Hemp has become one of the most talked-about crops this year among those in the agriculture business. Now legal to produce at a federal level, many farmers and companies are looking toward hemp as a crop with many possible yields.
Hemp is very versatile, being used in manufacturing, health, food and other industries. “While regulations on growing hemp haven’t yet been determined, it’s only a matter of time before growing hemp could become one of the most commonly cultivated crops,” according to a guide to growing hemp at CBD School.
Hemp also can be grown in varied places across North America. We’ve heard of crops in the deep south, midwest and mountainous west that have started up since the 2018 Farm Bill made it legal to grow again in the U.S.
Here are some things to consider when converting some of your acreage to hemp. We’ll give some details about the three types of hemp that you can grow for industrial use, talk about the best elemental conditions for growing it, and give you some details about how HempWave is working to help you out when it comes to the building blocks for a strong hemp crop.
Fiber, grain and CBD
One of the first decisions to make concerns the different varieties of hemp and what they are used for in the marketplace.
Fiber varieties are truly “industrial” in nature. As the CBD School article notes, fiber hemp plants can be used for building materials, paper, fuel and textiles, among other items. For this variety, farmers also harvest it on large scale and must be meticulous about the right harvesting, processing and transporting methods to ensure a successful crop.
Grain hemp has a lot of nutritional applications. According to the Medical News Today website, hemp has several nutritional pluses. Since it has all 10 essential amino acids, it can be a good plant-based source of protein. And it’s also a good source for what’s considered “healthy fats,” which are needed for a balanced diet. Hemp also contains phytosterols, which work to reduce cholesterol and remove fat build-up from the body’s arteries. The CBD article notes that this type of hemp is delicate and requires specific storage methods to make sure it keeps its quality.
Lastly, there is the cannabinoid variety, better known as CBD hemp. This is the phrase you’ve probably seen everywhere in the last few years, as CBD has greatly gained in popularity as a pharmaceutical, dietary and nutritional health supplement. According to the CBD School article, growing CBD typically only uses a female plant, When male and female CBD hemp is grown together, it increases seed production but decreases the CBD level.
The Elements in Play
Favorable conditions should always be considered when deciding if growing hemp is right for your farm or business. The CBD School article talks about the three elements all farmers need to know about – soil, sun and water – and how hemp reacts to each.
When you go to test the soil on your land, you’ll want to make sure that it has a pH reading of 6 to 7.5. That’s the best range for growing hemp. Minerals that are recommended for hemp should also be applied, and the soil should be well-aerated.
As for the sun, the more the better. Thriving plans require 12-plus hours of sun per day, although they can grow well with about half of that time. Mid-spring is the best time to plant in most of North America, to prevent any potential frost damage.
Water and hemp are an important combo in the germination stage. About 20-30 inches of rainfall or applicable water are needed from early growth to harvest-time. Hemp plants also need water increases for better absorption until the beginning of their flowering stages. The entire process should take about 16 weeks, according to CBD School.
Helping you grow your hemp business
With this burgeoning industry already starting to help farmers around the country, it’s important to note that finding the right seeds is going to be crucial to your success.
With supplies of industrial hemp seeds and clones at a premium for the demand, HempWave is doing its part to help farmers and entrepreneurs with this fast-growing industry. HempWave recently acquired two Arizona greenhouses to grow industrial hemp seeds and clones.
The greenhouses have a combined total of more than 210,000 square feet. HempWave plans to grow hemp seeds and clones year-round.