“We’ve completed the side-by-side trials, and the results were fantastic. Compared to traditional trellising netting, our retractable system reduces harvest times by up to 60%. With less plant-touching, it also naturally improves the quality of the flower, and lastly, there is zero waste after harvesting,” says Bobby Mitchell of Green Tree Scrog. As a grower, Bobby has been through quite the journey. After having to burn down a failed hemp production in 2021 (read more here), he is now venturing into medical cannabis in the new Mississippi market. “We’ve applied for our cultivation license this month and are hoping to start production in March.” Throughout it all, Bobby remains passionate about helping fellow growers. “I designed our Green Tree Scrog system to make harvesting time much more efficient for growers. Moreover, as the medical cannabis market in Mississippi is just starting out, we are working to create a curriculum to educate residents looking to enter the industry.”
From hemp to medical cannabis
Bobby explains that medical cannabis got officially legalized in Mississippi last year. As his outdoor hemp production had previously failed due to the harsh outdoor climate, indoor medical cannabis was the perfect opportunity for him to start growing again. Currently going through the licensing process, Bobby is hoping to start his production in March. “We have a warehouse where we’re preparing to grow a few thousand square feet of production. We’ve also invested in a cannabis dispensary; this allows us to control quality and supply from seed to sale, meeting the needs of customers through our own storefront.”
When it comes to genetics, the new medical cannabis growers are doing research on what will most benefit the patients. “We’re not really looking to grow the highest THC or the product that has the most hype. While the strains we are growing may not be the most popular, we want to grow what is best for the patients’ medicinal purposes. Therefore, we have been doing lots of research to make sure our products will fit the medical patients’ conditions,” Bobby says.
In order to ensure that this new venture becomes as successful as possible, Bobby has consulted other growers and industry experts. “We’re working with a plant scientist from Colorado, who is ensuring we integrate all the best practices. We’re working together to create the best environment, methods, and genetics so that we can bring a great product to the market.”
The Green Tree Scrog system at a facility
A new market
The Mississippi market may be starting off rather slow, but that is not an issue for Bobby. “It gives me a chance to ease into the market and not have to rush. Right now, dispensaries are just coming on board, and a few growers are getting ready to harvest. I think Mississippi is going to be a great medical cannabis market. The state has set up one of the most balanced programs out there with some of the most stringent testing requirements. The state is really trying to make sure that there is high quality and clean cannabis going to the patients,” Bobby says.
In order to help along the new market, Bobby is working with a group of educators and industry experts to create an educational program for Mississippi residents looking to come into the cannabis industry. “It’s a new industry, so nobody has been training them on how to grow or manage cannabis or even how to work in dispensaries. Therefore, we are working on creating a state-approved curriculum that will be teaching people how to become growers, processors, and skilled employees. We are trying to ensure that we have good employees and entrepreneurs who can really take this industry and move it forward.”
A closer look at the retractable, permanent trellising system
Retractable trellising system
During his previous hemp production, Bobby’s company was struggling with the traditional trellising systems during harvest. “As a small company, the process was difficult, and the plastic netting can become a tangled mess with the danger of damaging the plants.” That is when Bobby invented his patent-pending trellising system, which is retractable and permanent.
“We’ve completed side-by-side trials, rigorously testing our system against the traditional methods of scrogging, and the results were fantastic. Our retractable system reduces up to 60% of the harvest time over traditional scrogging, and you no longer need any razors or cutting devices, eliminating those hazards. Moreover, it improves the quality of the flower, as there is less potential for degradation and contamination that comes with touching the plants. And with no netting materials having to be thrown out, the solution is zero waste. Overall, in the long run, the system will reduce operating costs as the labor cost goes down, and there is no need to purchase materials every time you harvest. With the feedback I’ve already received from growers, I don’t see anyone going back to the old ways.”