With cannabis cultivation, novices may think it’s a matter of putting a seed in the ground and growing a plant at the whims of mother nature. However, those who’ve attempted to grow their own cannabis know it’s quite a bit more complex than that.
Whether you’re growing six plants or 6,000 – consistent, precise conditions and environmental controls are the keys to high-quality cannabis. Fortunately, today there are new and emerging tech tools to help at all levels of cultivation, from personal use to commercial production.
CULTIVATION TECH FOR HOME GROWERS
Cannabis Tech recently spoke with cannabis legend Ed Rosenthal about his new Cannabis Growers Handbook, and he advised, “You wouldn’t use a ten-year-old computer book to fix a problem with your computer today,” and likewise, technology is changing the way we grow cannabis too.
Today, home growers have many more options for high-tech cannabis grow closets and systems to maintain the perfect environment for their plants. Cannabis grow closets can range from simple tents equipped with the necessary lighting and ventilation for traditional soil-grown cannabis to elaborate automated hydroponics systems.
Whether you’re a novice or a veteran grower, Super Closet offers a variety of cannabis tents and fully-equipped setups for starting or expanding your own home garden. On the other hand, if you’re looking for something a little more discreet, Green Goddess Supply offers a hydroponic cannabis closet called The Armoire, which is designed to look like a high-end piece of furniture.
SENSORS FOR CONTROLLING COMMERCIAL CULTIVATION
Controlling the environment in a 5’ x 8’ grow tent is much different from controlling the conditions in a 10,000 square foot greenhouse or indoor cultivation facility. With the evolution of IoT and sensor technology, commercial cannabis producers now have the ability to monitor, control, and even automate environmental conditions.
In commercial cannabis production, many factors can negatively impact the final outcome of the crop. Thanks to the development of powerful sensors, commercial producers can monitor their investment 24 hours a day, seven days a week, from anywhere.
Mobile technology advances combined with a series of sensors help farmers in every industry monitor various conditions within their operation. Sensors, like those available from Growlink, allow producers to monitor and track conditions, including:
- CO2 levels
- Vapor Pressure Deficit
- Light Levels
- Soil Moisture
SAAS FOR DATA ANALYSIS
The raw data collected from a sensor array is basically useless unless you have the software to crunch the numbers. With the SaaS solutions available today, growers have a broad range of available information right at their fingertips.
Using the available raw data, SaaS solutions like Growlink Pro allow producers to collect meaningful data and then actually present it in a useful way with visualizations, artificial intelligence, and other integrations for enhanced functionality.
PARTICULATES AND POLLENS
Cannabis is a CPG product, and as such, mitigating particulates like mold and dust is a critical part of producing a safe product for the consumer. Additionally, a growing problem in the industry is cross-pollination. Pollen from nearby hemp fields can infiltrate the ventilation system and pollinate the cannabis plants causing yield decreases and crop loss.
Particulate sensors can help producers be aware of any potential problems that may be floating through the air. Pollen Sense sensors continuously sample the air for pollen, molds, and dust and can even differentiate between species of pollens and molds.
TECHNOLOGY SIMPLIFIES THE PROCESS
Can quality cannabis be grown without all the fancy bells and whistles? Absolutely. Can it be done consistently at scale without the help of technology? Not without an incredible amount of labor. Automation and control help ensure that compliance and consistency are top priorities in commercial cannabis production.
Just as technology has changed the way we live and work, technology is also changing the way we grow. Providing cultivators with the right tools to grow a superior product makes it easier to provide consumers with a safe, consistent, and clean product they can trust.
THE AGE OF INFORMATION
Home growers and commercial growers alike are reaping the benefits of a less stigmatized approach to cannabis. Not so long ago, even the companies who supported cannabis cultivators had to hide in the shadows or disguise themselves. Today, as marijuana moves into mainstream, a myriad of solutions are available to make growing cannabis fun and rewarding regardless of the size of your operation.
If you’re interested in learning more about cannabis grow systems, sensors, lighting, or other necessary equipment for your cannabis operation, check out our new Cannabis Tech Marketplace to find whatever you need!