And you can mix the calcium and the magnesium together temporarily. And that’s the magnesium is also biochelated. It doesn’t have as much assets in it, so it won’t affect. It’s easier to chelate the magnesium than it is to chelate the calcium. Calcium is very, very difficult to get into a plant, but super essential. All the other nutrients go over the back of calcium into the plant. So you know, we did it so that that living bed people can use very little of it. And people that are growing in coco would use a lot more of it. So once again, you are pH adjusting, but using Plant Amp to do that.

 

Chip: Awesome, man. Well, thanks once again for an incredible episode of The Real Dirt. I’m stoked to see you in town so much. Now you’re going to come back here in a few weeks. We should do this again. 

 

John: We should.

 

Chip: This is like your regular stop. What John sees in Oklahoma.

 

John: Good things.

 

Chip: Good things, good things. Hey, listeners. Thanks for joining us once again for another episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker and John Piccirilli. Hey, if you haven’t done it already, please download all of our episodes. Please subscribe on iTunes, on Amazon, on Spotify, on any way you get podcasts. You can subscribe to The Real Dirt with Chip Baker. You can also check us out at any one of our operations, growerscoco.com, cultivatecolorado.com, cultivateokc.com, cultivategardensupply.com. We do it all, right? And check John out at cutting edgesolutions.com.

 

John: Thank you.

 

Chip: Yeah, it’s been a been a great episode, and I didn’t say it when we started this episode, so I’ll say it now. Why don’t you guys sit back and roll the largest joint you can and think about this episode of The Real Dirt?

The Truth About Delta 8 THC

The Truth About Delta 8 THC

Does delta 8 thc get you high?

CBD wasn’t the only cannabinoid that inadvertently became legal when the federal government passed the 2018 Farm Bill.

We know that there are currently over 100 known cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. When industrial hemp was legalized on the federal level in 2018, the only cannabinoid specifically kept illegal was Delta 9 THC, the main psychoactive cannabinoid that produces the common cannabis high.

Leaving over 100 other cannabinoids to fill the space, growers began experimenting. We saw the CBD boom and the rise of CBG and CBN over the past year, but another cannabinoid has broken into the spotlight and has a lot of enthusiasts curious.

Delta 8 THC claims to be the legal alternative to Delta 9, providing similar effects to a traditional THC high. But is it really a 1:1 replacement?

Delta 8 THC explained

Just like D9 THC, our knowledge about the effects and benefits of D8 THC are limited due to lack of research. For the most part, the resources for learning about Delta 8 THC come from first hand accounts of users.

What we do know about D8 THC is that it is chemically different from delta-9-THC by only a few atomic bonds, and according to the National Cancer Institute is defined as, “An analogue of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) with antiemetic, anxiolytic, appetite-stimulating, analgesic, and neuro-protective properties.”

In other words, it sounds a lot like plain old Delta 9 THC. However the experiences noted by Delta 8 THC users reveal some slight differences.

Does Delta 8 THC get you high?

The short answer seems to be yes. Most descriptions of the Delta 8 THC high note that it is more mild or “lighter” than a traditional Delta 9 THC high. User have also said that the high feels almost identical to D9 THC but without the associated paranoia or anxiety many experience.

Other anecdotes note how it can take multiple hits of a D8 THC vape to get a similar effect to a Delta 9 THC vape of similar potency, and that the flavor differs, and not always in a good way. Granted, taste is typically associated with processing, especially when it comes to distillate cartridges.

The most popular form of consumption seems to be vaping and consuming D8 edibles like gummies. However just like CBD, you can also find Delta 8 THC flower and other extracts.

This Week’s Episode

In this week’s episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker, Chip sits down with Matt Chandler from Sunshine Connect, a Full-Scale Hemp Product Development, Supply Chain Management & Production company. Matt has been involved with hemp and CBD for over four years, and he’s learned a lot about the different cannabinoids in the hemp plant, including Delta 8 THC.

Learn whether Delta 8 is just a new hype trend that will fade away, or a solid replacement for Delta 9 THC in states that haven’t yet legalized. Plus dive into the science and real dirt behind hemp and CBD, projections for 2021 and more.

Transcript

Chip: Well, here we are. The Real Dirt 2021, thank God. Welcome back. Oh man, it’s so good to be on a roll of Real Dirts. Right now, we’re recording all the season, and it’s just been really exciting. We’ve been doing a lot of market research, really, you know, trying to hear what you guys want to listen to, and give it back to you. And today, man, we’re real fortunate, because one of the most asked about topics we have is hemp, and the chemistry of hemp, and the genetics of hemp, and the genetics of cannabis. And today, I have Matt Chandler, and we’re going to talk about all of that. How’s it going, Matt?

 

Matt: Doing great, man. Thanks for having me.

 

Chip: So Matt, tell me how you’re involved with CBD and hemp.

 

Matt: So currently, I have a brand really focused around more of the experiential side of CBD. And we kind of talk about more of that of like the market. I got into cannabis and hemp about four years ago, I’m actually from Oklahoma where you’re at now. And then you, you were from Colorado. And we switched, right? 

 

Chip: So where did you grow up?

 

Matt: I grew up here in Oklahoma City area, just a little bit east of the city, Choctaw area. You know, around here growing up, cannabis was pretty taboo.

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, this was a really hard place.

 

Matt: Yeah, they’d even have tattoos that were illegal when I was growing up here. You had, people had to go down to Texas to get a tattoo. 

 

Chip: Absolutely, you know. So Oklahoma, for those of you who don’t know about the free lands of Oklahoma, now we have tattoos. We have beer over 3.2. Yeah, totally. There’s breweries.

 

Matt: And cannabis.

 

Chip: And there’s medical cannabis.

 

Matt: Yeah. And when I was growing up, or actually, when I got into cannabis when I was 26. And mainly got into it, because my partner at the time had a hard time sleeping, and was trying to decide between Ambien or that. And we had a small kid and it was like, I can’t do anything. She’s like, in college cannabis helped me a lot. And so I was like, “Let’s do that.” So we went found her some. And at the time, it was illegal. And that year was right before we got into the business. And I think they had 20% increase in incarcerations for cannabis. Yeah, and here it was like a pretty stiff penalty like, two years for possession.

 

Chip: A small possession.

 

Matt: Yeah, it’s ridiculous.

 

Chip: Crumbs, and that’s all changed.

 

Matt: It’s all changed. It’s all changed. So that’s kind of how I got in the industry,  just coming for the plant that way. Really just –

 

Chip: The medicinal side. 

 

Matt: Yeah, the medicinal side.

 

Chip: Man, yeah, that is the true great gateway to cannabis is the medicinal side.

 

Matt: The medicinal weed is the gateway drug. Yeah, exactly. But I feel like I contribute cannabis to really helping me open up my mind to many things. I feel like you know, growing up here, we’re all taught, you know, proctor our own environment what we’re, you know, our experiences growing up and it’s a conservative state, and cannabis was the devil’s lettuce and all that bad stuff, so.

 

Chip: Pass the devil’s lettuce.

 

Matt: That’s right. So – 

 

Chip: You know what Oklahoma’s really done? One of the things that’s obvious for me now, and this is might be a stereotype.

 

Matt: Yeah?

 

Chip: But now we write country songs.

 

Matt: That’s right. We got some good cannabis country songs.

 

Chip: All the time. We just came up with “pass the devil’s lettuce.”

 

Matt: I like that one, man. I like that one. You guys are making hits over here. 

 

Chip: No, it’s me and you. It’s not –

 

Matt: Yeah, right. There we go. Do you play guitar or anything?

 

Chip: You know, I just, I make noise. I make noise. I just picked up a hybrid dulcimer. 

 

Matt: Oh, okay.

 

Chip: Totally pretty cool. You know the dulcimer?

 

Matt: No, I don’t. 

 

Chip: Well, I found out it’s the easiest stringed instrument to play so I immediately excelled at it. It’s the easiest to pick up. Yeah, I started with the banjo and then I moved to the guitar, and I’ve been banging away with those guys for a few years. But I’m kind of new to at all like, maybe three, four years I’ve been playing. My David dulcimer just has this hybrid dulcimer. It’s a Merlin dulcimer. it’s only has, it has four strings. They’re metal, like a banjo. You can play it however you want. You can pick it, you can claw banjo style it you know, you can strum it. Dulcimers are traditionally made to be on your lap. But this Merlin style is more like a guitar. It’s also half. It only has seven frets and I believe the dulcimer normally has 11.

 

Matt: So when do we get cannabis country album this year, dropping this year?

 

Chip: Yeah, let’s drop that shit.

 

Matt: 2021.

 

Chip: You know what it’s, you know what I really like about it, is it sounds it is, so I really love the banjo sound and the banjo tuning, right? You get the claw, the banjo claw to it. And really have a great like, banjo like, sound.

 

Matt: Nice.

 

Chip: Right? 

 

Matt: Yeah, I like the banjo sound, too. It’s unique and different. 

 

Chip: Yeah. I mean it’s all based on that root music back from Africa man. You know, that same tuning. There’s something with the harmonics in the world and like, how that same tuning that’s in many instruments, Indian stringed instruments, and African string instruments. It resonates.

 

Matt: Creates a unique sound.

 

Chip: The universal buzz.

 

Matt: Yeah, I like that.

 

Chip: Yeah, totally, totally. Universal frequency.

 

Matt: Universal frequency, that’s right.

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

Matt Well, sounds good.

 

Chip: But yeah, just kind of like weed.

 

Matt: So yeah, that’s why I got into cannabis that way. CBD was a big part, probably about a year into after I started in cannabis, smoking cannabis. Pretty much on the back porch at night, relaxing, chillin’. Notice that I stopped watching as much TV, it was more of just like, hanging out, having more conversations. And so, it really improved my life in a lot of different ways. And I felt like just some of the patterns I had growing up and programming of what to do in life started to become more aware and more conscious. At the time, my ex-partner had a couple of autoimmune disorders, and we started learning about CBD through it. And it started really helping her improve her energy, and overall mood, and different things. And so at the time, was wanting to get out of Oklahoma, wanting kind of a lifestyle change, because I grew up here my whole life. And we were looking at places in Colorado. It was obviously a big cannabis state. They were big into hemp. It’s probably one of the biggest places in capital for yeah, for hemp. That and Kentucky, I think was two early adopters. 

 

Chip: Absolutely. 

 

Matt: And so moved up there to learn about the plant. We started our own brand. I started consulting with a company that was making CBD isolate at the time, which is about flexing, four and a half, five years ago, so it was pretty new. Yeah, I learned a lot about the chemistry side, started jumping in the supply chain about the growth side, and really just learning good growing techniques, what people were doing, how to grow hemp, because I was unfamiliar at the time. And then how to extract it, and basically for minors and different things like that. So like I said, I’ve been involved with a lot of different areas in the supply chain. But when we first moved up there, it was a brand. When we started up there, I think when we first started CBD, there wasn’t like many manufacturers won’t touch this stuff. There were still a lot of regulations, banking was a mess. And we got shut down several times and banks, and credit cards, and all sorts of stuff. And so it’s just, even now it’s still a little bit challenging, we’ve got a lot better. But really, there was no manufacturers that took touches so we ended up getting our commercial kitchen license and getting some of the licenses we needed to start manufacturing products, and doing products ourselves. Did that for ourselves and other people, and the market’s taken to some crazy turns over the last three years.

 

Chip: It’s been like a rodeo man. 

 

Matt: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. Well, I think with hemp because it’s not, it wasn’t, it had that not same regulations as cannabis did, because it was federally legal, it got a lot more attention and money. So there’s big players starting to dump money in the last three, four years, because there’s a multi-billion dollar market that’s forming. And so people are wanting to get into it. But then, there’s a lot of people that I feel like with cannabis that they’re like, “Oh, it’s gonna be big. We’re all gonna throw money into it.” And so they infrastructure, almost overbuilt, a lot of people started popping up that were making different isolates, and different farming. And when I first started, our farmer made $90,000 an acre on his farm. 

 

Chip: Oh, wow.

 

Matt: Drawing hemp. Now back then, it was I think Colorado had like, three or four years that they had that pilot program that they were able to do that.

 

Chip: Oh man. I tell you, I saw all that happen and I really missed out on it all. I tried to get involved with it, but like, it just, I was just so busy with the rest of my world that I just couldn’t get involved with it. It was an awesome, that was an awesome time to be in hemp. And I mean, it still is.

 

Matt: It is still is, yeah.

 

Chip: [inaudible 9:02] now though, ’cause you know, now you’re like, maybe a couple $1,000 an acre, $3,000 an acre if you can.

 

Matt: If then, that’s when you have to be really efficient. Yeah. Just last year, my farmer that made that $90,000 that I’ve been working with a lot, he ended up getting out of the business, because he made less than he did growing watermelons. And he’s an organic farmer and he’s like –

 

Chip: I grow watermelons, right? They’re just farmers.  Like I grow watermelons more. That was my first crop, watermelons.

 

Matt: And you don’t deal with it, any of the shit. They can sell the whole foods at Walmart. You know, the watermelons, where the hemp market, people that buy it are all over the board, and changing, and it’s constant chaos it sounds like. So, yeah.

 

Chip: The market got flooded in so many different areas. There were multiple bottlenecks, there were multiple issues with it. One thing that happened you pointed out was that the hemp market was flooded with manufacturers of hemp juice products flooded with brands, lots of co-packing going on. So a lot of this stuff was all just the same stuff even, right? It was all, so much of it was just and is still just homespun. Homespun people never dealt with marketers or copackers, and might not realize that like, “Oh man, they just made my hemp product the exact same thing as everybody else.”

 

Matt: Everybody else’s. Yeah, exactly.

 

Chip: Right? 

 

Matt: And then the more it started being acceptable nationwide in the like, stores and things like that, and all the bigger brands that might already have a name for themselves, but just was looking at CBD as another health ingredient, or adding it to their products and their lines, and they already have the distribution set. So I feel like it pushed a lot of the brands out. And then the ones that got in early that were making stuff like us, it made it very difficult, ’cause as soon as the manufacturer started opening up, they’re set up with large facilities to scale. And so if you’re a –

 

Chip: You guys are a boutique style. As nice as it might be, it’s just the volume that’s just boutique.

 

Matt: Mhm. So you got into it, because you had to because the bigger ones weren’t doing it at first, but then after a couple years of regulation changes and them getting more comfortable, they started flooding it in and bring in some of the bigger companies over. And so, I feel like a lot of people that invested heavily in the manufacturing side, which a lot did end up in trouble, you know? And they’re still, some of them that made it survived a little bit longer. But a lot of them those big companies are in trouble. 

 

Chip: Yeah. And it went a couple different ways too, because there was the initial scale that happened where it went from homespun boutique operations to like, the step up, or maybe two steps up even.

 

Matt: Oh yeah. 

 

Chip: For manufacturing. And then hemp was federally legalized, right?

 

Matt: Yeah. Which made it a lot easier.

 

Chip: Everybody could, everybody that ever wanted to grow cannabis could do it. And they did. 

 

Matt: They did, yeah. 

 

Chip: So it seemed like.

 

Matt: No it really, that’s true, that’s true.

 

Chip: Do you know any stats from the last year? I mean, 2019 production?

 

Matt: As far as production, I really, the more familiar set I am is just price per acre. Because you know like, from the farm it was like from 90,000 the first year down to I think it was like, cut in half the next year, down to 10 that was last year, which we were making around $1,000 an acre. And it was like, there wasn’t much sense. They could grow multiple other things. And I think too, it’s just because the amount of hemp licenses I did look at per state, just skyrocketed. I don’t know the numbers off my head, but it went significantly up. And I feel like the supply, basically there’s an oversupply.

 

Chip: Oversupply. Absolutely, absolutely.

 

Matt: Yeah, there was an oversupply of the growth, because people and the growers – 

 

Chip: Was Colorado and Oregon could have probably produced all of the hemp for the country, right?

 

Matt: Yeah, exactly. You know, acres and acres are, that’s a lot.

 

Chip: That’s a lot.

 

Matt: It’s a lot. It’s millions and millions of dollars of actual products.

 

Chip: People went in from the homespun people, the small farmers, the farmers wanted to stick your toe in it. We’re doing one acre, 10 acres, 40 acres. And then all of a sudden it became legal, and I heard multiple people say 100 acre, 1000s acre, right?

 

Matt: Well if you’re a farm that’s a mass farm and you’re growing hundreds of acres of certain crop on your on your farm, you can make sense out of it, out of $1,000. And that’s still a premium than what you’re getting paid over weed, and other things that you can farm and sell. So yeah, the farmers that have bigger farms, I think they’re the ones that are like, kind of coming in and cutting down the rest. I know so many people that came in hemp that wanted to grow those 1 to 10 acre range. And if you’re doing it by hand, it doesn’t make sense for the labor, and your time, and all that stuff for what you’re gonna to sell it for.

 

Chip: There is a market for the smokable, or the higher end hemp that you can get into with those smaller acreages.

 

Matt: Yeah. Which is that, is that popular in the dispensaries here? Or any like, do people buy hemp?

 

Chip: Oh, it’s at gas stations.

 

Matt: It’s at gas stations, so people are buying in there?

 

Chip: It’s a non-weed illegal state, I have been into a gas station that has had hemp or a head shop that has hemp buds for sale.

 

Matt: Nice. Yeah. Which I don’t know if you’d, do you use hemp, have you smoked them personally?

 

Chip: Yeah, totally.

 

Matt: Yes. I’m mixing them with mine.

 

Chip: I mix it with the ganja.

 

Matt: Yeah. I mix them with the ganja. I think it’s good like, I blend it.

 

Chip: Absolutely, it blends great. Because you know, that’s the thing for a lot of the hemp is it’s not fed at all. And it’s just given water, there’s hardly any fertilizer in it. So it might not have the best look. But like, it smokes really great. 

 

Matt: Yeah, it’s more earthy.

 

Chip: Or it can smoke a really good. The quality of the smoke is good. It might not have the flavor, it’s not stunning but like, it’s a really good smoke.

 

Matt: Yeah, it’d be more like more of an earthy blend to me as I’m grounding and mixing it.

 

Chip: Matt, you know what? We’re gonna grow some ganja that way next year.

 

Matt: What mixing them, half and half?

 

Chip: No, no. I’m just gonna grow it like hemp, and only water, and just give it some water, and not pay it any, much attention at all, just for the smoking quality. 

 

Matt: Yeah, okay.

 

Chip: Because then I can mix ganja in with my ganja.

 

Matt: Okay, yeah.

 

Chip: No, water only cannabis is the best smoking cannabis, no matter how you, if it’s ganja or hemp, just –

 

Matt: Just water only.

 

Chip: Just water only. It’s just how it is. The volume of water just changes the composition of it.

 

Matt: Okay. Do you give nutrients and things like that?

 

Chip: Mix it all into the soil.

 

Matt: Soil, right. Caring more about the soil.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah care more –  or I mean even if you use synthetic nutrients, you just like, give it the synthetic nutrients two, three times and then water.

 

Matt: Yeah. So water is the main, yeah.

 

Chip: Yeah, water. Water. But yes, it’s not. I mean, fat kids love cake. That’s my theory of growing cannabis. And if you want fat cannabis plants, you got to feed them. 

 

Matt: Feed them water. 

 

Chip: No, feed them fertilizer. Fertilizer, if you want fat ones.

 

Matt: Okay, gotcha. Gotcha.

 

Chip: I know that’s not a politically correct statement. But everybody can identify that I was a fat kid. I loved to eat cake, I get it, right? 

 

Matt: That is the perfect analogy. 

 

Chip: Right? But yeah, no, you gotta feed it. Yeah, I don’t know why like, a million people tell me that you don’t after we just said it. But hey, that’s cool. 

 

Matt: Yeah. Do what you do.

 

Chip: No, yeah. Hey, man, if you want to get that price per acre up, you got to spend the money on it in order to put the fertilizer in it to get more out of it. And there is a cost benefit there. You know, like, you can either do it for $10,000 an acre organically, which is a shit ton when we’re talking about 100 acres or 1000 acres, right? Or like, synthetically, it might cost you 500 bucks.

 

Matt: Yeah, exactly. I don’t think that the organic markets quite doesn’t pull that much higher of a price right now, for cannabis in general. I’m a profound proponent of organic farming or [inaudible 16:50] and stuff like that. But I do feel like there’s not enough market right now to differentiate if you’re a grower for the cost sometimes. So yeah, I think it’ll start to pop up a little bit more. There’s gonna be some buyers that are –

 

Chip: No, it already happening. No, it’s already happening. I already see organic cultivation in Oregon. And people ask if it’s organic, you know, and I haven’t seen that for a long time. 

 

Matt: Yeah. Certainly. People are caring more for sure.

 

Chip: Yeah. So hey, man, this is a perfect time for us to roll into a break. 

 

Matt: Sounds good. 

 

Chip: Hey, let’s a take a moment.

 

Matt Alright.

 

Chip: Hey guys, it doesn’t matter if you’re a hemp farmer, or if you’re a medical cannabis farmer. If you’re farming in your basement, if you’re farming out in the back, 40 Cultivate Garden Supplies can help you. If you need anything from truckloads of soil to pints of fertilizer, we have it all. You can contact us online, we ship all over the country and the world. You can look us up at cultivatecolorado.com, cultivateokc.com. And if you need to talk to somebody great, just walk into one of my shops. Ask to speak to anyone, anybody. You don’t even have to ask to speak to someone, we just come up and start talking to you. They can help you solve all of your fertilizer problems, all of your lighting problems. We serve as the largest, most commercial gardens in the country, and the smallest most boutique. And I’m just getting started guys. So please come by. We welcome all of you Cultivate Colorado in Denver and Stapleton, Cultivate OKC in Oklahoma City, and please check us out online, cultivatecolorado.com. Yeah, man. Nice little break. Wow, I can’t believe you did that with that bong man. That was incredible. I can’t even smoke one of those anymore, you know?

 

Matt: I like the bongs. Yeah.

 

Chip: I know, I know. Everybody’s heard about the bong at The Real Dirt studio. Man, the industry kind of, it went flat. It went more than flat this past 2020.

 

Matt: Oh yeah.

 

Chip: Right? Has it recovered?

 

Matt: I feel that it is recovering a little bit. I think most of the people that have flooded the market with like, came into hemp as like, this is a gold mine. Farmers are making 10,000 an acre were used to doing this –

 

Chip: Gold diggers. Gold diggers.

 

Matt: Exactly. They came in and lost their ass in 2019, 2020. And so, they’re slowly getting up.

 

Chip: Oh man, I’m sorry for you guys.

 

Matt: Yeah no, I mean it’s, if you were in those, if you came into hemp for the first time to grow during those times, it was definitely going to be challenging. Not only to grow, but then to sell, because I don’t know about you, but I think every hemp farmer I’ve met, any cannabis grower, the first year is always a learning kind of journey. And you know with hemp, you get one shot that year in most places, at least I think in California and places they might have more growing seasons, but yeah, you had a hard time. And so, most of them I think are got out and so where it’s kind of normalized the supply chain a little bit. Some of the bigger guys that are still in there, they’ve kind of driven the price down, got their price to where they know that they can money on it. And yeah, that the hemp market is completely changed, and it’s really elevated on a global level too. There’s people growing all over different countries, and just like most of the other crops and commodities that we have, wherever the cheapest and makes the most sense to grow for the climate, is where I feel like there are gonna be the most growers, and the most  activity going. And I think that’s gonna be happening with hemp too.

 

Chip: Oh yeah, absolutely. I mean, it’s that way with every other crop, right? There’s some superior areas to cultivate it. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking, we were talking watermelons earlier. Like man, Florida’s a great place to grow watermelon.

 

Matt: Yes, yeah. Oh yeah.

 

Chip: But weed is harder to grow there, right?  It’s just so humid.

 

Matt: Humid, yeah. I figured it was the humidity.

 

Chip: You know, I mean, it can be done, absolutely and people are crushing it down there. But it’s not as easy as say like, Oregon or southern Colorado, right? Where it’s nice and dry, and you get, all your water comes from irrigation. You can control it all.

 

Matt: Control a little bit more.

 

Chip: You know,  and in Tennessee like, it might rain every day of the harvest season. Yeah. Kentucky’s kind of the same way, but it can be a little drier all throughout the east coast are affected with the hurricane season like, which correlates with harvest season.

 

Matt: Yeah, growing’s different in every climate, I’m sure. Obviously, it changes constantly, and so, yeah. It was –  

 

Chip: Absolutely there’s always something to learn no matter where you go, it’s gonna, it can if you’re open to it, you can submerge yourself into the environment and kind of read what’s going on, understand. If you understand what the plant wants and needs, right? Then you can manipulate both the plant and the environment to do what you want. It might not be exactly the same, but you gotta pay attention.

 

Matt: Oh yeah. And I feel like with cannabis or hemp growing is going to be, if you’re starting out, it’s probably not the best place to start in the industry right now. If you’re looking at doing smokables and growing some higher end stuff, then that’s a little bit different. But I think there is a market for those and they are pulling in the $150 a pound versus right now, I think like, yeah. 5, 10 bucks for you know, or lower depending on you know for points, yeah. It’s pretty high.

 

Chip: I even see people pulling good money on it, on 

 

Matt: Smokable?

 

Chip: Smokable. It  all depends on how they sell it. But you know, it’s out there. So the future, I mean, the history of hemp has generally been CBD, and maybe some like, snake oil medicine and but it’s really started to mature. And this flood, the thing about floods is historically, the flood will come in and they wash off all the trash us humans like, have put in the way, you know? What they leave is fertile ground, for us to like, rebuild on, you know? And then that’s what’s going on right now in the hemp industry. I think a lot of the like, gold diggers came and went big and small, came and went. Some of those gold diggers turned into like, real cannabis farmers and are interested in it and like –

 

Matt: Yeah went to stick with it early –

 

Chip: Went to stick with it and you know –

 

Matt: All the brokers went to PP or the you know, the PPE or whatever equipment [inaudible 22:23] they just follow the money and whatever big industry is there.

 

Chip: “Oh, I’m a broker hemp, oh a broker PPE.” Yeah. There’s nothing wrong with making money, dude. I get it if that’s your hustle like, sell buy, buy, sell. Whatever it is. 

 

Matt: Sure it is, yeah.

 

Chip: I mean, [inaudible 23:42] to this plant. I can’t seem to do anything different beyond it. Or even want to honestly. I mean, I have other interests in my life, but this is the only business I want to be in.

 

Matt: Yeah, no, I’m the same way. I’ve been in it for almost five years now. And I don’t, I’m in it for the long term too. So not one of those quick fly by night.

 

Chip: Because I mean, it is a business plan. People come in to me all the time and they say, “Hey, in three to five years we’re gonna exit,” right?

 

Matt: There’s probably a lot of opportunities with dispensaries and cannabis, especially if it’s been federally Iegalized –

 

Chip: I have seen people do it all the time successfully. And I don’t see anything wrong with it. Tap on, I hope people do it. You know, like lately, “Hey, let’s go do it man,” you know? I’m on different trip, bro.

 

Matt: You like to be in the plan and learn it, yeah. Be in the –

 

Chip: Yeah, totally. I want to be in the mix, man. I want to be in the dirt. That’s why this is The Real Dirt, right? So the real dirt on hemp, cannabis genetics. We just started to like really, like, really get into that right? You know, the first thing is everybody just wanted some weed, wanted some hemp, wanted some CBD oil, wanted some relief, wanted some, those urge for cannabinoids that us humans need and want without even really realize it, but the truth of the matter is coming out. Now there’s all other secondary compounds that are being developed, they’re are already there or have been like, applied. Let’s talk about some of that.

 

Matt: Sure. I think the first one that kind of came out was CBG, because they can, they’re making genetics now that are high-end CBG, which is the first cannabinoid that the plant grows into before it kind of blooms to CBD, THC and the other various cannabinoids. And the genetics, when they’re making that plant high-end, it’s going to grow higher percentages and extract at higher percentages too, that you can make final products with. And I think some of the things that are going on right now that I see in the industry is that on the chemistry side, they’re learning how to take industrial hemp, which is 0.3% by dry weight, Delta-9-THC, and basically formulate through chemistry mainly by sunlight, heat, sometimes pressure to form different cannabinoids. All the cannabinoids kind of like, turn into different cannabinoids, and don’t care which side off the top of my head, but there’s like, a whole entire tree where CBD might turn into CBN, and then after a while, CBN might turn into a CBC. And there’s this whole like, tree that they turn into different ones. And so yeah, I feel like the you know, we’re able to generate from industrial hemp which can be mass harvested through chemistry, turning them and things like Delta-8-THC, which I feel like it’s very popular. We kind of talked about it a little bit. I like how you said a THC light?

 

Chip: THC light.

 

Matt: It’s like THC light to be really honest. But I think it’s awesome for people that are new to it. And like you know, new to THC, or maybe they taken, to me, I feel like hemp is a good stepping stone to people that are like, brand new to the plant. You know, they’re a little sensitive. And so you know, if they took a big bong rip, you know, it’s gonna be a little different experience for them. But taking –

 

Chip: They might pull a Stevie Wonder that’s for sure. 

 

Matt: Exactly.

 

Chip: You know, getting stoned blind and start singing.

 

Matt: Oh, yeah. Definitely, man. Definitely.

 

Chip: Oh, that goes out to my good sister in law.

 

Matt: Yeah. Yeah, nice. It’s a good stepping stone. And, you know, D-8, I’ve experimented a lot recently myself, and I really enjoy it. You know, it’s more of a body high and less of a heady high. It kind of gives me that giggly and relaxed feeling, not taking pretty high doses. I feel like with D-8, especially for me, it’s been like, 100 milligrams, versus like, 20 in the edible that I might do. So it’s probably five, four or five times, I feel like you need more of. But really, it’s been great. And I feel like, you know, if I’m trying to still focus and get something done, but want to relax and have a body high, Delta-8 has been great for me on that. And so there’s just cool that there, I think the market, new market is like-

 

Chip: Let’s talk about Delta for a second. It’s legal in many areas, and only a couple of states have defined it.

 

Matt: They kind of defined it as legal.

 

Chip: Yeah. Right, right.

 

Matt: And who knows what’s gonna happen? Because I think the DEA or the FDA, right now it’s in that gray area, because the only define laws we have are around Delta-9, and that you’re in 0.3% by dry weight. So when you extract it, it’s even in higher percentages, and that’s another debate. But yeah, I think like, some states have came out and said they don’t want it. But overall, the DEA and some of the statements have around from, it’s still derived from the plant, as they term in the Farm Bill industrial hemp. It’s kind of one of those areas where they might come in and interpret it someday, and be like, “It’s too close” and things like that or whatever, but we’ll see. I think in the next six months to a year especially with all the activity we have with like, federal legalization and things like that, we’ll know more on those. But I feel like there’s a lot of opportunity right now, because they’re getting popular, and less people are doing them. And there’s some good alternatives to like you know, I think for more affordable like Delta-8’s pretty affordable in general for you know, comparatively to Delta-9 just because of all the regulations and things you have to do around Delta-9.

 

Chip: Oh, absolutely. Give me the 9’s but hey, I’d love to have some 8 too. Don’t get me wrong. It’s fascinating, we’ve been saying this for years, that it’s not just THC, it’s not just THC, it’s not just THC, it’s not just THC. But be it in Colorado, and California, and some of the other states have really pushed this certificate of authenticity, this high THC number to sell product, or low THC number to sell product. But you know, they’ve just put THC-9 as the boogeyman honestly.

 

Matt: They have.

 

Chip: You know? And the good thing  is it means everything else is pretty much legal on the plant.

 

Matt: Yeah, pretty much. So they focused on that entirely and forgot about the other seeds that are very similar. They play on one of the two receptor cell sites in your body CB1 and CB2 and –

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah. So it’s good. Now see, CBG was one of the first alternative cannabinoids besides CBD, CB, THC that I had –

 

Matt: Heard about so?

 

Chip: Well that I actually got to use. Like I’d seen like, I’ve seen them all, read papers about so many of them, and there’s like, theories. There’s hundreds, or 15 or –

 

Matt: Gave you used the CBG product? Like have you dabbed it or..?

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah I had CBC, CBG Hash, CBG Key – 

 

Matt: What did you think? 

 

Chip: CBG – first it was a Moroccan style hash made from CBG. She was great, very uplifting, relaxing at the same time, but we literally like, packed a bowl of it thinking it was bedtime. So we packed some hash. And because we also had their CBD hash, this is in in some part of Eastern Europe. Man, we fired up the CBG, we started chatting, everybody started chatting for hours and hours more. Like, “Let’s go get some more food.”

 

Matt: You got more like I guess, energized?

 

Chip: Energized, yeah, totally, totally energized. You know where the CBD is far more relaxing.

 

Matt: Yeah. Some people say CBG is more relaxing too. I don’t know, it seems like everybody’s system sometimes responds slightly different.

 

Chip: It is. I’m a professional user. So it really, it’s similar to how cabo works, that’d be a great description. It’s stimulating yet relaxing.

 

Matt: Yeah. Yeah, I would agree with that. I feel like all cannabinoids are still overall relaxing. I’m more chill. I’m more sitting back, I’m more aware and observant around me. You know, some of them make me a little more tired. CBN specifically makes me a little bit more drowsy when I take CBN. Even Delta-9 sometimes makes me tired, but depends on you know, terpenes have so much to do with that too. 

 

Chip: Sure. Absolutely. Yeah, we’re big fans of Lemon G, and we’ve got a Lemon G Dosidoe. And we also have a Gils and Nils which is a Y cross with Georgia Pine Skunk strain. But none of those are real –

 

Matt: Stimulating?

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

Matt: Also tried those. Yeah. 

 

Chip: Sometimes I’ll confuse those in the evening. And like, like last night, right? Or it’s just so good, because it’s got that pentatonic buzz we were talking about earlier, you know? That I’m just buzzing and don’t want to stop, you know?

 

Matt: Oh yeah, oh yeah. When you do that, does it make you not fall asleep? When you have the [inaudible 32:36]?

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah. 

 

Matt: So you’re up more when you do that? 

 

Chip: Yeah. Totally, totally. 

 

Matt: I always see that I could find like, sleep though when I’m, when I need to even with –

 

Chip: Yeah, you’re like my wife, Jessica. Yes. She’s like, “Oh, I’m gonna go to sleep now,” you know?

 

Matt: That is like me.

 

Chip: You know? And I’m like, yeah, I struggle.

 

Matt: Yeah. Okay. Is that one of the reasons why cannabis helps you a lot, is it? 

 

Chip: Man. I am manic as hell, man. I mean, up and down. I get so excited about stuff. Oh, I’m so excited. Right? And then I mean, I also like, feel it really, too. And I get like, really like, you know, depressed. I shouldn’t say really depressed but like, you know, I really feel it when I lose something, or it doesn’t work out for me. I’m a little bit of an emotional roller coaster and cannabis absolutely evens that out quite a bit. It makes it oh, man, the font’s not exactly right on that, right? Like, you know, instead of just like, “Oh my god damn it. This font’s not right,” right? And for those of you who get into fonts, you’ll understand. “Not that one. Not that one. Oh, man, this, I need this one. Where did the guy get this one?” Yeah, you know, there’s just like, a million fonts out there. You know, I’ll obsess over it. I’ll swing one way or the other. Like, “Fuck it. I don’t care. Use anything. Oh, no, that one sucked. I can’t use that one.”

 

Matt: Not that one.

 

Chip: Not that one. You know? Yeah. So cannabis really helps me with that. But you know, I mean, I also, like, a common problem so many of us have is like, I really enjoy the manicness of it sometimes, too, right? And it’s part of like, who I am. And you know, it keeps you know, things exciting to some degree. I don’t want to just be “brrr” all the time. Yeah, you know, but I need to calm down a little bit. Yeah, I need to calm down a little bit.

 

Matt: Helps you, yeah calm right aways.

 

Chip: Right, right, right.

 

Matt: That’s one thing that’s helped with me too. I agree. I think that’s one of the biggest things that I’ve noticed people overall takes them down a notch, kind of where they, a little more chill, and calm, and look at things from a little bit different perspective.

 

Chip: Yeah, I definitely don’t want any medication over you know, my manicness. But I bet many people with my condition are given it, you know? Or don’t even understand their weed, or do they have like, this simple access to it. Heed on to the nation, man. Hey, I gotta give a big shoutout right now to King Shiloh Sound Systems. If you guys don’t know King Shiloh, I want you to stop what you’re doing, go onto Facebook, go onto YouTube. Look up King Shiloh Sound System. He’s out of Amsterdam. And it’s a group of DJs who previously pre-COVID would go around and have these big speakers and do these big sound Wall of Sound type shows, right? Old school 70’s Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Grateful Dead style. 

 

Matt: That’s awesome.

 

Chip: Right? But the best reggae you’ve ever heard. These guys have the deepest cuts. They have the best, the biggest collection of reggae singles and vinyls I have ever – I love reggae, I’ve been listening to it for 25 years. And these guys absolutely crush it. Nettie? I think he’s one of the DJs, big belly, overalls, a big white beard. Man, he plays just incredible singles. And, you know, interesting thing about Jamaica, is they got all of our leftover recording equipment from the 50’s and 40’s. And back then like, they just made singles and radio stations would have songs and you know, and so they got all of that equipment, started kind of replicating the same type of thing, right? Like, lots of small producers, lots of like, singles every week, singles every week. Anybody could show up and make a single every week. So all this stuff’s off copyright now, right? So King Shiloh, they play it, so it’s all the stuff you’ve never heard of from artists that you know they’ve lost the copyright or publishing or however YouTube allows you to do it.

 

Matt: So they can just take it and run with it then. 

 

Chip: King Shiloh Sound System, YouTube, Facebook, everybody please check it out. Tell King Shiloh Chip from The Real Dirt sent you.

 

Matt: Alright. I like it. I’ll have to check them out. Definitely check them out.

 

Chip: Oh, it’s great. They play a live show out of Amsterdam every Saturday at noon. 

 

Matt: Okay. How many of you been to? You said –

 

Chip: Well, it’s all Facebook now. So he’s got 42 that he’s released since COVID, right? Yeah, and man, if you love reggae, or if you’re even interested in it. That’s how to find out about it. Listen to his 80 hours of reggae.

 

Matt: Nice man. [inaudible 37:45]

 

Chip: I would suggest episodes, some of the mid-teens, 12, 13, 14s, those are some of my favorites.

 

Matt: Okay. Good to know, man. Thank you, reg.

 

Chip: Reggae sidenote.

 

Matt: Reggae sidenote. Reggae and cannabis goes along great though, and there’s something to them that – 

 

Chip: I mean, just music in general and cannabis go pretty good together.

 

Matt: Yeah.

 

Chip: I need more musicians in here. I’m gonna bring some more.

 

Matt: Yeah, you have to have some people play in.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah well, you know, just talking about getting stoned and you know, using you know, cannabis as a performance enhancing drug.

 

Matt: Yes, exactly, exactly. 

 

Chip: A little PED.

 

Matt: It’s part of the like, a reggae musician prerequisite is cannabis, I think. A  lot of them use.

 

Chip: Yeah, I’ve met a few that have shoved it but not many.

 

Matt: Not many. 

 

Chip: But yeah, not many. You know, reggae’s not really off topic, but we did move along a little bit. So what do you see coming forward for hemp and hemp farmers and hemp industry people?

 

Matt: Sure. Like I said, on the farm side, I feel like the boutique side, the smokable flower side, if you’re looking to get into business or looking for opportunity, that’s going to be a better opportunity. Most of the products and industrial size are going to be mass farms. If you’re not into that, then it’s gonna be hard to compete, and the market’s more of commodity. I think on the extraction side, same thing. It’s a little bit more commoditized now. There’s some large companies that got into it, got a lot of investments, so the price for them to create CBD oil and isolates and things like that have gone way down. The labs that seem to survive and that I work with a lot now, are the ones that are good with minor cannabinoids. Finding ways to produce these minor cannabinoids from hemp, so they can be sold on the market. Like the ones that are Delta-8 are crushing it obviously, because it’s similar to Delta-9, but they’re able to sell it in more states and things. And so, I feel like that’s yet another opportunity. And then on the brand side, I would say, if you’re just gonna say, “I want to set up a CBD product,” it’s gonna be, you’re gotta have to differentiate yourself. You need the target market you’re going to be going to, an audience you’re going to be serving, and really trying to – I feel like with anything, like Dollar Beard, Shave Club or whatever, razors and stuff wasn’t new and it was a huge market already. But they took it, did a little something different with it, made more of a, targeted to a certain audience, had a different experience and packaging and stuff, and then they crushed it, didn’t they? So I think you know, doing those kind of things in cannabis is more what I’m really focused on, and creating experiences around it. Would love to have a property in the mountains and doing retreats and events around it. And really people can come in and experience it in a safe way, as well as try some different parts of it, I think are going to be really popular. You know, and I think overall just the event and experience industry is going to grow starting this year, from this whole last year not having any events and experiences. So, I feel like that’s going to explode as well. So those are the areas that I feel are most going to explode if you’re looking to get into the hemp and CBD industry. You know, the minor cannabinoids, the boutique products and if you’re on the brand side, it’s really finding your audience and unique people that you’re calling to. 

 

Chip: Everyone who had a rough year in 2019 that decided to keep into it they did, they probably scaled back and really realize this year how to move forward with their business. Some people fell apart, some people waited. I know a few big organizations who were just like, “Oh, yeah, we don’t, we’re not going to grow anymore.”

 

Matt: Yeah.

 

Chip: Right? And some of those people may come and go. I think the wisdom of age of the industry is starting to develop. And you know, out of the necessity or the desire or the want, so many businesses and so many products and so many brands have been developed. Nike’s one of my favorite, favorite stories and it came out of like this need for an athletic shoe, right? And even though there were stuff out at the time like, they were the first people who really started to do research on it –

 

Matt: And cornered that market.

 

Chip: And cornered that market. And I think that like, the hemp industry is in exactly that place. The cannabis industry is in exactly that place where now, we have time to do research and development. We have time to like, standardize practices and not just think about it as like, this get rich quick scheme. My friend Stacy Johnson, Stacy J of Harvest House, he likes to say, “Getting rich quick since 1989.” And it’s so true but like. right now, I think it really offers that time. And people had all this hemp laying around the past year, they were able to do all kinds of stuff with it. I think the textile market’s coming down.

 

Matt: That’s different, yeah. I feel like that could be a huge market that really is picking up. Again, I feel like on the growing side, they’re going to be in huge farms that are you know, they’re growing and 15, 20 foot high plants, and they’re coming with harvesting machines that are you know, it’s very efficient, and you get very little bit of a –

 

Chip: I met some guys that have got 1000 acres in like, Nebraska or Oklahoma someplace. They’re doing it for industrial hemp and they’ve got a pressboard plant or something like that, and man, that’s gonna be great. You know, they like, just harvested their crop and like, they’re trying, they’re gonna go and do it all this next year, they’re gonna have their first round of product and, but it’s good.

 

Matt: Yeah, it’s the innovation I feel like that has the opportunity in those areas of like, taking the hemp [inaudible 43:20] from the growers, and making plastics out of certain molds for construction, or developing products from hemp on the industrial side is going to be big. I think the bigger stuff like the growing, or the extracting, and the commodities are going to be tougher to get in. There’s a lot of people in there and prices are pretty far down, but creating and innovating from those are what I think there’s, it’s infinite opportunity. Like Nike, shoes were around forever, but Nike came in and claim this domain and you know, has crushed it, and I think there’s gonna be, there’s a lot of opportunity within industry to be able to do that.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, man, it’s all just started. It’s all just started. For people who think it’s over with, or you’re not able to like, it’s all like, just starting so hold on to your hats.

 

Matt: Exactly.

 

Chip: It’s happening, man.

 

Matt: It is, it is. A lot of opportunity. Sticking a plant in the ground and thinking, “Alright, I can just do this, follow this process, and make a shit ton of money,” those are over. You know, you had a short window on those, but the opportunity to take something, and do something cool with it. 

 

Chip: Man, I’ll say I’ve been doing it for you know for, wow, a long time. This is my 32nd outdoor year. 

 

Matt: Yeah. You’re OG.

 

Chip: It’s never been that easy to just stick a plant in the ground and pull money out of. Yeah, like some people, I hear that works. But like, it’s not real, dude. That was fantasy. 

 

Matt: Yeah, you’ve had, every year has been learning, huh?

 

Chip: Every year has been great, every year has been a learning curve every year. But it’s just, it is a job. If you want to do it professionally, it’s a job. Go grow a plant in the backyard, you don’t have to do much if you want to, right? But you know, we’ve got great top soil there, you got a water sprinkler there like, you got a fence around, like, you know, go grow a field.

 

Matt: Personal use plants are like that, yeah. 

 

Chip: Right? It’s just a different scenario, but love weed, love everything about it, and just wanted to keep learning more, talking to more people about it, and, you know, helping more people grow.

 

Matt: Nice. Which I know you do a lot of growing supplies. What do you feel like the market for people that are just trying to do things at their house? Or, you know, I think that’s another opportunity to like, growing kits. Especially if things come  –

 

Chip: Yeah, you know, we’ve tried to put a lot of kits  together over time but people, the cannabis industry or DIYers for sure, they just want to buy the parts and pieces, and kind of put it together, right? But I’ll say that part of that is grow tents. Grow tents are, you know, they’re hard to get. I mean, there’s just so many of them out there now. Like, if you are one of the 300,000 people in Oklahoma that got your prescription for medical cannabis, you try  to go by a grow tent, which is like a little 4×4, 8×8 or 4×8 little vinyl type cloth tent that you can erect in your house, and it’ll light tight it so you can flower cannabis. Right. Everybody is interested in that. And I think they’re one of the greatest things in the world, man, honestly. The entry level for everybody who’s wanted to grow a plant, they can easily go do it in their backyard with a bag of soil.  Go pick up a bag of growers, Coco HP, or just drop it in hole in your backyard and plant your plant in it. Like, everybody wants to do that, who’s ever smoked weed or thought about it like, “It’s legal now. Let’s grow.” And honestly, everybody should. Think of how much better it would be. If 150 adult Americans all went out and planted one plant in their backyard. . Alright, let’s split it off into couples and families and just say 50 million Americans went and planted out one plant of ganja in their backyard. Wow, man. We could see some real change in the world.

 

Matt: Yeah, that would be. It would, and maybe there will be that one day. You know, that’s what I was wondering like, you know, coffee people. I mean, they don’t necessarily grow the coffee, but they’re grinding up the beans, they’re French pressing, they’re doing like, you know, all the extracting basically, the coffee right there in the house. And I’m wondering if cannabis is gonna have that same kind of market to where there’s all these at home, kind of little extraction systems and things like that, it becomes like that much of a household plant, you know? Especially as we get deep down of like, learning more about the plant, the different cannabinoids, and growing different strains. I think it’d be interesting you know? Like I want a little more CBD, or this is more for daytime, or this is more for my nighttime. I’m curious of how the market ends out. And I think there’s a lot of innovation in that area. There’s a lot of room to grow.

 

Chip: Oh, there’s tons of room to grow, man. It is just starting. Well, hey, Matt, let’s talk about the brand you’re building, and what’s going on with you and your business?

 

Matt: Sure. Well, thanks man. So currently right now, like I said, I’m really focused on the experience around cannabis. It played such a large role in my life on the way it helped me open up to patterns, and things, and programs that I had that weren’t necessarily serving me, and I feel like it’s a big stepping stone in that. So currently, I have three main core values around our products. Number one is intention setting. So I like to say the analogy of a car analogy. To me, cannabis, and CBD, and hemp are the vehicle that we’re using to get to a place. Our intentions, our navigation, basically like, where are we wanting to go? So we’re really big with for the first 30 days people taking our products, trying to connect with them and find out what are their intentions for taking the products. Is it to sleep better? Is it, why are they wanting to sleep better? Because they’re starting a new business, or whatever it is in life, right? Really be clear  –

 

Chip: The sleep feels good.

 

Matt: Sleep feels good, right. 

 

Chip: No joke but like, you know people, like, sleep is one of those things that people like, oh, you can’t sleep. And it’s like, if you haven’t been in that position, you know not being able to sleep, we talked about this already, you sleep great.

 

Matt: I sleep great.

 

Chip: And I don’t at all, right? And like, man, it is hard, man. Like, you know, and then like, when you start like, taking you know, substances to help you sleep, most of them have some hangover effect.

 

Matt: Yeah. More drowsy in the morning more. Yeah, I agree. And so yeah, cannabis has been one of the biggest things I feel like for what I hear most people taking them for, help them relax and sleep. 

 

Chip: And you know, inflammation, any type of inflammation I see. I see with CBD specifically, I see the aid in, you know, they’re the other, you know, pharmaceuticals they’re using, right? They don’t have to take as much. It means that they don’t have as many adverse side effects from the pharmaceuticals as well, right? And all that means something.

 

Matt: Yep. Oh yeah.  I think that it’s a natural plant that has a lot of different uses. But I think mainly in helping people relax, kind of helping work on the nervous system and their immune system, which is basically taking their inflammation and why people say that cannabis has helped with such a wide range of things, because it usually comes down to those two things. It helps calm their nervous system down, which I think everybody’s a little bit more wired nowadays. There’s a lot more stimulus we have coming at us in COVID and things like that. We just, there’s more nervous system disorders, anxiety, depression, things like that where I feel like you know, definitely cannabis and endocannabinoid system when it’s healthy, helps the nervous system regulate as well as immune system with inflammation. And like I said, it works on a host of different diseases, and I guess conditions that people say it helps with so yeah.

 

Chip: And hey man, it’s fine to self-medicate. Damn right, we do it all the time. Like there’s nothing wrong with it. And, you know, that’s why all the over counter drugs are there is because you can self-medicate. Self-medicating with cannabis is one of the most effective, less, least harmful things that anyone can do. And I know I’m preaching the choir here, because we’ve got 30,000 listeners here that are just gonna say, “Right on, Chip!”

 

Matt: Oh yeah.

 

Chip: But it’s true.

 

Matt: It is true, it is true. You know, and that’s, I think with our brand, it’s more of like, set your intentions, have gratitude around it, and really just focus on like, what are you trying to bring this plant to do in your life? And you know, our deal is building a community where we can support each other in those changes, right?

 

Chip: Are you guys, are you connected on Facebook or Instagram? You have social media platforms you work with?

 

Matt: Yes, we have. We’re on Instagram, @thealchempist.com. The alc-hemp-ist, I don’t know if some people would debate, the name was based on the book, The Alchemist, have you read the book?

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, sure.

 

Matt: Yeah, I love that book. And, you know, to me, there’s a lot of hidden stories in that book and hidden gems in that book of good lessons that you can learn. But for me, it was more about that, you know, the boy that kind of went against the programming that he was taught, and what he’s supposed to be in this world to, you know, discover his own personal legend. And that’s kind of what I you know, with that with hemp. ‘Cause as you know, I kind of was the same way I grew up in a, this was not an acceptable plant, like the devil’s lettuce, like we talked about earlier. And, you know, and finding it, helping in my life and following that path, and my intuition that I’ve discovered my own journey. And so, I feel like everybody can do that with cannabis in their own way. And our goal is to kind of help them set that intention, help them form the gratitudes around it, and then build a community where people that are going in the same direction like, “Hey, we’re all trying to sleep better, we’re all trying to do this.” We can kind of share openly like, “Hey, this is this is working for me. These you know, I’m smoking cannabis at night and I’m using CBD during the day, and this is how it’s affecting me, and these are the dosages I’m doing,” because you know, we haven’t had a lot of research around the plant because it’s been illegal.

 

Chip: Yeah, next to none.

 

Matt: Next to none. Because federally yeah, it’s still Schedule I which hasa prevented colleges and things like that, which I’m sure your listeners know too. But Schedule I, you can’t do any research around as much where you know, you have cocaine and meth and all of them are Schedule II. So it’s just nuts how that works, but I feel that you know, there’s starting to become more research, especially hemp and stuff is least introduced the plant because I you know, I tell people hemp is cannabis, there’s no difference. It’s the same plant.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. All the time. People are, “Oh, hemp, not cannabis.” I’m like, “Same stuff. Same stuff. ” They’re like, “Well, not the new federal regulations.” I’m like, “Nope, new federal [inaudible 53:46].” Right?  It just the same plant, it’s just –

 

Matt: Government had to reclassify to make them feel better about you know, “Alright, we’re stepping, we’re stopping the line at 0.3%.”

 

Chip: That’s hemp. 

 

Matt: That’s hemp. Now it’s hemp. Now it’s okay. Yeah, exactly. No, it’s an artificial line in the same plant. And so, we’re able to study it from that angle a little bit to kind of see what THC is doing and what, you know, CBD, and CBG, and all these different minor cannabinoids and terpenes are doing inside the body. I feel like that’s going to continually grow. And the more we get into that and more research we get into that, the more we’ll be able to develop products, and have businesses that are focused around certain parts of the plant, and what people are dealing with or need help with in their life.

 

Chip: Hey, Matt. Well, hey, thanks for joining me today, man. This was a great conversation. I was looking forward to it. We always talk so well together about hemp, CBD and cannabis. Next time you’re down here in Oklahoma, we’ll, let’s go track down some of those industrial hemp people.

 

Matt: Sounds good, man. Sounds good. Thank you for having me. Appreciate it. 

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. And thank you once again for listening to another episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker and today, Matt Chandler. Hey, you guys. We all love cannabis. And you know, the hemp, and the medical cannabis, and the ganja people, you’re often fighting this wrestling match. And I’m gonna ask each and every one of you to embrace each other. Embrace your cannabis brothers and sisters, it doesn’t matter if they’re a hemp grower, if they’re a medical cannabis grower, they’re a ganja grower, if they’re a personal grower, or if they’re a home grower, right? Hey, we’re all in this together. And let’s work together and really find out the real dirt on hemp, ganja, and medical cannabis. This is it. The Real Dirt with Chip Baker.

The Real Science Behind Compost Tea

The Real Science Behind Compost Tea

how to make compost tea for cannabis cultivation

We all know the benefits of compost when it comes to cannabis cultivation.

But we’ve also come a long way from just dumping a pile of compost into your soil and mixing it in. With compost tea, we can now incorporate compost into our cultivation practices by simply feeding the plants through irrigation, just like hydroponic nutrients.

If there’s one man who has gone to extra mile to understand the science behind compost tea in order to create powerful, organic tea mixes, it’s John Picirrilli, Founder of Cutting Edge Solutions.

“So my grandma turned me on to compost tea, I think I’ve already told you this story. She made anaerobic tea. It was just like a jug, a five gallon bucket of manure that we’d fill with water and sit there forever. And then occasionally, she’d get a scoop of water out of it and dilute it and pour it onto her radishes and tomatoes, or whatever we were growing in the backyard, right?” – Chip Baker

Even since he was boy Chip Baker was learning about compost tea and its benefits from his Grandma. And John learned a similar way himself.

 “You know, going back on some of my many mistakes, one of the early ones was doing something like that. And then you do it on a larger scale than a five gallon bucket. Because pretty soon, you see a little works pretty good, so you want more of it to use all at once.” – John Picirrilli

From a five gallon bucket to 50 gallon drums, John quickly expanded his research and development of his compost tea product. And that was 40 years ago. The science behind compost tea and growing with biologicals had limited research at the time, and John was at the forefront of looking at the microscopic details of the teas he was making.

Eventually he would start his own microbiology lab where could study compost tea and all of its components scientifically.

What John Learned

Through his decades of research, John’s findings are plain and simple.

“That’s when I realized better biology means better flower.” – John Picirrilli

While compost teas are nothing new, using them for cannabis cultivation is a relatively new practice, and that’s why John is focused on educating growers on its benefits. But explaining the complex science behind how good compost tea develops isn’t so simple, especially when cannabis cultivators come from a wide range of backgrounds, age and education.

The Real Science Behind Compost Tea

In the Season 5 premiere of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker, John and Chip dive into their history and experience with compost tea, from their first discoveries to developing their current regiment. John goes in depth about how he began and continues his studies into compost tea using his sophisticated methods to find which specific microbes and bacteria are the most beneficial for cannabis.

The two talk about the history of using compost tea, how it has evolved, and why every cannabis cultivator should be incorporating it into their regiment. And of course the two long time friends share some old school stories from the Northern California days.

‘A regulator told me a long time ago. “Don’t try to list too many things on the label. Just say it makes plants happy.”‘ – John Picirrili

Is it that simple? Find out in this episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker!

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FULL TRANSCRIPT

Chip: Hello, my friends. It’s so good to be back here in another episode of The Real Dirt. Got an exciting season this year for you, The Real Dirt. Wow, last year was incredible. And this year, wow. It’s gonna show so much for the cannabis market and cannabis industry. You know, we’re gonna hold on by the, fly by the seat of our pants. It’s coming so fast and so strong. If you’re involved in the cannabis industry right now, you know what I’m talking about. Everybody sitting at home, unemployed, smoking more weed than they ever have, or you know, they maybe have a little stress or – hey, also, there’s medical cannabis in so many more states now. 2001 is gonna go up in smoke. And I mean that in the very, very best way. That is my prediction, is the cannabis industry is going to be one of the saviors of the country and of the planet. If we’d all just sit back and smoke a little bit of weed, then you know, it’ll be a better place. And those of you who consume cannabis, or who work in the cannabis industry know how good this plant is. And man, dude, it has been so good. Despite of what’s going on in the rest of the country, the cannabis industry just had a banner year last year. And we’re gonna repeat it again. So these next episodes of The Real Dirt man, we’ve got a new studio, it sounds great. You can hear it right now, you can hear the bass in my voice. And I’m stoked man, we’ve been running out of this bedroom in the back of my house. And it hasn’t been the best, and the best internet reception. But man, we’re here, we’re set up for a very socially distanced event. I have many, many guests both on Zoom and as well here in the studio. I have a huge eight foot table, we can all be across from each other. We’ve got great ventilation in here. We’ll socially distance and be as careful as we can. But man, we’ve got some great people from all over the world. They’re gonna chime in this year. And we’re gonna run things a little bit different this year, I hope you guys enjoy it. But I’m really, you know, in this quest for knowledge, and previously, I wanted to know people’s story and understand stuff about them. You know, and I still want that. But one of the goals that we’re gonna have this year at The Real Dirt is we’re gonna answer questions. So if you have any question, and we’re looking on the internet, we’re looking at our Instagram, we’re looking at Facebook every single day. If you have any questions about cannabis, the cannabis industry, you know, ask us at The Real Dirt and maybe we’ll make an episode about it. So currently, we have about 35 episodes planned for this year, we’ll see how it unfolds, we’ll probably get a little bit more, a little bit less. But man, it’s gonna be really informative. If you’ve ever, I apologize for all the bad quality recordings this past year. We’re gonna do far, far better this next year. But uh yeah, man. We’re just gonna grow right along. So yeah, if you haven’t already subscribed, please go to The Real Dirt on iTunes, and on Spotify, and on Amazon and all the other major places where you can listen to podcasts. And listen, all the other episodes you know, if you’re interested in anything, you can ask us at The Real Dirt. “Hey, I’m interested in this, do you have an episode suggestion?” And we’ll give you a suggestion but you know, some of the early episodes are great, great, great information, even though they might have been four or five years ago, three or four years ago. Man, some of that stuff is just great. You guys should all go back and listen to that if you haven’t. We got about 70, 80 episodes published right now and man, they all have some great tidbits of information. But this year it’s going to be super high quality, super informative. And yeah, man. Here we go, man. My first guest is John Piccirilli. Me and John have been friends for years. He introduced himself one day to me in Humboldt County right after I’d started a potting soil plant. He literally rolled by and heard that I’d started a plant, had kind of heard about, you know, what I was trying to do, royal gold coco fiber, this was in like, 2008. John stopped by, said hi. He had a company called Cutting Edge. And so has a company called cutting edge where he makes top quality fertilizers for cannabis. And John helped me over the years tremendously. Anytime I had a question, he was there for me. And you know, when I started selling retail product with Cultivate Colorado and then Cultivate OKC, you know, really supported John and all of his products and whether it’s his 3 Part or his Uncle John’s, or, you know, the Sonoma Gold, man, he’s just got some great, great, great products. He makes nutrition for plants simple. And we’re going to talk to john about of a couple of things. We’re definitely going to get into some compost tea, and we’ll have a few episodes here, where Uncle John kind of explains it all. If you’ve ever met John, you know how he can go on, and on, and on, and on, and on for hours. So, I’m going to try to consolidate all his knowledge into you know, some good, good, good information we can all digest. But what I want you to do now is sit back, roll the largest joint you can and enjoy this episode of The Real Dirt.

 

John: Hey guys. We got John Piccirilli here. He’s the founder of Cutting Edge Nutrient Solution and pretty much go-to source of all things cannabis cultivation and nutrition. There should be like, a Google section that’s just like,  “John says, Uncle John says.” Welcome, John, thanks for coming. 

 

Chip: Thanks Chip, and happy birthday. 

 

John: Oh, yep. This is my birthday episode. For those of you who didn’t get me a gift, it’s okay. You still have all of next year to plan. 

 

Chip: Right, I mean, I was caught off guard myself. And I’ve known Chip, you know, 15 or 20 years. So…

 

John: Yeah. Well, the reason you were caught off guard is because you’re eagerly waiting to tell me happy solstice in a few days from now. And you just forget that it’s my birthday a few days beforehand. 

 

Chip: Yes. And then it gets brighter every day. 

 

John: It does. It gets brighter every day. 

 

Chip: So wow John, me and you have known each other for a long time. We met a decade or more ago, when I opened up my first humble soil plant, you walked in the door one day, and politely answered all my questions and told me how I was doing everything wrong. And now I’m successful today because of you.

 

John: Oh, I don’t know, Chip, that’s not true. You’ve been at it a long time, too. And, you know, for me, I’ve been at it for 40 years, you know. I was one of those punk kids that ran away from Berkeley at 14 and started growing in Mendocino County in 1978. So I’ve had a little bit more time to make more mistakes than you. So I’m just telling you the advice that you think I’m giving you, I’m just telling you the mistakes I made, and not to do this. 

 

Chip: Now you are a world-renowned, known as the problem solver. I’ve made that mistake for before, you know, answer for many, many, many, many, many things. Right? 

 

John: And if people don’t believe it, I tell them how much it costs to make that mistake and it scares them. 

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely.

 

John: So they back up and they look at what kind of solutions that I’ve come up with. And those are pretty much our products.

 

Chip: I sell Cutting Edge Solutions. It’s one of our biggest sellers here at Cultivate OKC, Cultivate Colorado throughout California. It has been called the Calif-or. It starts off as a basic three part nutrition formula, but then there’s several other additives, magnesium additive, calcium additive, cal mag. I mean, you’ve got numerous, numerous products. The thing that’s great about John’s products is one, the customer service. You guys got great customer service, t feedback that you get. But man, you and Kevin go to see more gardens than pretty much anybody I know. I mean, I see a lot of gardens. But you guys like. really are in the dirt, man. You know, the thing that fascinates me is that everybody has a like, this little magic or something they do. It’s not magic, what you’re doing.

 

John: No. Well, it’s kind of magic. I mean, it’s science. But science is just a small explanation for magic. And there’s more magic than science. So you don’t always use your head, sometimes you use your heart. 

 

Chip: Yeah, I’ve seen you guys turn around more gardens, for sure, after visits and more happy customers. Is there like, one thing that, is there a common thing that people have problems with? 

 

John: Yeah, I would say using pH up and that locks out calcium, and calcium is key. And so ais phosphorus. A lot of ways that we back people out of problems is by using home tea which is a compost tea. 

 

Chip: And you know, it happens to be the topic of our episode today –

 

John: Wow. 

 

Chip: Is composting. 

 

John: That’s great.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. So my grandma turned me on to compost tea, I think I’ve already told you this story. She anaerobic tea. It was just like a jug, a five gallon bucket of manure that we’d fill with water and sit there forever. And then occasionally, she’d get a scoop of water out of it and dilute it and pour it onto her radishes and tomatoes, or whatever we were growing in the backyard, right? As a little kid, but I didn’t know any different until kind of I met you, John. And you started talking about compost tea, and actively aerated compost tea. Wow, if you’re not compost tea-ing now, it’s definitely something you should think about. Mostly, I recommend it for soil growers, the indoor outdoor greenhouse, it doesn’t matter applying it to the soil foliar feeding. Should I make this statement that it is the most effective thing that you can do for your garden, compost tea?

 

John: It is. It’s true. You know, probably what your grandmother did, you know, she used manure, broke down, and she poured it on and the plants got boosted, right? They look better. You know, going back on some of my many mistakes, one of the early ones was doing something like that. And then you do it on a larger scale than a five gallon bucket. Because pretty soon, you see a little works pretty good, so you want more of it to use all at once. And then you use, make a 50 50 gallon drums. And then it really goes anaerobic. And then you get acids in it that just melt the roots, when you overapply it. So then, there’s an application amount that you should use too. But I mean, that’s how I started out was, like I said, like over 40 years ago, you know, one of the benefits of being back then was you got to see cultivation going from fields and planes flying over, to actual helicopter traffic coming in. And then we had to move back in the barrage, and then ultimately back near the tree line. And then there’s a lot more microbiology that interacts with the plant then. But about the same time – 

 

Chip: So this is application. You saw this through application, you saw the biology change through application.

 

John: Right, through just trying to use the same amendments and in holes, or trenches, and grow plants and then you know, we had to march the plants back into the barrage, and then ultimately back into the tree line. And then at that time, I thought just fertilizers grew plants. But then I realized by that point that it was the microbiology that was making the chemistry available.

 

Chip: Yes, the roots, they grow the plants, don’t they? And they need that proper biology around the roots in the soil in order to digest the nutrients in order to feed the plants, right? People can argue that science all day long, but it’s pretty much how it works, right? Synthetic or organic like, you have to have that biological dynamic.

 

John: You do to have healthy plants. And otherwise you get diseases or bugs are attracted to them, which transfer diseases to other plants that are still somewhat healthy. 

 

Chip: So let’s take this back, John. Let’s do a couple things. Let’s talk about like, what is compost tea, and then we’ll talk about some like, things we can do with it, and problems it creates, and problems it solves. So, how do you define compost tea? Because I know this, people say and do this all different types of ways. 

 

John: Right. So you know, some people define compost tea as any compost, like we were saying before, put into drums of water and they make sun tea. And you know about the time we were being pushed back by the helicopters, I was making sun teas and taking horsetail which is high in silica, cutting those up, putting them in –

 

Chip: Wild, crafting horsetail. 

 

John: Right. And stinging nettle, which is not easy to collect, as you think. 

 

Chip: Got to pick it from the jungle.

 

John: Otherwise, your arms are thrashed. But you know, using different herbs and making sun teas, and that seemed to be okay. But I got more results out of it when there was bubbling going on. And then I used it before the bumbling stopped, before it got completely anaerobic. And you know, I got a microscope and I started looking at things closer. And then I got bacterial stain kits for Gram positive and Gram negative, started kind of identifying different bacteria, and started looking at fungi, and staining that with prussian blue, and that led to just building a microbiology lab. I was kind of a kid back then. That was the early realization that you can make liquids that help the amendments of the soil. But compost tea, you know, you asked me that question. And I started to aerate it, so that I could break it down further. And then about that time, you know, it was just sort of wide open. There was not a lot of research being done using biologicals. But I started to learn how to isolate them out of healthy agricultural systems, and scraping them off lichen in the forest, because I realized that some of the best plants were at the drip line were lichen were. They weren’t necessarily getting more sun, but they were growing healthier, and they yielded better, and the flavor of the –

 

Chip: Better biology. 

 

John: Yeah, better biology. And that’s when I realized better biology means better flower. 

 

Chip: I mean, compost tea is new to many people, but it’s a very old technology. I mean, I’m not sure how far back actively aerated compost tea goes. I mean, people have been bubbling compost in the liquid solution for a moment, right? But it’s new to many people. So what we mean by this is we’re actually injecting air of some sort, and people use all types of things. Are there things you should or shouldn’t use, pumps you should or shouldn’t use? 

 

John: Yeah, some people build these elaborate brewers that’s spin the whole liquid inside of a cone tank. And that might be good to generate bacteria, aerobic bacteria, but not necessarily good for protozoa. And so you know, you’re looking for three things in a compost tea that’s aerated as you say, by at least putting in an air stone if not putting in lines that are perforated, and [inaudible 16:13]. it just depends on the size of the brewer that you’re working with. 

 

Chip: Sure. I’ve made probably millions of gallons of compost tea through all my potting soil stuff and you know, royal gold, we used to apply it directly on the line and use compost tea within our products. You know, I’ve always liked the simple air bubblers, right? I always felt those made the best, you know, product, the best compost tea, even though we’ve kind of used everything. I’ve used, you know, these jet pumps that move water around, we’ve used [inaudible 16:52] pumps. Man we’ve used, you know, just like large air pumps with a bunch of lines going into it. But for some reason, the air stones, they they really do work the best.

 

John: They do, I mean, you put them in the bottom of a cone tank, a lot, you know, a line that runs from the pump into the tank, and then it’s at the bottom of a cone tank, and it has just the right amount of air. 

 

Chip: Those with bubble size, I think what it has to do with it? Because you got all those little small bubbles, and as they’re turning over in the water, they’re mixing everything, right? And you know, if you think about it, a bubble is this real like, natural like, thing. You know, I just like the idea of that anyway. I don’t know if it’s reality or not, but millions of bubbles mix better than hundreds of bubbles.

 

John: Well, you know, it’s like champagne. 

 

Chip: Yes, the champagne effect, right.

 

John: It’s the champagne of compost tea. You know? And the other ones are like the jacuzzi jet of compost tea.

 

Chip: Yeah, because you don’t really, you don’t want it really swirling. You don’t want it really bubbling, right? You just want it like, moving around. You wanna inject the right amount of air. Do you know if there’s any math involved with this? 

 

John: Oh, yeah. You know, there’s a, you know, you look at, see I’ve used of different organisms that are in a spore state or in a cis state of it, which is like your egg state for a protozoa. Take a drop of compost tea, and put it on a hemocytometer, that’s what you use to look at blood. But it’s the same thing you use in microscopy to look at the population number in one drop, which is pretty much a measured amount. And on this hemocytometer, it’s got a graph and you can estimate, do a bacteria, fungi, protozoa count. Sometimes people are off on the on the fungi because of actinomycete, which is, you know, when you’re turning your compost, you get that white fuzz on it. –

 

Chip: Yeah, I know it. On the outside, and the inside –

 

John: Right. And then you dig through that and you see all the strands, that actinomycete is helping break down the compost, but it operates at a warmer temperature, which is just on the outside shell. But when you’re making compost tea, a lot of times you have that in there. People mistake that for actual beneficial fungi. It’s beneficial in the sense that it’s breaking things down and making enzymes, but it’s also, can throw you off if you’re actually reading it. So, you need a Gram stain and there’s a certain way to identify that.

 

Chip: And all this stuff is inexpensive now, right? Like, you know, digital microscopes and you know, all this equipment is readily available to people. When I started doing it 20 years ago, it was like, $5,000 for a microscope. But now you can get it for 100 bucks, right? 

 

John: Yeah, yeah. There’s decent microscopes for 100 bucks. I mean, we pretty much use Olympus and Leica microscopes which are German lenses and those are – 

 

Chip: Well, you guys are professionals. Of course you use Leica.

 

John: Well, because we look at, because we look at a lot of samples, right? And so you can get eyestrain. It’s like, the difference between getting reading glasses and real glasses, I guess. 

 

Chip: Now me and you and other people were fascinated with it all. And we might break the microscope out and notice the balance of bacteria and fungi or protozoa over temperatures or, but most people aren’t going to nerd out quite like that. You don’t necessarily need a microscope, right? 

 

John: No.

 

Chip: No, I saw that look in your eyes. You’re like, “No, you gotta have a microscope.”

 

John: Well, you know, you were just saying it.

 

Chip: It’s not that expensive. 

 

John: They’re not that expensive. And, you know –

 

Chip: It’s easy to use.

 

John: I mean, we used to have Maverick cameras that cost like$1400 that attached with a special adapter that went on the compound microscope. In the end, you’re like spending thousands of dollars –

 

Chip: Now you can almost do it on your phone. 

 

John: Yeah, right. Exactly. And they have smaller digital microscopes and digital cameras that are maybe $100 or $200 that are great for taking photos, and sending to someone to identify something that you think is wrong with your plant. Or, you know, the cross section of a root, or you know, many different things. So it’s definitely worthwhile to get these. It adds to your digital library of things that are either going right or wrong. 

 

Chip: It’s just another tool in the tool bucket. So basically, compost tea is any type of compost that’s dissolved in water. And then we’re aerating it.

 

John: That’s a good basic definition.

 

Chip: When doesn’t it have to be compost, then?

 

John: Yeah, I mean, to be compost tea, it should be compost. Usually, it’s vermicompost. Because that’s, you know, high in bacteria. 

 

Chip: The earthworms are incredible creatures and get rid of all the E. coli. And you know, that’s the best thing about earthworms. You use a pure earth, pure black castings and you’re not gonna have any E. coli. 

 

John: Right. That’s very true. Sometimes you could have coliform bacteria, but –

 

Chip: Still rare for earthworm castings, unless it’s like, unless it’s not been screened. If it’s just compost, and earthworm castings, that’s where you see the coliform bacteria.

 

John: Well, it depends what state you’re in. And it’s not you personally, but it’s you physically. 

 

Chip: Yeah. Okay, okay. 

 

John: And you know, because different states do different tests. And you know, for a while they were mixing up E. coli, which is a coliform bacteria with all other coliform bacteria. We have coliform bacteria in our hands.

 

Chip: It’s everywhere.

 

John: It’s everywhere. It’s ubiquitous, right? So but you know, it’s not something that is going to harm you. 

 

Chip: Mostly compost tea is made from earthworm castings, water and maybe, you know, a couple of other things. I mean, there’s all types of recipes people use for all types of reasons. I know you guys sell a great, great product HumTea that is a completely formulated compost tea recipe or, what do you, how do you phrase it at? 

 

John: Yeah, so that would be a compost tea. 

 

Chip: HumTea, is it, do you call it an inoculant kit, or a starter kit, or..?

 

John: Yeah, you know, you could call it either thing. You know, I’m not very good at marketing as you know. 

 

Chip: Right, yeah, yeah. You’re great at sales though. 

 

John: Yeah. [inaudible 23:34] I could go in and say, you know, yeah, we have a spawn bag, which is a resealable plastic bag that’s impermeable by pretty much anything, except that it has a GoreTex window on it. So it allows gas exchange. And in there we have some woody material that we grow protozoa on. The actual let’s say, compost itself is a mixture of this woody material, and a mixture of earthworm castings. So the earthworm castings have really good background bacteria, fungi and some protozoa. But we enrich that and enhance that in our composting process and our finishing process. So we usually have a screen of 10 important bacteria, a few fungi, and about 22 different protozoa. So you would take this out of the bag, put it into, you know, we have brewers that have screens. And you can put it into the screen or a HumTea Brew Ball, and that’s actually floats in any container. It will even float in a reservoir. And then we have three different containers, three different say pint or quart bottles depending on the size that you buy of the HumTea inoculant. And those have certain bacteria and there are food sources in there. You know, ours is a little bit more sophisticated than just taking compost from your earthworm castings, and throwing it into some gauze or some sort of screen system, and then bubbling it in water, where a lot of people would add molasses. 

 

Chip: Because you’ve done all the work for you with the HumTea. You don’t have to have a microscope. You can just drop your pre-made formulated compost tea inoculant in a barrel of water in the compost brewer. Any compost brewer, but specifically a Cultivate OKC or Cultivate Colorado compost brewer that you can get in Colorado, you can order it online. Go to cultivate colorad.com, cultivateokc.com, we’ve got great, great deals. Better deals, and you could ever get on 15, 30, 35, 45, 65 gallon brewers. All of that will make it easier for you than just using some random container or you know, maybe not like the easiest thing to clean. But you start with a good compost tea brewer. But any type will work, right? And use the – oh I see, they’re like ” Oh well maybe not any type,” because we already kind of went over that. The ones that move too much water don’t really work so well. 

 

John: Well they work well for bacteria, to generate bacteria but –

 

Chip: So if you got a specific bacteria you’re trying to grow or wanted high in bacteria, then  you would use that.

 

John: Yeah, you wanna use of those high volume mixing, spin it around, [inaudible 26:35].

 

Chip: I mean, anybody can go out and make their own. Anybody can go out and get a bag of earthworm castings. They can get some bat guano, some trace minerals, maybe a little, the smallest amount of some sort of sugar product. They can make their own but man, the HumTea product is really so much better. You know, when you first came out with this, this is how John sold this product. He first came out with it and he gave it away. And he taught us a lot about giving stuff away, all of us in the cannabis industry. And so he would give it away – where would that have been? I mean, you gave it away all –

 

John: North coast horticulture.

 

Chip: North coast horticulture, it would have been –

 

John: In Humboldt County. 

 

Chip: Yeah, it would have been in Humboldt County. And people were like, “Oh, what do I do with this?” He was like, “Well just take a gallon home and when your cuttings are rooted, feed it to them.” Right? “Oh, I’m having problems with you know, my plant. Should I feed all my -” “Well, just start on your cuttings. Take this gallon and feed your cuttings.” And you sold so many people on compost tea and educated so many people on compost tea and Humboldt Tea that way. Off one single gallon. Change their, changed everything for them, right?

 

John: Yeah, yeah. It’s actually Humboldt Countea.

 

Chip: Humboldt Countea.

 

John: Right.

 

Chip: I see. 

 

John: And then there’s just the t-e-a at the end. 

 

Chip: And now, is there some special biology that you’ve put into the Humboldt Countea? 

 

John: Well, yeah. You know, by just raising it and generating it, and then using it in a good agricultural system and then re-harvesting it. You know, some of the bacteria alone, you know, there’s Pseudomonas putida, and that can break down herbicides. So I mean, I was working with that a long time ago, back when they used the silvicultural practice in Mendocino County and Humboldt County, was to spray hardwoods with Agent Orange that was left over from the Vietnam War. So long ago, this was –

 

Chip: [inaudible 28:44] for you and me, right?

 

John: Yeah, that’s right. 

 

Chip: Spraying all the weeds in the woods, they say it’s gonna make the world go good. Oh yeah, man.

 

John: Right. 

 

Chip: Some protest songs there, protest songs from the 90’s. 

 

John: Right. Born right out of NorCal, you know. There was fighting for their lives out there, literally. 

 

Chip: We got pesticide danger. Oh, can decide, danger.

 

John: Nice. Oh, yes. Reggae on the river, I hope it comes back. 

 

Chip: Oh, it will. Yeah, yeah, for sure. And it’ll be in memories forever. But…

 

John: Yeah, we still bring it to life. Yeah, you know, I was giving it out at first because not just to educate people, but just to give back to the community. I can see that here in Oklahoma again, where a lot of people just left because they saw corporations rising in their state, whether it was Colorado, Michigan, Washington, Oregon, California. And they wanted to be back in a community of people that share plant material. And you really see it here now. And it’s good. 

 

Chip: Oklahoma reminds me a lot of Humboldt in the late 90’s. 

 

John: Yeah.

 

Chip: Right? The organic movement, the freshness, the newness, the idea. Because even though like Humboldt, Mendocino and Trinity, they’re thought about and they are the world capital of ganja production and have been for, like 50 years, right? It’s like Mexico, Humboldt County, right? 

 

John: Right. You go anywhere in the world and they go, “Where are you from?” And you say, if you say Arcata or Trinidad, immediately they’re like, “That’s in Humboldt County. You’re from Humboldt County.” Yeah.

 

Chip: Yeah, right. So I know there’s a lot of haters out there, but that’s just how it is, the volume of cultivators up there, it’s just now incredible. But back then, in the late 90s, we had just gone through Operation Green Merchant. There was, one of the Bushes came in with an aircraft carrier off the coast of Humboldt, they had National Guard, they were like, stopping and searching people coming in and out of highway roads that just went through National Forest systems. But, you know, all kinds of illegal Gestapo type of stuff. And in the late 90s, cannabis, it was really, really underground. You know, outdoor cultivation. It had it for like, 10 years at that point was really hard, right? You had to hide it, you had to put it under trees. And people were growing indoor. It started growing indoor in like, huge farms. Absolutely some of the biggest farms in the early years. Everybody seemed to have a 40 or an 80 light indoor on a generator back then. 

 

John: Right.

 

Chip: Right? That’s kind of what’s going on here is that it’s easy to get a 200 amp license, it’s easy to get a license to grow and grow under 200 amps. Maybe that’s what I should say, 2500 bucks, $3,000 you can easily get a license. And it’s kind of the same way back then, it’s like you could go get your prescription and grow some weed and sell it to the dispensary, right? They just kind of formalized it a little bit. But the same enthusiasm, right? The same old coops coming out of the hills going, “I love weed. We used to grow it back in the whenever it is,” right? Man, and we saw it happen then. Because we had that big first explosion happened in ’97. And it was like ’97 to like ’94 or something. And then there was smaller changes in the laws like in Mendocino, they made it legal for 25 plants for anybody, and then 99 plants. If you registered, they were one of the first registrations in the country, that was back in 2004, right? And outdoor cultivation really started to take off again. We got rid of Terry Farmer and a couple of other holdouts from the old war on drugs and it reminds me all of that here. It’s like the, except it just went differently, right? Instead of there being this big political issue, you know, the police are just like, “Oh, weed’s legal? Okay,” right? And it’s not like it was in Humboldt back then where everybody fought it for years, and years. Now it’s like, “Oh, weeds legal? Okay.” People were really accepting of it here, right? They’ve embraced organic cultivation like those old days in Humboldt. Remember how it used to be if you [inaudible 33:22] wasn’t organic? Like I mean, your friends would just like, rail you for it.

 

John: It’s true. 

 

Chip: Remember?

 

John: Yeah.

 

Chip: I mean like, what, I mean, it means me and John are both hydro guys. And I love organic too, John does too. John’s got a whole like organic thing too. You know, organic supplements, organic nutrition, that we use – I’ve got some weed over there in front of us –

 

John: Oh, nice.

 

Chip: That’s all just happened in here. It’s a special time and special place in Oklahoma. And man, it’s starting to happen that way in Mississippi, Missouri, Illinois,  Michigan, right?  It’s this new great industry that still anybody can get into. In Colorado and in California now, anybody just can’t get into.

 

John: No.

 

Chip: Right? 

 

John: No. 

 

Chip: And if you guys are into it over there, and things are going great for you, me and John are both giving you a thumbs up. 

 

John: We are still there, Chip. 

 

Chip: I mean yeah, we’re – 

 

John: We’re still in Humboldt County, but –

 

Chip: We know how hard it is, man. It’s hard. 

 

John: The building codes, everything that goes along with it, the invasion of your private property. You know, touring farms here, I don’t see that I see people doing their best, instead of having to pay regulators and go through all these different code enforcement issues, and wait, and wait, and wait, and spend money on their mortgages, or leases, or whatever. In the outlying areas of major cities here, there’s no building codes. So I mean, I was just yesterday at a place that you know, they spent 300,000 on a state of the art greenhouse. And they’re putting up two more, they’re putting up one first and they’re gonna join these greenhouses together. But my point is that when people are allowed to do their best, they do great. And when people are held back by a regulatory industry that doesn’t understand what they’re doing, but wants to take opinions from everyone else –

 

Chip: And a percent.

 

John: Yes, let’s not forget that. 

 

Chip: And let’s not forget the percent of profit that they want to take as well. 

 

John: Right. And it really should just be grown and sold at the end that it’s being sold that it should be taxed. 

 

Chip: Easy enough, man, Oklahoma’s got a really good handle on it, that’s for sure. And it’s got some problems, don’t get me wrong. Back to compost tea. A couple ways, I guess, people use compost, either they like, do a soil drench, or they do a foliar spray. 

 

John: Right. So a foliar spray would be to offset other potential plant pathogenic fungi that could be on the plant like, powdery mildew. Aspergillus brasiliensis will take care of –

 

Chip: Like I know if he’s pronouncing that right. 

 

John: Yeah, I was kind of hesitant when I started because  –

 

Chip: He almost, your eyes go up in your head, like they’re having this rain man moment. 

 

John: Well you know, you throw out these kind of terms, and then people are, they can’t, you can’t catch it. It’s something that’s really got to be written down. But, I mean, that’s something that offsets and outcompetes powdery mildew, which is a big issue. Going back to this farm that I was just at yesterday, you know, state of the art greenhouse really good quality Quonset houses, and one is lit up and holding all the best mothers. But at the same time, they were put in not Chip’s soil, but another soil let’s say. And that soil was made from composted pine needles back east. And then what happens is, it’s super acidic.

 

Chip: Oh. So there was a pH problem. 

 

John: To the extreme, where the plants were basically dying. When I looked at them a month and a half ago, the person didn’t want to take them out of their 30 gallon plastic pots. So the only choice is to use a compost tea or to use HumTea, because the microbiology will start breaking things down and leeching out certain elements that are toxifying the plant. And these are prized plants. I mean, they’re, you know, they’re – 

 

Chip: Compost tea. One of its benefit really is if you have sick plants, if you have plants that aren’t doing so good, regardless of what diagnosis you think they have, compost tea will help them. 

 

John: Yeah, it’s true. I mean, it’s like magic, you see? You know it’s working because the leaves –

 

Chip: It’s kind of like chicken soup. It’s like the chicken soup.

 

John: It is, for this time of year. It’s flu season. You know, people are afraid to even cough in public. You know, will be hauled off. But you know, when you want to keep those mother plants going until the spring, and you have light in order to be able to do that in a greenhouse and you’re heating the greenhouse, if they’re in bad soil, or if they get some sort of disease because it’s too humid, and you don’t want to open it up because it’s too cold outside, compost tea or Hum Tea is is what you need. Not only foliar spray with, but run through the soil and then that has another action when it goes into the soil. It will stimulate the plant’s immune system. 

 

Chip: So there’s lots of talk about dilution when you do soil drench. Do you have a typical dilution rate? Or how about this, what’s a, because I know it’s varied. What’s the best dilution rate?

 

John: You know, when you have a brewer, say it’s even a five gallon bucket. When you make tea in that, you should be able to take 1 gallon to 25 gallons. And if you want to go thinner, you can go up to 50 gallons. One gallon of compost tea or HumTea to 50 gallons. And you’re going to get the benefit. You can pour HumTea straight on, and it’s good to do. Pour it straight on. Do it 1:25, do it 1:50. And you pour it straight on, you see a result the next day. You do 1:25, it’s two days. You do 1:50, it’s three, maybe three days. And for me, 1:25 is good because you know brewing it is roughly like, $6 a gallon. So I don’t want to spend too much money, but I want the plants to be healthy. 

 

Chip: Yeah my experience is exactly the same thing. If you, I think that the HumTea, it works best diluting it 1:1, because I think you can use it. I mean, I know you can use it just straight on, but most people can’t afford to, or the volume of it. And you know, I also try to just use it on like, just rooted plants or vegging plants, so I can get the most concentrated colony forming units in one area, right? I like the 1:1. That being said, man, like, you can pretty much pour it in any volume of liquid that you have to feed your plants, right? If you’re using a 300 gallon tank even, you will absolutely see benefit by making a five gallon compost tea and pour it in there. Now, it might work better for [inaudible 40:34] if you only have 5 gallons, and you have a, you know, a garden that would require 300 gallons of water, you’d be better off boiler feeding it, I would think. Even if it’s just on the top of the soil, because we see people doing that too. And I’ve done that too, is just take the like, direct HumTea, Humboldt Countea with a pump sprayer, right, right? Have you ever seen this? 

 

John: Yes, oh yeah.

 

Chip: They just spray it right on the top of the soil as opposed to the plant and then you get the water in and you get the like, you know, the colony to develop there. And I mean, that’s like, three bucks for something like that. 

 

John: It’s super cheap, and it’s super effective. And that’s a good point, Chip. Putting it in, regarding the sprayer, you can do full strength or 1:1 and foliar spray it. 

 

Chip: The only problem with the full stream is sometimes it’ll clog your sprayer and you have to like, screen it out anyway. 

 

John: Oh, yeah. 

 

Chip: Right? But if you just dilute it, 1:1 goes to the sprayer. 

 

John: Yeah, that’s true. 

 

Chip: Pretty, pretty good. 

 

John: And not use the bottom little part, just pour it on the top. 

 

Chip: Yeah, we screen it out exactly and try to leave the bottoms. When we’re actively doing it, and I don’t know how you feel about this, but I just try to do back to back to back to back compost teas. And I never clean out my compost tea brewer except with water. So I’ll just wash down the sides, wash down the sides, and then just start another one up. And it works. If it’s back to back to back to back to back, that seems to work great. As soon as I let it sit a few days and don’t fight with it. I gotta start over.

 

John: And there’s a good point in there is, so you’re on a farm and you’re using well water. 

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

John: So it has no chlorine in it. 

 

Chip: Correct.

 

John: Right. And chlorine isn’t really a bad problem, you can aerate it for 24 hours and it’ll, you know, take the chlorine out. But, you know, if you’re using chloramide or chlorinate, some cities use that, then you’ve got nitrogen injected with the chlorine. IT forms a more stable compound to keep the chlorine in the pipes, right? And then you have to use something like a Hydrologic Big Boy. Or, you know, if you don’t want that, you could go to your local hardware store and get a carbon filter that removes chlorine, and that’ll also remove that. 

 

Chip: Right. 

 

John: So because that will kill,  mean, why is it there? To kill biology. And you don’t want to do that. 

 

Chip: So don’t use chlorinated water.

 

John: Yeah.

 

Chip: So back to the foliar spray though. So we can use it as a soil drench, or we can use it as a foliar spray. How do you recommend people doing that?

 

John: That’s a good point. You can screen it through a piece of nylon and get all the particles out of it. And then either do it full strength or 1:1, and foliar year spray the top, foliar spray the bottom of the leaves and the stem, you’ve pretty much completely covered the plant. You can also, and this could be called foliar spraying, you could spray where the drip emitters are. And that will, the water coming out of the drip emitter will drive the biology down to where the roots are. And if you just, if you hand water, same thing. You can either throw it into your hand watering reservoir, your hand watering in or you could put, you know, just put it on the top and spoil the tops of the pots or the trench or whatever. 

 

Chip: Yeah, my first commercial application of compost tea was down in Salinas at our first Royal Gold potting soil plant down there. And I saw people spraying it on lettuce and cauliflower. They would say it was a foliar application, they just called it spray. But they’re spraying the plants and the ground at the same time. Right? To get these big rows and this stuff wasn’t plastic culture. To me, it’s like part of it all. It needs to go in the soil. You need to spray the plants. Now what is some of the benefits of spraying the plants over soil drench?

 

John: Well, spraying the plants, it will knock back powdery mildew and other plant pathogenic fungi that might grow on the leaf surface. So that’s the benefit there. It’s not really like it’s going to be able to break down any fertilizers. Some people say, well, it does, it seems to boost the plant. Well, that’s because they’re spraying with chemical fertilizers, and it’s helping move those into the plant. But in general, it’s better to spray with organic supplements than it is to spray with NPK directly on the plant. The plant doesn’t really take it in well that way. 

 

Chip: Let’s talk about compost tea and synthetic nutrients. Because this is one of the myths or maybe not myths, but concerns people have. Like, if I’m using synthetic nutrients, can I benefit from compost tea? 

 

John: You can. I mean, it depends on what type of synthetic chemicals are being used. I mean certainly, if you’re using urea, you know, you’re gonna kill things. If you’re using something that’s made, and it’s got sulfuric acid in it, you know, there’s some harsh chemicals out there. But in general, when you go into a hydroponic store, or if you want to call it a grow store, the lines of nutrients that are on the shelf are better quality. A lot of them aren’t –

 

Chip: Say at the farm store.

 

John: Right.

 

Chip: Right.

 

John: You’re not getting ag grade, you’re getting possibly food grade. I mean, we use food grade in our line of fertilizers. You know, there are other companies that use ag chemicals because it’s cheaper. And then people call them salts. I mean, all it means is that it dissolved, those minerals can dissolve in water, and that it’s not necessarily sodium chloride. But you know, going back to how microbiology works, and how well will it do with these different fertilizers? Well, I would say it just depends. But when I was working on HumTea, I developed it so that all the functional groups that do the magic,  let’s say, are offset by our fertilizer lines. So because I built it so that it could be used in recirculating systems.

 

Chip: And we have used it in recirculating systems with your you know, 3 Part Cutting Edge for sure. It works great. I gave up the organic components and [inaudible 47:25] during a while ago just because I don’t want to deal biofilm, or clogged comps, or some of the other problems  that happened with it. But it worked great. I just prefer to keep the synthetic stuff and recirculating systems separate. You know, if you’ve got a tank that’s not recirculating, then no reason not to mix synthetic and biological stuff together. Right, I know, I know. I’m [inaudible 47:53] now that I said that. Oh dude, I’m gonna have a flurry of people like, “You can’t kill all the biology dies when they come across [inaudible 47:59],” what did you say that [inaudible 48:00] was? You didn’t listen to that?

 

John: Yeah, it doesn’t. I mean, if –

 

Chip: It doesn’t, and we can see. And here’s another big myth that happens is people talk about, “Oh, in California, the ground’s dead, because of all of the chemicals that they’ve put on it. You can’t grow anything there anymore.” Do you know any place in California that’s like that?

 

John: Well, you know. Yeah. Maybe not in the Hills but you know, you look in the Central Valley. And yeah, there are a build up, there’s a buildup of boron from the groundwater. And the boron, you know, it gets to certain parts per million, and there’s fewer crops you can grow until you’re finally left with pistachios. So –

 

Chip: Oh so they just moved pistachios to those areas?

 

John: Right.

 

Chip: Oh, that’s why. Okay, okay.

 

John: It’s like a succession of planting. And then ultimately, the pistachios come out and then they grow cotton. And then when you –

 

Chip: Uhuh, that’s Oklahoma. 

 

John: Certain people say, “Well, what caused the Dust Bowl in Oklahoma? Wasn’t that the killing of all the microbiology?”

 

Chip: No, it was all the people leaving at once.

 

John: They were trying to get on the freeway first. It’s really dirt roads back then. 

 

Chip: Oh man. I miss the railroad on the freeway. There’s a song there, right, right? Hotel California or something. 

 

John: Right. But you know, the dead lands of California, it’s more like, they’re not dead. They just don’t have, they don’t have the water quality to grow crops. And what is growing burns down. 

 

Chip: Yeah, I mean water quality is a big issue here in Oklahoma and throughout the country. That’s for sure. I mean, the water quality here is pretty poor. We almost all use RO filters. If you’re an indoor you should be using an RO filter here. 

 

John: Yeah and you know, I go to a lot of places here and there, you have boron problems. That’s why those farms were abandoned. So that and the fact that everybody tried to grow one type of wheat, not weed. Fortunately, that’s not happening, because we’re growing many varieties of weed. But wheat, I mean, that’s what pretty much caused the Dust Bowl. It was, there was one popular wheat that everyone wanted to make bread out of in the northeast. And so everybody ran out here, tore up the land, grew one kind of wheat, because it was profitable, and then it became not profitable. And then all those farms were abandoned. And that’s part of the reason of the Dust Bowl. All these people left. They weren’t farmers to begin with anyway.

 

Chip: Yeah, series of droughts. Everybody was planting at once over and over again.

 

John: Same thing.

 

Chip: You know, World War One, it had a huge demand of food for, you know, for that effort. Everybody kind of like, had several great, great years and just everybody pumped it up.

 

John: Right. And my –

 

Chip: Kind of like the hemp industry. In the current hemp industry, there’s a Dust Bowl reference in there someplace.

 

Chip: Yeah, I mean hemp growing, you know, that’s farming once again. I sell a HumTea to hemp growers. You know, they use very little of it, but they use it at transplant because it helps with adjusting to the field from the greenhouse. I mean the hemp industry, there’s another over regulated industry. Keeping people at point three has punished a lot of plant breeders who –

 

Chip: How will that manage? You know what I hate about it? This is the biggest problem, is it still differentiates cannabis growers. There’s either the no THC or the THC growers. And the non-THC growers – mostly, don’t get your feelings hurt if you’re one of these people – mostly you’re like, “Oh no, I don’t grow THC.” It’s like come on, man. This is just the cannabis plant. Let’s stop being so scared of some letters, right? THC, CBD, DEA, FDA. Let’s stop being scared of those. Let’s think about like the cannabis. Let’s think about the plant. Let’s think about the world. And think about it that way, instead of this just fucked up liability type, human health and safety issue that they try to raise with it. We know cannabis is harmless. We’ve been using it for a long, long time. 

 

John: Very true. 

 

Chip: Yeah. Alright. So John, we’ve gone over a handful of things here with compost tea. Who can most benefit from this? Is this just for small people? Is this just for big people? Can anyone benefit from this? What are the best scenarios for compost to use?

 

John: The plants benefit from it.

 

Chip: Anybody, any plant can benefit from it.

 

John: People are problematic.

 

Chip: People benefit from it only because their plants are better and it makes the people happier?

 

John: Yes. 

 

Chip: Oh, I get it. I get it. I get it. I get it.

 

John: A regulator told me a long time ago. “Don’t try to list too many things on the label. Just say it makes plants happy.”

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah. Happy plants. 

 

John: And this was California. And I took that to heart because if you read our Constitution, we have the right to the pursuit of happiness. 

 

Chip: Absolutely. 

 

John: So why shouldn’t plants? 

 

Chip: Absolutely. Well, I love compost tea man. I’m glad we kind of got to talk about all of this. I got a couple compost tea recipes I love. I love 5 gallon compost tea, right? And the way that I like to make it, I don’t know if this is right or not, but when I make it this way, my plants absolutely respond. I usually dilute like, 5 gallons into about 20 gallons when I do it this way, right? And that’s out of sheer necessity. But I like 1 gallon of earthworm castings, 3 gallons of water. I’m gonna then put in a half a cup of some type of trace minerals. And then this is where it gets a little sticky, but I really like some sort of fish product. The fish [inaudible 54:33] or the fish emulsion, there’s controversy over all of that. And then just a smidgen of some sort of sugar. That recipe has been great for me and many other people for years. It’s so easy to follow. It’s not hard at all. You bubble it at you know, it needs to be over 60 degrees. I usually almost always bubble it outside. It usually takes three or four days for the fish smell to exchange from putrid to sweet. And, that’s what I like about this thing. When’s it ready? As soon as it turns sweet. I generally like the soil drench as opposed to the foliar spray. And part of that is because I’m scared of the yeast and fungus tests. 

 

John: Oh, interesting. 

 

Chip: Yeah, I don’t know if that’s real or not. But I’m scared of it. And I know you can outgrow it, you know, but many people spray throughout their flower period and I just choose to only like, spray it once or twice when they’re clones. I feed the clones stray compost tea and then dilute it, you know, like 5:1 or 4:1 or something like that. That’s my favorite compost tea. 

 

John: Yeah, I mean that sounds like a successful formula right there. Simple, easy to use –

 

Chip: Oh kelp. I forgot the kelp. There was my trace minerals, I say trace minerals, but I do prefer kelp for my trace mineral. 

 

John: Ah see, I was gonna add that.

 

Chip: Oh right, right. Yeah, and you know ’cause trace minerals, mined trace minerals are now harder to find, John. Have you looked for this lately, or it might not be hard for you because you’re in California, but they’re hard to get.

 

John: Yeah, you have to buy them in volume. You know, they come from mines in New Mexico and volcanic areas. But, you know, no one wants to go out there and truck them in anymore, that’s one of the problems. Cost, fuel, cost of operation –

 

Chip: There’s something they sell for 19 cents.

 

John: Right, right. So you know, I keep stocked up on all those. When I get halfway down in a container, I’ll reorder, because I like to use trace minerals for a couple different locations in my, in HumTea. And of course, there’s also kelp in there. Simple things that make a great tea. And sort of feed the microbes that you want to step up and be able to further break down what they need for the plant. 

 

Chip: So if you’re interested in compost tea, definitely check out more information we’ll have on The Real Dirt. Check us out at Cultivate Colorado, Cultivate OKC. You can buy all of your compost tea equipment. If you’re not familiar with Cutting Edge products, how do people look you up, John? 

 

John: Cuttingedgesolutions.com.

 

Chip: Cuttingedgesolutions.com. Ask your local vendor. If you’re a commercial grower, you absolutely need to check out the quality of the product. We didn’t even go into the whole lines of this whole compost tea conversation I wanted you here for today. Because I believe in compost tea and it’s something we’ve been talking about forever. And you know, really something that I want to turn people on to. So thanks for coming today, John. I really appreciate this little chat and I look forward to having you on in the future. 

 

John: Sounds good. You know all I have to do is drive down from Tulsa now. 

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, that’s right. We’ll get on that whole relocation on the next episode. Hey guys, thanks for joining me today on The Real Dirt with Chip Baker and John Piccirilli. If you liked this episode, and you have not subscribed yet, please subscribe on iTunes. Join us on Instagram, join us on Facebook. Hey and always comment, always leave a message. And if you’re interested in soil, or any type of growing equipment go to cultivatecolorado.com. Stop in one of our stores in Denver or Oklahoma. Yeah, man, we’re always willing to chat and we’ve got great, great, great people who are willing to answer any question you have. So there it is, The Real Dirt on compost tea. Thanks again.

How to Ruin Your Weed with a Paper Bag

How to Ruin Your Weed with a Paper Bag

oregon cannabis, colorado cannabis and oklahoma cannabis

People have some whacky ways for curing cannabis, but a paper bag ain’t the way to do it!

When it comes to cannabis, there’s a lot that Chip Baker and Justin Jones can agree on. But when it comes to curing your cannabis in a brown paper bag, the two are at odds.

To Chip, it’s a figment of the past that’s best left there, and age old drying technique before the days of plastic bags and bins. For Justin, it’s a quick and easy way to finish out the drying process that works for him.

The paper bag dry method

Before the days of turkey bags and metal storage bins it was common for growers to dry their flower in brown paper bags. They keep light out and they’re discreet, but that’s about it. The problem with paper bags is that they absorb moisture.

If your flower is sitting in a paper bag, over time the bag will suck the moisture out of your plants. Left too long, your flowers will dry out too much and the bag can instill a strange flavor. But Justin has a technique that he insists works just fine.

Justin puts his flower in a brown paper bag that is extremely dry, so there is no moisture already present. Then with a dehumidifier or fan nearby he can keep the paper bag dry as it absorbs moisture from the plant. After 12 hours doing this process, Justin insists that his flower comes out perfectly dry.

Those days are gone

In Chip’s mind the days of needing to use a brown paper bag are gone. With the advent of Turkey Bags, plastic bins with liners and plain old traditional hang-drying in commercial facilities, not only have brown paper bags become unnecessary, they have become irrelevant.

Legalization has given cultivators access to better technology for harvesting, drying and curing their cannabis to the point where using brown paper bags or cardboard boxes is a figment of the past.

This week’s episode

This week on The Real Dirt, Justin Jones returns to talk about why he likes the paper bag method, how the cannabis industry has evolved and matured in Oregon, how it compares to Colorado and Oklahoma and more!

Roll up a nice hemp/cannabis blend and puff away while you enjoy another great episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker!

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Transcript

 

Chip: Once again, you have reached The Real Dirt podcast. Thank you for joining me today. On today’s real dirt, I once again have my good buddy Justin Jones. We just got so much stuff to talk about. And honestly, conversations with Justin was really how I developed the idea of The Real Dirt podcast, because I have such interesting conversations with my friends within the industry. Now I wanted to share those with you, and today we have Justin on the line again. Justin, are you there?

 

Justin: Hey how you doing, Chip?

 

Chip: Oh man, doing good, bro. Feeling good. What’s going on over there on the West Coast?

 

Justin: I’m just transferring some sherbadough here from a ziplock bag into a brown paper grocery bag. And I just want to know, how many guys out there and gals how many people, cannabis growers, know anything about the old brown paper grocery bag?

 

Chip: Oh, I’m moaning, dude. I am moaning over here. I can’t believe you’re telling me you’re putting your fine buds into a paper bag. Oh my god.

 

Justin: Man.

 

Chip: What, why are you ruining your weed? Why are you doing this?

 

Justin: No, man. No, no, no, this is a good thing. This is what you want, it’s good for it.

 

Chip: It’s good for your weed to taste like cardboard?

 

Justin: I don’t know. I don’t know if that’s what it does.

 

Chip: Man, you put your wet weed in a – or dry weed – in a brown paper bag, and it sucks up all of that moisture that’s inside that paper bag before it releases any outs.

 

Justin: But you got to have a dry paper bag. You can’t start with a moist bag, bud.

 

Chip: Oh okay, so you’re telling me it’s all in technique?

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: Well, let me hear it. Let me hear your technique on how you don’t ruin your weed by putting it into a paper bag.

 

Justin: Well, I don’t put it in there for that long. And you got to know whether you’re rolling the top down all the way, or if you’re just kind of crumpling it up a little bit at the top, or whether you’re leaving it just open.

 

Chip: Okay. Alright, alright. You’re gonna have to start at the beginning. Start at the beginning. Tell me what you’re doing again.

 

Justin: It’s something that the old school probably guys that are older than us smoked, it’s a way that you can – 

 

Chip: Before they had plastic bags, all they had  – 

 

Justin: Before all those plastic bags, you had paper bags, because you could use the paper bag to just kind of shift that lot in a slow way when you’re at the end of your dry and cure, and you’ve done your hang. And now you’re doing your seal and burp, and you just got to get that last little, make it perfect. You could use the brown paper bag, you know? And you got to look at other industries too. I mean, the people store seeds in paper bags, people store other thing, because it does have a little bit of a –

 

Chip: Breeze.

 

Justin: If you have any takes, breeding with the moisture. And so you know yeah, you don’t want to push your, a wet cell paper bag moisture into your bud, but I would say it’s a way to kind of temper it, right at the end a little bit. If you need to, you don’t always need to.

 

Chip: Man, I have seen so many people ruin weed by putting it in a cardboard box or in a paper bag.

 

Justin: Well, why do they put it in there for?

 

Chip: The same, they’re trying to do the same thing you’re doing. Hey, they got their weed almost dry, and they cut them down and put them in a paper bag to like, finish them out, right? Or cure them in a box. And I believe a lot of this came from early 2000s Cannabis Cup, where that’s what Arion of Greenhouse said that they did, is they cured their weed for months in a cardboard box, right?

 

Justin: Would you think there’s actually a certain taste or flavor that gets put in there?

 

Chip: Absolutely. Oh absolutely. It is – alright, so here’s the thing. And you kind of said it earlier about you have to have a dry paper bag, right? Well, it is a little more than that. If you have a dry paper bag, if you’re in Colorado, if you’re in California, if you’re in the desert –

 

Justin: Oh yeah, wait a minute, hold on. 

 

Chip: You’ve got a dry paper bag.

 

Justin: I got a dry paper bag in a small closet that’s got a dehume pounding on the other side of the closet too. So –

 

Chip: You got a dry paper bag?

 

Justin: Or I’ll blow a fan, right? If you point a fan right at the side of the paper bag, what you’re trying to do is get some movement, but not too much. And get a little bit of that wet in there, but not too much.

 

Chip: You’re trying to control the dry, so that it doesn’t dry so fast, because you don’t need, you don’t have the best drying room.

 

Justin: Right.

 

Chip: That’s where the paper bag really started as and became, is if you didn’t have enough or the best dry room, you’d hang your plants. And so they, because they won’t at some point in many – unless you have a proper dry room, they’ll never dry. 

 

Justin: Right.

 

Chip: Right? On the coast of California, Oregon, Washington throughout the southeast, you can hang weed up in your house, and it will never dry in your closet. 

 

Justin: Here in Oregon, I struggle with that. And you know, coming from Colorado where you have a hard time not over drying, here you just I mean, most of the time here, your relative humidity is 50 to 60%, which is kind of where you want your stored, finished dry material to kind of, I don’t know.

 

Chip: End up.

 

Justin: Right. Right, right yeah. And so it just is like, you’re fighting the moisture, the over moisture and those sort of things all the time on the west coast, for sure. Especially coming into this time of the year here, where it’s gonna rain three or four days a week, and you’re just always gonna have that moisture in the air.

 

Chip: So yeah, I mean home growers and commercial growers would take their buds down, put them in paper bags, and it would allow them to control the dry rate. They’d increase the heat, or the moisture would be sucked out of the paper bag until they, it would help them dry.

 

Justin: It’s easier, it makes, it gives them a wider landing pad on not fucking it up, right? And so instead of being like, “Oh, if I miss the wind,” if you’re not doing that, you may be, you missed your perfect window by a couple of hours. Maybe this gives you a day of a window to get back to it, to get it fueled up.

 

Chip: So here’s the folly, is because you’re in these wet areas, those cardboard bags and the cardboard boxes, they’re sucking out moisture.

 

Justin: Oh yeah, you can feel it.

 

Chip: Right, yeah, they suck up moisture. So one, you got to get those dry, you have to get all the moisture out of them to dry. So you have to put, get a dehumidifier or heater, right? That’s going to dry out these boxes and get all that moisture out of there, right? Because if they leave the moisture in there, and then put your weed in there, as your weed dries, it’ll suck the moisture out of the bag. 

 

Justin: You’re going the wrong direction, you have to have – yeah. The box of the bag’s got to be drier than your cannabis and you can only leave it in there for a certain amount of time. And you should, if it’s doing its job, the bag or the box should be super brittle dry. And then you put your material in there, and let’s say after 12 hours, you come back. You should be able to feel the difference in the paper, and then get it out of there. 

 

Chip: So you’re not going in the wrong direction. 

 

Justin: It’s the technique. 

 

Chip: Now your bud’s gonna suck it back up. I’ve used the paper bags like, so, so many times. I’ve had, years and years ago.

 

Justin: Well, it’s about, it’s all about reusing, you know? We try to recycle and recycling is good. But reusing is even better than recycling. And at the end of the day, I think cannabis guys are great at reusing those thin metal hangers from the dry cleaner? The dry cleaner hangers, you know? Those are real popular for hanging new branches, right? And so, there’s a way to, ‘cause those hangers suck. You get them from the dry cleaner, and then you don’t really use them to hang your shirts back up later, right? So they get kind of built up, so those are good. And then the brown paper bags, got to have them.

 

Chip: I’m definitely not a brown paper bags fan. I do, however, like to take the brown paper bag, fold the top over one time, maybe one inch or two inch fold and then insert a turkey bag. And then hold the turkey bag up, right? And as you’re going through your cannabis you can just put it right inside to a standing up bag, you know?

 

Justin: I like that.

 

Chip: Yeah, totally.

 

Justin: So, it’s a stand, it’s a turkey bag stand.

 

Chip: It’s a turkey bag stand.

 

Justin: Turkey or goose bags?

 

Chip: All depends on what you’re doing, man. Here in Oklahoma, we sell cannabis out by the gram. Meaning, that we sell it to an extractor by the volume. So we’ll have a volume and it’ll be like, 4,382 grams, right? That’s not quite 10 pounds, but we just, we’ll bag them up in a goose bag like that. 

 

Justin: In those large goose bags. Yeah.

 

Chip: And just get as much as we can, specifically with trim. When we do that with trim, right? And we try to get at least a thousand grams in one container. But it’s going to the extractor, they don’t care. They check it into their system by the gram as well.

 

Justin: You’re not trying to sell some of the, a perfect one pound?

 

Chip: I’m absolutely not. And, we try to go in 500 and 1,000 increments, just to make all the math easy.

 

Justin: Less brain damage.

 

Chip: Yeah, exactly, less brain damage. And I would use a larger container and I’ve been told, and I am we’re going to start the stock these bin containers, the bin bags. So they have a large turkey bag style that goes into the thirty gallon Rubbermaid bin now.

 

Justin: Nice.

 

Chip: Right? Yeah, totally. So I think we’re going to push towards that, and try to even get more cannabis in, right? Into one bag. Because man, it’s one bag, one label. Here in Oklahoma, 10 pounds is a batch. We’re not –

 

Justin: You guys got rules in Oklahoma now for that stuff? 

 

Chip: Yeah dude, there’s all kinds of rules here. Yeah, Oklahoma is really – 

 

Justin: Yeah, we knew it was coming. It was wild west there at the beginning.

 

Chip: Oh, at the very beginning, it was like, you can show up and in 30 days be doing whatever the fuck you want. And that changed, that changed to you can just show up in 30 days, apply for whatever you want. And then that changed to you can show up in 30 days, apply for whatever you want, and then depending on your local municipality, it might take one day to four months for you to get into any type of business, or get in to have a building plan passed or anything like that. And now, we’ve just –

 

Justin: Now you’ve got residency, two years?

 

Chip: Two years residency here. If you’re interested in coming to Oklahoma, you can only be an investor for 25% now. If outside residents of the state of Oklahoma, they have a 25% stake max for two years. And then, there’s a lawsuit I hear that they’re trying to lift that. Who knows if that’s going to maintain other states it has maintained?

 

Justin: We have a chain in Colorado, we spent years fixing those laws. Because they were very restrictive, and once all the money inside of Colorado ran out as far as investment money and that sort of thing, then you had to be like, “I gotta go outside of the state.” So I first started that you could get a, you could get an out, you could get a loan. And the loan could be guaranteed, like a convertible into ownership is that. So you get a loan from a guy from another state that says that could turn into ownership if that person moved to Colorado, lived there for two years, became a resident, then they could like, convert. So that you could do a loan that was convertible, if these other things happened. And then after that – 

 

Chip: That’s a convertible loan.

 

Justin: Right. And then after that, it became you could just have out of state ownership. And then now it’s, in Colorado, the public, pub coast are circling and making moves, because now you can have 49% ownership can be a publicly traded company. So, it was always that they wanted to be able to just go, background check, deep, deep dive on every single owner. So having a publicly traded company that could have thousands or tens of thousands of stockholders, right? Didn’t work. So now, so they fixed a lot of that. And so now, you’re seeng companies in Colorado start to go public, or go that direction. So Colorado’s now available for the multistate operator, the MSO. But we were really talking about Oklahoma moving forward and the regulations, and so you guys are now using the Franwell Metrc tracking system?

 

Chip: That is not in place yet, but it will be.

 

Justin: They’d said they’re going, so they’ve contracted.

 

Chip: Mhm, they’ve contracted. They say it’s going to be six months before they get it in place, who knows? 

 

Justin: Sure.

 

Chip: Right?

 

Justin: Yeah, well, that’s good. And what I like about that, and be it what it is, Metrc really is tracking probably 90% of the legal cannabis, and as we move forward towards a national legalization effort, having one company that’s kind of got most of that in line, it should be good down the road. That we hopefully in the next decade start to integrate the entire country into –

 

Chip: Yeah, well Metrc’s – 

 

Justin: Legalize cannabis.

 

Chip: Metrc definitely steps it up. It’s costly to scale Metrc, it’s difficult to scale it. So maybe some of the people who were, got tons and tons of square feet, and lots of plant numbers, they may change their operations.

 

Justin: There’s new companies coming in that are going to make it, they’re going to take and give you a user interface for your company that really works for you. And then behind the scenes, it plugs everything in the Metrc the way it’s supposed to. And so, Metrc is very clumsy, and it’s very designed towards the applications that the states want to use it for, for tracking the inventory, for tracking taxes, and these sorts of things. And yeah, there’s things that they thought were, would be great for the license ease on the user end, but they’re still real clumsy, and that hasn’t been their focus. So there’s some definitely some other companies that can overlay, and they’re trying. Nobody’s really knocked it out of the park yet, but I think that’s coming. 

 

Chip: It is coming. And it is easier, you can print your own tags now. The technology’s changing. It also makes monitoring, enforcement and regulation, the local government here easier, right? And it will drive more of that, because now they can go into a field that is all RFID, they can immediately get all the data of all the plants in it, you know? They can immediately like, follow that all the way from seed to sale in your operation that will make people tighten up their operations, their business models, account for everything. I mean, I tell you, I hope they haven’t made all the rules, because I hope they don’t make us weigh that shit, wet, dry, stem weight, bud weight. I hope we could skip all that. I know you got, I know Colorado has, I mean it is, that’s not just a Colorado thing.

 

Justin: No, it really, tracking the waste, tracking all that plant material is kind of the foundations of the early legalization, and it really hasn’t changed. And it’s really if you look at other industries, people are doing that on multiple levels. So, you just, when you’re trimming a plant down, just stick it all in this bin, the leaves go in that bin, the bud goes that way, weight it wet, we weigh it, we weigh it wet before we weigh it dry after you get all those markers all the way through.

 

Chip: Yeah, I mean, in all of my business, we monitor all of our waste, right? Our waste stream really does say a bunch about what you’re doing in business. And for instance, at Growers Coco, my soil manufacturing plant, we monitor all of the coco dust that’s wasted, we calculate all of the inputs into what all the outputs are, we’re always looking at our trash stream, our plastic, our wood stream going outside the business. Because the fact of the matter is, if you have a lot of bags that are torn in production, that shows up in your trash. And that means that there’s something wrong with your machine, or my employees, or the material where the bags are getting ripped and used inappropriately, right? Are not used inappropriately, thrown away. And each one of those bags cost us 40 cents, or something like that.

 

Justin: Well, it adds up. Yeah.

 

Chip: Oh, it adds up, man. And then you, also on the waste stream, you get to calculate how many pallets of material that you’ve gone through. So it is important in that business, that manufacturing business to track it for sure.

 

Justin: Well, that’s really what we’re doing with cannabis now that you can see the flow. It’s all manufacturing, you know? It’s agriculturally based, growing, processing, packaging, manufacturing, all the way down to get those consumer items.

 

Chip: Now, at some point though, it’s over regulated, right? It’s something I mean, from in my view, cannabis is harmless, right? Until you turn it into an extract. And at that point, it becomes like, I’ll call it dangerous, right? Because if anyone consumed or a child consumed a chunk of extract, a gram of extract, they would be fucked up, right? And they’re not going to die, but it would definitely be a, considered a poisoning, an overdose, right? They’re not going to die, but like, you know –

 

Justin: Yeah, you don’t want to do that to your kids.

 

Chip: You don’t want to do that to your kid, or to yourself, or to anybody. And like that’s to me where it becomes dangerous, and it should be regulated in some way.

 

Justin: Well, that’s why the regulations, well and that’s why you’ll see 10 milligram doses of edibles and not a hundred milligrams. 

 

Chip: Yeah, I don’t believe here in Oklahoma there’s a limit, currently.

 

Justin: There will be, there will. It’s five here in Oregon, 10 to 5 milligrams a serving, 50 in a bottle or a pack max. In Colorado, it’s 10 per serving, 100 in a pack, you know? One item is 100 milligrams, 10 pieces of whatever edible, or however that looks. Your Dixie Elixirs you talked about in one of our previous chats, they’ll have measuring guides on the model, or even sometimes they’ll come with a little cap, like your [inaudible 21:01] bottle has your little one ounce measure cap. Yeah, that’s how [inaudible 21:05]. So the tracking’s overly done, but that’s because we’re still operating under these, the guys that the feds aren’t going to do anything to you, if you’re operating legally in your state. And so I think that the tracking system is there, because it’s been there since day one of Colorado rack, the tracking systems are what’s helping protect the industry from the feds saying, “Hey, we’re going to take these guys out.” So, as legalization happens nationally, maybe some of these, some of these things will become less burdensome. That’s not happening anytime in the future. So you just have to get used to it, you just have to spend the money on that end of the business, and compliance, and inventory tracking and do it right. 

 

Chip: Yeah, man. And it is exciting to see it blossom here in Oklahoma, it’s a great place to be. The people are just incredibly nice for sure. It’s inexpensive to relatively speaking, to California or to Colorado, to set up an operation. But the real reason we’re here is the opportunity to help other cannabis farmers to cultivate OKC. And through our research at our cannabis farm, really figure out how cannabis grows best in Oklahoma, indoor or outdoor, greenhouse, the best type of products to use, how the season works, like, it’s really just this huge R&D effort on our part.

 

Justin: That’s what sets you guys aside from some of the other companies out there that are selling nutrients, or equipment, or dirt, or whatever, is that you guys are actually practicing, and have been the whole time. You’re in it, you’re in the same side of things so –

 

Chip: We want to get better, we want to help other people do it better. We want to overgrow the current stigma of cannabis, and that’s what we’re doing at Cultivate OKC, Bakers Medical, Growers Coco, at our farm here in Oklahoma. I mean, man, this place has been, this was a really great spot. I mean, Oregon was in a similar manner years ago, and Oregon had a boom and bust. I mean – 

 

Justin: It’s all balanced out here now.

 

Chip: Oklahoma is going to do a similar thing. Hey, give me the timeline, because Oklahoma will boom and bust due to the open regulations. And then the regulations and just the market environment, it’ll make it change. 

 

Justin: Yes, eventually. 

 

Chip: Right, eventually.

 

Justin: And how fast it happens. Here in Oregon, they’ve had to remove us to marijuana [inaudible 23:56] –

 

Chip: Was it medical and then rec? How did it fold out there?

 

Justin: Right. So medical has been around forever. Obviously, there was a great private market scene going back, 40, 50 years now. But medical converted into recreational and here in Oregon, they actually did away with the medical marijuana system from a commercial standpoint. So when all of the medical marijuana stores were forced to convert to recreational marijuana, and give up their medical marijuana licenses, and just sell recreational marijuana. And so, that’s what you see now. There’s still a few handful of just medical only stores here in Oregon, but it’s only really in areas that are banning the recreational sales. So at the end of the day, if you have a medical card which you can still have your medical card in Oregon, and you can still grow your own, and if you have a medical card, you can grow a few more plants that just with your recreational growing rights. But at the end of the day, you can go to the recreational marijuana store with your medical card, and then you pay no taxes, and you can get a higher amount. So instead of one ounce of flower, you can get four ounces of flower at one trip. And instead of four grams of hash, you can get whatever, whatever it is. So they haven’t totally screwed over the medical side. But at the end of the day, people jumped in and it was wide open. And it was really easy to get a license in [inaudible 25:28]  Oregon, and that would have 2015, going into ’16. And then, that’s when the conversion started happening here with Measure 21 and the, it Measure 21 which was the legalization of recreational here. And then they really were able to find out how much cannabis these guys can grow in Oregon and it became a huge overproduction, especially of outdoor. You could get an outdoor rec grow going for pretty cheap out on a farm down in Southern Oregon, and these guys just grew way too much. And that first year –

 

Chip: Best climate in the world. Best climate in the world.

 

Justin: And I think it was 2000, it was fall of ’16 that was going in as there were still a conversion going on, but it was it was going in and I believe that it was like the best growing year ever. It was in the 80s and dry all the way until Halloween. And so it was just a major harvest. So anyways, a lot of guys were only able to get 100 bucks a pound. That’s kind of what it came to for outdoor, and people just started really not doing well. So I think that people started dropping out and then with the hemp thing, in ’19, a lot of cannabis guys grew hemp, smokable hemp instead of ganja, and that cut it down even more on the licensed growers here in Oregon. And now, it’s bounced back out. And if you’re growing indoor, and you’ve got some really good indoor hydroponics type of bud, you can get up to 2500 a pound now wholesale, selling to the stores. I think it’s more in the 17 to 2, and maybe 22. And then maybe there’s a few of the really good name brand grows up here that are that are really great that are getting more, a little bit more with that 2500 premium.

 

Chip: I mean, two years, it’s been.

 

Justin: It’s just now been turning hemp. I’d say five years, four to four years.

 

Chip: So it took four to five years of like, flooded, like, what was the lowest price that cannabis, that quality cannabis got to? Tell me that.

 

Justin: Five to six hundred.

 

Chip: What about that greenhouse cannabis? That major production, the major –

 

Justin: Less than 100, less than 100. ‘Cause we had to start specking out a tier two outdoor grow in Oregon, which is 40,000 square feet of canopy. So that’s an acre of canopy. And basically, if you looked at what it costs you to grow, and for your licenses, and obviously it’s pretty cheap, because you’re just using the sun, natural stuff there. So you’re not like, paying for electricity like you would an indoor thing. These guys were lucky to get 100 bucks a pound and basically pull off 1000 pounds. So you get 1000 pounds of, you could revenue about 100,000 on an acre. 

 

Chip: Grown it like that, it’s fairly inexpensive putting it into a grow, right?

 

Justin: Yeah but I mean, it’s just $100,000 is not a lot of revenue. And especially –

 

Chip: If for just the costing, agree.

 

Justin: Costing, harvesting, it all has to come down at the same time. So you can’t necessarily just one man that. It just doesn’t work. It didn’t work. Now that’s changed. It came back up. Yeah. Well, and they were just trying to call them those oil fields. And nobody really was buying that material for a smokable sort of thing –

 

Chip: Oh man, all of our R&D, that’s what we’ve done with it for sure, man. It’s like –

 

Justin: It’s just going to the extractors.

 

Chip: It’s going to extractors. “Oh, I don’t like that strain. Oh, that didn’t work out. Oh, that takes too long. Oh, that one’s a little sick. Oh,” you know?

 

Justin: It’s different if you’re a vertically integrated company. And so if you have an indoor and an outdoor grow in Southern Oregon, and you have an extractor, and you have a store or two, then it’s fine. Grow the outdoor, because you’re just going to shove that through your extraction mine, and take it to your store, and you’ll eventually get retail for it, right? So, but there were too many independent growers that weren’t vertical also. So all the guys in Oregon that started out vertical and went with the grow in a store, that sort of thing, they’ve all have done well the entire time.

 

Chip: Yeah, right. Absolutely. Oh, man, you know, it’s business dude. Those same years in the hydro industry were a lean eight years for us. And I would say, it was about three years. ‘Cause it hit, well one, Oregon and California ruled the cannabis industry, regardless if you’re independent in your state, like their numbers and their volume like, really has a lot to do with what’s going on the rest of the country. I so

 

Justin: Oh yeah.

 

Chip: But in Colorado, it kind of hit peak about the same time, right? But it was more affected in some way, and we seem to like, the flood happened there a season before, and slow up a season before it did out there, too. The numbers started coming up a little bit earlier on, it was a solid three years though, in Colorado.

 

Justin: Yeah, for sure. Well, it just took longer. It took longer. Yeah.

 

Chip: Right.

 

Justin: And it’s a different curve but no, it’s definitely – 

 

Chip: [inaudible 31:00].

 

Justin: You brought up the outdoor. You bought an outdoor, we’re talking production, we’re talking where, who produces for what, so what’s up with all these fires, and what’s going on –

 

Chip: Oh man, everybody [inaudible 31:13].

 

Justin: How’s that going to affect the industry?

 

Chip: Dude, I’m telling you all the ganja from, I’m not saying all, but a shitload of the ganja producing region in the country just got burned.

 

Justin: Even if it didn’t actually get burned down, did it – I just read an article about all the grapes in Sonoma and Napa are going to be unusable this year, because they smell like fire. And so they’re, even if the farm didn’t get burnt on, there was so much smoke for such a large amount of time, it’s still happening.

 

Chip: Yeah, fires aren’t new over there. We lived over there for almost 20 years. And yes, some of it is so smoky that it will not sell and then, people have developed an ability to like, get that smoke out in some way, too. I’m not exactly sure how it’s done. But maybe just with the natural aging process, the smoke goes away. I’m not sure if you can extract it with that smoky flavor. I do know that, I mean, I personally know three different people who’ve lost most of their gardens, or all their gardens, right?

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: And it is, as far as my listeners and people that I follow on Facebook and Instagram, multiple farmers have lost their gardens and their infrastructure, and it might not come back next year. 

 

Justin: Right. 

 

Chip: Right. So I mean, this is like, last I checked, I’m not sure if you’re in front of the computer, but this is the August complex, right? It’s what they’re calling it now. And they had several different fires that merged together in August. And it was 100,000 acres, right? Like, that is such a huge area, man. I mean, it spans like, from Santa Rosa all the way up to Hayfork and beyond.

 

Justin: I just was looking at a map yesterday and it’s a huge part of the region there for sure.

 

Chip: It’s a huge part, and that’s not the only fire, that’s just the biggest one. There are other fires throughout California, Southern California. And those coastal regions are where the cannabis is produced, a lot of the hill cannabis, so to speak. Now what this won’t affect are the people that are in, I mean for next year anyway, it won’t affect for all those people in the valleys, and in the “ag land.” A lot of those people were pushed out of the forest area, even though man I mean, fire does not care where you are. And the wind starts to blow, and it moves as fast as the wind blows. And I’ve literally watched it travel what looked like 10 miles to me in the matter of moments.

 

Justin: ‘Cause that’s what we just had in Oregon here. And it did affect a lot of the, a bunch of marijuana guys, and hemp guys.

 

Chip: Southern Oregon’s huge, had a huge fire too.

 

Justin: Huge fire, but the one we had up here by Portland was big too, and it caused some problems. And same sort of thing you’re just saying, we had a big windstorm, which normally doesn’t happen until like November, December once it’s rainy. It happened starting the day after Labor Day, and basically there was already a fire going, and it wasn’t that big and then we got these like, hundred mile an hour winds up in the mountains coming down into the valley. And it moved, the one fire moved 20 miles to 12 hours. 

 

Chip: Wow.

 

Justin: Yeah. So –

 

Chip: Man, that was just big.

 

Justin: I’m concerned about that even just the size of some hemp fields and they look fine, but you just, I didn’t get, I don’t know what’s going to happen. It was so smoky here, and the air quality was like, as bad as it can get, you don’t even want to be outside. So, what did that do to the outdoor cannabis plants, hemp or whatever the, you know. We know them to be a sponge, we know them to be bioremediators of some level. So is the, are those plants going to be infected, or toxic, or have heavy metals, or some other thing from being smoked out for about seven or eight days here in Oregon? So even if you weren’t close to the fire and didn’t get hit that way, you lost sunlight production really because there was this weird sepia filter going on for the last eight days. And all the plants just stopped growing. Yeah, all the plants just sort of stopped growing, everything, like, everything stopped growing. 

 

Chip: [inaudible 36:10] max CO2.

 

Justin: Yeah. So, it’ll be interesting to see what that just did to these plants. And maybe they got cleaned up. Because that went away and the weather’s been good. And they’ve had some good, maybe they were able to well still –

 

Chip: Well if there’s enough time, if there’s enough time before harvest, the plants outgrow it.

 

Justin: Sure.

 

Chip: Right? And, and but if you’re harvesting right at –

 

Justin: It’s different if it got rained out on you. Right. 

 

Chip: If you’re harvesting right at the smoke, right? Like, if the fire is at your house, if you’re under that sepia layer we’re talking about, and it is the harvest season, you’re going to be the most affected, unfortunately. And maybe you’ve got some technique or something that we’d love to hear about here on The Real Dirt, let us know. Man, that’s just is hard. When it’s just smoke, and you’re harvesting your weed.

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: Oh, I’ve been there, man. 

 

Justin: You guys didn’t have any fire problems in Oklahoma right?

 

Chip: Fire season comes like fall and winter for us. That’s the dry season.

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: That’s because – but last year, there was some fires and fires happened here. They put up fire warnings, do not burn warnings. It’s windy, lots of grassland, it’s dry. The trees are small, comparatively. 

 

Justin: Definitely sounds like there’ll be a shortage of, there’s gonna be some sort of shortage for the suppliers. 

 

Chip: It is going to affect the demand. And it was already, demand was already up. So, demand is not going anywhere. It’s going to keep going up, just prediction. And supply, man, we just lost a huge chunk of the supply. And I mean, I’ll tell you, Oklahoma didn’t have the best outdoor growing year this year. If you were trying to pull before October, it was rough. It was humid and rainy throughout the state. Colorado, they had that early freeze this year. 

 

Justin: Oh, yeah. 

 

Chip: So their outdoor, their outdoor, like, it was diminished by that. Sure, some people have survived and a chunk of people lost out over that. On the East Coast, it was also a little bit more humid and wet, more hurricanes came through this year than any year before. So I think the overall outdoor production for 2020 is gonna be low. Combined with COVID, with all the new farms not being able to get the supplies, the materials, the people, the employees out to the garden, this is a really great year to be involved in cannabis. I predict that the price will initially dip as outdoor, what is comes into place, and everybody floods the market. And then between December and January, most of that will have run through the marketplace. And then the price will increase. Currently here in Oklahoma, there’s indoor weed between $3 and $3600. 

 

Justin: Yep. 

 

Chip: Right? Wholesale. This is of a similar nature in California. In Colorado, it’s cheaper, but  2800 bucks, $2600, that’s all going to go up next year, right? The wholesale price of weed is gonna go up. Fortunately for you listeners and consumers out there, generally the end user price doesn’t go up terrible. No, you guys are gonna, you guys are going to continue to pay $10 to $20 a gram, $40 to $60 and eight, right? And that’s been going on since 1996.

 

Justin: Yes, it has. Well, that’s good. Yeah, the consumer price is, well, and they might go up a little bit. Or you might see the higher end cannabis become a little bit more expensive, and maybe the quality of the lower priced stuff is not quite the same, right? You see a little gap, a bigger gap there.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely, man. It’s a good year to be in it. I’m glad I am. Things are good. We’ve had a better year than ever at my grow stores and with Growers Coco fiber.  More people than ever are growing cannabis.

 

Justin: When’s Oklahoma going recreational?

 

Chip: Oklahoma.

 

Justin: Yeah, when’s that going out? 

 

Chip: I just said some Chip’s predictions, okay, here’s the other, here’s more of Chip’s predictions. I think sometime next year, it’ll be introduced into legislation. I think it’ll be a legislative movement here. If it’s 2021, and they’re just gonna push it over to recreational 2022. Maybe –

 

Justin: Right. No vote, no public vote?

 

Chip: No. 

 

Justin: Just go to dispute the laws downtown, and get it, and then pass it?

 

Chip: Yeah, I think that’s what gonna happen.

 

Justin: We’re gonna see more of that as the country goes that way, it doesn’t necessarily gonna have to go to a big statewide vote. And in which, if they feel like everybody is good with it, and you trust your local congressperson and representatives to do, then it works.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. Maybe it moves to 2023, if it has to be a voter sponsored initiative here, that might occur. But as far as yeah, recreate or adult use I would prefer to call it, I’m [inaudible 41:46] for 2022. 2022! Yeah, I mean, who knows? Who knows what’s gonna happen with the economy and the recession and, and everything. It’s incredible how like, because we’ve kept all of our spending and whatnot, internal, and everybody’s just like, sitting at home, and buying stuff online, and saving money, and not doing stuff. And it’s, our economy ain’t so bad right now. I mean, the stock market’s holding its own, banking hasn’t crashed, people are still buying houses. I mean, I know there’s a bunch of people out there hurting right now, and I’m sorry to hear it if you are, man. I know it. But like, it’s weird that to me, that just a little bit of stay at home, a little bit of government sponsored cash, has really kept this country floating, man.  I don’t even know what’s going on.

 

Justin: Yeah, well, people definitely are smoking more cannabis. 

 

Chip: Absolutely. ‘Cause unemployed people smoke more weed. That is a 100% a fact. Every time I’ve been unemployed, I’ve smoked more weed. How about you?

 

Justin: Yeah. Oh, for sure. I think that it’s also, if you’re stuck at home, and you’re dealing with this pandemic and everything, it’s a smarter choice. If you’re bored, and you’re not going out. I mean, the thing about alcohol and how social it is, is that maybe you go out two or three times a week, and maybe it’s a happy hour with some work colleagues, or you’re meeting some friends over here, and have a couple beers.

 

Chip: You might say, fuck it. 

 

Justin: Well, people don’t necessarily feel the same about just sitting at home every day chugging three, four beers, bored by yourself. So we’re, because it just the social aspect. So but, sitting at home and packing a bowl, I think it’s more tangible in the situation, in the current situation, right?

 

Chip: Absolutely. Oh, absolutely. And Netflix is like, I mean, weed and Netflix has been the number one way people have billed their time this past six months.

 

Justin: That I mean, I gotta admit, I got my kids the Nintendo Switch, and I found some games that I enjoy on there that are kind of fun. I didn’t see myself playing Super Mario Brothers at my age, but hey, it’s something you can catch a buzz, sit there and do that for 20 or 30 minutes. I mean, I don’t, I’m not promoting gaming as a full time job or anything, but you got to find some different home enjoyment. And people have been putting time and effort into their home gardens, and hopefully people have been, grew some extra, grew some cannabis plants at home if it’s legal in your state, just because you spent less time running around town and doing stuff away from the home front this year, and I think next year will be similar so.

 

Chip: Absolutely. I think people are going to stay at home more. I think that people are going to grow their own at home more. I think that throughout the country now, it’s legal to grow your own, and accepted to grow your own even if it might not be legal where you are. That people are going to sit home, man. They’re going to grow some weed, the amount of weed that enters the marketplace isn’t going to be, isn’t going to meet the demand. We’re not gonna have an oversaturation. I could be wrong, but that’s my prediction. There’s gonna be a lot of first time weed growers this year because of this, right? 

 

Justin: Well, it’s been good catching up here.

 

Chip: Yeah man.

 

Justin:   Some different topics, and jumping around a little bit but –

 

Chip: Once again – 

 

Justin: Hopefully, you can turn this into a good a good podcast.

 

Chip: How we’re just throwing it all out there these days, Justin.

 

Justin: I know. Hey, you know –

 

Chip: [inaudible 45:47] The Real Dirt is we just throw it out. 

 

Justin: We need to do an episode, we did it years ago where we were, we just prank called a bunch of people and did like, a 10 minute check-ins.

 

Chip: We should prank, we should do Justin, Chip and Justin prank call. Okay, we’ll schedule that one up next up.

 

Justin: Yeah, let’s do that again. That was fun, just check in with a bunch of people. But otherwise, it’s harvest time here in Oregon. The hemp plants are coming down, we’re here, we’ve had decent weather after all that smoke. But we got a rainy weekend going on now, and then a little bit more dryness coming, and so people are scrambling. I got a call the other day, and somebody needed help harvesting 50 acres of hemp so, it’s going down. And we’ll see, we’ll know here in the next six weeks how it all ends, I suppose.

 

Chip: Well thanks for the call again, Justin. Thanks for joining us on The Real Dirt. 

 

Justin: Always a pleasure. 

 

Chip: And thank you for listening. This has been The Real Dirt podcast with Chip Baker and Justin Jones. If you enjoyed this episode, you can download others at iTunes and Spotify. We’re The Real Dirt podcast. Please, please, please subscribe. Hey man, thanks for joining me. You guys have a great rest of your day. Later.

The Dirty Truth about Cannabis Marketing

The Dirty Truth about Cannabis Marketing

how to be successful in cannabis marketing

Anybody that owns a cannabis business knows that advertising is no easy task.

The Real Dirt is no stranger to adversity when it comes to cannabis marketing. We’ve been shut down, shadowbanned, disabled, you name it.

And anyone else who works in cannabis marketing, owns their own cannabis business or even just likes following cannabis creators on Instagram has probably noticed the issue too. And that’s part of the reason that Olivia Solero started Cannabis Stack.

A Platform for Cannabis Professionals

Cannabis Stack was created to be a home for people in the cannabis industry to connect without the worries of Instagram and Facebook shutting them down. While it may not be the behemoth of social media that Instagram and Facebook have become, it’s a start.

The reality is that advertising any cannabis business or product is basically forbidden on these platforms. And when organic reach has decreased over 60% since 2014, it’s easy to see what the intentions are; money.

When they can’t make money off of you, what’s the point in giving you free exposure, especially when you work in an industry that is still illegal on the federal level? That’s the mindset of Instagram and Facebook.

What’s the solution?

In this episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker, Olivia talks with Chip about her experience with being a cannabis business with “cannabis” in their name and the problems it has caused them all the way down to getting a logo made.

The two also talk about why cannabis businesses struggle with marketing and social media platforms so often, what could be the cause behind it and why cannabis is constantly fighting an uphill battle.

Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit

The best way for cannabis entrepreneurs and marketers to be successful in the cannabis industry is through group collaboration and sharing of ideas. If we are all dealing with the same problems, then by working together we can solve them.

The Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit is a free online conference featuring some of the most prominent and successful cannabis marketers in the industry, including Chip Baker!

Roll it up and get into the dirty business of cannabis marketing!

Learn more about Cannabis Stack

Get your FREE ticket to the Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit

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Transcript

Chip: Hey, this is Chip with The Real Dirt. Today’s dirt, I have Olivia Solero. How’s it going, Olivia?

 

Olivia:  It’s going great. How you doing, Chip?

 

Chip:  Oh, doing good. I am proud to have Olivia on the show today, because we’re going to be talking about one of the hardest problems, the biggest problems of cannabis professionals. No, it’s not growing weed. No, it’s not extracting weed. No, it’s not packaging weed. It’s not selling weed. It’s marketing and branding cannabis. Olivia has started an online cannabis community, Cannabis Stack. And it’s here to help cannabis professionals connect. Tell us a little bit about this, Olivia.

 

Olivia:  Yeah we started – my partner, AJ and I – started Cannabis Stack so we can create an online community to inspire, educate and connect cannabis professionals and help them achieve success in you know, the cannabis industry. So our goal –

 

Chip:  So, is this like a Facebook group, or..?

 

Olivia:  I would say it’s like a social network, but it’s more like a member community for professionals that we host on our website, where individuals can connect, and they can talk about best practices and resources, and hold each other accountable, and all the great things that communities offer.

 

Chip:  Oh, yeah, well, that means that you’re not bound by any of those nasty guidelines of Facebook, because it’s your own website.

 

Olivia:  Oh, yeah. And you know, it’s great to do it on Facebook or somewhere else. But like, you know, you have those guidelines you know, that are really troublesome for this industry.

 

Chip:  And that’s why we are talking today. What made you realize this was going on, Olivia? When did you have this like, idea that you should start a community, or focus on these type of business problems with cannabis?

 

Olivia:  So both my partner and I, my business partner and I, AJ, we both come from a marketing background. And we’ve each had agencies and done a lot of work. I used to run a networking series for startups in a community that I lived in, a smaller community that didn’t have that kind of space. And, you know, I’ve always been interested in cannabis, I had done some like, early investing in some dispensaries in California back in the day. We also do a lot of other content sites, so we thought a content site around the cannabis space and like, more professionals reaching professionals like, not another kind of culture site, or how to grow site, which is really cool, but that just wasn’t where our interest was. It was like, creating content in the community around the space and kind of looked around and thought, you know, this is needed. This is a good opportunity. And I’m motivated by the content and industry. So we started this back in, with some fits and you know, stutters back in 2016.

 

Chip: Right. You were on the forefront of adult use in the country. That’s right when I was changing everywhere. I mean, since then, it’s gone on to over 30 states, cannabis regulation for either medical use or adult use is now common practice. And the common practices of marketing, we’re not kind of, we’re not allowed to do those things. 

 

Olivia:  No.

 

Chip:  I’m like, I just mentioned Facebook a second ago. Many people, that’s the first thing they think of is, “Hey, let’s start with Facebook, Instagram ads, Google ads,” but we can’t do that.

 

Olivia: Nope, cannot do that. You know actually, when we first started out, we went looking for someone to build out a website, do us a logo. We had freelancers and businesses refusing to work with us, because of the subject matter. I mean, you know, like no one [inaudible 04:04] wanted, I know, wouldn’t want to design us a logo. Not that they weren’t down for what we were doing, but their company either didn’t want to be affiliated with it, or they they lived in a country where –

 

Chip:  On moral grounds.

 

Olivia:  Exactly.

 

Chip:  This is all on moral grounds, because in our country anyway and many others, you can say whatever you want.

 

Olivia: Right.

 

Chip:  Right? But not necessarily with cannabis. They really restrict our use. We have to tiptoe around stuff all the time. You know, we can’t ever imply we’re selling anything in the cannabis industry.

 

Olivia:  You and I had like, a discussion about this. And I thought it was really interesting, because one of the things that we did when we chose the name was because we were thinking about SEO, and thinking about owning the space and our name has killed us. But the word cannabis in our domain is just, it’s been painful at times, because there’s been to your point, we would have been able to maybe tiptoe around and work around some things, but not with that domain, not with that company name.

 

Chip:  Yeah, absolutely. Hey, I have the same problem with my company, Cultivate Colorado. You know, I own several hydroponic stores, Cultivate Colorado, Cultivate Denver, Cultivate OKC in the past, Cultivate California, and it has caused so many problems. Even though it’s a garden store, and I don’t touch the plant and we don’t sell cannabis in any form, hemp, or medical marijuana, or adult use at Cultivate Colorado, Cultivate Denver, Cultivate OKC, I still get categorized like we are a cannabis business. We just got kicked out of our Instagram account as a matter of fact, for Cultivate Denver. Yeah, 37,000 followers are now left without posts from Cultivate Denver today.

 

Olivia:  I’m so worried, we have an Instagram account. We don’t have your presence, you know, and that and part of the reason why we haven’t invested time in that in the past, even though we use it for other projects extensively, is for that fear. We’re, “Oh, do we want to invest in that, and then get caught out?” You know, all of a sudden, it’s they’re [inaudible 6:21].

 

Chip:  But you know, it’s something that you have to do, though. You have to have and Instagram account. And we weren’t even trying to get 37,000 followers, honestly. Yeah, we were just totally using organic growth. I mean, we were you know, posting multiple times a day and, you know, enjoying ourselves with it. But we weren’t necessarily trying to grow our Instagram account, because of how hard it is.

 

Olivia:  Yep.

 

Chip:  Right? But once it got to 37,000 you’re like, “Yeah, man. We got quite a bit of followers.”

 

Olivia:  Can I ask you a question, Chip? Do you think that’s why you were shut down, because like, you got, you stick your heart, you stuck your head above the ground and got so many followers?

 

Chip:  No, I think what happened, well, who knows?

 

Olivia:  Right.

 

Chip:  Well, I’ve talked to some insiders, and they say more than likely, and other friends and business people who’ve been kicked out of Instagram or Facebook or other social media things. And, and they thought that like, I probably just had somebody, you know, like, complain and say that I was selling weed. And they get enough complaints like that, and you just can’t appeal it anymore. We’ve been kicked out a couple of times. And even though we have strict policy, man, you know, there’s no mention of cannabis sales or cannabis in any of our Cultivate Colorado stuff, right? And I mean, you know, really, really work hard not to pierce that veil, and don’t, and haven’t. So I don’t know if it got broke any necessarily like, community rules, kicked us out, said no appeal.

 

Olivia: Wow.

 

Chip:  So, yeah, totally.

 

Olivia:  That’s frustrating. You know, the other frustrating thing too, is like you put a really good post up, whether it’s on Facebook or Instagram, and you want to boost it. You’re like, “Hey,” and you know, and you can’t. We can’t. It’s just, you know, it’s possible sometimes. But you know, we’ve had to basically not mention things and send people elsewhere. 

 

Chip:  Oh yeah. Oh yeah. It’s common like that. And you know, my Real Dirt Instagram presence, it’s 17,500 people. But we believe that we’re under some type of shadow ban. And I say that because about every 90 days, we’ll have a huge influx of followers for a couple, three days or a week. And then it just stops. And we don’t get any movement at all, one person, no people. 

 

Olivia:  Interesting.

 

Chip:  So I am sure that they’re not showing our posts. So we’ve actually gone from posting six posts a day, I know, I was aggressive. And to now, we post one post is we use, you know, a calendar system to post it. Before it was live interaction, someone actually posted off their phone or their computer, and then talked to everybody immediately afterwards. But yeah, we had to stop all that because we were just wasting all these resources and just, you know, getting nothing out of it. Nobody was hearing this great content I felt we were producing.

 

Olivia:  You know, and it’s so frustrating especially, I don’t want to get like into politics. But if you talk about people’s fear and like, all these fake accounts that are getting created and influencing elections. And whether you believe that or you don’t, or whose side you wanted, it doesn’t matter. It’s like, is this really that important? Just to you know, I mean, we’re talking about, we’re talking  –

 

Chip: We’re talking about weed, man.

 

Olivia: We’re talking about weed is right. And we’re talking a plant that’s not you know, has so many benefits.  But you know, more than just like fun and getting high, obviously, you know like – 

 

Chip:  Yeah. Right, right. I don’t know why they do it. Hey, you know what, let’s just give a shoutout here. If you’re Mark Zuckerberg or anyone, an upper of Facebook and Instagram, I would love to talk to me about this in an open format where I wouldn’t like, you know, be mean, or berate you at all. Just drop us a line here at The Real Dirt or check us out on our Instagram feed. Come on Martin, let’s have a conversation about it. I know you smoke out.

 

Olivia: I hope someone contacts you.

 

Chip:  That would be great if they did, I’m gonna call you up. “Olivia, you’ll never guess what happened!”

 

Olivia:  I’ll be like, “When is it gonna air?” It could be like, “I’ve got a couple questions, I’ve gotta ask that first -“

 

Chip:  Yeah, totally. Totally. I’d love that to happen. But I have talked to some, I have talked to numerous Instagram and Facebook and Google, Amazon employees. And, you know, I feel like I have a, you know, understanding of what’s going on over there. They get the word from the top, a lot of stuff is just algorithm associated. If you’re already a paying customer, if you already have an ad on an account, if you’re already doing really good, you know, revenue with Facebook or Instagram, you can often get through it, because you have an ad account person that can you know, override anything. But if you don’t have that, nobody’s picking up the phone, you’re not gonna talk to anybody at Facebook or you know, nobody that means anything.

 

Olivia:  That’s for sure. And then you just get caught up in some kind of like, appeal system where it’s just, you’ve got to fill out forms and do other stuff. I know you and I, you had mentioned them to me. And I you know, I knew about the Jungle Boys. I don’t understand. I’m a marketer and I don’t always understand why, you know, they’ve got pictures of like, blood on their like, Instagram pages, all kinds of humor and all these products and now, you know, how did they not get shut down? [inaudible 12:11]

 

Chip:  You know, I get it. No, I get it. How are they successful at it? And you know, we look at those guys all the time. And I think it’s several things. I think like I just said, they were probably in, the people that are running their social media site. I love the Jungle Boys marketing what they’re doing, by the way. They’re you know, you can hate on them all you want guys, but like, from a marketing and sales perspective, thumbs up, you guys did great.

 

Olivia:  They’re awesome.

 

Chip:  They’ve done a great job, man. They’ve done a really great job. Regardless if you’re gonna hate on these guys or not like, they’re doing a good job there. It’s hard to be second place in their first place. Right? But I have not talked to these guys. I don’t know, I’m talking out of my ass, but here’s what I think. I think that they probably come from a marketing or Instagram or social media background. They already had connections at Instagram and Facebook, or they were working with an agency that did have with those people. And I think that’s how they’re able to do some of the stuff they’re doing. And then man, other things, they’re just, they follow all the rules, because they have been kicked out over time. But for instance, you know, one of the rules that we don’t break at The Real Dirt is no weed smoking. And in the past, you may have seen me smoking weed or someone else, but we don’t do that anymore. Because you know, Instagram, Facebook don’t like it.  No implications of anything is for sale, ever. Like even, you know, like, “Oh, I bought this first at so and so.” You know, you can’t even say that type of thing. You know, I picked it up, you can’t imply it ,you can’t do any of that stuff is just, you know, “This weed from this person.” It’s hard to comment on it, you really have to separate the human portion of it. So you’ll see a lot of their stuff. And now that I said this, you’ll see it as they’ll have pictures in the background of the products that they’re promoting. And they may or may not like, hashtag or talk about those products in their comments. However, I think their comments you can, that’s one of the most impressive thing about the Jungle Boys posts, is how many comments they’ll get, right? And they absolutely have people working with them to make these comments, to generate this dialogue. And they’re doing great. I mean, it’s I wouldn’t say that it’s completely organic. But they definitely have arranged it to drive the point home they want. But mostly, I think it’s like, who you know. And just I think they just know somebody.

 

Olivia:  You know, I think that that makes more sense than anything else I can figure out. I mean, like you had discussed. It matters with having a relationship with these big, you know, these big publishers, you know, who are really providing the content, you know, to have a one on one relationship with them is key.

 

Chip:  Yeah, most people don’t understand about Facebook, Google ads, YouTube ads, like none of this stuff that’s product related or that’s website related is viral in an organic manner at all. And even a lot of the viral stuff isn’t organic. And what I mean by that is, it is paid for advertising and traffic. And you think, why would anyone want to get 5 million views of them twerking? Why? Well, it’s ego, right? And you know, if you know how to market your, market it and but the advertising. You know, you can buy the views, you can you know, on any normal product go and do that, but cannabis people can’t. And it’s common practice in every single industry on social media.

 

Olivia:  It’s ego, but it’s also there’s huge money involved in captivating an audience to monetize that audience.

 

Chip:  Oh well that’s is if you can kind of see, you know, like, there’s this guy out of Tinder, I forget his name, but it’s actually his dog’s Instagram site. And it has like him, his dog going everywhere with him, his dog doing stuff, and, you know, he gets a Toyota sponsorship. And now, the dog is in front of every picture or lots of pictures to tell you he was involved. Right?

 

Olivia:  Give to the dog.

 

Chip:  Give to the dog. Yeah and I mean, I’m unsure but I’m positive that there was a good beneficial relationship between Toyota, the dog and the dog’s owner.

 

Olivia:  Yeah.

 

Chip:  I mean, I love weed. I love cannabis. But on those really hard days, like, you know, earlier this week, when we got kicked out of Facebook or Instagram, you know, I think about it, what it would be like if I was involved with another product that I didn’t have these restrictions and how I would approach it.

 

Olivia:  I come from a pharmaceutical marketing background,  I worked in-house for a year and I worked on the agency side with pharma as clients. And even though their regulatory process is quite complex on how you can advertise and things that you can say, and even the use of logos on a pen have an [inaudible 17:33]. But I’m just amazed sometimes. I have those moments like you do where like, “Why is, why can’t I do the things I could do in this market? Or with this product? Why is cannabis so restrictive? Why am I not, you know, am I an outlier? Or do I live in like, areas or communicate with people that view it the way I view it?” Because I don’t see the big deal? I just don’t.

 

Chip:  Well, there are other industries that have our problems, with banking with advertising. I mean, you know, firearms, alcohol, erectile dysfunction, sex toys. All of these things have similar, pawnshops. They all have similar problems that we have.

 

Olivia:  This is true. I don’t, I wouldn’t like I wouldn’t, maybe again, I’m going to go back to I don’t know if it’s just because I’ve grown up in big cities here in the States. I don’t know. Or I don’t know why it’s that big of, I don’t know why it’s that big of a deal. Who are we protecting at this point? Alright now, I sound paranoid. But that’s not what I mean.

 

Chip:  No, no, you know, hey, I mean, who knows? But I tell you this, it always seems to come down – when I’m talking to people about it, whether it’s banks or magazines or lenders or car dealerships, because it comes up all the time.

 

Olivia:  Right.

 

Chip:  Right? When I’m talking to them about it, the same thing comes up over and over again. It’s federally illegal, they’re scared about the banking.

 

Olivia:  Yep.

 

Chip:  Right? There’s these money laundering terms that people are scared of, and they should be, but they’re really just uninformed. It seems to boil down to that more than anything else, is people are scared of the banking associated with it being federally illegal. Now doctors and dentists and people that have federal IDs, they’ll say something like that, that they’re scared for the federal government, because of their federally issued captain’s ID, or pilot certificate, or pesticide applicators certificate. You know, people will bring this up, “Well, it’s federally illegal.” And I think they’re just putting that stuff on it. I mean, I think those are their own pressures. They’re making it up, the federal government doesn’t have anything to do with, you know, what I do if I’m hiring you to come over and do something for me.

 

Olivia:  Right, right. Well, you know, it’s –

 

Chip:  Where’s the regulation there?

 

Olivia:  I don’t know. And, you know, I actually, it’s funny. I had opened up a bank account for a business that has nothing to do with Cannabis Stack. Nothing is, it’s completely separate, completely separate entity. And the bank, I brought in my like, you know, all my paperwork, and I opened up the account. And within a month, they shut me down. Because somehow, they found, they associated, I never gave him this email address. They associated my email address with Cannabis Stack domain with that account, and they just shut me down.

 

Chip:  Yeah. Well, you know, the banks use the social media as much as anybody else now to sniff you out. And I’ve gone through this numerous occasions, you know, calling us up and, and kicking us out because someone posted on one of our sites about weed. And, you know, we’re like, “Well, we didn’t post that. Somebody else did it.” They’re like, “I don’t care. That means you’re about weed.” You know? Yeah. And they’ve literally looked me up, I mean, I don’t hide from weed, you can look me up. So you know, I’ve literally been looked up, Chase gives, you know, every six months or a year, they have a review of people to make sure they’re not cannabis people that, you know, they’re not, you know, putting illegal assets, you know, or untaxed assets into the banking system. So it’s hard to hide, because we’re all talking about marketing ourselves, or our businesses through social media. And the banks have access all the social media, or anyone has access to the social media, you know. And they can and will use it against you if they, appropriate for them.

 

Olivia:  Oh, 100%. I mean, the days of privacy are over. You need to behave as if everybody is watching, and will always have that invasion –

 

Chip:  Everybody is watching. That’s how we sell stuff. And that’s how we brand. And that’s how we market. And you have a webinar is that cannabis slack is putting out Cannabis Marketing Masters summit that’s going to help people solve all of these products. Now, I know one of your speakers happens to be the illustrious Chip Baker of The Real Dirt podcast.

 

Olivia:  Yeah.

 

Chip:  But tell me about the Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit.

 

Olivia:  Okay, so yeah, the Cannabis Marketing Masters summit is happening November 13 and 14th. And what we’re gonna do is carry it over two days, really meant to serve as a resource for marketing in the cannabis industry and help like, entrepreneurs and other professionals be able to like, grow their business through a number of different styles and sessions. So we have a combination of like, techniques and tools for like, SEO and paid advertising, email marketing like, sales and traffic funnels. We also have more inspirational brand stories in regards to like, customer journeys and things along those lines and value like, driven brands.

 

Chip:  Tell me who you’re gonna have speak at the Marketing Summit. Let’s talk about how it’s gonna work and who should join, who should show up.

 

Olivia:  This is all really great points.

 

Chip:  This is free, right? The Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit is free.

 

Olivia:  The Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit is free. You can register at Cannabis Stack, that’s what two s’s in the middle, or with one s in the middle, or with a hyphen if you like it. So that’s cannabisstack.com/cannabis-summit. And you’d be able to sign up there.

 

Chip:  Alright, so everybody stop what you’re doing. Just stop what you’re doing. I’m gonna do it real slow. So go to your computer, your phone. Olivia, what are they gonna look up?

 

Olivia:  You’re gonna look at cannabisstack.com/cannabis-summit. 

 

Chip:  Alright, and then you’re just going to apply to join right there.

 

Olivia:  Right there.

 

Chip:  Right there.

 

Olivia:  You’re going to see a list of the speakers, the dates and the time of the event, November 13th and 14th. You’re going to, all you’re going to need to do is give us like, your name, and email, the company, if you wouldn’t mind. And then you’re going to hit ‘Submit,’ and we’re going to send you a link so you can join the summit, 100% free.

 

Chip:  And I know we’ve been talking about it, and I’ve been excited. You know, I invited you on this podcast because I thought this was a really good idea that you had not really wanted to help promote it. And yeah, I’m gonna be involved on it. But what I really liked about it is you were giving it away. And you’re trying to just help people expand their business, and do better business.

 

Olivia: Definitely. We have Amy Larson from Simplifya.

 

Chip:  Yeah. Oh yeah, Simplifya. Yep, from Vicente Sederburg. See, I know several Simplifya people.

 

Olivia:  That’s awesome.

 

Chip:  Jordan Wellington, great guy. I’ve had him on the show a couple of times.

 

Olivia:  But you may also know that Amy currently serves as the chair for NCIS, you know, the marketing and advertising committee.

 

Chip:  Oh, okay. That’s how I recognize her name as well. Sure.

 

Olivia:  Yeah. She’s going to be speaking to strategic plan, like as to like the foundation of like, what your marketing should be in, for any marketing program, but specifically for cannabis marketing. So, we’re excited to hear what she’s gonna present.  Then we have Tyler Horvath. He’s like, the king of SEO, right? He’s the CEO of Marijuana SEO. And he’s gonna give us some like, the three pillars of a successful SEO strategy.

 

Chip:  Man, I’m really looking forward to this one.

 

Olivia:  Then we have Brian Chaplin of Medicine Box. And Brian’s going to be speaking to the importance of like, mission driven and value based cannabis brand.

 

Chip:  And Medicine Box, they’re a vending machine?

 

Olivia:  No, they do like, a box delivery system for whole plant natural wellness products in like, a subscription box model.

 

Chip: Oh okay, okay, great.

 

Olivia:  Then we have Beth Aiden from Nissan Co, which is a public relations, marketing and PR firm. So they’re going to be speaking to the right public positioning for your cannabis business with public relations. So they’re going to kind of break down like, a successful public relations strategy, and what they can afford, specifically to the industry. Then we have Antonio Javiniar from WebJoint. You know WebJoint? They’re like the –

 

Chip:  No, but you could pass me one anytime.

 

Olivia:  Only if I could right now. They’re gonna, also they’re gonna be speaking to content, but like content that converts and marketing on a limited budget. So – 

 

Chip:  I’m so excited about all this stuff. You know, these are some great talks, I need these as much as anybody else for sure.

 

Olivia:  Yeah, they do their inventory, WebJoint’s like an inventory management software provider for like, cannabis delivery services. So which is kind of cool. And we have Travis Crane from a little company called Cultivate.

 

Chip: Oh yeah. Oh man, he’s a master in social media marketing, that’s for sure. Organic driven social media marketing. This guy knows what he’s doing.

 

Olivia:  For sure. And he’s got a really interesting story about how he kind of got into the space. So his session is going to be about navigating the waters of advertising, and kind of touched upon some of the things that you and I chatted about earlier. Then we have Andrew Watson from Happy Cabbage Analytics. So this is really cool, because they do some really amazing things with hyper targeted marketing. Because they have, they do like an integrated like, data insights. I’m not doing them justice, and Andrew could explain this much better than I. But they have a marketing platform that integrates with a POS system, so it can help retailers and brands to better engage with their customers. It’s really slick stuff, super interesting. We also have Gianna Guard from Happy Cabbage also. And she’s going to be talking about that whole infrastructure from closing the loop, from marketing to sales, which is, you know, I think –

 

Chip:  That’s a hard step. That’s a hard, hard step.

 

Olivia:  It sure is. And you know, we talked earlier about like, just advertising in general. Like, maybe you’ve got a brand and you want to reach the consumers and that’s difficult. Now trying to figure out how you want to reach other businesses in the space. That’s tricky. Super, super tricky. We also have Colton Griffin, he’s the CEO of Flourish Software. So they have a whole supply chain management and seed to sale tracking software, for the industry. So again, Colton is going to be, we’re going to focus a little bit more on sales and marketing. And he’s going to speak to leveraging technology and automation to make your sales and marketing system, let’s say more efficient. So that’s kind of cool.

 

Chip:  Yeah, like automated emails, automated text messages, collecting people’s emails, addresses, scanning IDs and getting their info. But that’s, all that type of stuff is one of the most useful things in the cannabis industry right now. If you’re not doing it, you got to get on it.

 

Olivia:  Indeed. And then we have Kevin Green and Tyrone Russell from the Cleveland School of Cannabis. Did you know that they are –

 

Chip:  I don’t know about the Cleveland School of Cannabis.

 

Olivia:  They are the only state approved career school for cannabis education east of Colorado. They have a whole curriculum, you got to check them out, Cleveland School of Cannabis.

 

Chip:  I do. Calling them up.

 

Olivia:  That’s our lineup. Over the course of two days, we’re going to be hearing from these people and they’re going to dive in deep. And then while the sessions are running, people will be able to jump on the Facebook page that we’re going to be holding the sessions on, and ask questions.

 

Chip:  How do we get to it again, the Cannabis Marketing Summit? 

 

Olivia:  So if you if you go to the cannabisstack.com homepage, you’ll see an ad right there for the Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit. It’ll be right there.

 

Chip:  And can you look it up on Facebook and Instagram as well?

 

Olivia:  Yeah, you sure can. We have all that. If you do a search for Cannabis Stack on either Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter, you’ll find us. Sharing is caring.

 

Chip:  Sharing is caring. The saddest thing to me about COVID is whether you believe it’s a pandemic, plantdemic, whatever. The cultural aspect of sharing joints and weed is going to be different forever. You know, I still have employees and friends that, you know, they get still hop around the joint circle. But most people I know, have now decided not to do that. You know, I went [inaudible 31:45] a long time ago because I’m such a head that I need to smoke a joint all by myself.

 

Olivia: Okay. Some can call you greedy, but some could say, you know –

 

Chip:  Hey, I’m gonna roll you a joint just as big as mine, though.

 

Olivia:  Alright.

 

Chip:  Right? So it’s fine. But just the cultural and social aspect of cannabis is such a big part of it.

 

Olivia:  Oh, for sure. I mean –

 

Chip:  Sharing is caring, that phraseology that you just mentioned is something that’s, you know, I’ve really like, embraced over the years. And I’ve tried to like, give people as much weed and smoke as many people out as I can.

 

Olivia:  So you know, to that, it’s funny that you said that last night, because that part has stopped and just all social interactions for me have like kind of, you know, have slowed down, you know, to the trickle. So I was with some people I didn’t know very well and some of them wanted to get high, but they had the greatest solution. They had a bag of individually wrapped tips and like, one big bong, like hookah bong that had one bowl and everybody like you know, everybody had their own hose.

 

Chip:  They had their own hose. Hoser, a whole new meaning to the name hoser.

 

Olivia:  Everyone had their own they had their own hose with their own like, brand new like, shield tip. It was awesome.

 

Chip:  Are you guys gonna give those out as part of the Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit as a promotional item?

 

Olivia:  I would love to but – 

 

Chip:  CMMS. 

 

Olivia:  I don’t think I’ll be able to do that.

 

Chip:  A CMMS branded hookah tube.

 

Olivia:  Well I was, you know, I don’t think I could give away, ’cause I gotta tell you what the head was, it was Scooby Doo. It was shaped as a big dog, the Scooby Doo head.

 

Chip:  The Scooby Doo head.

 

Olivia:  Yeah, I don’t know how I gonna be able to top that with the Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit giveaway.

 

Chip:  Well, I am excited about it. You know, we’re gonna participate. The Real Dirt’s gonna participate. If you’re interested in how we do it. because people ask me all the time. It’s like, “Chip, how do you put out so much content? How do you do it? How is it authentic? How, how, how?” And we’re going to tell you how. Travis is going to tell you how to do it. I’m going to tell you how we do it. And it’s a lot easier than you think, honestly. With a little organization and prepared thought, you too can put out authentic cannabis content. I’m not saying that we’re doing the best of it. But I’ll tell you man, if you listen to this channel, if you listen to The Real Dirt podcasts, you must like some of it. So join us please at Cannabis Stack Cannabis Marketing Masters Summit.

 

Olivia: Yep, that’s November 13 and 14th.

 

Chip:  November 13th and 14th November. And it is going to be on Facebook. You join through the Cannabis Stack online community. And yeah, while you’re there, check out their online community. Maybe it’s something you want to be a part of. I know it’s definitely helped me connect with other people, other people in the cannabis community. I look forward to connecting to, with more people there. Olivia, if you had, like, some advice that you could give anybody going into the cannabis business, because you’re in the cannabis space, you’re not just servicing people in the cannabis space. Looking back on it all, is there some golden nugget that you could give somebody right now?

 

Olivia:  Go find your tribe. Go find your community. And go find the right people that are doing the things that you want to do. And, you know, network and speaking to like, creating authentic content, network authentically. Just don’t promote, you know. You know, like, the cannabis industry is a perfect space for community. Because it you know, because we’re a little bit segmented, based on some of these challenges that we face in the industry. So like, this circumstance offers us a common goal to rally around, and like, we can bring people together, right? 

 

Chip:  Yeah, totally.

 

Olivia:  And this commonality brings people together. And we’re, we as humans are known to be more willing to collaborate more, we’re more effective in numbers. And we’re more innovative in our thoughts when we do this together. So you know –

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, community, man. That’s how we do. That’s how we’ve always done it. That’s how we came out of the woods, so to speak, is we gathered a community, you know, we all work together to survive and to thrive.

 

Olivia:  Yeah. And I think like, you know, they’ll let your like, guard down a little bit, and you got to share and you know, you can’t be worried about taking something that you think is yours, right? There we go again, sharing, right?

 

Chip:  Yeah, yeah.

 

Olivia:  I mean, it’s community. That would be my one thing.

 

Chip:  Yeah. It’s great. It’s great. Well, hey, hey, thanks for joining us today. I really appreciate it. And if anyone wants to get in touch with you, Olivia, how do they get in touch with you?

 

Olivia:  They can reach me through the website, or they can email me directly. I’m happy to accept if someone needs to reach out olivia@cannabisstack.com. That’s cannabisstack.com.

 

Chip:  Thanks for joining us. I look forward to the conference on November 13th to 14th. Thank you once again for joining us, Real Dirt listeners. I know you have other things you can do with your time, but you chose it today to spend with me and Olivia. Thank you once again. And hey, just want to encourage all of you guys to visit Cultivate Colorado, Cultivate Garden Supply. Check out Growers Potting Soil. You have any questions about cannabis, just talk to us on Instagram, on Facebook. Once again, man, thanks again for joining us. I love all of you and fire one up for me. It’s The Real Dirt.

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