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growing weed outside uk

Growing weed outside uk

Outdoor grows are harder for police to find because they are not situated in built up areas and are less prone to attracting attention. So far this year the only reported police discoveries of guerrilla grows include 750 plants found in woodland near Mansfield in September and 50 plants found in a small woodland clearing near Lowestoft in May.   

Damo and Neil, who are using pseudonyms for fear of being identified, are willing to live with the risk of going to jail for cultivating a Class B drug because they think the country’s ban on the plant is backward, and they don’t like buying weed from dealers. 

Harvesting the plants in September and October is the riskiest part, because that is when they end up driving around with transit vans stuffed with bundles of freshly cropped weed. Most of their grows are near motorways, so they reap their harvest under cover of being road maintenance workers, with high-vis jackets and an official looking white van, usually at night. 

But it’s not just the police or random members of the public they need to take into account, it’s also “rippers” – professional cannabis plant snatchers who often use drones and Google Maps themselves to hunt down the rising number of illegal outdoor grows popping up across the British countryside. 

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They’ve had grow sites near motorway verges and major junctions, near railway lines, quarries, ley-lines between large countryside fields and openings in vast areas of woodland. “The plot needs to give the plants at least six hours of direct sun per day, preferably more. So south facing with a big open sky is ideal. You have to balance being open to let in sun but being hidden enough not to be seen”, says Damo.

As with indoor grows, some get found by the authorities. This year one of their plots was found by railway security near the Eurostar train track and destroyed by British Transport Police. 

The process takes around eight months from start to finish, from finding grow sites in February, planting in April, feeding the plants nutrients such as “fish blood and bone, super manure and chicken shit pellets”, to harvesting in September or October. 

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Damo and Neil both have day jobs. Damo works in an office and Neil is a mechanic. But for the last eight years they’ve been cultivating large amounts of cannabis, hidden in plain sight, next to some of the busiest motorways in England.

Damo and Neil grow around 100 plants, distributed among five sites around England’s south east, harvesting around 40 ounces of organic, gangster-free weed a year. What they don’t vacuum-seal to use over the next 12 months themselves – both men are big tokers – they give out to friends for free and use to make bubble hash and oil.  

Growing weed outside uk

Some outdoor growers like to try to control surrounding vegetation throughout the summer. In particular they like to stop nearby trees and bushes from taking sunlight from their cannabis plants. Outdoor pests such as aphids, whitefly etc can be a nuisance though they can be tackled with traditional methods as well as predatory insects (ladybirds etc).

The diverse, changeable and unpredictable weather can mean that no two UK grow seasons are exactly the same. That can make it difficult to have a preferred strain which will always deliver, year in year out.

What does your cannabis grow calendar look like?

Once your outdoor plants are in position, you should protect them. Some growers use chicken-wire (garden wire mesh fencing) around their plants to protect them from deer, rabbits etc. You can use tent pegs to pin down the fencing and stop rabbits getting underneath. The most determined UK cannabis growers will also plant a perimeter of thorny brambles around their plots to deter grazing animals, dog walkers, hikers etc.

Can you grow cannabis outside in the uk? Yes you can. But growers in different parts of the UK face different challenges. A grower in the far north will face completely different challenges to a south coast grower. Some growers will be able to grow feminised outdoor seeds, whereas others will need to focus more on autoflower seeds. Dates of the last spring frost and the first winter frost vary from region to region, you will need to know yours. Local insect pests and threats from grazing animals also vary around the country. This practical guide explains how to grow cannabis in the UK and explains the month by month timeline for outdoor cannabis growers in the UK, boosting your chances of a successful harvest

What are the best cannabis seeds for the UK climate?

Is it legal to grow cannabis in the UK? Cannabis is still regarded as a Category B drug in the UK, meaning it is illegal to grow, use or possess for recreational purposes. However in November 2018, UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid announced that cannabis would be legal for medical patients with an “exceptional clinical need”.