The Indoor Pot Story

“Today, indoor-grown pot is king. A weed that grows naturally in the sun has been tamed into an industrial product that is branded like soda pop and as subject to fashion as women’s shoes.”

The LA Times is running an excellent story today about the economic and social impacts of indoor grows and how consumer demand is creating a “crop” of growers. Sam Quinones (full disclosure–I’ve spoken to him multiple times) says that,

A Nov. 2 ballot measure to legalize limited cultivation and use of marijuana is the talk of Northern California’s “Emerald Triangle,” where indoor pot is an economic mainstay. The effect that legalization would have on the marijuana market is unclear. Much would depend on the policies enacted by cities and counties, which would have power to regulate and tax production and sales. Oakland is making plans to allow cultivation in warehouses, which could affect prices.

What is clear is that consumers now harbor a powerful fetish for indoor weed. A potent bud is no longer enough. Like connoisseurs of wine or coffee, pot smokers want cachet: an exotic look, a distinctive smell of cheese or lemon. This requires growing indoors, where plants can be coddled, protected from the elements and blasted with nutrients.

I don’t agree with Quinones that the distinctive looks/smells can only be produced indoors but I do agree that indoors allows a rapid turnaround on breeding which allows the grower to start new strains quicker in response to market pressures.  However, one of the major points of this article is that indoor growing is driven by prohibition.  I think his article points to the fact that large indoor growing might be one of the casualties of legalization.

Those who are indoor farmers and the businesses who depend on them are an important part of the Emerald Triangle’s current economic reality.  There are entrepreneurs out there who are readying businesses and growers and government officials who are readying laws for the new reality of legalization (whether 19 passes or not, other states are looking at legalization.)  I’m hoping that indoor growers and businesses who depend on them start looking for ways to thrive even with the new changes.  I’m also hoping those ways are more environmentally sustainable than the current model.

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14 comments

  • I’ma keep telling it cuz it’s gotta be told: Indoor/Outdoor is a negligible concern. Would it be of my character right now to show pictures of the exact same plant finishing simultaneously in different indoor and outdoor places…Each has its obvious merrits. Neither is superior, except in the sWine cone-sewer’s way…har har.

    What all Humboldt marijuana has going for it is an unspoken fair-trade label…no need for “trimmers unions” and what-not formalities here, everybody involved is a happy participant from beginning to end, guaranteed.

  • I’ma keep telling it cuz it’s gotta be told: Indoor/Outdoor is a negligible concern. Would it be of my character right now to show pictures of the exact same plant finishing simultaneously in different indoor and outdoor places…Each has its obvious merrits. Neither is superior, except in the sWine cone-sewer’s way…har har.

    What all Humboldt marijuana has going for it is an unspoken fair-trade label…no need for “trimmers unions” and what-not formalities here, everybody involved is a happy participant from beginning to end, guaranteed.

  • Pot is worthless. Its only value in its prohibition. All these schemes are worthless unless we can get nancy reagan back. the current crop of republicans are only interested in abstinese (sp) only even for your self, they don’t care what you smoke just as long as you don’t smoke man on man, or Obama’s birth place. Maybe we can get them excited about the evils of peanuts. We can’t really grow them here but we could import lots of sand.

  • Pot is worthless. Its only value in its prohibition. All these schemes are worthless unless we can get nancy reagan back. the current crop of republicans are only interested in abstinese (sp) only even for your self, they don’t care what you smoke just as long as you don’t smoke man on man, or Obama’s birth place. Maybe we can get them excited about the evils of peanuts. We can’t really grow them here but we could import lots of sand.

  • Maybe I could dig a good point out of what you said with a clean spoon, tom…you realize you’re trying to tell a whole lot of people who don’t feel exploited that they’re being exploited? I suppose tomatoes and oranges are worthless too. Marijuana has always happily happened with or without anybody’s opinion of how it happens. There’s nobody telling anybody to do it in “the media”…quite the contrary. What do your friends who smoke think?

  • Maybe I could dig a good point out of what you said with a clean spoon, tom…you realize you’re trying to tell a whole lot of people who don’t feel exploited that they’re being exploited? I suppose tomatoes and oranges are worthless too. Marijuana has always happily happened with or without anybody’s opinion of how it happens. There’s nobody telling anybody to do it in “the media”…quite the contrary. What do your friends who smoke think?

  • Sometimes it feels like California’s cannabic center of gravity has shifted southward. But I like the point Kym brings out of the article, that indo’s roots in prohibition may spell its (relative) doom post-. What possibilities for outdoor herb will open up when legal repression is removed?

  • Sometimes it feels like California’s cannabic center of gravity has shifted southward. But I like the point Kym brings out of the article, that indo’s roots in prohibition may spell its (relative) doom post-. What possibilities for outdoor herb will open up when legal repression is removed?

  • 99.9% of pot growers don’t breed strains to react to market pressures. These marks have to buy clones from people who know how to grow the good good. They ain’t gonna breed nothing. If they ain’t got the patience to root cuttings how are they about to label and select from test crosses? Mega indoor growing and breeding got to be treated separately.

    My hope is if Oakland do have these warehouses that someone runs 100,000 plants to do good breeding and get that old school garlic Vietnamese shit down to killing all this OG Kush bullshit.

  • 99.9% of pot growers don’t breed strains to react to market pressures. These marks have to buy clones from people who know how to grow the good good. They ain’t gonna breed nothing. If they ain’t got the patience to root cuttings how are they about to label and select from test crosses? Mega indoor growing and breeding got to be treated separately.

    My hope is if Oakland do have these warehouses that someone runs 100,000 plants to do good breeding and get that old school garlic Vietnamese shit down to killing all this OG Kush bullshit.

  • Thanks Charlie Horse, I was just linking to Heraldos for that slightly buzzkilling article.

    pot smokers want cachet: an exotic look, a distinctive smell of cheese or lemon.
    They do? Hmmm. Maybe I can patent the name “Blue Cheese” and sell the little stuff as “crumbles”… that name certainly has a certain cachet, or sachet? Mr. Nice, what do I have to do to get that cutting edge cheesey smell?

    Just kidding, Mr. Holder!

  • Thanks Charlie Horse, I was just linking to Heraldos for that slightly buzzkilling article.

    pot smokers want cachet: an exotic look, a distinctive smell of cheese or lemon.
    They do? Hmmm. Maybe I can patent the name “Blue Cheese” and sell the little stuff as “crumbles”… that name certainly has a certain cachet, or sachet? Mr. Nice, what do I have to do to get that cutting edge cheesey smell?

    Just kidding, Mr. Holder!

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