While we can hardly believe that it’s September and the summer season is coming to an end in Iowa, we are excited to start winding down our growing season and begin planning for harvest!
Our plants currently vary from five to nine feet in height, and are entering into the final stages of growth.
As the days get shorter (beginning this week, days in Central Iowa are around 13 hours), our plants will enter the flowering stage, which is the last stage of the plants’ growth. During the first week or so, the plants will continue to grow in
height, but they will also begin to sprout pre-flowers, which are small white hairs called pistils. These are the beginning of our buds, which are the part of the plant that are processed into CBD oil after harvest and drying.
During this stage, it is also important for us to switch our focus from vegetative growth to flower development. We will shift our organic fertilizing program from nutrients that support growth to those that encourage flower production.
As time progresses, these flowers continue to develop. We will see the buds increase in density for several weeks during the mid-flowering stage and then become heavy and sticky as trichome density increases in the late-flowering or “ripening” stage.
Around October 1st, our plants will be tested by the State of Iowa for their THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) content. Under state law, CBD hemp plants must have a concentration of less than .03% THC. Once the State tests our plants, we have fifteen days to harvest our hemp crop. We will harvest by hand in mid-October and hang our crop to dry and cure. Those are the first stages of processing our organic hemp into full-spectrum CBD oil.
Stay tuned as we get ready for harvest and processing!