There has been a lot to think about and consider after my first year of hemp farming. If I could have done things differently and accurately predicted the future, I would have done a lot better financially. But, the best I can do right now is to fix the things I can fix and run a better ship next year! And believe me, I am so excited for next year!!!
The number one lesson I learned from hemp farming is that it is a lot more work than I expected to harvest the material. It is not easy to get plants harvested and processed. It took a lot of time and hard work. Many hemp farmers are looking to mechanize and produce large amounts of biomass. But, for me, mechanization is not really an option.
I am trying to produce a high quality hemp flower for sale on my website. But, in order to do this, the hemp plants must be treated very gently. They can’t be thrown around my machines and put into piles to be processed without destroying terpenes and overall quality.
I have been very proud to receive so many good reviews from the premium flower that I have for sale. I could not have done this if my harvesting process is mechanized. My only option if I want to get bigger next year is to figure out how to gently move large amounts of plants and to dry them without destroying their quality. This is going to be very important if I want to get bigger.
The second big lesson that I learned is that I need to water my plants regularly in order for them to succeed here in Western Wisconsin. The only land I could use this year was just not able to be watered properly. Next year, most everything I plant will be watered. This will add a lot of money to the costs of planting, and it will take a lot of time to do the water. But, it will make me sleep a lot better to know the plants are getting water even if there are drought conditions.
Another big lesson that I have learned from other hemp farmers and farming in general is that farming costs a lot more money than you think it is going to and the profits are smaller than I expected. In hemp farming you are going to have to spend at least $2000 an acre for seeds and that is just the beginning. It costs more for clones ($10,000), so how is someone going to get rich if they have to go broke first just getting the plants in the ground?
I talked with a bunch of hemp farmers. I’m sure some made good money, but others (like me) are just getting by hemp farming. In any business it’s tough to make money the first year, but in hemp farming it isn’t any easier. It’s a lot easier to lose a lot of money hemp farming than it is to get rich.
If someone has great farmland, that’s probably the number one factor helping them succeed. Unfortunately for me, the land that I choose to use has very low fertility and needs a lot of inputs in order to grow big plants. But, organic inputs are very expensive and need to be applied in mass.
The space needed for harvesting is also very expensive. Luckily for me, my family is letting me use some space for drying. But, this space needs to be renovated and repaired in order for it to work. Everyone I talked to said that they needed more space. And, if it takes up that much space, then you need more help to get it hung up and processed.
So, why after all these learning experiences, do I want to do this again? I think that those who choose this life really don’t have any other life they would prefer to be living. I like being excited about growing plants, starting plants, smelling like hemp, and sweating my ass off harvesting plants. Hemp is a way of life for me. It is who I am, and it is what I do.
I really love hemp farming and cbd has changed my life for the better. Cbd is great for helping me stay emotionally level and is great for keeping me happier. The plants make me happy and the cbd in the plant’s along with the other cannabinoids also chemically helps to keep me feeling better. There are no other plants that I know that help me so much.