An Inside Look at a Super-Sized Marijuana Grow Site

The Aspen Times has an in-depth article about the largest marijuana grow site in the state. Turned down by Aspen, the facility ended up taking over the old Coors warehouse in nearby Glenwood Springs.

It's located in Glenwood Springs and owned by Ron Radkte of Green Dragon. The building is 26,000 square feet, enough to make it the state's biggest so far, but by the time Radkte is finished with improvements, there will be more than 60,000 square feet of grow space and storage.

Radkte is committed to both the quality of his product and environmental concerns. It sounds like the "Whole Foods" of marijuana: [More...]

Some details:

One area of the warehouse has multiple pallets loaded with several tons of crushed coconut husks and another area with a dozen pallets of perlite. The two products are used together as a soil to grow the plants in.

Instead of commercial pesticides, Radtke is using sprays of natural rosemary and citrus to combat spider-mites.

All of the products grown will be tested for "contaminants, molds, pesticides and other foreign substances" by an independent testing facility, similar to ones used by grocery stores.

The fertilizer will be food-grade -- safe for humans to eat or drink.

As to electrical power, the facility is equipped with 2,500 amps at 480 volts, which will easily accommodate future growth.

For security, there are 200 video cameras that will display on 4 inch screens.

A lot of thought has gone into how to maximize the use of space and power consumption:

One room in the warehouse will be used as a 3,800 square foot grow space using only natural light from June through October. A special composite material was installed on the roof to expand the natural light and increase growth production.

...The roof of the warehouse has a level section that Radtke is looking to turn into another 16,000 square feet of growing area.

Green Dragon has already been accepted into the Glenwood Springs Chamber of Commerce.

Radtke's retail stores will sell both medical and recreational marijuana, with different counters. There may be as many as 70 different strains.

Our goal isn’t just to have a product that’s 20 percent THC,” [General Manager] Kennedy said. “We want to offer choices to our customers. Not everybody wants the strongest marijuana possible; some people like the taste, the color, the smell or just the mood they feel from different strains. There are so many other components to a plant that’s beneficial or desirable to our customers other then just the THC count.”

In addition to pot, the store sells "edibles, smoking paraphernalia, clothing and vaporizing products."

One detail not included is the number of jobs Radkte and his grow facility are providing. There will undoubtedly be bud-tenders, trimmers, edible producers, inventory control persons, sales persons, extraction technicians, security staff, administrative positions, just to name a few.

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  • Display: Sort:
    200 video cameras... (none / 0) (#1)
    by Mr Natural on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:05:35 PM EST
    Hard to imagine a Federal Grand Juror staying awake to watch a couple of thousand hours of evidence recorded those cameras - unless the Feds provide methamphetamine from one of their other busts.

    Misprint in the post title... (none / 0) (#2)
    by kdog on Mon May 12, 2014 at 02:15:55 PM EST
    should be "An Inside Look at Heaven".

    lol; imagine the streaming video... (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by Mr Natural on Mon May 12, 2014 at 03:57:02 PM EST
    StoNet TV

    Imagine (none / 0) (#4)
    by b3citizen on Mon May 12, 2014 at 05:49:35 PM EST
    How wonderful it would smell in that grow space!

    Two words (none / 0) (#5)
    by Mikado Cat on Mon May 12, 2014 at 09:44:48 PM EST
    Organic fertilizer, might be the dominant smell.

    WeedMart goes against my hippy view of a few plants in the back yard. I wonder if growing your own is going to be restricted, or require special security etc.?


    Clearly (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by CaptHowdy on Wed May 14, 2014 at 04:19:31 PM EST
    You have never been around a pot field

    out of curiosity, is he also planning to install (none / 0) (#6)
    by cpinva on Tue May 13, 2014 at 02:04:21 AM EST
    a solar array, to reduce the use of electricity generated by polluting methods? seems like that would be the next logical step.

    The roof is semi clear to let in light (none / 0) (#7)
    by Mikado Cat on Wed May 14, 2014 at 03:44:15 AM EST
    To grow the plants, solar would block the light.

    OTOH just speculating, solar has a pretty long payoff life for a startup to use it.