High Times Magazine: I have well over a decade of growing the absolute finest cannabis




Article by Mr. Spliff of Cannabis

I have well over a decade of growing the absolute finest cannabis.

I personally consume a lot of cannabis as well. I know cannabis very well. I know the industry and its struggles very well. Cannabis is my life. I have used every kind of plant food, grown in every kind of medium, run every size or room, tried every trade secret and use every available form of lighting technology.

There are so many critical variables when operating a successful garden. As that garden becomes the centerpiece of a growing business it is extremely important to control these variables. Some variables outweigh others, but it is a perfectly functioning system we wish to achieve.

In my experience the most critical variable is lighting. Everything in gardening is about maximizing photosynthesis. environment, plant food, medium and so many other like variables are designed to maximize photosynthesis. As this is the case it is imperative to have a lighting program that really drives the plants to their full potential.

I have used many different forms of indoor lighting. Metal Halide and HPS HID lighting, both single ended lamps and double ended lamps. CHM/LEC 315w lamps in various reflector setups. Many forms of fluorescent and induction lighting. I have used many different builds of LED lighting as well. Companies make claims left and right about better power usage or cooler operating temps or cheaper initial costs and sometimes even government rebates/reimbursement… at the end of the day it comes down to 1 thing and 1 thing alone. Performance.

The SPECTRUM KING Low Pro Veg LED is hands down the most effective and high-performance lighting system I have ever used. It is the way the plants react to the spectrum. Their increased rate of growth and structure of that growth. The way the light drives the plants to build a massive and dense root system. Absolutely perfect and luscious plant tissue. Huge stalks and stems that developed quickly.

Most modern lighting systems are no bigger than a shoe box. This creates a centralized source of light that leaves a lot to be desired when lighting larger spaces of plants. This can lead to non-uniform structure in the plants. The SPECTRUM KING Low Pro Veg is a 4’ x 4’ lighting deck that is so powerful, so consistent and uniform in its broadcast of light. This translates directly to the uniformity and consistency of the plants. I have never seen a lighting system that delivers like Low Pro Veg. I have seen at least a 20% increased growth rate, better plant structure and stronger plant presence with the Low Pro Veg than any other lighting system. The Low Pro Veg being a dimmable unit allows vegetative plants to stay in the same space for the term of their cycle as you can dim the output as the plants get closer to the lighting unit keeping them from light toxicity and fouled plant tissue and form. These lighting fixtures also require little to no environmental control to maintain ideal temperatures in the grow space. The SPECTRUM KING Low Pro Veg LED has so many advantages. Truly professional grade lighting for the modern indoor Commercial/Recreational/Medical cultivator!

Product shot of the SPECTRUM KING Low Pro Veg LED
If a garden is the business and LIGHT drives the garden then it is of the highest importance that your lighting equipment is powerful and consistent. In this ever-growing industry the only businesses that will survive is those with a consistent result and powerful presence. The SPECTRUM KING Low Pro Veg LED is the only light I recommend for vegetative cycle lighting.

It should be noted that I have observed 100+ strains/varieties under the Low Pro Veg. Exceptional results across the board.

Where Marijuana Is Legal: Opioid Deaths And Alcohol Sales Are Way Down


For many years, the biggest threat to marijuana legalization and fledgling legal cannabis businesses was the police.

Fears of DEA agents breaking down the front door at dawn, prosecutions in federal court with its accompanying mandatory minimums or warrantless visits from helicopter-riding police who merely cut down plant and leave—such things happen and are legal—was what kept people involved in cannabis up at night.

But now, with legalization sweeping the country and a vast majority of Americans in support of medical marijuana, the real enemy is revealing itself.

And as recent events in Arizona demonstrated, it’s Big Pharma.

In 2015, U.S.-based companies made up 40 percent of the global pharmaceutical trade, a market share worth $413 billion. These companies are well aware that cannabis is becoming an accepted treatment for chronic pain and many of the other lifelong afflictions now treated by highly profitable trademarked drugs—and some have proven willing and able to take steps to make sure marijuana stays out of the hands of law-abiding Americans in order to protect that enormous bottom line.

“Pharmaceuticals are going to run me down,” Dr. Gina Berman, medical director of the Giving Tree Wellness Center, a Phoenix, Arizona-based cannabis dispensary, told the Guardian. “We have a small business, and we can’t afford to fight Big Pharma.”

The most egregious case to date is Insys Therapeutics. Insys, is an Arizona-based drug manufacturer of pain drugs that contain fentanyl, the powerful synthetic opioid that’s been fingered in many fatal opiate overdoses (including the death of Prince).

Arizona was the lone state where a marijuana legalization initiative failed at the ballot in November—and one of the leading donors to the anti-legalization campaign, with a $500,000 check, was Insys. (Another was Trump-supporting casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, CEO of the Las Vegas Sands Corp. Here are the Vegas nightlife spots to boycott, forever.)

As the Intercept reported this fall, Insys executives openly recognized the threat to its market posed by marijuana. And in a devious twist, Insys identified marijuana as an existential threat and moved to keep it illegal, while developing a new drug based on synthetic THC.

On March 23, the DEA ruled that Insys’s new drug, called “Syndros,” could be marketed and sold as a Schedule II drug—meaning it could be prescribed to patients as soon as this fall.

So far, the FDA has approved Syndros for AIDS-related weight loss and vomiting and nausea associated with chemotherapy—two of the original applications for medical marijuana.

“It’s pretty absurd that federal law considers marijuana to have no medical value, but allows for the development of synthetic versions of the same substance,” Mason Tvert, a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project, which sponsored Arizona’s legalization measure, told the Guardian.

But what about Insys Therapeutics? It’s a company straight out of a Superman comic. 

In December, Justice Department prosecutors took the “unusual” step of charging six former Insys executives, including former CEO Michael L. Babich, with racketeering for its “aggressive” marketing of a fentanyl-based pain drug called Subsys, the New York Times reported. Prosecutors alleged that in order to sell more Subsys, the company arranged lavish dinners and other events for doctors who prescribed “lots of” the drug, and when that didn’t work, the company resorted to kickbacks. 

One Connecticut nurse pleaded guilty in 2015 to accepting $83,000 in kickbacks from the company. Families of dead patients, prescribed Subsys despite prescriptions for other drugs that are fatal when combined, and despite no cancer diagnosis—the drug is only FDA-approved from cancer-related pain—have also sued the company.

In a statement, Carmen Ortiz, the-then U.S. attorney for Massachusetts (before she and many others were summarily fired by Trump administration officials earlier this year), pinned part of the blame for the country’s opiate epidemic squarely on “corporate greed.”

In January, Insys founder John Kapoor stepped down as chairman, a role he took over from the indicted Babich in late 2015. Kapoor’s exit came after Insys’s sales plummeted 40 percent, as Forbes reported. (Wonder if the alleged kickbacks had anything to do with the inflated numbers?)

It’s all very ominous, but in a real way, marijuana activists should let Insys try—and then fail, spectacularly, as they are primed to do.

Insys’s proposed product, called Syndros, is a solution of “oral dronabinol.” Dronabinol is the generic name for another synthetic version of THC that’s been on the market for quite some time, called Marinol—and if you know anyone who has used Marinol, you know what they think of it. Namely, it kind of sucks.

For many patients, fake weed simply doesn’t work. As one patient prescribed Marinol told CBS News, “It might as well have been M&M’s.”

This is almost certainly because as synthetic THC only, Marinol and Syndros both lack cannabidiol, or CBD, as well as dozens of others cannabinoids. And as per the “entourage effect” theory, proffered by luminaries like CNN’s Sanjay Gupta and many more, your body and brain need all of cannabis’s component parts in order for its medical “magic” to work.

But let’s say Insys strikes out with Subsys. It won’t end there.

This is a company accused, with enough evidence to indict in a federal court, of being willing to see people die in order to sell more drugs. And it won’t end with this company.

Big Pharma is scared of weed—terrified—and as any animal scientist will tell you, a cornered and frightened animal is the most dangerous. And that applies to humans.

You can keep up with all of HIGH TIMES’ marijuana news right here.