Last spring, in advance of the opening of the first adult-use cannabis dispensaries, New York regulators began issuing cultivation licenses to farmers across the state. Of the roughly 280 growers now licensed to grow cannabis, FlowerHouse is among the largest. Located an hour and a half north of Manhattan, the 40-acre property boasts 55,000 square feet of greenhouse space.
Its founders have previous experience in California and other legal markets. And like many in the industry, founder Sid Gupta also has experience in the illicit market. "I've been in the cannabis industry since I was a kid," he said.
When Gupta and his partners took over the property last year, much of the infrastructure was already in place. For decades, the farm had been used to grow houseplants, flowers, and herbs. "Now it's still an herb," Gupta said. "It's just a different herb. And we also have a lot of varieties of this herb."
Co-founder Linsay Villareal oversees the grow operation. Cuttings from the so-called mother plants take root, then grow for eight weeks inside the greenhouse, which controls for light, temperature, and moisture, allowing cannabis to grow year-round. Villareal gave us an up-close look at the flowering buds on plants that were set to be harvested the following day.
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