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Rookie Errors to Avoid When You Are Just Starting to Grow Weed



rookie growing mistakes

If you’re considering growing your first ever cannabis crop, congratulations – it’s a massively rewarding thing to do and even experienced growers will feel envy, a little like seeing someone discover a great movie or piece of music for the first time.


However, you are also embarking on a road strewn with traps for the unwary. Here, we highlight some of the more common rookie errors and how to avoid them.


The bag seed of doom


Oh, it is so tempting. A free cannabis seed that magically appeared in your bag of buds. The buds were great, so surely this will produce a plant that delivers more of the same? Don’t waste your time. The seed could be anything, it’s most likely a male, in which case you won’t get any buds at all, and even if it is not, it’s highly unlikely to produce the same buds that you bought. 


Getting off on the right foot starts with having the right seeds, so visit an online seed bank such as Zamnesia and choose the exact type that you want. There will be more than enough surprises on your growing journey without throwing mystery seeds into the mix!


Trusting to luck with the pH and nutrients


Remember what your mother told you about what it takes to grow up big and strong? The same applies to cannabis plants. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the nutrient advice that’s out there and the associated acronyms, and you wouldn’t be the first rookie grower to throw your hands up in despair, give the plants a good watering and hope for the best.


Even if you think you’ve got it covered with nutrient-rich organic super soil, it counts for nothing if the pH is off-kilter, as this will prevent the roots from absorbing whatever nutrients are there. Most nutrient problems are actually pH problems, so keep that at the right level and the battle is more than half won. If you are growing in soil, the pH should be between 6.0 and 6.5. With coco coir or hydroponics, aim closer to 6.0, or fractionally below.


Underestimating light requirements


Lights are expensive, and so is electricity these days, that is understood. But here’s a word to the wise. If a basic household lightbulb was sufficient, then all the professional growers would be using them instead of their expensive HID and LED set ups!


Younger plants can manage without lots of light, but you need to be able to crank it up when they get to the flowering stage or your buds will be a disappointment. In short, there is a direct correlation between the light intensity and the amount of bud produced. The type of lights you need depend on your personal set up, but if possible, invest in LEDs. They deliver phenomenal intensity without producing heat and are very energy efficient, so you will thank yourself later as they don’t take long to pay for themselves.


Over or under watering


It’s easy to make a blunder on the watering, and it’s something that trips even experienced growers up occasionally. An underwatered plant is plain to see. With thin and brittle leaves that feel dry to the touch, the plant will look generally sickly and sorry for itself. Don’t over-react, but increase the watering frequency and when the plant is looking healthier, consider transferring it to a larger pot.


An overwatered cannabis plant has droopy leaves that are curling downwards and might have yellow or brown spots. The problem is not necessarily that you are giving the plant too much water. It could be down to insufficient drainage or even too large a pot.


Getting the watering just right is a fine art, and different strains of cannabis have different needs. The most important tip is to be on the lookout for signs of trouble so you can react quickly.


Not enough ventilation


When you grow indoors, you can be so busy monitoring temperature, humidity and so on that you forget to give your plants a little fresh air. Inadequate ventilation can lead to mold, which in turn, can destroy an entire crop.


Assuming you’re not growing on a large scale, a free-standing fan should be more than adequate to keep the air moving.


Lack of care with outdoor plants


Ventilation is no problem when you grow outdoors, but it does expose you to a whole new set of risks. In short, it boils down to two things. Don’t forget to protect your valuable property and be considerate towards your neighbors.


As far as the first point is concerned, growing cannabis where any passer-by can see it is never a good idea, even if you live somewhere where it is perfectly legal. Let’s assume your plant will yield 300g. Average dispensary prices are around $10 per gram. Even in the best neighborhood, you wouldn’t leave a $3,000 car in your yard day and night with the keys in the ignition for all to see. By growing companion plants like chamomile and lavender, you’ll disguise the smell, too.


It’s not just thievery you need to think about. You might have been punching the air with delight when cultivation was legalized in your state, but that doesn’t mean your neighbors felt the same. Keep your plants a respectful distance from boundaries so that they are not obvious to the eyes or nose. That’s doubly important if the neighbors have children.


Harvesting too soon


Every new grower finds the first harvest stressful, it’s only natural. Harvesting too early is a shame, as it reduces the overall potency and weight after all your hard work. Be patient and wait till most of the pistils have darkened and started to curl in. Choosing the right moment comes naturally with experience, but if it’s your first harvest, these tips will help you along.


Cannabis growing is a great adventure. You’ll never stop learning, but if you keep the above points in mind, you should be off to a flying start.





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Federal Appeals Court: Maine’s Cannabis Licensee Residency Requirement is Unconstitutional




On August 17, the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the the holding of the US District Court for the District of Maine that the residency requirements of Maine’s Medical Use Marijuana Act violate the Dormant Commerce Clause (“DCC”). The First Circuit has added itself to the list of jurisdictions that have invalidated similar state cannabis laws on DCC grounds, including in the Sixth and Eighth circuits.

Northeast Patients Group (“Northeast”) and High Street Capital Partners (“High Street”) sued the Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services in 2020. The complaint challenged Maine’s requirement that all owners of medical marijuana dispensaries must be residents of the state. The First Circuit’s decision effectively eliminates all residency requirements for becoming a cannabis licensee in the state.

The history here was interesting. In 2020, the state issued policy guidance  stating it would not enforce the residency requirement for cannabis licensees in the recreational marketplace. There, the state was advised by the Attorney General that the residency requirements for adult use cannabis licenses would not withstand DCC scrutiny. Northeast put that theory to the test.

Northeast owns and operates 3 medical marijuana dispensaries in Maine and is wholly owned by three Maine residents. High Street is a Delaware corporation that is owned entirely by non-Maine residents. High Street wanted to purchase all of the equity in Northeast, but because High Street had non-resident owners the Maine Act prohibited High Street from becoming the owner of Northeast’s dispensary operation.

Admirably, to complete their transaction without creating a convoluted business structure of dubious regulatory legitimacy (which we see a good deal of) the plaintiffs filed a lawsuit challenging the Maine Act’s residency requirements under the DCC.

The Dormant Commerce Clause

Without getting in the weeds here, in general the DCC prohibits states from enacting laws that place substantial burdens (discriminate) on interstate commerce. This means that when a state enacts a law that regulates interstate economic activity by favoring its own residents, as with Maine’s residency requirement, it must be “narrowly tailored”.

Broadly speaking, this means the state must be able to justifiable the discriminatory law. That’s the rub: Maine’s (and many other states’) requirement that medical marijuana licensees be state residents is clearly discriminatory against non-residents. In this case, Maine did not dispute that the law was not narrowly tailored and as a result the First Circuit found it unconstitutional.

The DCC and state cannabis regulations

The DCC has been used to invalidate many state laws similar to Maine’s residency requirement for cannabis licensees. In 2019, the Supreme Court invalidated Tennessee’s 2-year residency requirement for owning a retail liquor store. However, in the cannabis context there are several unresolved questions among certain of the federal circuits– including whether the DCC is applicable to cannabis in the first place due to the plant’s federal illegality.

The First Circuit held that the DCC is not preempted by the fact that the Controlled Substances Act (“CSA”) makes marijuana production, possession, and sale unlawful. Further, it stated that the CSA and DCC are “distinct rather than coterminous means” of federal law to regulate state law. Also notable is the majority’s disagreement with the dissenting judge on an important point. The dissenting judge stated that federal prohibition of cannabis prevents a federal court from using its power to facilitate illegal conduct. The idea here is that the court cannot rule in a way that allows for the plaintiff to participate in the cannabis industry because it is federally illegal.

That argument was used by a federal court in Oklahoma in 2021 to throw out a case making a DCC challenge to the state’s residency requirement for cannabis licensees. There, the court dismissed the case without considering the merits of the DCC claim by invoking the “clean hands doctrine”. The court stated that it would not use its power to facilitate (federally) illegal conduct.

While that federal court’s invocation of clean hands may be the minority view on this issue, many states still have residency requirements for cannabis licensees. Challenging them in court is not as simple as having a court rule on whether they violate the DCC.

Here in Washington, for example, the residency requirements for owning a cannabis license remain on the books and last month, a WA superior court judge granted summary judgment in favor of the state in a DCC lawsuit challenging their constitutionality. The court held that the plaintiff, an Idaho man, lacked standing to bring suit challenging WA residency requirements, and, like in the Oklahoma case, did not consider the merits of the DCC claim. It remains to be seen whether the case will continue to an appeal.

What’s next?

This decision may lead to more challenges of similar state cannabis regulations within the First Circuit as well as in other jurisdictions. For purposes of residency requirements of licensees, that would probably be a good thing.

We should say, that not all protectionist state regulations are necessarily bad. Sweeping DCC application to some state cannabis regulations may not be a good thing. Some protectionist cannabis regulations are aimed at addressing real concerns. For example, the consolidation and domination of the market by a few large companies should be guarded against. Some states either have taken, or are taking action to cap the number of licenses that can be issued. Others are limiting vertical integration of producer to retailer licensees.

Love them or hate them, these regulations do have some effect on addressing the market consolidation concerns. Residency requirements on the other hand just serve to stifle development and maturity in an industry that needs both and they do not tend to achieve their stated purposes, which is really a lose-lose situation. So, at least with respect to residency requirements for cannabis licensees, we see the First Circuit’s decision as a positive step in the right direction and setting a good precedent for other cases.

We have been writing here at the Canna Law Blog about the DCC and state cannabis licensing regimes since at least 2015– well before the doctrine was used to challenge state licensing laws. We are happy to see this theory being tested, and getting results to boot.

For a more in-depth discussion of the DCC in the cannabis context, check out the following posts:

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Cannabis is Beneficial for Patients with Advanced Cancer Says Latest Medical Study




cannabis for advanced cancer

Cannabis Is Beneficial For Patients With Advanced Cancer, Says New Study


The big C has a tremendous impact on society and families around the world.


According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were over 1,750,000 new cancer cases in 2019 alone, and around a third of that died from cancer. Unfortunately, there is still no known cancer cure though the evolution of medical technology continues to save more lives. But cancer patients, along with their families, still have to face hardships: treatment with side effects, expensive and addictive medications for pain, poor quality of life, and emotional anguish.


But perhaps cannabis can make things a little simpler.


Researchers from the Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse sought out to analyze how patients with advanced cancer responded to medical marijuana treatment.


Participants for the study were enrolled in New York’s MMJ registry. “The goals of this study were to review the characteristics of patients who received medical marijuana under our ambulatory palliative care program and to determine barriers to access and use of medical marijuana in this population,” says the study.


“Data from June 2017 to June 2020 were analyzed. Patients were included if they had a diagnosis of cancer, were certified by a qualified practitioner in the New York Medical Marijuana Program, and received care at Upstate Medical University,” it reads. “Patients were excluded if no marijuana certificate was found or if they transferred care.”


The researchers found that advanced cancer patients who used medical cannabis had positive effects. “Ninety-three patients (51.5%) received at least one prescription from a New York licensed marijuana dispensary while 72 (39.13%) were certified but never obtained any medical marijuana,” they wrote. “For patients who took at least one dose of medical marijuana, 48.14% experienced an improvement in pain, 44.95% used fewer opioids, and 85.11%   had an improvement in at least one symptom. Adverse effects were low at 3.72%.,” says the study.


The research adds that “medical marijuana appears to have an important role in palliating symptoms of advanced cancers with few adverse effects.” The researchers also called on more studies to determine optimal dose and delivery for patients.


Cannabis For Cancer Treatment Is Promising


There’s still much that even experts are unsure of when it comes to understanding how cannabis can help with cancer. Several other aspects can make it slightly more complicated, such as the cannabinoids used and the kind of cancer.


In another recent study out of Israel, researchers assessed the cancer symptoms of several hundred patients over the course of 6 months. They found statistical improvements in symptoms and a significant decrease in their need for painkillers.


The researchers concluded that cannabis was associated with reduction in cancer symptoms, reduction of prescription drug consumption, and better quality of life. Almost half of the cancer patients who finished the trials no longer needed painkillers. “The main finding of the current study is that most cancer comorbid symptoms improved significantly during six months of MC [medical cannabis] treatment…. Additionally, we found that MC treatment in cancer patients was well tolerated and safe.”


There are also over 100 natural cannabinoids that we all need to learn about, which means that there is no one-size fits-all approach in using cannabis for cancer treatment.


The American Cancer Society acknowledges that THC and CBD have the ability to cause cancer cell death or slow the growth of cancer cells. They may also prevent cancer from spreading. They base it on early clinical trials in humans. “While the studies so far have shown that cannabinoids can be safe in treating cancer, they do not show that they help control or cure the disease,” they say. Certainly more research is needed to maximize the therapeutic ability of cannabis, though there have been many anecdotal cases of individuals saying that cannabis has helped treat their cancer.


There are several studies that support the therapeutic properties of cannabinoids for cancer patients. In fact, cancer patients can benefit in several ways from using cannabis:


  • Managing the side effects of chemotherapy and radiation: Chemo and radiation are among the most common and successful conventional treatments for cancer. However, they can produce several uncomfortable side effects such as nausea, pain, and loss of appetite. Many patients also struggle to finish chemotherapy and radiation treatments due to the discomfort it causes.


Cannabis has been shown to be successful in helping cancer patients manage these conditions: it reduces nausea, improves appetite, mitigates pain, and helps improve sleep. All of these are critical for healing. In addition, several studies have shown that using cannabis together with chemotherapy greatly improves prognosis.


  • Cannabis can kill cancer cells without affecting healthy cells. Whereas chemotherapy also kills off healthy cells in the process, cannabis doesn’t. In one laboratory study, cancer researcher Dr. Matt Dun worked together with Australian Natural Therapeutics Group (ANTG) to come up with a marijuana variety with under 1% THC and high CBD. They found that this combination was effective for killing cancer cells.


“The CBD variety looks to have greater efficacy, low toxicity and fewer side-effects, which potentially makes it an ideal complementary therapy to combine with other anti-cancer compounds,” says Dr. Dun.




Current studies on marijuana for cancer are hopeful, and patients who want to explore using cannabis for cancer are recommended to talk to their doctors. They may be able to provide a dosage and consumption method that is best suited for your specific medical needs.





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The Top Cannabis-Based Products in 2022




Cannabis has a range of health benefits derived from components of the plant. CBD oil creates therapeutic products without the high associated with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Alternatively, THC products can gift the brain and body relaxation, which can help to alleviate physical pain and mental conditions. You can buy cannabis products in creams, oils, gummies, vapes, and much more. If you’re interested in exploring this world, you can find the top cannabis-based products of 2022 below.


Why Use Cannabis-Based Products?

Cannabis is a natural remedy that is proven to help relieve pain, nurture healthy skin, and alleviate symptoms of mental conditions. People enjoy using CBD products because it offers the benefits of full THC but without the associated high. CBD has made its way into many different areas including beauty products, which is one of the reasons for its rise in popularity. As well as the many health benefits of cannabis-based products, its use has been endorsed by high-profile celebrities including Kim Kardashian, who is renowned for setting trends.

Eagle Moon Assorted Fruit Gummies – Delta 8

Delta-8 gummies elevate the CBD experience by providing a clear-headed and productive experience. We suggest getting your assorted fruit gummy fix from the Eagle Moon Hemp CBD Wholesale program, which will help you make incredible savings in the long run. As well as having a great taste, these gummies have an equal balance of Sativa and Indica.

Tropic Mango Gummies – Delta 10 + HCC

TRĒ House manufacture some of the greatest gummies on the market, including these Tropic Mango Gummies, which are rated delta 10 and contain hydrogen. This means that they provide a gradual increase in mood, and they’re less likely to get you high when compared to delta 9 THC products. Every serving of these gummies contains a sizeable 2mg of THC-0 and will be extremely potent when consumed in high quantities – you’ve been warned.

Lemon Jack Sativa Vape – THC-0

Keeping on the TRĒ House train, Lemon Jack Sativa Vape pens are an excellent product, and they come in different strengths ranging from D8 to D10. The appeal of this pen is the combination of zest and sweet cannabis, which has us coming back for more. Further, in comparison to the average vape pen, you will get an extra 500+ puffs, which means your money is stretching further.

Medusa THCP Cartridge

With a name like Medusa, there’s no surprise this THCP product has made the list. Every part of this product is appealing, from the packaging to the great flavor. When it comes to the high, these cartridges provide a calming effect that will bring out the social butterfly inside. This brand comes in different flavors including Zour Tangie, Black Cherry Gelato, and Apples and Bananas. The high you receive will depend largely on the ratio of Indica and Sativa.

Saha Self-Care Nano CBD Softgels

Cannabis products aren’t all about getting high, with CBD coming in capsule form as well, and the Saha Self-Care Nano CBD Softgels are among the best on the market. Each capsule contains 25mg of CBD, which makes it perfect for people familiar with CBD. What makes these capsules interesting is the nanoemulsion technology used during manufacturing, which makes the CBD more absorbable. If you enjoy this product, you can benefit from great savings online through their “subscribe to save” program.

Medterra Pain Relief Cream

Extensive research has shown that CBD can relieve aches and pains, which is why we’ve included this Medterra Pain Relief Cream, which you can buy over the counter. The cream, which is non-genetically modified, is made in the US and approved by the FDA, which increases its trust score. However, if organic products are a priority, you should be aware that this cream contains on-organic hemp. When you shop for this product online, you can earn discounts through loyalty and bundle offers, which are great for chronic joint pain sufferers.

Unoia CBD-Infused Fruit Gummies

Unoia is an affordable vegan gummy with a potency of 10mg, which is relatively low. Flavors include grape, lemon, and orange, which aren’t the most appealing. However, you won’t find any artificial colorings, which is a priority for some buyers. Owned by a diverse group of people, the Unoia brand is dedicated to promoting a lifestyle of self-care and mindfulness, which we fully support.

Joy Organic CBD Oil

Joy Organic CBD Oil prizes itself for brand transparency, which is why you can view the entire growing procedure on its website. The benefits of this potent oil, which contains full-spectrum CBD, are said to encourage a sound sleep during restless nights. The cost of this product is significantly higher than others on this list, but they provide regular discounts to medical staff, teachers, veterans, people on a low income, and first responders, making it accessible to much of the population.

Hempz CBD Conditioner

Research suggests that CDB helps to promote healthier hair, which brings us to Hempz CBD Conditioner. A healthy combination of tea tree and CBD helps to nourish strands and leave hair looking revitalized. The nutrients found in CBD make this product a winner, with the power of reaching deep into the scalp to repair dead skin.

Kush Queen Bath Bombs

Relaxing in a warm bath is relaxing enough on its own, but when you throw in a Kush Queen bath bomb you’re writing relaxation an open invitation. The Kush Queen brand is renowned for blending herbal tea products with 25mg of CBD, which helps to reduce inflammation and fight harmful bacteria on the skin.

Milk Makeup

Milk’s expertise lies in CBD-infused waterproof mascara, which is a must-have product for cannabis enthusiasts. In a similar way to other parts of the body, the CBD in this makeup range helps to nourish lashes and leave them looking fuller.


Cannabis-based products have a range of health benefits ranging from relieving mental stress to reducing joint paint. There are many different products available, and they all have different potency levels and strain build-ups, which contributes to the effectiveness of the product. To unlock the health benefits of cannabis, you should try the products outlined above.

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