growing weed secretly indoors

I knew these folks would be out there, somewhere, just as I was, hopping on the quarantine gardening train for some of the same reasons — and no doubt some different ones. Some would be planting their own pot to do an end run around corporate cannabis (which, with each passing day, looks more and more like Big Pharma and Big Tobacco). Others would pursue pot parenthood to save money (buying weed in L.A. — legally — includes taxes that increase the cost of THC-containing products by more than a third) or to stick a green thumb squarely in the eye of Johnny Law as a kind of cosmically satisfying payback for decades of cannabis prohibition. (Growing your own is legal in the Golden State, but it remains illegal under federal law.)

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The fix was easy enough. Brandishing my P-Touch label maker, I printed out “Lowryder strain, seed two” and stuck the label on the container of curing buds, right over top of the one that read “Diana Prince.” I instantly felt better.

For almost as long as I’ve known about the cannabis plant, I’ve wanted to grow my own weed. This is partly because I like everything about it; not just the psychoactive effect of combusting and inhaling it, but also the way it looks, from the slender serrated fan leaves to the densely packed flowers shimmering with a crystal-like dusting (called trichomes, these tiny, hair-like structures are home to the high-producing compound THC). I like the skunky smell of a live plant, and I appreciate the fact that it’s only the female of the genus that will get you high.

But the desire to get my grow on also has a lot to do with how I grew up in rural Vermont.

In addition to having a hand in bringing eggs, bacon, chicken and milk to the table, my siblings and I saw how wool becomes yarn. We learned how to make rhubarb wine (the first kid down the stairs in the morning usually gave the crock full of fermenting fruit a good stir), how to bake bread on a wood stove (the Dutch oven came in clutch) and how to turn the sap from the trees around us into maple syrup. In short, we were doing farm-to-table before farm-to-table was even a thing, and it gave me a keen appreciation of the effort that goes into things that I otherwise would have taken for granted.

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Fast-forward two months and, instead of the towering THC-laced tannenbaum I was hoping for, I was headed into Christmas week with a seedling — all of 5 inches tall — curving out of its pot at a 45-degree angle. Since A Pot for Pot purchases include growing consults via email, I sent off a few photos and a plea for help. A few days later, I heard back from an upbeat consultant named Taylor who wrote: “Thanks for reaching out! What a cute little plant!” Then came the bad news: Based on the photos I’d sent and the timetable I’d described, Mariah wasn’t going to get much bigger. Taylor’s theory was that I had probably waited too long to transplant Mariah from her seedling cup to her 5-gallon fabric pot, unintentionally creating bonsai bud in the process. But the silver lining, as Taylor pointed out, was that because of her stunted size, there would be more than enough nutrients in the soil mix to support a second attempt in that same pot.

That’s why, when faced with midpandemic boredom, in a state where it’s legal to grow (under California law, anyone 21 and older can grow up to six plants for recreational use) and with an unused everything-but-the-seeds kit from A Pot for Pot (purchased while researching The Times’ 2020 holiday cannabis gift guide) lurking in the corner of my home office, I decided to connect with my roots by trying to get a pot plant to put down the same. By following the process from start to finish, I reasoned, I’d be able to better appreciate how those dried little nuggets of instant staycation get from the soil to the dispensary shelf.

As the eighth week stretched into the ninth, I dutifully burped the curing jar every few days, gazing at the contents with awe before snapping the lid back in place and putting the container away, but I didn’t try it. Was I, on some subconscious level, afraid that I wouldn’t get high enough (or, even worse, not high at all) off my homegrown handiwork? Perhaps the thrill had really been about the process — the pursuit of happiness — the whole time and not about the ounce of weed curing in my pantry. Or maybe I wanted the best for my baby and was dragging my feet only until Diana Prince had cured a full six months?

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Taken altogether that means your ability to become a legal pot-plant parent in L.A. — despite what your biological (or botanical) clock is telling you — hinges on who owns your house, how big your yard is and how much money you’re willing to spend on grow kits (like the 5-gallon, $99.95 one I was using), LED lights ($169.95) and feminized cannabis seeds ($89 for five Lowryder Autoflower seeds).

In mid-January, I planted my second seed. When she burst forth from the soil Jan. 19, the split seed casing clinging to the top of the green shoot reminded me of an armored helmet. Having just watched “Wonder Woman 1984,” I impulsively decided this powerful woman would bear the name of the Amazonian superhero’s secret identity: Diana Prince. Eager to avoid my earlier mistake, Diana Prince was transplanted to her forever home just five days later and then locked safely in my garage under the new grow light (20 hours on, 4 hours off). I visited my baby daily, watering her just enough to keep her healthy and thriving.

I planted my first seed on Oct. 19, 2020, opting for an easy-to-grow strain called Lowryder. Considered one of the first autoflowering strains of marijuana — meaning the plant flowers after a set period of time instead of taking its cue from seasonal light changes — Lowryder is a cross of Cannabis ruderalis , ‘Northern Lights No. 2′ and ‘William’s Wonder’ that yields a compact, indica-heavy plant. Based on the grow guide included in my kit, my plant would be ready to harvest just before Christmas. In a nod to the holiday season timetable, when the first green sprout popped out of the soil a few days later, I nicknamed her Mariah in honor of the chanteuse whose 1994 album “Merry Christmas” seems to flower like clockwork year after year.

That wasn’t the only connection I was hoping for. I saw becoming an L.A. pot-plant parent as a way to gain entree to an invisible social network in this city in the way those who raise children here end up forming lifelong bonds with strangers who happen to have had kids at the same time. Instead of bonding over hastily arranged carpool schedules or sitting on the sidelines at a soccer game together, I imagined mingling with first-time marijuana moms and dope dads in the gardening supply aisle at Lowe’s, sharing baby pictures of our leafy green chlorophyll kids and trading curing tips and yield-boosting hacks.

Then it hit me: In my haste to marry the nostalgic farm-to-table experiences of my Vermont childhood to my love of weed, I’d forgotten the part about not forming an emotional bond and had done exactly that. Even worse, I’d given her a name and imagined a personality for her. By naming her Diana Prince, I’d become less of an urban herb farmer about to get his buzz on and more like the Titan Kronos of Greek mythology about to swallow his offspring.

If some bored neighbor is watching you, it's going to seem weird if you're going in and out of your house with pots, nutrients, big bags of soilless grow mix, etc, if you don't actually grow anything.

That's why one of the best covers for growing weed is growing a few other plants, whether it's flowers, vegetables, fruits, etc. I keep a few flower pots with random flowers on my front porch, and have a vegetable garden in the back, which is an ideal cover.

No, growers don't get usually caught because their seeds were intercepted, or because they were buying some hydroponic growing equipment.

Block all windows with light-proof fabric or curtains. The bright lights you use to grow marijuana are a dead give-away that someone is growing weed inside.

If someone asks you where you got your weed, tell them you'd rather not talk about it and leave it at that.

Rule 4: Be smart about comings and goings to your home or grow area (especially with lots of growing supplies).

But unfortunately it's not. Telling the wrong person is the number 1 most common reason growers get caught.

It's important to remember that, while medical marijuana has been legalized in many areas, it is still considered illegal to grow marijuana in much of the world.

Basically, don't get your marijuana seeds shipped to the house where you're going to grow your weed.

I know, I know, this is common sense, right?

If you're serious about privacy, no more guests inside your home until you build a secret passageway to an underground grow room.

This is why growing weed with CFLs can be so appealing for the small-time grower. They barely give off any heat, but you can still produce a few ounces a month.

It's easy to get comfortable after a while if you've been growing weed for a long time.

If you have a large indoor garden, then you already know how hard it can be to control the heat. Controlling heat is good for your plants, but you also need to do it to avoid getting caught.

You can't have guests over to your house. Many arrests have come from a random guest coming across a grow rooms by accident.

Rule 5: Sorry, no more guests.

People are surprisingly nosy about what you're doing. Remember that.

That is why should never, ever tell a soul that you grow marijuana. No excuses.

If you're venting air outside, control odors with a carbon scrubber. This is something that air passes through which will remove the odors before they go outside. If that's not enough, you'll need to start going crazy with the odor-control products. You'll often find some of the best ones at hydroponic stores. 🙂

If that's not an option, then make sure you are not observed when you come and go with supplies. Night is best.

Remember, you will get used to the smell!

Don't ever give hints that you know how to grow weed. If you encounter others who are talking about it, bite your lip and act dumb!

Safety Precautions when Growing Weed Indoors and Buying Marijuana Seeds online.

Lights can give off a hum, but usually it's water pumps that make the most sound when growing. If you have a roommate, or if you share a wall with a neighbor, you need to buy a better water pump or better light set that is dead quiet.

I think this rule is self-explanatory. Don't get marijuana seeds shipped to where you'll be growing your weed.

Here's my "never get caught, ever, for growing weed" policy: You can never trust someone else as closely as yourself.

Use the same amount of caution that you would use if your life depended on it.

The secret to successfully growing marijuana is to completely understand the composition and growth patterns of the different strains in order to choose the right one for your given location. This book will show you how to easily grow marijuana from the comfort of your own home. The key is creating an environment that’ll allow the specific strain you’re cultivating to reach its full growth potential. Growing marijuana without any guidance can be a daunting task, even for those who have experience growing herbs.

1 person found this helpful.

Way too much was written about cannabis business which isn’t what I wanted from this book at all. I wanted legitimate information on how someone else may grow and their techniques. There’s a lot of filler writing to fill space. Extremely dissatisfied. I’d return it if there’s an option.

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I would try another book by this author or its narrator.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Growing Marijuana for Beginners: Cannabis Cultivation Indoors and Outdoors?

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6 people found this helpful.

Loved it! 1st time grower here, and I’m fucking happy with the new knowledge i obtained! before getting the audible I was fearful my first attempt would have been a failure! Out of the 5 seeds I initiated with only two had survived, but now that I’ve heard the book, my two lil survivers are thriving and look gorgeous!

This book will teach you everything you need to know in order to go from a cannabis-growing novice to a seasoned veteran. Whether your intentions are to simply provide a supply for your own personal consumption or to start your own grow op, this book will get you off the ground and ensure you’re fully equipped to maximize your plant growth, both short term and long term. Take advantage of this exciting time in marijuana consumption, and begin your own growing operation right at home!

Audible.co.uk reviews.

not bad. pretty informative. could be a little bit longer felt kinda ripped off really.

1 person found this helpful.

yes, This book covers the cannibis industry from the standpoint of an experienced grower and business person. A must read for those who want to build, correct, or fill in the gaps in what they already might know about the cannibis industry before entering into business. Not just about marijuana but about how to organize and execute a profitable business where legislation allows. check local laws.

While the information provided is common sense or non-specific, the book itself is short and I didn’t feel time was wasted. Hopefully any follow ups hone in on a specific party such as pros and hobbyists, and gets into some details and advanced tips for how to perfect this craft. Selecting a space, understanding what a GFCI outlet does and knowing that marijuana will smell isn’t something most people need a book to tell them.

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2 people found this helpful.

Any additional comments?

2 people found this helpful.

not specifically, but the book is very motivating and makes envisioning yourself as a successful grower or legal reseller very easy.

Would you try another book from Clyde Bank Alternative and/or Amy Barron Smolinski?