A lot of people want to grow cannabis, but are lacking the space indoors or at their own homes. Therefore, some resort to outdoor options done on public or private land, or in (private) wildlife sanctuaries. This is by definition, often referred to as Guerilla growing. Guerilla growing itself can be done in a variety of ways.
As one method of Guerrilla growing, growing marijuana in the woods comes with its own specific needs and considerations. And the fact is, that growing in the woods is said by some to be the stealthiest growing method there is. To start off our investigation into growing cannabis in the woods, lets look at some more good reasons behind the method.
Why Grow Cannabis in the Woods?
When we compare the history and examples of others who grow marijuana in the forest (just look to Humboldt County in California and several locations in Colorado and Oregon) we can see multiple benefits over and above other methods of growing. The advantages of growing cannabis in the woods include the following;
- Is fairly inexpensive
- You cannot be easily arrested for plantation ownership
- You can have more than one spot to increase yields as well as reduce risk of losing all of the harvest at once
- It’s potentially organic and eco-friendly.
The Cons of Growing in the Woods
The benefits of growing marijuana (as listed above) in the woods can, adversely, be affected by the risks and liabilities that come with guerrilla growing in general. Therefore, it’s very important to be mindful of a few obstacles that come along with this style of growing.
- There’s always a risk of losing all your harvest. This can come from thieves, law enforcement, animals, lack of care or even the weather.
- It’s not ideal or safe to visit a hidden garden too often.
- Nutrient runoff when growing weed in the woods may be dangerous for the local environment. Try to steer clear of pesticides or inorganic nutrients as far as possible, to avoid any rivers from getting contaminated.
Now that we’ve weighed the pros and cons, we can move on to the details of how-to grow marijuana in the woods in the safest and best manner possible.
How-To: Guerilla Growing Cannabis in the Woods
There are a lot of decisions involved in growing marijuana in the woods. Below is a list of factors that should be taken into consideration. Keep in mind that every location and situation is different – so you must be ready and able to adapt to the area you're in.
Picking the right strain to grow
It is important to choose the right cannabis strains for the region of woods you will be growing in. Some important aspects to pay attention to when wanting to do guerilla growing in the woods, are immunity and resistance ability against to conditions such as extreme moist, pest control, irrigation and watering tolerance, and flowering times.
Auto-flowering and feminized strains are recommended for a few reasons and have become the popular choice for outdoor growers. This choice removes the consideration of the number of hours of light needed for cannabis plants to start flowering.
Picking a Spot in the Woods
Picking a location for planting cannabis in the woods must be done with care and diligence. You don’t want to lose your crops to random blokes or law enforcement, or thieves. Cannabis needs a place that has abundant sunlight and ideal soil conditions.
So how do you go about picking the best place to grow cannabis in the woods? Here are some important guidelines, summarized;
- There must be a water source nearby.
- Keep the pH levels of the soil between 6.0 and 7.0
- Choose places in the forest where there’s ample sunlight – 8 hours ideally
Preparing the Soil
Preparing the grow site requires digging holes and filling them with a mixture of soil with organic fertilizers and materials that will retain moisture for a long time. You can use peat coconut fiber, compost and sawdust among other mediums.
Planting your Seeds
This is where the real work begins. Dig a small hole with your finger or use a stick to dig a few centimeters down into the soil, then place your seed inside and then lightly compact soil on top. Plant as many as your space permits, and lightly water the newly planted seeds with clean water when done planting.
Feeding your Crops
A proper feeding schedule must involve pre-dissolving the fertilizer in water in larger volumes and ratios to make feeding easier. In the vegetation stage, cannabis needs a lot of nitrogen, while during the flowering stage, potassium and phosphorus is more important. Depending on your choice of nutrients and soil mix, there will be specific guidelines for mixing ratios at different phases. Be sure to follow them.
Maintaining your Crops
When it comes to growing cannabis in the woods, ensure that you maintain your plants throughout their growth, from sprouting, to pruning, feeding, watering, and pest and mold monitoring. You can try to incorporate different training methods that improve yields like low-stress training. Even though it’s challenging to maintain an outdoor forest grow when you can’t visit it too often, all it takes is some proper planning.
Keep a grow calendar to know the proper time for harvesting. During rainy season, it’s better to harvest earlier or have a strain with a shorter flowering time, to prevent decay or mold from forming. Trimming, drying and curing can be done at the comfort of home.
Discretion is Key
Your planting area should be located far from paths trampled by hunters, mushroom pickers or fishermen. This is where environmental or conservation enforcement (like rangers or game wardens) will often pass by as well. The best way to check whether people are walking near this place is to attach a couple of paper banknotes to the branches.
In Conclusion: Into the Woods
Growing cannabis in the woods has been done for centuries, and provides a higher quality and lower cost option. Keeping in mind all the risks and work that will be involved into reaping the rewards of a bountiful harvest, it may or may not be for you. If it does sound like your kind of thing, ‘may the force be with you’, and happy growing!