Hemp Fest never gets old, the positive energy never fails to fire up my activist side but all the Hippy’s always rub off on me and I also leave with a full heart and a smile on my face. MzJill and I didn’t get in until Friday afternoon so we missed the opening at noon. Long before we got close to the event we could smell the sweet smell of the herb that everyone had gathered to celebrate. It was a really nice afternoon and the sun was shining but a cooling breeze was blowing off the bay and swirling the music around as we walked into the park. The path into the park was a wall of people leaving the event I am always amazed at how huge Hemp Fest crowds are. We walked around a bit saw Ngaio Bealum and stopped by the TGA booth and enjoyed the sunset with few bowls of Dank. The next day I got an early start because I am always really excited and a pretty hyper person. I love to meet and greet and wake and bake with just about anyone I see, everyone is so cool and in such a great mode. I can’t count the number of people I smelted that day with my full melt bubble but lets just say a large number of people have a good story to tell now. I made up the purest Apollo-13 water hash I could and I was rewarded by friends stopping in mid sentence after having just one bowl. I captured some video during the day and took a good many pictures but I spent most of the time talking with fans and signing books and rolling treys and tee shirts and even bongs. The jams were really good and you can hear a sampling in my Youtube video, over the weekend a few dozen bands perform on the many stages and I have to say I really liked just about all the bands that we heard on the main stage on day two. Later that day we went to hear some of the speakers and we got to see Seattle’s mayor speak. He actually did a good job and it was quite the trip to see the mayor on stage in front of thousands of people actively smoking cannabis and he openly welcomed us to the city.
The thing I saw that was different and that I want everyone to know about is the huge amount of commerce that went on at this event. There was a much larger group of people serving food and a much wider variety hell you could order up a Caesar salad and grilled Cajun salmon at one booth. I am much more a burger guy and as I walked up to one booth to get some munchies the guy asked MzJill if she was with High Times because she was dressed in one of her green outfits with all her adornments. I replied no that I was Subcool and she was MzJill and the people behind the booth all started praising us for our genetics. The owners were medical patients who had grown out our Flav and the Vortex. They wouldn’t even let me pay for my meal which blew me away most of the day just thinking about it. I know cops are known to get free food for their service but a Cannabis Breeder? Far Out Man!! Everyone seemed to be doing a brisk business and even the ATM’s had lines of people standing in front of each one. The economy may be down but our culture seemed to be thriving seems a large number of Americans dig weed. While the politicians seem to be busy ruining our economy counter culture has dug in and are doing quite well because of the plant. While its kinda taboo to talk about there was no shortage baked goods or flowers at the event, people were doing what it takes to survive and I am a huge supporter in that. I got a cool shot of one daring entrepreneur holding up a sign as people walked buy advertising his goodies. The stupid part is because the government refuses to acknowledge our culture and cannabis economy they missed out on untold revenue. I think regulation was on everyone’s minds and one of the speakers I captured on video spoke about it. Free weed is a great dream but the reality is taxing the sale of cannabis goods can and will generate funds to help rebuild our countries infrastructure one day.
Sunday was another great day and just as busy we passed out about 4 jars full of TGA flowers to card holding patients on the house and even though the TGA booth was hoping like mad everyone was polite and gave up there spots in the crowded booth so others could meet and speak with MzJill and myself. Ed came over and hung out and as usual I did my best to medicate him into the stratosphere. TGA’s Washington reps Rob and Rose and there crew who did such a great job for us were impressed that Ed hung out so long and signed books for everyone. I had so much fun working with them that next year we plan to double the booth size and sponsor the festival with a nice donation.
I would like to thank all of the volunteers who without this event could not be held. As the sun set on a glorious day they were looking at several days of cleaning up and taking down everything.
I hope to see everyone next year
-by Subcool - July 4, 2015
Since moving west I have really come to respect outdoor growers and I am amazed by the amount of work it takes to pull off a successful harvest. Growing indoors is certainly not for the lazy but those that grow under the sun are truly farmers in every since of the word.
Getting up before sunrise and working late into the evening is a daily routine here and everyone does their fair share. This garden provides yearly meds for 16 people so there is a lot riding on their efforts and they take it very seriously.
Dioxide a TGA crew member introduced me to Pat last year and I was impressed immediately by his knowledge and attitude about growing. At the time he was working for Advanced Nutrients and listening to him give advice I could tell he was very passionate about Cannabis. As I got to know him better I started to think of him as the Bill Nye of grow rooms and nutrients seemed he had a detailed answer for any question asked of him.
As he got to know me better and study TGA his curiosity about Super Soil grew and this year he decided to use it in his outdoor medical grow. Drew a friend of Pat’s who is also a Photographer, was nice enough to document the progress in the garden before I arrived and the first part of this story will feature his photographs. I am very impressed with this young mans skill with the camera and hope you enjoy his work as much as I do. Long before I even knew of this gardens existence and crew of dedicated care givers did the hard work of prepping the holes.
Two pallets of soil, a ton of worm castings and boxes and boxes of dry amendments were mixed together to create the mother load of all Super Soil batches. Heavy machinery like a hole boring rig and a back hoe were used to help dig the holes and so much work and care was put into each area that would hold a plant. Once all that work was completed it was time to transplant the clones that had been growing indoors under artificial lights. Pat seems to be a master at soil biology and his soil web created by the mycrohase was amazing, in Drew’s pictures you can see the amazing root growth as the plants were removed from their containers and placed into the ground. Like you guys I am lucky that before I got involved such good documentation was done so we can all see the evolution of this medical garden from the start. I will always be amazed at how fast cannabis grows outdoors under good conditions. From my experience with the Garden of Weeden I had seen the phenomenal growth that can occur when cannabis is planted directly into the ground.
I was even more excited to see how the garden would perform using my soil recipe and asked Dioxide to ask Pat if I could visit and take some pictures to document everything and do a story on it once the harvest was successfully completed and Pat happily agreed.
Dioxide picked me up early one morning and we made a drive up into the hills of Oregon. It was a foggy morning and it got worse as we drove up. My first look at the property was shrouded in a dense fog I called Mist and this became the un-official nick name, The Mist.
The Mist is a long narrow property that slants uphill and the garden is located on the back of the lot nestled up against some trees. From a distance the green house looks like any of the hundred you see driving through Oregon but once inside that all changes. Planted directly into the ground are ten plants, one TGA Bloodwreck, one Jack Herer, two Snocaps, two Orange Velvet, three Hawaiian Hindu Kush X Heavy Duty Fruity and one Sage X Afghani. Situated in between are rows of Jack Herer planted into smart pots, these will be moved into a second tent as the main plants get bigger and take up the full greenhouse. It was August 10th the first time I saw the plants and already they were taller than me. Just like with Weeden seeing plants so large made me feel very small. The beauty of this magnificent species in its natural setting is truly awe inspiring. When cannabis plants are grown to this size and in groups like this they seem to create their own climate. In between the rows the temps can be as much as 15 degrees cooler than on the sunshine side. One thing that stands out fast as you walk through this garden is how neat and tidy everything is kept. Drew not only took the amazing shots featured in this story but did a good share of the work as well. The first day I visited there was work going on everywhere and they only took a break so I could shoot video. The plants were trimmed and trained properly and discussions were taking place on the best way to support the side branches once the bud weight started piling up. Pat was actually meeting that day with a building inspector to have an electrical upgrade installed to provide power to the commercial de-humidifiers he had ordered. It was still kind of weird when a county worker came out to inspect while we were filming 10 foot reefer plants but that’s Oregon for you.
So there you have it the first look at the start of an amazing season and some of the behind the scenes work that goes into a medical garden. Early mornings and late nights sounds like any other farming to me and you will see more hard work and dedication in part 2 of this story of the Garden in the Mist.
I am driven up to the location early in the morning and arrive to see the land clouded in a dense “Mist” that seems to almost hide the property. I drive up a gravel road through a security gate that has been left open just for our entry. A nice home sits on the front of the property well kept and the lot rises upward to the rear of the land where nestled in the trees is a long Tube style green house open ( for now) on each end. Shrouded in the heavy mist the whole seen is very surreal and I am almost giddy with excitement at what I am about to see.
As Part two of our story unfolds, the plants have been in the flowering phase since about August 20th. This is when the old timers in the area have taught me the days are short enough for just about any strain to start budding. I learned at the Garden of Weeden that the Kush plants tend to start sooner and finish a bit faster. In this garden in appears the Jack Herer may be quickest out of the gate in that aspect and even on my first visit I can see the first start of buds setting in. The larger plants already tower over my six foot frame and the weight of the limbs had started to drag the plants down. Pat and his care takers are discussing the best way to support these already massive plants. While they talk I walk through this amazing garden where the plants have already started to create shaded areas to hide from the suns glare. It’s hot in the green house and I work up a sweat as I go from plant to plant snapping pictures and then setting up a few ladders to shoot some video.
The main difference I can see at first glance is how neat and organized the garden is. The plants are laid out in a grid pattern and it looks almost symmetrical through my lens even though there are multiple strains in the garden. There is a 4 man crew tending this garden all day every day and as always I am amazed by the amount of work these growers have put in. Outcast by society do these appear to be lazy people with no work ethic? I think not!
I wasn’t able to return to the mist for almost 3 weeks and man what a difference that time made. To start with the workers had come up with a brilliant way to support the plants. Using large bamboo poles and 15×15 Canopy nets they formed large net boxes to support the side buds and a series or plant yoyo’s to support the upper colas. From the looks of the garden it looks like they had been at this project the entire time I was absent. Literally thousands of bud sites had been trussed or netted up to form these massive “Box Plants” you see in the pictures. As I walked into the massive shaded area under the canopy I was delighted to feel the temperature drop as I walked into the rich oxygen enriched air. Large cannabis gardens like this always amaze me and almost make me feel giddy with excitement. The smells of all the strains combined to create one amazing smell and the one word that screams into my brain is “Dank”.Third Visit
The sun came up above the trees my 10 am and I was able to get some really nice shots using the sun and the blue sky as a back drop. At first these plants were being watered each day but it was recommended by Dioxide to actually not water the plants so the root systems would go in search of water forming a much larger root system. I saw no negative effect when the watering schedule was reduced to allow the roots to expand. You can see how full and lush the canopy is in these over head shots of the garden.
I tried to be consistent in my timing of every two weeks, and I made my third trip up to The Mist in mid September. The temperatures in the area had finally started dropping in the evenings and the plants were all starting to form bud set. The Jack Herer that I mentioned as being a faster budding strain was well into budding and even small cola formations were visible. The smell coming from the buds was a lemon mint smell that reminded me of a natural toothpaste and it was quite intoxicating. I took the time to document the growth that had taken place over the two weeks but I was more excited for more return trips when I knew things would really start to happen in a big way.
This is also a time of great stress for the care takers in this garden and the crew moved a small camper up right next to the garden. Each night a different worker would camp out next to the garden just to make sure nothing went missing. This garden is very secure but and hidden but it never hurts to play it safe.
I would like to thank everyone for following along with the story so far and also thank the great design team here at Weed World. As an artist layout is very important and I can’t wait for each issue to see what magic these talented people have performed on my content.
As the final chapter unfolds the weather is pretty bad with early rains, warm days and cool nights and the boys are working overtime to prevent mold and mildew.
The cooler night time temps that came early in October created a need for heat so a huge 300,000 BTU space heater has been installed to try and both warm and dry the garden out.
The plants some over 12 feet tall tower over my head and I have to use a step ladder to get any of the upper buds into frame. I have been documenting growing for a long time and I never stop being excited about giant plants like these. Before I took a single picture I walked through the garden for like 1/2 hour just blown away at what I was seeing. The smell was over powering and heavenly to me as the heavy citrus smell of the Jack Herer combined with all the other fragrances of Cannabis to create one hell of a Dank bouquet. After snapping a few shots of the ginormous plants I got down to business and set up my camera on a tripod with my Sigma 105 Macro lens and ring flash. Shooting anywhere outdoors is challenging because of air movement. The best super macro is done when the subject is perfectly still but I did my best to get you guys some nice close ups to drool over.
The Blood Wreck cutting is named for her dark pigmenting trait and her buds were already changing color. The Jack Herer plants looked close to harvest already and my arms were covered in sticky lemony resin from brushing against the plants. The Heavy Duty Fruity were not nearly as far along but her buds were just plump and big as a mans fist. The Orange Velvet plants were tallest in the garden with top cola’s towering above 12 feet and almost touching the top of the greenhouse.
In my final visit harvest of some of the more mature plants had started pretty much on a branch by branch basis. The room created allowed me to get a few full plant shots just before they were harvested. Some wider than a passenger van I used a 10 foot ladder to get above the canopy to shoot video and I still had to use an extended monopod to get a decent angle. Imagine trying to get a shot of an oak tree inside a tent.
There was some loss due to mildew and mold but as soon as any sign appeared it was quickly chopped out and removed. This is one down side to growing in the mist especially in really poor weather years like this one. Some of the biggest cola’s in the garden had to be tossed out when they got to close to the ceiling of the greenhouse where condensation formed at times. This time of year temperatures can vary outside as much as 40 degrees. The rise in temps cause moisture to condensate on everything and as the sun comes out and the temperatures rise the warm moist conditions are really conducive to mold and mildew. The good news as that it was only about 20% of the total crop and many beautiful flowers were untouched.
The crew was using a commercial trimmer at first but on inspection it was obvious that the hash trim was being destroyed by the machine. As the leaf is chopped off by the blades and vacuumed into a bag it came out looking more like mulch than hash making trim. While it did speed things up the time savings was not worth the loss of quality bubble hash.
Day by day the garden was taken down and as the dried flowers became ready each patient came and took away their legal state limit. There are limits to the amount of dried medicine based on weight a grower can possess, so to stay within guide lines the whole process actually takes longer. The plants slow to mature where left until the end of October when the sun went away for good and temps plummeted and then ready or not everything came down. I asked Pat if he planned to give the location another go the following year and I was surprised when he said no. He explained that even with all of his efforts and investing a great deal in technology he felt the weather was too big of a factor in the area. He did not like harvesting early due to bad weather. Not every location will work and the only way to find out and it wasn’t a great growing season for anyone that year.
I few weeks later I was able to sample some of Jack Herer in flower form and some bubble hash that was made from the trim. The bud was so good I was inspired to include Jack Herer in my book Dank 2.0.
I’d like to thank everyone involved in helping me tell this story, from Dirt Diggler to the growers that helped him. Thanks to Weed World and it’s readers.
-by SubCool - May 31, 2018
Marijuana seeds have many benefits when compared to growing from clones.
The most helpful benefit is that marijuana plants grown from seed do not introduce pests or problems into a garden like clones can.
Another benefit seedlings provide is health and vigor. Sometimes marijuana motherplants and/or clones can be old, tired, or even diseased without it showing visibly.
Many growers opt for feminized seeds, but I feel that you do best, and can have efficient seasons, using regular marijuana seeds.
One key factor for good germination is to select the right brands and strains of seeds.
When selecting seeds, do homework online and find out what marijuana strains the most successful marijuana growers are growing.
Find out which companies are creating the best seeds, and choose carefully.
A seed needs moisture and the right temperature so it can germinate.
I recommend germination temperatures between 70-80 degrees. Temperatures in that range tend to produce a higher ratio of female marijuana plants. Temps higher than that create a higher ratio of male marijuana plants.
Many marijuana growers still use the tried and true method of germinating cannabis seeds in a wet paper towel.
With the invention of rapid rooters, you can get better germination. They’re made from composted organic materials bonded together with plant-derived polymers.
These plugs are manufactured using a scientifically controlled process that yields large populations of beneficial microbes in the medium. We started using them to clone about three years ago and when I tried starting marijuana seeds in them, I knew I would never do it any other way.
I flip the cone-shaped rooting plugs upside down so they have more stability.
They’re made to fit into sectional trays, but that just adds cost and I try to keep things simple and low frills.
Wash your hands well with a disinfecting soap to remove any oils or contaminants before you handle marijuana seeds.
Make a small hole with a poker and place the seed point side up into the plug about ½ inch deep into the rooter.
Place the plugs into a domed container and place it under florescent lights. I like to use plastic/Tupperware shoe boxes stacked on top of each other. They’re low cost and easy to find at any department store. Not everyone has access to a hydroponics grow shop at all times.
Don’t let the cubes dry out. That is really the only thing to worry about.
It’s best not to drown them, but as long as they don’t dry completely I have always had great success using this method.
Once the marijuana seeds sprout, I transplant them into one gallon pots filled with good quality potting soil, but make sure the soil isn’t too nutrients-rich, or it will be too nutritionally “hot” for your plants and will damage your seedlings.
My company, Subcool TGA seeds, works hard to create unique marijuana strains and seeds that are guaranteed to have near a 100% germination rate and to grow out to be exactly what you wanted when you bought them.
Check out the many BigBudsMag.com articles written about TGA strains and TGA personnel, and my internet marijuana television program, Weed Nerd. I can’t vouch for other marijuana seed companies, and I often hear from growers that seeds from other companies have low germination rates and other problems.
What I can assure you is that my passion in live is to help more and more people grow fantastic marijuana, and this is what motivates TGA Subcool seed breeding.
-by Subcool - November 12, 2004
I had the idea to start 20 Vortex seeds and find the best 3 males to do a Apolo-13 cubing project. We were only blessed with one lone male out of 21 seeds started and that kind of defeats the concept of increasing our male selection pool. The good news is I ended up with 17 females. Every one a keeper in there own right. I wasnt expecting so many females and the three I killed early in seed stage would have been no different than these but enough is enough and 17 is enough. I have passed out the extra clones to friends all over and there input will help determine which is the best clone when they finish. I Took pictures of about half of the plants to give you an idea of how nice and even they all are with just slight differences in smell and shape.
The plants were budded in square 2 gallon pots and placed in 12/12 as soon as they showed sexual maturity about 24. I used super soil in the lower ½ and Roots soil in the upper portion. The plant were budded mainly under a 400 watt HPS in a room that was averaging 60 degrees so Im sure they are a lot happier now under a 1000 watt HPS with temps in the 70s. I fed the plants about a week ago as these are really small pots compared to what I normally bud in and it looks like I pushed them just right as just the leaf tips are fried a tad.
Im very impressed with the quality and stability of this many plants from seed and over 75% look just like clones. This is a very strong line and I am extremely pleased as I have been telling people for over a year how good it is based on the 5 seed run we did last year.
As the plants in bud matured and the clones rooted we started passing the females to more local med growers to run in there gardens. While I knew one would stand out every plant was a keeper in my opinion. I kept three that I liked based on smell and structure and ran all three again through the bud room to determine which was the absolute best to me.
The three phenotypes we kept were named after Chat members on my website. Pistils, Speakers, and SuperRV311 were the tag names they received and it was a lot of fun to have each member pulling for his favorite plant.
The clones were placed in full sized 7 gallon pots and run in my normal fasion on the second run.
The Pistils variation was very Apollo dominant and tasted of Spicey Pepper and fruit. The Speakers variety was sweet and fruity but the high was mellow and not as complex as I prefer. SuperRV311 was just right with a combination taste/smell of Grapefruit and Pineapple that got better and better as the sample cured in a very large glass jar.
We culled the other two females and cloned Super to run in our main medical garden. As with many clones by the third run the plant was performing better than from seed and the buds were extremely hard and dense with a liberal coating of resin.
Everyone that tries Vortex from seed finds something they love. The females are all very similar but slight variations are present and make it easy for each grower to find one that has the taste they like the most.
Super was alone this time and on her third trip through the garden she really hit her stride and the Cola shots from her are simply stunning.
Rock hard resin encrusted Grapefruit buds with just a few ambering up at day 54. I will place her in the dark in two days and let her mature to my taste.
She has so much of what I love in a strain, the sour flavor and offsetting contrast of sweet fruit. Heavy resin and a great Bubblehash strain she will be in my garden for some time to come. Enter the Vortex and see what all the fuss is about.
-by Subcool - April 2, 2018
It was about 12 years ago I stared a 10 pack of seeds labeled Killer Queen from a guy I met online nicknamed Vic High. That I first found an amazing phenotype of Killer Queen that was G-13 dominant. If anyone were to be called my “Mentor” it would be Vic. We spent literally hours arguing every point about growing and breeding cannabis. The guy was a cannabis genius and I should have spend more time listening than arguing but through it all he taught me some very important basics about growing and more importantly breeding. Vic was responsible for strains like Space Queen and Grapefruit as well, and then one day he just disappeared from the internet and no one has seen him since. I was left with only a single pack of Space Queen which we used in many of our breeding projects and where our legendary male plant “The Dude” came from.
Out of that original pack of Killer Queen seeds I got 4 nice female plants that we grew out and then cloned and flowered to the end. Two distinct variations were present an obvious G-13 dominant and the Cherry resin monster I actually ended up keeping. At the time the movie American Beauty was out and G-13 was mentioned my Kevin Spacey in the flick and it had taken over the smoking world. Every stoner I know has a buddy that worked at the farm in Mississippi who had magically acquired a cutting of G-13 and we all know it’s a BS story. So with all the Hyperbole surrounding it I was mentally turned off on the whole G-13 craze. Even though a good friend Dayhiker was literally blown away by the G-13 one I discarded. I liked the way the Cherry smelling one grew and it’s amazing red hairs that to me reminded me or Panama Red in looks alone. I loved the cherry cut and we grew it for years, later using it to create one of my first commercially available strains Dannyboy. It was later that I actually met Airborne who convinced me he did indeed have the G-13 and let me grow it that I recognized how potent it actually was. I never really loved the flavor but we weren’t really thinking of medical uses back then just if we liked something or not. So a few years ago I started thinking I had made a huge breeding mistake not working with this particular phenotype since this was before we could actually test strains for Cannabinoids. I lost contact with Airborne years ago so I couldn’t get our hands on an original G-13 cutting. Then 2 years ago I came across an amazing cutting of Killer Queen from a young grower named Titan. It was obviously G-13 leaning and one of the most resin covered plants I have ever seen than I did not breed myself. I say that not in boost but it is a fact that resin production drove my breeding direction for many years and still does. The plant when grown properly is covered from base to leaf tip with over lapping resin heads or Trichomes and we call them now. The resin from this Killer Queen cutting has a particular characteristic of producing bubble hash that appears dry as soon as it comes out of the 90UI Bubble bag. It looks and feels like sand and while it melts it doesn’t seem to want to stick to itself, almost like each trichome is covered in a thin layer of oil. I was extremely intrigued but also busy with other projects so I placed the cutting in storage. During one of our seeding sessions TGA’s lead breeder Dioxide dusted the Killer Queen with some Jack the Ripper pollen and made about 200 seeds. These were grown out by a small number of core TGA medical test growers and the results were amazing, every single grower reporting resin production off the charts and a very strong pain relieving medicine.
The breeders at TGA were very busy trying to keep up with the demand for it’s established strains now that the medical community has become familiar with our work. We are a very small company and do everything by hand ourselves so we often fall behind and run out of many popular strains. Finally catching up some this year we made a larger batch of the hybrid Killer Queen X Jack the Ripper and gave it the name Jack Skellington mainly because we like pirates and it has to be called something. I had seen the results mainly in form of reports from growers and I was blown away the first time I actually saw the strain growing in Super Soil at Grower X’s house. This tour was featured on my show on You Tube, “The Weed Nerd” Episode #37 if you care to check it out. Then I actually smoked some of the cured buds and after 3 hit’s my ears were ringing so I knew it was powerful as hell and we had achieved the desired results. Some strains really cross well together and you get just what you expected and this was the case with this combination. Other times we do all this same work only to scrap the entire project like we recently did with the Oregon Blues project.
Then came my favorite part I made some water hash using my 1 gallon set of Bubble Bags and what we found in the 90UI bag changed history IMO at least as far as Hash making is concerned. The ratio of clean trichome heads with a very thin waxy coating are captured and it has the consistency of sand until it melts back into itself. It has a almost clinical flavor not fruity or skunky just very clean and with a hint of margarita flavoring. I recommend that all the Hash and extract makers take a look at this new hybrid bred pretty much specifically for resin production. Jack Skellington can be found at many of Weed World Sponsors like Attitude Seeds. It takes a good bit to impress me these days and this new creation really blew me away I am just sorry it took so long to release. Check out Episode #37 on “The Weed Nerd”
You Tube Channel Subcool420