Out in the East Coast’s first commercial marijuana field last week, hundreds of “frosted” marijuana flowers glistened, the fall light dancing off the lucrative cannabis oils.
The gamble had paid off.
Nearly an acre of carefully tended marijuana plants had delivered something far from guaranteed: a commercial-scale harvest cultivated outdoors in a climate ill-suited for it.
Mackie Barch and a team of workers wore plastic sleeves and latex gloves to fend off the plants’ sticky and smelly resin, clipping stalk after stalk in what industry experts said is the first such harvest in this part of the country.
“It’s a race against the clock to get it out of the field,” said Barch, owner of the medical cannabis cultivation company Culta, which launched the multimillion dollar experiment.
Marijuana farms in Northern California and Oregon have been growing pot plants outdoors for decades. Farms in Colorado are plentiful, too. But commercial growers on the East Coast until now have cultivated marijuana in warehouses or greenhouses.
Partly, that’s because the region has been slower to adopt legal marijuana industries. But mostly, it’s because the humid climate and variable temperatures on this side of the country create less-than-ideal conditions for outdoor cannabis. [Read more at The Washington Post]