Monday, December 24, 2012
Book Review: Medical Growing - A Garden of Peace
Steve Elliott ~alapoet~ in Culture, Growing, Products
Wednesday, December 12, 2012
My friend Daniel Boughen has a green thumb, and he comes by it naturally. With a family history of organic horticulture, this British Columbia resident had a solid foundation when he began growing cannabis, the world's most medicinal plant.
Medical Growing: A Garden of Peace begins by ably pointing out the evil folly of the tragic War On Drugs, contrasting that with the numerous social, medicinal and economic benefits of cannabis and industrial hemp. Boughen shows a keen consciousness of the forces currently impacting the marijuana community, including the impending danger of corporate control.
In what I personally believe to be one of the most crucially important sections of the book, Boughen contrasts the corporate model of legalization with a more community-centered model. Daniel spares no words in condemning those who would make marijuana just another tool for big corporate profits.
"Monopolistic models for the corporatization of cannabis are now being presented by lobby groups who want to cash in on cannabis in order to sustain the inflated profits of Big Pharma," Boughen writes.
Recently instituted legalization models which place control in the hands of the state, and don't allow home growing, aren't good for cannabis genetics, we learn in Medical Growing.
"To preserve the biodiversity of the species, our access to specific strains grown for taste or symptoms, the people must remain the custodians of cannabis, and keep it in the public domain," Boughen writes. "Recent efforts to patent strains should be resisted; it's just another attempt by corporations to rob us of our natural rights."
Cannabis, Culture and Creativity
The important role of marijuana in culture isn't neglected, either.
"All of the arts have benefitted from the use of cannabis," Boughen writes. "It doesn't cause aggressive behavior or possess toxic properties of other substances, and cannabis is without the addictive profiles characterized by drugs such as tobacco, caffeine, alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamines or prescription opiates.
"Cannabis stimulates thought, creativity, and peaceful cooperation, and many of the other qualities we find aesthetically desirable in human kind, and yet with cannabis prohibition, those are not being stimulated in our society," Boughen points out. "When we prohibit cannabis, we also prohibit our culture's artistic and creative growth."
Grow Your Own
Daniel goes on to clearly outline a step-by-step manual for the growing, harvesting, curing and storage of cannabis, as well as provide recipes for preparing medicinal oils and other concentrates and extracts. Neither novice growers nor experienced veterans will feel left out, as the books techniques and tips cover a broad range of skill levels.
Boughen's clear, easy-reading style lets you know what to expect when growing cannabis, and what to do at each stage of growing and processing. He doesn't hide behind technical language; Medical Growing is written in everyday words, and the instructions call for everyday, low-cost materials found in most any home.
Daniel is a devotee of the "12-1" method of growing cannabis, and thus not a fan of the 18-6 vegetative grow cycle favored by many mainstream cultivators. However, even if you disagree with Boughen's assertion that 18-6 lighting cycles constitute "abusing" the plants, it's worth reading his arguments to broaden your perspective.
If you're confused about exactly what constitutes the 12-1 lighting cycle, see page 29 of Medical Growing for a clear explanation. Short version, instead of just a light and a dark cycle like 18-6, 12-1 involves 12 hours with the lights on; 5.5 hours lights off; 1 hour on; and 5.5 hours off, cycled over a 24-hour period.
Cannabutter and Baking
Since cannabis resins are easily extracted using butter to capture the oils, cannabutter (marijuana-infused butter) has become a popular option for those who use the herb medicinally. Medical Growing has a "Butter and Baking" section with instructions on how to make cannabis butter, and how to include it in recipes for cannabinated treats.
You can also learn how to make your own concentrates, including making hashish and making and dosing medicinal cannabis oils from leaf and trim (of which, using Boughen's techniques, you should soon have a nice supply).
At $19.95 in the United States and $21.95 in Canada, Medical Growing: A Garden of Peace is a great choice either for yourself of for that experienced or aspiring cannabis farmer on your list.
For more information on ordering, visit www.agardenofpeace.com.