We could have a lengthy discussion on the best way to grow cannabis and there are plenty of advocates for indoor, outdoor, sun-grown in a greenhouse, live soil, custom grow medium or hydroponic.
One thing that cannot be argued is the current environmental impact of cannabis cultivation. Presently in our state, 4 percent of electricity usage is to grow marijuana. Another number that can’t be ignored is the bottom line in dollars, which determines the popularity of a particular product and dictates whether the operation can survive in a competitive market.
Each grower selects lighting systems, growing methods and varieties of products. But what will make them stand out in a crowded marketplace? Does what they see as their niche even matter to consumers?
Justin Tacy, founder of Burnwell Cannabis in Pullman, has experienced many of the challenges facing growers and still has a core ethos to be the most sustainable grower in Washington.
The vision of using a unique cultivation model delayed the company’s market entry until October 2016. The original facilities at Burnwell were built from the ground up to incorporate a HPS lighting system and real soil while also using natural sunlight to its fullest. The buildings in this Tier 2 operation use roofs made of three layers of polycarbonate to allow sunlight to penetrate and diffuse, giving all the plants, no matter their location, the full spectrum of light while conserving electricity.
By using this hybrid design Burnwell can use 30 to 50 percent less electricity than a conventional operation of the same size. Burnwell is the only cannabis producer in Washington currently using this method.
Even though we will never agree on a perfect method of cultivation, we must begin to think differently if we are to achieve any zero-waste production model. I’d like to say that “the future of cannabis is now, at Burnwell.”
Appearance: These pale green hand-trimmed buds are dense and still pliable with a good bounce when pressed between fingers. A nice cover of trichome-encrusted sugar leaf remains to encase the bracts, calyxes and pale orange pistils which are thick with trichomes, giving the flower a soft, fuzzy appearance. Each bud is perfectly preserved with full-length pistils encrusted with translucent-to-deep amber trichomes intact.
Aroma: Without a lab test for the terpenes, I am using my own sensory evaluation to piece together the aromas. Right out of the jar I am hit with an unmistakable blast of white pepper that would indicate beta Caryophyllene, which can aid in reducing inflammation. My next educated guess would be Linalool, that would come out as mint or a lavender-like sweetness that tends to be calming. Also in the main profile, I would include Myrcene for this strain’s sedating and pain-relieving qualities.
Effects: The physical attributes of these flowers translates through to their effects. Smooth would be a good way to describe just about everything about Future. Taking in the smoke is easy as is the exhale. After a few hits the filters seem to move in slowly and a calm softness descends over you and your surroundings. There is enough mental stimulation to engage in a task as long as the body is willing. It wouldn’t hurt to just sit and stare for a while and enjoy the state that Future brings.
My eyes did feel droopy, more in line with body relaxation than with the mental clarity that would work well with stimulating philosophical conversation. Expect a good 3 hours to enjoy a break from your hectic present.
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe to the Coronavirus newsletter
Get the day’s latest Coronavirus news delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter.