Cannabis legalization gains pace every day, but more than half of the nation’s police force will still put you in jail for growing weed. That is, if they catch you. We told you all about how to get away with growing indoors in the “Growroom Security Guide” feature in the July issue of High Times, but what about growing outdoors?
The first important step in growing outdoors is obviously picking your location. If you plan on picking a spot in the wild, you’ll need a way to make sure that random people don’t often go through there. You could go high-tech with motion sensors, recording equipment or sophisticated traps, but a simpler method beats all of these. Some growers have gone around and tacked money to trees in an area they want to scope out. Leave them up there for a week or two, and then come to see if anyone came by to pick them up. Untouched money probably means you found the most remote area you could find, and you’re ready to get growing.
Whether your garden is right under society’s nose in plain sight or way out in the wild blue yonder, it will pay to implement some methods of disguising it. You always have the option of hoisting your pot plants into a tall tree and camouflaging them from the bottom, or you could use these simple tricks to disguise your garden right here on the ground; your choice.
Pick The Strain Right
Certain sativas like Durban Poison, Jack Herer and crosses thereof have very mild smells. Girl Scout Cookies, for example, is an extremely smelly strain that charcoal filters can barely handle; anything with Kush genetics will likely be comparably smelly. You might even want to consider planting Ducksfoot, the legendary strain whose fan leaves resemble a webbed duck’s foot. The fan leaves look pretty crazy and unfamiliar, but the leaves around the buds are normal pot leaves like we know and love. We’re not entirely clear on the best place to obtain Ducksfoot genetics, but check out some of these forums for more information as well as pictures of the Ducksfoot.
Grow experts normally recommend pruning for a lot of reasons, but for stealth growing it’s pretty much a must. Cutting the main stem during the vegetative stage of growth stimulates branching and growth from side-shoots, eventually leading to a bushier plant. The bushy shrub-shape differs significantly from the typical pine tree look of un-pruned pot plants. Also, consider cutting off those big fan leaves after on a regular basis. Fan leaves act like flags on a pot plant; the recognizable pattern shouts its identity from much farther away than you want it to.
Keep Good Company
If you plan on pruning your plant to make them bushy, then plant other bushes around them to make them blend in. An incognito ganja farm should not only disguise the ganja, but also disguise the fact it’s a farm at all. Don’t plant your crops in a row. Mix it up to look like a patch of random bushes, or even distribute the plants throughout several acres of forest if you have the space and nobody stole the dollars bills you baited them with. If you’re growing in tight spot in the middle of the forest, try to find an area with the most brambles and scraggly bushes so nobody gets tempted to traipse on through. You could plant nettles around it, and just wear waders and other skin protection when you go and visit yourself.
Drown Out the Smell
Those who grow right under societies nose will need to worry more about the smell, while those wild blue yonder growers bank on never being found. Cannabis is smelly, there’s not much you can do about that. That leaves you with the need to drown out the smell with other smelly plants. Plant whatever you can that is smelly and that will grow in your climate. You could use mint (which is extremely invasive and smelly) as a ground cover around your cannabis, and plant smelly plants around like rosemary, lavender, lemongrass, etc. If you plant smelly flowers, just make sure its flowering time coincides with that of cannabis.
Give It A Makeover
If you plant your cannabis next to tomatoes or around apple trees, you could hand plastic fruit on it like Christmas ornaments. Get creative; there’s a million and one ways you could disguise a pot plant without breaking your budget. Remember, it will probably be cheaper than getting caught.