Since June of 2018, Oklahoma has allowed legal, regulated sale of marijuana to persons over the age of 21. In doing so, they became the 30th state to legalized marijuana!
Grow Oklahoma: Marijuana Cultivation FAQ
Yes and no. If you are planning on selling your marijuana in a retail store, you will be required to test each product with the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority for safety, accountability, and consistency. If you are not looking to cultivate marijuana on a large scale, you cannot grow your own marijuana plant at home unless you have a medical card—what’s more, the grower must either own the property or have explicit permission from the landlord. Recreational users can only legally have 8 ounces of marijuana in their possession at any given time and are not permitted to cultivate their own marijuana.
Fortunately for patients dealing with serious illness, chronic pain, or other ailments, it’s relatively straightforward to get your medical card in Oklahoma—in fact, this can even be accomplished online! In order to obtain your medical marijuana card in Oklahoma, you must be over the age of 18, have proof of Oklahoma residency and a valid ID, a digital photo in color of your whole face, and a recommendation form from a licensed doctor. The doctor’s recommendation must also be dated within 30 months of the green card application. Some common reasons doctors recommend medical marijuana is for ailments like:
- Acute nausea or lack of appetite
- Chronic pain and neuropathic pain disorders
- Crohn’s Disease
- Wasting Syndrome
- Or terminal illness
But this is by no means a complete list. If you think you might be a good fit for a medical card, start a conversation with your physician about their recommendations for next steps.
Particularly if you live within city limits, this question is met with red tape and somewhat tricky regulations. If you own a property in town, technically that property—even if you own it—is governed by the town. This means that anything occurring on the land must comply with the town’s zoning ordinances. Typically, land is zoned in the primary three categories: commercial, residential, or industrial. Therefore, if you’re hoping to grow marijuana for commercial purposes, you must be sure that your property is zoned accordingly.
Because zoning varies from city to city, it’s important to talk with your town’s zoning department to make sure you are in compliance of the law. Most cities require commercial or industrial zoning for those hoping to cultivate marijuana on a larger scale.
If you live in a more rural area, your odds of being able to grow marijuana on your land increase. Because you are outside of town limits, you must play by the rules of the county—which usually will not have zoning agreements. This means that as long as your county does not have zoning restrictions and you have an adequate growing area or building, you will likely be able to acquire a commercial growers license.
Yes! After marijuana became legal in 2018, local law enforcement has gotten tough on those distributing marijuana outside the law. Oklahoma legislators drew up a comprehensive plan for actionable steps to fortify marijuana laws, including:
- Ramping up the number of inspections of legal grow operations
- Increasing product packaging labeling and quality
- Deeming the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority the only entity capable of regulating products
- Testing products in a standard laboratory environment
- Increasing pre-license paperwork and inspections
- Implementing required reports on growers’ water and electricity consumption
- And implementing a seed-to-sale tracking system for product.
The Seed-to-Sale Tracking System is a comprehensive means of tracking cannabis cultivation, processing, and sales, including any waste that may occur as a result of business. In Oklahoma (and other states where marijuana is legal, like Massachusetts), commercial growers use a program called Metrc to inventory their cannabis plants using radio frequencies and serialized labels. Like it sounds, this program is designed to track all marijuana activity, from the plants’ beginning as a seed to the sale of the final product.
Once you have gone through the commercial licensing process, you will be able to sell your product exclusively to licensed processors and licensed dispensaries. Of course, this is after you’ve had your product tested by the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority.
First, you must decide whether you will be starting from seeds (for more genetic diversity) or clones (for replicating the characteristics of a mother plant). One key benefit of using seeds is that they keep for much longer than a clone, which is essentially just a cut from the mother plant. (For more information on the differences between seeds and clones, check out our recent article on the topic!)
Second, you will have to decide if you will be growing your marijuana outside or inside. There are certain pros and cons to indoor vs. outdoor grow ops. In the following section, we will detail what’s great and what’s not so great about both growing methods.
If you love gardening or tending to plants, cultivating marijuana won’t feel like a chore but a relaxing hobby. There are other more quantifiable reasons why you might choose to grow your marijuana outside, including:
- Solar energy and rainwater. This is huge! By tapping into natural resources like rainfall and the energy from the sun, you can eliminate the sizeable costs associated with special grow lights, electricity bills, or dehumidifiers.
- More room for growth. When growing a plant outside, you can allow it to grow as big as you want while still being able to manage it. This means you one plant can yield up to one pound of dried flower! If you choose to grow inside, you are limited to the space within your grow structure.
- Better for the environment. Growing marijuana outside is not only better for your wallet, it’s better for the environment. By cutting down on your energy consumption and producing plants that give off sweet, sweet oxygen.
One of the determining downsides to growing your marijuana outside is that you are at the mercy of the elements. With inclement weather and the changing of the seasons, you will not have nearly as much control over your plants’ living conditions or nutrients as you would with an indoor growing operation. There are more reasons to love indoor grow operations as well, including:
- Security. If your weed’s under lock and key, you don’t have to worry so much about growing it out in the sunlight. This also affords a certain amount of privacy as well.
- You can grow round the clock. By “tricking” the plant into thinking conditions are always perfect for growing, you can collect more than one harvest a year. You can even cue your plant to flower and restart the cycle immediately after your harvest. This means more product on your shelves!
- Quality. While it takes significantly more resources to grow your marijuana inside, the initial investment and monthly energy bills might be worth the high quality of the product you are able to produce. With consistent, great results with every harvest, you will have more loyal customers down the line and more recurring income.
Grow Oklahoma: Emerald Treez
Once you understand the laws around growing your own marijuana, whether for medical card or commercial purposes, you can see that it’s not so hard to grow in Oklahoma. By clearing all marijuana products through the Oklahoma Medical Marijuana Authority, following Seed-to-Sale Tracking programs, and abiding other regulations, you can keep this market fair, fun, and legal for everyone old enough to be involved.