How great would it be to grow the best buds, with your best bud? In this 12th episode of Growing Exposed, We take you behind the scenes of a 10,000 square foot facility named Treedom. Here, two friends in the Pacific Northwest, Chad and Joe have set-up shop next to a crematorium where they’re absolutely -pardon the pun- killing it.
At first glance, the flower room may appear to be your typical set up of mixed LED and HPS in this 250 light facility. But as soon as you look down at the plants you will immediately recognize something different.
My cameraman’s jaw dropped when he first saw the field of “Treedom” sized buds on staple strains like 9lb Hammer and Dutch Hawaiian. In reaction to our surprise, Chad tells us that Treedom is only interested in growing weed of one type:”big top-shelf nugs”. He goes on to explain that “the consumer base they have wants that, and so that’s what they will get.”
They care so much about this in fact, that they have implemented a pruning process that allows the plant to finish with multiple tops while removing a lot of the larf that comes with a typical cannabis plant. If you haven’t heard that term before, larf is that fluffy small material left on the bottom of the plant that is not only time consuming to trim, but also brings very little reward.
Author of The Grower’s Handbook David Robinson puts in his opinion on this episode explaining that “you really should avoid growing small flowers.” Why?
“Besides the fact that they are terrible to trim… they take away energy from the primary colas… plus the light really doesn’t penetrate the lower branches and are often the areas which are inviting pests and disease,” he states.
Chad is the first to admit that some of the techniques they choose to use lower the output of the garden. But that decision of sacrificing a bit of yield in order to create a product they know their customer base will love and come back for time and time again is worth it.
During the episode, they also made a really good point on THC testing. Joe clearly states “we are not a big fan of it.” Treedom is a product which is more of a wholesome experience; a connoisseur bud. Treedom models some of their business after the alcohol industry, such as microbreweries.
Chad says the product is “more like a wine. You’re not going for what percentage of alcohol is in that bottle, you’re going for the body, legs, what soil it was grown in. The true connoisseur doesn’t go after the number, they just enjoy the product for what it is.” Joe adds “you can smoke something and it is delicious and it will come it at 16% and some people won’t even touch your product.”
Something I have to mention that I witnessed, was the efficient and hard working crew. We came on a day where they orchestrated a lightning-fast takedown where a room was stripped and cut. It was clear this was not their first harvest.
Inside the drying area, they used rolling drying racks that were left for a two week period allowing the bud to cure while the terpenes and flavors really start to come out. The full-size plants remained hanging upside down while the humidity was controlled electronically with sensors to maintain a constant level.
“Curing must take time, and if you don’t take time and flash-dry to get product out fast, all the hard work you put into your plants is wasted.” Says Chad.
Final Hit: Growing Exposed Episode 12—Treedom
We completed the tour in the packaging area as they explain why they decided to go with slick premium-looking cube containers for the stores. Besides the fact that a large box of jars can be heavy and break, the acrylic cubes, by contrast, are light, durable, and stackable on the dispensary shelves.
Treedom goes all out as they cater to the stores by offering different sizes, like eighths, quarters, halves, and ounces. And for specific stores, Treedom also leaves buds on the cola. They weigh it out extra to compensate for the stem and sell as-is with one beautiful bud. Although their business seems to have grown organically, Chad admits the branding is an area they struggled in the beginning but now says “We are so happy with the name, the logo, the brand, the product… over-all the way this all turned out… this is amazing. More than we could hope for.”