By Mikal Jakubal
Checking the weather report this morning, it looks pretty typical for August in SoHum: 100° today, cooling down to the high 80s during the week. A small reservoir-worth of water will get dumped on pot plants here in the next day or so. By the weekend, however, they’re forecasting a slight chance of rain showers, a rarity for August.
While some rain would be a welcomed by veggie gardeners, pot farmers dread late-summer rain. The moisture from even a light sprinkling can weigh-down the branches to the point where they snap off. Once the plants develop more “buds” (flower clusters) in the coming weeks, this will be an even bigger problem, along with mold that can form when buds hold the moisture in. To get a sense of why this is so worrying, a fat branch on a heavily-bearing strain might yield anywhere from $30 to $100 worth of finished product. Imagine a rainstorm where $20 and $100 bills are dissolving away in front of your eyes.
Most growers who are on top of the game have already used some combination of stakes, wires and large mesh cages to support all the main branches on their plants. The mere threat of rain on the horizon will send everyone else out to the garden with stakes and tie-wire to get caught up.
Two of my documentary peeps have their plants completely tied up, the other two, not at all. I think I know what I’ll be filming this week.