Sunday, December 9, 2012

Cleaning up the grow site...keeping unwanted attention to a minimum

Once all of the manicuring, and trimming waste and by-products have been been disposed of properly, the budding guerilla grower must now head back out to the cannabis garden, turning his/her attention to the multitude of garbage, equipment, tools, and “stuff” that accumulates over the course of the growing season. Every bit of grow mix, mulch, compost, and fertilizer that is carried in to the growing area is wrapped in some sort of paper or plastic, or comes in a cardboard box, or is contained in some sort of plastic bottle or container. Most of this stuff usually ends up stashed, in and around the clandestine marijuana garden site. Making matters worse, the manufacturers of these gardening materials usually package them in bright colored plastics. The grow mix that I buy (Heco #1) comes in four cubic foot bales that are white and yellow! Not very good for camouflage purposes out in the woods, where, once the cold season hits, everything turns brown.

I have one garden location that is situated in a treeline, between a swamp and a cornfield. Because of the fast growing corn, and wetland, plants, the garden is in a very well camouflaged location. During the growing season, because of the surrounding plant cover, I can stash a multitude of tools, wrappers, bags, buckets, and other growing stuff out there, with little worry that it will be spotted from a distance. I figure that it is better to leave it there for the entire growing season, than to be spotted, and perhaps questioned about it, on my way back from the gardening chores (although, your gardening chores should always be carried out late in the day, on a Saturday or a Sunday, to minimize the chance of unwanted observation, or contact).

The first year that I grew out there, I left a large, white, plastic bag on the ground, near the garden, weighted down with rocks, and covered over with leaves and topsoil. I left it there so that it could be used for tool storage during the next growing season. It was down at ground level, so I figured that it was well hidden. I drove by the area the next year, in the early Spring, just to check things out, and, lo and behold, I could see that white plastic bag, from the road, at least a quarter mile away.

This is a very big deal, because it could lead hikers, farmers, rippers, or law enforcement directly to the clandestine cannabis garden. Eventually, someone will decide to hike back there to see what the "white thing" in the woods is. When they get to the location of the garbage, they have also reached the location of your cannabis cultivation site, consisting of easily spotted turned-over earth, fencing, support stakes, watering jugs, etc. Most people these days will quickly figure out that this is a clandestine marijuana gardening location, and maybe come back to visit in the Fall, in order to help themselves to your entire crop. If law enforcement, or the farmer who owns the land, finds the garden, the area may wind up being “staked out”. When your crop is ready, you may end up facing a farmer, holding a shotgun on yo, while he calls the sheriff. If the cops find the garden, they may come back to check on it in the Summer or Fall, and stumble upon your budding garden. They figure that this is an easy bust, because they already know exactly where the garden is located. No planes or choppers will be needed to find this garden!

These clean up chores usually take place after all of your trimming, manicuring, and packaging task have been done This means that it will usually be late in the year when you return to your garden site. Usually, you will want to get out there before the snow starts falling, or it will be hard to find any of the garbage and junk that you are after. There is not as much forest cover at this time of the year, so you want to take even more care now to avoid being spotted at your marijuana garden. Do your clean up chores late in the day, on a weekend, timed so that you can leave the area just as the sun is setting. The less light, the better. It is much harder for someone to spot you at twilight. Plus, during the weekends, everyone is at home, partying, watching football, and toking up...not really wanting to venture out into the cold autumn weather. Also, get this done before hunting season so that the woods are not full of hunters who can spot all of your junk and garbage from a distance. His is especially true if you are trespassing. Deer hunters like to smoke (and steal) marijuana too! The marijuana grower will not be wearing an orange reflective vest on his way out to the garden, and a lot of these hunters will shoot at anything that moves, as long as it is not colored bright orange!

As you make your way back to your marijuana gardening site, the first thing that you will notice is the matted, trampled down trail that you have left while traveling to/from your grow during the growing season. Trails tend to stand out even more once the surrounding vegetation and wild grass dies back. If you really want to freak yourself out, look at google maps "satellite view" of your garden site. If you have been growing out there for more than a couple of years, there will be trails that are easily spotted from the air, no matter how careful you have been to hide your entry to the area. It is very, very hard to haul in amendments and water, over a long period of time, and not leave a very visible trail leading directly to your growing area. Thank God that the trails are only this highly visible from the air, because, unless they are tipped off to an area, police planes and helicopters can only cover a very miniscule portion of potential growing areas, no matter what you have been told to the contrary.

When I travel back to clean up my garden site, The first order of business is to cover , and camouflage, the trails that I was responsible for creating during the past growing season(s). The first order of business is to stop at Menards, Home Depot, or any of the larger hardware or gardening stores, to pick up a large (25 pound) sack of generic lawn fertilizer. This stuff is usually rated at an NPK of anywhere from 45-10-20 to 15-5-10. Almost any ratio will work, but I usually choose the blend with the highest Nitrogen content. As I walk the path that I have trampled down for the past six months, I grab large handfuls of the lawn fertilizer, and broadcast it heavily over the trail, and to both sides of the trail. The presence of this fertilizer will give the weeds and grass on your trail a huge growth spurt once the warm weather sets in next Spring.

The areas surrounding your guerilla marijuana garden are also trampled flat while you are doing your digging, mixing, watering, and other cannabis cultivation chores. Trampled down vegetation, turned-over ground, and bare soil all around your garden make it much easier to spot from the air. I always save at least half the fertilizer, and spread it around all areas of the marijuana garden site. Again, the goal being to stimulate the rapid, and heavy, growth of cover plants all around the garden area, once the rain and warm weather set in next season. For those of you organic purists, who may be concerned about spreading chemical fertilizers around in the wild, this small amount of fertilizer is washed away by the Spring rains, and completely used up by the fast growing weeds, and grasses, long before your marijuana plants go in next season. This technique works very well; the new growth that sprouts up in the Spring is very thick, very tall, and very green, all in a very short period of time. You might say that the weeds "grow like weeds", completely covering and masking any evidence that there was a heavily trampled down trail there just a few months prior.

Even better, once the new growth covers your old trails, blaze a new trail (carefully) five to ten feet to either side of your old trail. Use the new trail for the rest of that year, and then move back to the original trail next year, giving each trail the fertilizer treatment every Fall. After a few seasons of this, your trails will be so thick with vegetation that you will find it hard to find your own marijuana cultivation site, even though you know that "it is back there somewhere". And if you cannot find it, chances are that the rippers and law enforcement will have an even harder task in trying to locate it!

Here is a short excerpt from my book "Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets: Hints Kinks and Tips for the Clandestine Cannabis Grower" concerning this subject:

I added some 46-0-0 urea to the vegetation surrounding my guerilla grow. It came in pelletized form, about the size of a BB. I just took a handful and scattered it throughout the perimeter of my grow area, in a strip, about five feet wide. By early June, I was already noticing the effects. The brush and weeds are much thicker and taller than they were last year. The extremely high Nitrogen content of urea will very quickly improve your security situation."
"I do pretty much the same thing, except for a different reason...after I am done hauling in water and fertilizer to my grow holes, I hide my trails by sprinkling 44-05-05 pelletized lawn fertilizer along my trail as I walk back to my vehicle. Any high-nitrogen lawn fertilizer can be used, but be sure that you buy it in pelletized form, it is easier to broadcast by hand that way. The pelletized form is also much less smelly. I bought a 50 pound sack of this stuff for $13 a couple of years back. I usually use about three pounds worth to cover a trail that is about 100 yards long. I then apply extra fertilizer at the entrance to the trail, as well as at the approach the the marijuana garden site, hoping that the camouflage will spring up even faster and thicker to hide my entrance way(s)."

Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets” can be ordered at:
As you approach your guerilla marijuana garden, stop about 25 yards from the garden site, and start looking around for anything that you might be able to already see from that distance...stuff like fencing, water jugs, buckets (as mentioned before), tools with bright colored handles, soda or beer cans, plastic, and anything else that may catch your eye. Anything that can be spotted from this distance has to be removed from the marijuana garden, or very well camouflaged. Do not just check from your entry trail location, circle the entire garden area slowly, watching for anything that catches your eye.

I am going to mention the subject of one of my blog posts from a few weeks ago, because it is sooo important...a cannabis root ball (stump) that is left in the ground, at the garden site, can be used by law enforcement as evidence that a marijuana growing operation was conducted using that garden plot. The grower can be charged with marijuana cultivation based on the presence of marijuana plant root balls alone. The most important part of a guerilla cannabis garden clean up is the removal of all root balls from the ground, along with the removal, and disposal, of any and all leaves, branches, and stems that are left over after cutting the plants down at harvest time.

I am going to repost the excerpts from my book "Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets: Hints Kinks and Tips for the Clandestine Cannabis Grower"below, just to reinforce how important this removal, and disposal, task is:

"The feds are charging me with 100+ plants! The state police came in, and they found nothing; all of the plants had been chopped down, except for 10 moms. The feds then came onto the case, saying they had evidence of more than 100 plants being cultivated. Remember, 100 plants triggers the federal statutes. All the feds found were old root balls, and some stalks, a total count of 112 to be exact. They also found around a pound of dried herb, along with a bunch of my hunting guns. The state charged me with the manufacture of less than 10 pounds, along with the charge of simultaneous possession of firearms, at least until the federales hand down their indictment. My research reveals the plants are defined as having leaves and roots! Can they really charge me with only root balls as evidence? My lawyer says that we have to wait and see what they really have, it is still very early in the case."
It doesn't matter which state you are in. This is about the federal DA building his reputation, the asset forfeiture laws, and you rolling over on someone you know, as a confidential informant. If you own a nice home, expensive vehicle, or have a fat bank account, every jurisdiction out there is hungry for your money. And the feds are much less restricted in their methods of disposal of forfeited assets than most states are..................."
"I hate to tell you this, but the evidence of a crime seems credible. I do hope that there were no leaves attached to any of those stalks? If not, hold out for the jury trial option. To prove their charge of 100+ plants, they'll have to have all of those stems, and root balls tested, in order to prove that they are indeed marijuana stems.................."
"I have no idea of where you are, but Michigan law states clearly that you cannot be charged for root balls or stems....the feds may be something totally different though?"
"It all boils down to the feds being able to prove that a crime has been committed. Root balls reveal the existence of a once living cannabis plant. The feds do not have rules that determine what is a legal plant, and what is not. They have gone after people for rooting 100 cuttings! If they test the root balls, they can determine the maturity of the plant when it was cut down............................."
"Me and a guerilla partner got raided a few years back. When all was said and done, they counted 360 root balls, and they charged my partner with a class C felony. I escaped on my four-wheeler, down an old creek bed for about two miles, and then into the deep woods. My partner got 30 days in county jail, and had to pay a lawyer $8000. Not too bad, for the amount of profit that was involved from the harvest, but they can definitely charge you with a crime using only root balls as evidence."

Damn, and here I am, sitting around in February, with piles of dried leaves, and stems, inside, along with root balls outside everywhere, just because I'm too lazy to dispose of them! I am getting up off of my dead ass right now, and heading outside to uproot the root balls. Although, it would have been a hell of a lot easier if I had done it right after harvest, before the ground was frozen solid. I am then

going to burn all of my left over stems, branches, and leaves in my backyard fireplace, late tonite. I plan on fueling my burning program with a couple of 40 ouncers of Steel Reserve malt liquor, and a giant spliff of "Pinewarp" (Texada Timewarp X Purple Pineberry), my favorite Indica strain!

Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets” can be ordered at:

Carry in a garbage bag with you and proceed to fill it up with any, and all, plastic wrappers, fertilizer containers or boxes, papers, black plastic pots and plant flats, and any other miscellaneous junk that has collected in and around the grow site for the past six to eight months of marijuana cultivation chores. Use gloves so as not to leave fingerprints on the garbage bag or on the garbage. This garbage bag must then be carried out, and carefully disposed of. Again, I would not recommend disposing of this stuff in your own garbage...burn it if at all possible.

The bad thing about plastic, that is left onsite, is that the wind will eventually blow it around, where it will become caught in a nearby tree branch, waving like a marker flag to any one looking in that direction. We have all seen the plastic grocery bags that get caught up in tree branches along the highways, flapping and waving proudly in the breeze. A lot of these bags are still there a year later if no one physically removes them. Once the tree leaves start to grow back in the Spring, you could have a large piece of plastic waving in a nearby tree, without your even knowing it. While, at the same time, you are hauling in supplies, and marijuana plants, from another direction. This is a good way to get caught. Do not get lazy here! Clean up well; remember, you are only borrowing your outdoor marijuana garden from Mother Nature, you do not own it, she does. Go for the good karma!

Many times, rope, string, wire, and plastic plant ties are used to support the plants branches while they are heavy with buds. Cut down, and remove to the garbage bag, all of this support material. Plastic, string, wire, and rope, tied to the surrounding bushes and tree branches will stand out like a sore thumb once the leaves fall off of the trees.

If you pump water into your cannabis garden via plastic irrigation tubing, or some kind of hose or pipe system, follow the water lines their entire length (if possible), inspecting them as you go. If they have unburied themselves, rebury the lines, covering them well with topsoil. Remember, a helicopter equipped with FLIR (forward looking infrared) cannot use it to find a marijuana garden, but FLIR will detect the temperature difference of water lines that are lying unburied above the ground. The helicopter can follow the water lines directly to your garden, or, worse yet, your water source. It would be really bad if that water source is a well or a tank at your house, or a friends house.

Fencing, chicken wire, etc, that can be taken down, should be rolled up and wrapped in burlap or canvas. Stash the rolled up fencing deep under a bush. One that grows all the way down to ground level. If possible, throw some brush and topsoil over the top of it to further add to the camouflage. If you string up fishing line to scare deer, take the line down, It will reflect sunlight, and it can be seen from quite a distance away.

Many stores now sell (very cheaply) 5 gallon, plastic buckets, which have become popular with outdoor marijuana growers. The outdoor cannabis cultivator has found a multitude of uses for these things. Drill three or four drainage holes in the bottom of one of these buckets, and it becomes a large, heavy duty planter, capable of supporting a large plant for quite a while until it is moved into the guerilla cannabis garden. These buckets are also used by growers to haul water from nearby water sources, such as ponds, or creeks, as well as for hauling topsoil from one location to another. If these buckets, even the green colored ones, are left in the woods over the winter, they are very easy to spot from a long distance, once the surrounding vegetation dies back. The plastic they are made from is very reflective, and even the green ones stand out from a long distance. Buckets that were well hidden, during the Summer, surrounded by three foot tall wild grass, become very visible once that grass turns brown in the Fall and Winter.

If the grower is using these buckets to haul water, then they will have to stay at the garden site. It is too much of a security risk to attempt to carry them in during every visit to the garden. Buckets that will be left at the garden site during the growing season should be well camouflaged. Starting with the green colored buckets, sand the sides down thoroughly with some very rough sandpaper in order to roughen up the plastic surface. Next, paint the outside of the bucket with a camouflage pattern, using spray paint. While the paint is still wet, roll the outside of the buckets in a small pile of peat moss. The peat will stick to the wet paint and add immensely to the camouflage effect. A bucket that is camouflaged like this is very hard to see from even ten feet away. Store the camouflaged buckets at least 50 feet from the garden site, with the open end down (upside down). This is because the inside of the buckets are not painted with the camouflage paint and peat moss.

Watering jugs should also have been sanded, and painted camouflage colors, before being brought to the growing area. If you want to keep the watering jugs onsite, over the winter, stash them at least fifty yards away, but do not put them somewhere where you will not be able to find them next year! I do not know how many times that I have stashed something deep in the woods, and then have not been able to find it come Spring, once all of the new vegetation starts growing and changes the landscape.

Same with the 5 gallon buckets...if they have not been camouflaged (stupid) and you cannot remove them from the area, stash them far away from the outdoor marijuana garden, wrapping them also in burlap or canvas. Burlap and canvas material weathers over time, and blends in very nicely with the surrounding foliage, helping further with the camouflage situation.

If you trimmed a lot of tree branches back during the growing season, in order to allow more sunlight to penetrate to the plants, carry a can of "pruning sealer" in with you.

Here is an excerpt from my book "Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets" concerning trimmed tree limbs:
"When you start trimming branches, and chopping off tree limbs, you are going to end up with little patches of light-colored wood ends, standing out against the dark-green, or brown, background of the woods. Trimmed branches stick out like a sore thumb; very out of place in mother nature. Stash a can of pruning sealer spary in the bushes, close to your grow. When the time comes to start trimming back branches to let more sun into your site, spray the cut ends black with this stuff.

For added security, spray paint the pruning sealer green and brown using spray paint. If you stash this stuff at your garden site, cache it 20 to 30 yards away, wrapped in a thick, canvas tarp, or a burlap bag, for protection from the elements. Wear work gloves whe you handle anything that you can leave fingerprints on, especially a spray can. Also, watch for paint induced fingerprints that you might leave if you are not wearing gloves."

Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets” can be ordered at:

Once all of the clean up has finished, use the remaining time that you have to enlarge your garden for next season. Using your shovel, turn over an additional ten or twenty square feet of soil, chopping it up with the shovel blade as you continue.

Think about it; a garden that is in a secure site, and that has safely given up a couple of large crops, can be made larger with each passing year. Starting with a six foot by six foot marijuana garden (36 square feet) that is one foot deep (36 cubic feet of cultivated soil), and yields say, two ounces per cubic foot, meaning a 72 ounce per year (4.5 pound) yield. That garden can be enlarged, each year, by ten cubic feet, which is not really a whole lot of digging...a couple of hours, tops!

In five years time, that same garden will hold approximately 86 cubic feet of cultivated, fortified soil. At two ounces per cubic foot, which is a very low yield for a properly cared-for, outdoor guerilla cannabis garden, this works out to a yield of 176 ounces (11 pounds). This yield is realized growing the same number of plants, because each plant will now grow larger, due to the massive amount of extra topsoil for the roots to spread out into. Remember though, yields like this will demand a lot more irrigation water during the vegetative season, as well as a lot more fertilizer and soil prepared. TAKE IT SLOW, and remember the old saying: “Bulls get rich, Bears get rich, but Hogs get slaughtered!”

Alright, now that all of the hard work involved with removing roots balls, disposing of plant waste, cleaning up the cannabis garden, and properly storing tools and equipment over the off-season, has been accomplished, it is time to sit back and do some celebrating. By this time, some of your earlier harvested flowers should be semi-cured. If you do not have any fully cured product from last years crop, break into one of this years mason jars and roll yourself up a little reward. You deserve it! Do not get too comfortable though, because very soon it will be time to start planning next years crop; selecting and ordering strains, cleaning out and maintaining your indoor grow room, which will be used to start next years seeds, root cuttings, and to maintain your mother plants. Winter is also the best time to carry all of the needed supplies out to your multitude of guerilla marijuana gardens, either on your back, or through the use of an ATV, or snowmobile, and a pull-behind trailer. Enjoy your time off, because the professional marijuana growers vacation time is short...there is always something to do, whether it is the growing season, or the off-season. And, remember, your grow house is now full to the brim with a large amount of illegal contraband. Try to stay out of trouble, and try not to cause any yourself. Keep a low profile until the product is fully cured, and completely sold out. The first page of my book “Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets” tells it like it is for the outdoor marijuana grower:


All of the above growing advice is obtained from the 8.5 x 11 inch, 369 page outdoor cannabis growing manual titled:



Insider secrets and techniques from the people out there actually doing the growing

I obtained a copy of Guerilla Growing Trade Secrets: Hints Kinks and Tips for the Clandestine Cannabis Grower during the Fall of 2010, and, I must say, that it is everything that the author, Vinnie Kaz, claims it to be...and beyond! This book is 369 pages long, with no pictures, and contains more information, tactics, and techniques than the professional, outdoor cannabis grower could ever hope to apply to their own operation.

After devouring the information found in this book, (I read it three times,cover to cover, and took notes) I went from a three pound a year, “semi-pro” outdoor cultivator, in 2010, to a confident, professional outdoor grower. Finding myself unemployed since 2010, and very close to becoming homeless, I took the info in this book, and I flew with it!

Over the Fall and Winter period (late 2010-early 2011) I dug out, and installed, ten ,very large, guerilla marijuana gardens, to which I applied as many of the techniques, tricks, hints, and tips found in this book as was possible for my first year of commercial cannabis cultivation. In the Fall of 2011, I harvested more than 40 pounds of extremely high grade, dank, potent, mind-blowing Indicas. This stuff had a taste like I had never experienced before. There was so much weed harvested that I could hardly process it all. I had three clotheslines, more than forty feet long, hung in my pole barn. The lines were completely filled with drying plants. It took me more than two months to process all of the weed. But once it was finished, and cured, every ounce of it was sold in two months time. I have had people tell me that they have never smoked weed like this before!

Fast forward to 2012: I used the advice given by Vinnie Kaz in the book, and, instead of going out and finding additional garden locations, I simply added about thirty square feet to each of my ten existing gardens, and I grew the same number of plants. I concentrated on the chapter titled “Fertilizers:chemicals vs organics”, and added various exotic rock dusts and mineral powders (K-Mag, Gaia Green Glacial Rock Dust, and Azomite), which, along with Vinnies recommendation on using leonardite, sulfur, and ground oyster shell dust (as a substitute for dolomite lime), increased my yields another 25% as compared to last year! Those same ten gardens yielded just over 50 pounds of super high-grade Indica buds.

If you are a so-so outdoor guerilla cannabis cultivator who wants to move to the next level (or move up three levels in one season), this is the book for you. This textbook on cannabis cultivation is loaded with all of the lost, old-school techniques used by the original northern Californian growers back in the day. It also goes into techniques used by mainstream organic gardeners to take their legal plants (tomatoes, squash, collards, fruit and nut trees) to absolute mind blowing yields! I cannot say enough about this book, it has literally saved/changed my life. I will never be short of money (or weed for that matter) again. Thank you Vinnie Kaz for putting in the time, and effort, that it took to catalog all of these high yield, cutting edge, cannabis growing techniques. I will be forever grateful.

The Unknown Grower

Morgantown, Kentucky

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