Outdoor Cannabis Harvest Underway at WeedMD’s Strathroy Farm

Article by Dale Carruthers, Kingston Whig-Standard

Outdoor marijuana harvest underway at WeedMD's Strathroy farm Dale CarruthersDale Carruthers Curtis Wallace, head of cultivation at Weed MD, stands Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020 among some of the nearly 19,000 plants that will be harvested during the next few weeks from the company’s 11 hectare farm near Mt. Brydges, Ont. Derek Ruttan/The London Free Press

WeedMD workers spent the day cutting off the tops off cannabis plants and stuffing them into 100-kilogram containers that were taken away by a waiting tractor.

The crates of cannabis were taken to a nearby greenhouse to be dried and processed into edibles, extracts and topicals — Cannabis 2.0 products that first hit store shelves in January — and pre-rolled joints, head of cultivation Curtis Wallace said.

Staff at the Southwestern Ontario pot producer, and a team of temporary workers, started harvesting the nearly 19,000 plants on the company’s 11-hectare farm southwest of London last Friday.

“This year, the harvest should be complete by Halloween,” Wallace said.

WeedMD became one of the first cannabis companies in Canada to grow outdoor marijuana last year, yielding about eight tonnes of biomass sold as dried flower and concentrate products.

It’s too early to predict what this year’s yield will be, Wallace said, after two early frosts.

Last year’s first frost came Oct. 15, but this season, the region was hit with two overnight frosts in mid-September, he said.

“When that happens, what you’re going to see is the bud production is going to slow greatly,” he said. “That is going have an effect on the overall outcome of the plants, but the majority of our field took it very well.”

Wallace credited a woodlot surrounding part of the farm for blocking winds and mitigating frost damage.

WeedMD grew seven strains on the sprawling Strathroy property, a former asparagus farm, including the company’s popular Ghost Train Haze and the new Black Sugar Rose strain.

With some plants reaching nearly three metres, workers first cut off the plant tops, containing the largest buds, then harvest the rest of the plant 10 days later.

Machinery has played a larger role in this year’s harvest, Wallace said. “It’s more of a commercial-scale process.”

Read the full article here.

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