I first started conversing with @plant_n_prosper over instant messages, both of us trading knowledge and troubleshooting our gardens. Like some of the illest lyricists from the east coast, @plant_n_prosper always drops raw knowledge from his time-zone three hours ahead. But this time we weren’t here for our usually freestyle microbial battles. This time I felt the valuable knowledge P&P offers had to be documented, so he agreed to let me pick his brain on the Bounty Blog for everyone in the ProGrower Nation to benefit from!
If you were to “label” yourself based on your technique, howdo you grow? Organic, veganic, synthetic?
My garden is grown using true living organics (TLO). Although, now I’m being turned on to veganic growing methods and effective microorganism (EM) by Dragonfly Earth Medicine (DEM) and other growers.
I’ve been dying to try their Essential Cocoa, haha. For those out there who aren’t familiar with DEM and veganic growing methods, do you mind giving us a quick run down on what you mean? Can you also elaborate on The Rev’s TLO concept also?
That Essential Cocoa is amazing. Call it what you’d like, but the cold I had prior to drinking it is gone now (3 days later). That’s just the tip of the iceberg though when it comes to their products. I’m not getting reimbursed for saying any of this, but I recommend them to everyone because their products literally saved my garden from a powdery mildew outbreak. Repeated foliar sprays of their Natural Mystic combined with Lush Roots840 completely dehydrated and eradicated the mildew.
DEM is a veganic (meaning they practice growing plants WITH plants) company that is on the up-and-up right now amongst the organic growers out there because their methods are proven to be highly effective. Their products emphasize plant immunity and sustainable soil food web systems. They use science behind their methods and they’re eager to explain why their products work so well, which puts the gardener back in control because they know WHY they’re doing what they’re doing…rather than just doing what the label calls for.
Very kind people as well. I’ve never met them personally, but they’ve helped me countless times through email and Instagram. I would say their page is one of the most, if not THE most informative pages out there.
Anyway, The “Rev’s TLO concept” as we call it is an organic agricultural concept. It emphasizes paying close attention to feeding the soil rather than feeding the plant directly through using chelated nutrients commonly found in bottles (even “organic” bottles like Botanicare’s CalMag+). Don’t get me wrong, these bottles are great if you’re running a synthetic grow, but steer clear if you’re trying to build microbiology in your soil. This is why I back companies like DEM and you (North County Bounty). You have the right idea in mind when it comes to growing practices in my opinion… and I know for a fact TLO is the best method for producing clean medicine. Respect!
I remember your struggle with the powdery mildew (how long did the battle last???), glad to hear it’s over.
The “battle from hell” as I called it, lasted for a month of trying different things and failing repeatedly. I wasn’t using science; I was going by sales gimmicks. That was my main problem I think. Once I found the root of my problem I attacked it there and beat it within a week.
So how long have you been growing? What media, food and techniques did you use in your first grow? What’s changed?
I’ve been growing for 7 years on and off, but only passionately for the past 2 years. My first grow was in organic soil using Humboldt’s organic line of bottles and I completely fried my plants. I thought more was better back in those days! After failing with soil I moved on to hydro and was successful, but still didn’t produce the type of medicine I was after. I read Teaming with Microbes and the next day I chucked my hydro kit for some bags of soil and here I am today. So you could say I’m back to my roots, but I’m properly inoculating them this time around thanks to Jeff and other organic gurus out there. Thanks guys.
What is your current set-up? What’s the line-up (genetics) looking like with the ladies?
My current set-up was actually gifted to me from a fellow grower using a mix of breeders’ strains and his own personal X’s, so we’ll be playing “where’s Waldo” come flowering, that should be exciting. There are a lot of generous people out there willing to help others for nothing in return. I think that’s what makes this community so strong. I love it.
A little concept I like to think of as #growershelpinggrowers. Before tangents surface and we turn this into a freestyle, let’s move on. Have you made any crosses of your own? Does the genetic hunt entice you? What has been your favorite strain to grow?
I haven’t, but I see myself getting into that one day after I establish myself a little bit more. I still have a lot to learn. Pheno-hunting is always exciting for me. I grow on a very small scale, but I keep my eyes out for keepers. Some of my favorite strains to grow are Dinafem’s Blue Widow (CBD rich), Positronic’s Jack Diesel, Barney’s Blue Cheese and Dinafem’s Critical Jack. I’m a sucker for anything with Jack Herer in it.
Why do you grow? When was the first time you thought “hmmm I should grow”?
I grow for so many different reasons. I think I really do it for the zen-factor though, there’s something about raising living things, or in this case… plants. I can go into the garden upset and frustrated, but 10/10 times I’ll leave relaxed and at-ease. That and of course I grow to provide myself with my own medicine.
My first-ever desire to grow was out of sheer curiosity. I popped 6 beans and only 1 made it till the end. I think I harvested 3-4 grams from that plant and never dried it correctly either. Haha… ahhh humble beginnings.
Is there a specific P&P technique that you have adapted and made your own?
I can’t think of anything I do in my garden that hasn’t been done before to be honest. I’ve adapted my techniques from a spider web of sources. Microbiology books, all different styles of growers (including you, Miss MMJGeek!), Korean/Japanese EM (effective microorganism) farming methods practiced way back when. I try to stay as open-minded as possible.
Is there one key piece of advice you think every beginner and experienced grower should know?
The best advice I can give to ALL growers, both novices and vets, is to simply STAY HUMBLE and be kind to other growers. That’s what makes this community flourish. An open mind is like an open book in my opinion, and without it you won’t be getting too far.
Do you have any idols?
Yes, John Kempf. Here’s a pretty deep excerpt from one of John’s latest Soil & Nutrition conferences:
“Oliver Wendell Holmes once said, ‘I would not give a fig for simplicity on this side of complexity, but I would give my life for simplicity on the other side of complexity,” and I find the same to be true is that many farmers do what they do without thinking about WHY they do what they do. Once we understand the system (soil food web) and why we’re doing what we’re doing, and we have a conscious intention behind our actions and we really understand how the overall system is designed to work… it becomes very simple again.”
– John Kempf
I love that you listen to the microbe army and that you spoil them in order to spoil your girls. What valuable go-to source would you point anyone to who is interested in brewing teas?
Dr. Elaine Ingham is one of the best when it comes to compost and compost teas. I’d literally type her name into YouTube and watch anything that pops up because it’s all gold. You can check out her website at: www.elaineingham.com
What are your future plans in the medical marijuana industry?
My plans in the industry include working for companies/growers that support my cause of organic medicine, spreading the word on organic growing practices and their benefits compared to chemical fertilizers, and riding that wave into caregiving for patients eventually; that’s where my true passion lies. I think once we recognize this as a medicine rather than a recreation, will we be able to unlock this plant’s true potential. I hope soon laws will shift and we’ll be able to conduct the studies needed in the U.S. to advance the medical side of the industry, rather than taking a step backwards in my opinion and push recreational laws.
Do you have any closing comments?
Thanks for having me! It’s been a pleasure to geek-out with you as always, and much respect goes out to everyone at North County Bounty. Take care, folks.
Our instant messages have always been epic battles and the transient lyrics have been cluttered away 10 scrolls up. Thanks to P&P for letting me document some lyrics and pass along some knowledge.
Thanks for reading and happy growing!
You can find @plant_n_prosper on Instagram