How does hemp grow?
Updated: Jun 11, 2021
Clones are selected for superior genetics which grow plants with high levels of CBD, in addition to a full terpene and cannabinoid profile. Hempward Farms uses only full spectrum extract, making it critical to maintain consistency in their plants. In Spring, clones are shipped to our farm, where they undergo a hardening off period. Newly acclimated clones are planted into the soil, where Colorado sunshine and Rocky Mountain water enhance the growing process.
The vegetative phase is where the bulk of growth truly takes place. During this time, roots grow outwards as the plant gains height and foliage. The vegetation of the cannabis plants undergoes several stages:
Formation of lateral shoots--increased water at this time encourages the development of more lateral shoots for denser or bushier growth.
Stem elongation--The stem grows to its final height, forming nodes along the way. Leaves and branches develop from the nodes. Sativa strains (which include hemp) have more nodes hence their denser foliage.
The vegetative stage takes about 4-10 weeks. The hemp plant requires low phosphorus levels, moderate potassium levels, and high nitrogen levels.
Flowering Stage--In order to grow plants high in CBD, only female clones are selected. This ensures that the flowers will not be pollinated, and all energy goes into the production of trichomes, which contain the cannabinoids, rather that energy going into seed production. Some brands market "hemp seed oil," and consumers mistakenly think this has CBD in it. This is not true--only "hemp or CBD extract" contains CBD or other cannabinoids.
The flowering stage occurs during weeks 6-12. This varies depending on climate, soil and strain. In Colorado, peak flowering, which occurs when photoperiod is approximately 12 hours of sun, happens in late September. The trichomes become sticky because they contain cannabinoids, which may be CBD, CBN, CBG, THC and more. There are over 100 cannabinoids which have been identified.
Harvesting is a tedious process, because it must be done by hand. After cutting the stems at the base, the plants are dried and cured. At Hempward Farms, this is done by hanging the plants upside down inside a well ventilated structure designed for this use. Once it is cured, which takes just a couple of weeks, the plants are stripped of their leaves and and flowers and taken to an extraction facility. Here, the precious oils are extracted from the biomass, and results in a very highly concentrated hemp extract, which is used in all our consumer and animal products. We take pride in being involved with every step.