Innovative cultivation practices are starting to emerge on the cannabis market. One Humboldt County collective, with the help of the iGrow system, has already begun taking the steps towards running a successful, controlled, hands free operation.
Humboldt Integrated Cannabis (HIC), a local cooperative comprised of three team members, is using a model of greenhouse entirely controlled and manipulated by a computer system. The group is working with iGROW, who designed the system, to explore a new and innovating way of growing medical cannabis.
The computer, iGROW365, works to maintain what the system’s designers deem the perfect environment for medical cannabis to grow, while saving energy and avoiding pollution.
Monitored every second of every day by the system, plants are raised by this computer greenhouse that can fine-tune itself to help them grow.
“It’s all about the perfect environment,” said Bob, one of the three men working on HIC.
For everything from watering to feeding to lighting, the system is meant to be auto-functional and streamline the entire practice.
iGROW’s Induction Lighting technology mirrors the sun in its true full spectrum. Lights can be used during the day and night to assist the sun in plant growth.
The computer tells an arm to close the curtains throughout the greenhouse to block out sun when necessary, and opens it up again on its own, almost removing the need for a person altogether. The iGROW365 “Light Mover” system is integrated with the custom control system, with the most advanced sensors and motors in the industry being used.
HIC’s current greenhouse operates with 90 lights, each 1.6 amps, in its Light Mover system. Bob said the team is operating with lower-energy bulbs than they could if the system didn’t utilize the sun’s energy. Without this technology, the team would have needed even more lights, and at around four-amps each.
“This is going to become a commercial style greenhouse,” said Dan, “You know, as far as everybody in the hills, the state and the county, they’re going to want to see more places like this than they want up in the hills, where, you know, the rivers are getting polluted.”
HIC has been constructing the greenhouse since June 2015.
This February they began cultivating various strains such as Sour Diesel, Gorilla Glue and Girl Scout Cookies.
“Trying to do things in residences or basements or barns, it’s hard to get that perfect environment,” Bob said. “It’s really really hard. And if you can keep the same environment, you’ll have very consistent cannabis.”
Written by Marissa Papanek