"They Grow Without Love"

 

They grow without love.  Marijuana farmers who care more about money than about the land and about their community. Often times they’re from out-of-town and inexperienced about country living.  They don’t know about water bars, conserving water, and cleaning up after themselves.

Here’s an excerpt from a horror story about uncaring growers in Mendocino but its a story we know here in Humboldt.  This kind of depredation has to stop.

Because the hills were too sharp and steep, the road never worked, so they left it uncompleted. Instead, two 5,000-gallon reservoir tanks were dropped and filled by the local water merchants.

The same was done with fencing, tubing and hoses and all the housing, all provided by locals who support this industry…

The Wall Streeters made it through the summer. They erected a military canvas tent, 50×50, to cure and trim in. They set up the fans and blowers. Now, all they needed was trimmers….

Most inhabitants of what is called the Emerald Triangle live up there for a variety of good reasons. While growing dope might be high on the list for some, others just want their privacy.

Solitude and seclusion are intrinsic components to Northern California living. If they wanted to see people, they’d live in a city.

Because the Wall Streeters weren’t part of the local scene, they had to hire the trimmers literally off the street.

Now the population of the mountaintop increased from “a few” to “too many.” Neighbors began to arm themselves because of all the unknowns that could happen. After living for decades in almost total seclusion, residents near the Wall Streeters hung privacy fences and draped their compounds so prying eyes couldn’t see in.

With so much on the line, and a balance that has been made plumb by years of dedicated work and by locals keeping to themselves (much like the Appalachian moonshiners did in their day), the Wall Streeters were wrecking the harmony of the mountain.

The new kids on the block were threatening a quiet, secluded lifestyle that had been there for years before the Greedheads’ arrival, and would be there years after the later summer departures…

Fall came and the Wall Streeters’ industrial grow became silent. They were gone. All the residue of their business and craft was left behind. The only thing they took with them was their crop. …the land was ruined. For at least a hundred years, the topsoil and the mycelium layer that protects the ground and allows for renewal and rebirth have been destroyed. The ancient redwoods and rare Madera trees that were cut down for more open sunshine are gone.

The trees and brush that were cleared for the grow are bundled at the foot of a canyon. By the end of next summer, that area, full of discarded wood and brush, will be dried out under a burning sun and soon will be a tinderbox, ready to explode….

It is really impossible to calculate the damage this type of grow can cause.

They grow without love and leave a littered landscape, a traumatized community, a devastated watershed. When are they going to learn? And when are we going to stop letting it happen?
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19 comments

  • What to do.. people are just well greedy.
    Good read and no good suggestions..
    my favorite line:
    “Solitude and seclusion are intrinsic components to Northern California living. If they wanted to see people, they’d live in a city.”
    I think I am going to quote that.
    So true.

  • Once while working at a farm in Mendo, I watched as they spilled almost 15 gallons of gas on the ground. Their major reaction was to exclaim that nobody should light a cigarette for a while. Piles of trash shoved over the side of the work site, which was an illegally bulldozed tip of a spur ridge above a year round creek. I could go on for paragraphs. After a while, I just stopped working for them even though I desperately needed the job. It really pissed me off after a while that they could afford a 267 acre ranch -practically a whole valley- and then treat like a dump. A beautiful place . What a waste.

  • Once while working at a farm in Mendo, I watched as they spilled almost 15 gallons of gas on the ground. Their major reaction was to exclaim that nobody should light a cigarette for a while. Piles of trash shoved over the side of the work site, which was an illegally bulldozed tip of a spur ridge above a year round creek. I could go on for paragraphs. After a while, I just stopped working for them even though I desperately needed the job. It really pissed me off after a while that they could afford a 267 acre ranch -practically a whole valley- and then treat like a dump. A beautiful place . What a waste.

  • so sad , but so true! …posted !

  • so sad , but so true! …posted !

  • Thank God for scum sucking bottom feeders like those that would trash the place that we live. If it weren’t for them we would have to serve as the bad examples.

  • Thank God for scum sucking bottom feeders like those that would trash the place that we live. If it weren’t for them we would have to serve as the bad examples.

  • is it any wonder that “Money” is the root of all evil?

  • is it any wonder that “Money” is the root of all evil?

  • Kym,
    Thanks for posting this article–
    I see this issue as being one of the most important concerns that the Emerald Triangle region faces right now but is rarely, if ever spoken about. While all of the current attention is being put on saving the cannabis industry from fading away, the hills are buzzing with the energy of profiteers racing to the finish line of a possible legalization. An extremely complicated issue that leaves most people silent and feeling disempowered as their once rural communities become industrialized. The record profits of the cannabis industry have been made by externalizing the social and environmental costs just the same as any other economic model that loses sight of appropriate scale. We live in a place where in the past six years we can no longer swim in our streams and rivers after late July due to the increased dangers of blue green algae. Most other communities in this country can point their fingers at corporate agribusiness when confronting such impacts. We only have our very own home-grown industry here to blame. I feel it is morally, ethically and spiritually wrong to accept this and other impacts (unchecked road-building, vanishing species, drying up rivers, diesel spills, violence, etc) as part of the downsides of an economy that keeps this region financially afloat. In my opinion, this behavior tells our children and reinforces the belief amongst friends and family that the health of our watersheds, the connection to people and the caring of our “home place” is for sale. If we are to build lasting community that persists in the few remaining rural places left here in Northern California, this cycle will have to be broken in order to stand any chance of leaving something as special as this for the people who will follow us. I hope that neighbors, friends, family, and community find the strength to stand strong for the land and for what is right.

    Kyle

  • Kym,
    Thanks for posting this article–
    I see this issue as being one of the most important concerns that the Emerald Triangle region faces right now but is rarely, if ever spoken about. While all of the current attention is being put on saving the cannabis industry from fading away, the hills are buzzing with the energy of profiteers racing to the finish line of a possible legalization. An extremely complicated issue that leaves most people silent and feeling disempowered as their once rural communities become industrialized. The record profits of the cannabis industry have been made by externalizing the social and environmental costs just the same as any other economic model that loses sight of appropriate scale. We live in a place where in the past six years we can no longer swim in our streams and rivers after late July due to the increased dangers of blue green algae. Most other communities in this country can point their fingers at corporate agribusiness when confronting such impacts. We only have our very own home-grown industry here to blame. I feel it is morally, ethically and spiritually wrong to accept this and other impacts (unchecked road-building, vanishing species, drying up rivers, diesel spills, violence, etc) as part of the downsides of an economy that keeps this region financially afloat. In my opinion, this behavior tells our children and reinforces the belief amongst friends and family that the health of our watersheds, the connection to people and the caring of our “home place” is for sale. If we are to build lasting community that persists in the few remaining rural places left here in Northern California, this cycle will have to be broken in order to stand any chance of leaving something as special as this for the people who will follow us. I hope that neighbors, friends, family, and community find the strength to stand strong for the land and for what is right.

    Kyle

  • In my mind the biggest environmental damage being done in the Emerald triangle right now is not being done by developers in the traditional sense, not logging companies, and not traditional agra business. The big damage is being done by greedy or uninformed growers. I feel so sad that a culture I love so much has people in it who are willing to deeply damage watersheds in order to make large amounts of money.

    • I feel your pain. But such is life. Only a certain percentage of the loggers screwed up the land, but look at their legacy today. Nobody says “Oh, there were good loggers and there were bad”. They only talk about the damage caused by the loggers.

      The legacy of the “profiteer” growers is all that will be remembered 50 years from now.

  • In my mind the biggest environmental damage being done in the Emerald triangle right now is not being done by developers in the traditional sense, not logging companies, and not traditional agra business. The big damage is being done by greedy or uninformed growers. I feel so sad that a culture I love so much has people in it who are willing to deeply damage watersheds in order to make large amounts of money.

    • I feel your pain. But such is life. Only a certain percentage of the loggers screwed up the land, but look at their legacy today. Nobody says “Oh, there were good loggers and there were bad”. They only talk about the damage caused by the loggers.

      The legacy of the “profiteer” growers is all that will be remembered 50 years from now.

  • I blame prohibition, and only prohibition. Somebody will be happy to get the marijuana grown at this disgusting dump because for whatever reason they couldn’t get it any other way…more power to guerilla growers.

    Meanwhile in McKinleyville and Eureka, well over 100 acres are slated to be paved and “developed” in the name of “progress”, each compacting a plethora of sinks, drains and toilets flooding our recycled waters with all kinds of toxic chemicals, and just as many conjoined acres of parking lots onto which hundreds of gallons of oil and car chemicals will be dumped every week to be washed into storm drains.

  • I blame prohibition, and only prohibition. Somebody will be happy to get the marijuana grown at this disgusting dump because for whatever reason they couldn’t get it any other way…more power to guerilla growers.

    Meanwhile in McKinleyville and Eureka, well over 100 acres are slated to be paved and “developed” in the name of “progress”, each compacting a plethora of sinks, drains and toilets flooding our recycled waters with all kinds of toxic chemicals, and just as many conjoined acres of parking lots onto which hundreds of gallons of oil and car chemicals will be dumped every week to be washed into storm drains.

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