Posted on

growing marijuana in colorado

Growing marijuana in colorado

Colorado’s application fee for a cultivation facility is $4,000. The annual renewal fee depends on the number of marijuana plants. 9

Colorado marijuana law permits adults 21 and older to home grow up to six cannabis plants in a residence as long as:

Drug crimes always carry the risk of deportation for non-citizen defendants. Immigrants facing any criminal charges are encouraged to contact an experienced attorney as soon as possible to try to get the charges dismissed or changed to a non-deportable crime. 7

Colorado’s legalization of the recreational use of marijuana happened only in 2012 with the passage of Amendment 64. Adults 21 years old and older now may possess up to two ounces of marijuana for personal use. 2

9. How much is a grow license in Colorado?

Colorado law permits adults 21 and older to grow up to 6 marijuana plants, with no more than 3 being mature plants. Homes with two or more adults can have no more than 12 marijuana plants. A first-time offense of possessing more than 12 plants is a level 1 drug petty offense, punishable by up to $1,000.

Note that people under 21 convicted of possessing pot or of marijuana use face a petty offense charge for being a minor in possession (CRS 18-6-701). Penalties increase with each successive conviction:

But if there were more than 24 plants, a subsequent illegal cultivation offense is a class 3 drug felony. The sentence is two-to-four years in Colorado State Prison and/or fines of $2,000 to $500,000. But the prison term becomes four-to-six years if there are aggravating factors. Examples are if the defendant was:

1. How much marijuana can I grow in Colorado?

No. Colorado law prohibits people under 21 years of age from growing or possessing recreational marijuana.

A first-time conviction of growing more than 12 plants is a level 1 drug petty offense under Colorado state law, punishable by up to $1,000.

Growing marijuana in colorado

Gelt said a bigger factor is consumer preference. While outdoor cannabis might not require as much energy, the final “bud” or “flower” tends to have a tougher, less commercially appealing appearance. That might not be ideal for a customer hoping to smoke it or post a picture on social media. “It doesn’t have the same sticky feel you see on Instagram,” Gelt said.

As the operations manager for The Clinic, a Denver-based dispensary, Baca has turned the windowless space in south Denver into a plant paradise. He said the trick has been to mimic the outdoor environment. Artificial lights fill the role of the sun. Fans pull in fresh air. Pumps feed water nutrients to hundreds of sprouts lined up along long tables.

Ben Gelt, who promotes sustainable industry practices as the founder of the Cannabis Certification Council, said that doesn’t entirely explain why companies have stayed indoors. In the nine years since recreational legalization, Colorado no longer requires vertical integration, and some jurisdictions, like Pueblo County, allow outdoor cultivation and greenhouses.

“It takes a huge carbon footprint,” he said. “I see it as a good thing to let people know how bad it really is.”

More stories about the marijuana industry:

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite Marijuana grows in The Clinic's warehouse in Denver's Overland neighborhood. Tubes running across the ceiling carry carbon dioxide. March 19, 2021.

A recent study from Colorado State University confirms cannabis cultivation has a significant climate impact in Colorado. The research, published in Nature Sustainability, estimated indoor cannabis growing now accounts for 1.3 percent of the state’s total greenhouse gas emissions. For perspective, coal mining has only a slightly larger share at 1.8 percent.

Colorado’s status as a cannabis pioneer doesn’t mean it’s ideal for indoor cultivation, either. The wild temperature swings of the Mountain West mean indoor operations need more energy for heating and air conditioning. Combined with an electricity grid heavy on fossil fuels, the researchers found growing indoor cannabis in Colorado creates almost 50 percent more emissions than an equivalent facility in southern California.

An Intensive Industry

Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite Chris Baca stands in The Clinic’s marijuana grow house in Denver’s Overland neighborhood. March 19, 2021.

“That means if we’re using fertilizers, we account for actually producing those fertilizers,” Summers said.