A hempsational short video about the history, uses and amazing benefits of this powerful plant: Cannabis Sativa. Please hempducate yourself about hemp and share this knowledge and information with others!
Thank you to our friends at Hempstead Project H.E.A.R.T. for all their hempducational information and outreach. Their love and passion for the progress and liberation of Cannabis Hemp is acknowledge and appreciated.
One of the things I like that they share is, "if you agree with the benefits and uses of hemp, then take action to spread the knowledge, and if you don't agree, then you don't agree."
Please visit: www.hempsteadprojectheart.com to learn more and TAKE ACTION.
Excerpted from Hempstead Project H.E.A.R.T.
we encourage people to look and see for themselves the history, facts, and realities of hemp as a renewable resource. if you’re in agreement we ask that you act on your agreement in ways that are practical for you. let it be known.
A brief discussion by David P. West with special reference to work by Small and Beckwith.
The question I'm most frequently asked concerns the so-called "pollination effect." This issue devolves around the notion that marijuana growers will attempt to hide their plants in hemp fields and what would happen to these plants.
Cannabis compares (I have done so often) with maize (corn): in maize you have the "sweet corn" type that people eat, and "field corn" type that is fed to cattle and pigs and chickens. Breeders of the respective types take great pains to prevent their inter-pollination.*
The same is true between high and low THC types of Cannabis. High THC ("narcotic, "drug" or "marijuana") Cannabis and low THC ("high CBD," "fiber," "industrial," "hemp") Cannabis readily cross pollinate. The offspring tend toward characteristics intermediate between the parents. Nobody wants them. They're "good for nothing."
Actual research demonstrating this was published in 1979 in the now-classic work The Species Problem in Cannabis by the Canadian researcher, Dr. Ernest Small.** Here is an excerpt of that report which I have annotated for clarity for the non-specialist.
Cannabinoid Composition of F1 Hybrids between "Drug" and "Non-drug" Strains of Cannabis
E. Small and H. D. Beckwith. 1979. In E. Small, The Species Problem in Cannabis. Corpus. Toronto. p 121-127
Abstract Twenty-five sets of F1 hybrids [an F1 hybrid means the plants grown from the seed of a cross pollination between types] , mainly between "drug strains" of Cannabis (those in which the resin is chiefly of tetrahydrocannabinol[THC]) and "non-drug strains" (those in which the resin is composed chiefly of cannabidiol [CBD]) were examined. The majority of these were chemically intermediate between their respective parents, showing no dominance toward either parent.
[So, in the plants grown from the resulting seed (the "F1" generation), THC went down with respect to the "marijuana" parent and up with respect to the "hemp" parent. The converse was true of CBD.]
...It appears that generally crosses between drug strains and non-drug strains produce plants of intermediate potency.
...[In studies of drug strains...] The importance of protecting the [genetic] stock against contamination from pollen by non-drug strains is stressed by the fact that the amount of THC may be halved in hybrid plants.
What these authors don't go on to discuss is what would happen next, in practical terms.
We know, then, that the first generation has been degraded by half. If that "mixed-blood" seed is grown hidden again among hemp plants that will again provide the pollen, then the next generation will again lose by half, gradually by this means (it's called a "backcross" by plant breeders) converging toward the hemp type. But it is unlikely it would get that far as the material would be undesirable after the first contamination.
This is why marijuana growers want to stay away from hemp.
This discussion excepts those instances of plant genetic work where such crosses may be made intentionally in order to transfer specific genes, such as disease resistances, between varieties.
Small, Ernest, 1979 The species problem in cannabis
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HEMP AS WEED CONTROL
D. P. West, Ph.D.
Weed control is a recalcitrant issue in crops grown for organic certification. One approach is the prior use of a competitive crop. In his textbook, Modern Weed Control, A. S. Crafts cites as potential weed smothering crops: millet, Sudan grass, sweet clover, sunflower, rape, barley, rye, reed canary grass, crested wheatgrass, sorghums, buckwheat, soybeans, alfalfa, cowpeas, clovers, hemp, Jerusalem artichoke, and ensilage corn. Of these only one, hemp, can be taken seriously as an adequate weed controlling mechanism. The historical testimonials to hemp's ability to control weeds are numerous.
"...it is certain that hemp contributes more than any other crop towards repairing the damage done by its own growth through the return of the leaves to the soil, besides other matters while it is undergoing the process of retting. Hemp is an admirable weed killer and in flax countries is sometimes employed as a crop in rotation, to precede flax because it puts the soil in so good condition."
--Charles Dodge, Director, Office of Fiber Investigation, 1890.
"There will be little trouble with weeds if the first crop is well destroyed by the spring plowing, for hemp generally occupies all the ground giving weeds but little chance to intrude....In proof of this, a North River farmer a few years ago made the statement that thistles heretofore had mastered him in a certain field, but after sowing it with hemp not a thistle survived, and while riding his land of this pest the hemp yielded him nearly $60 per acre where previously nothing valuable could be produced."
--C. Dodge, Hemp Culture, USDA Yearbook of Agriculture, 1895
"Hemp prevents the growth of weeds and other vegetation which would be found on such soils in most other crops or after others are laid by, and its cultivation also seems to make the soil more uniform in character."
--Lyster Dewey, The Hemp Industry in the United States, USDA Yearbook of Agriculture, 1901
"Very few of the common weeds troublesome on the farm can survive the dense shade of a good crop of hemp...In one 4-acre field in Vernon County, Wis., where Canada thistles were very thick, fully 95 per cent of the thistles were killed...."
--Lyster Dewey, Hemp. USDA Yearbook of Agriculture, 1913.
"Hemp has been demonstrated to be the best smother crop for assisting in the eradication of quack grass and Canada thistles....At Waupon in 1911 the hemp was grown on land badly infested with quack grass, and in spite of an unfavorable season a yield of 2,100 pounds of fiber to the acre was obtained and the quack grass was practically destroyed."
--Andrew Wright, Wisconsin's Hemp Industry, 1918.
"Hemp has been recommended as a weed control crop. Its dense, tall growth helps to kill out many common weeds. The noxious bindweed, a member of the morning glory family is checked to some extent by hemp."
--B. B. Robinson, Hemp, USDA Agric Bull #1453, 1943
"Among the species studied, the hemp species proved itself to be the best in fiber production. This plant was all the more interesting owing to its low fertilization requirements, and its ability to grow without being irrigated and without chemicals, whether it be for weed or pest control."
--Barriere, et al. 1994 (1)
"Hemp grows quickly, soon covers the ground and chokes out the weeds. So weed control is not necessary."
--Eddy A. A. de Maeyer. 1994 (1)
In Holland, Lotz, et al. tested hemp's superior weed suppressing ability (Figure 1) against four other cropping situations in a controlled experimental setting. The target weed was yellow nutgrass (Cyperus esculentus), a weed also common in the US, which propagates by tubers and is difficult to control. The authors conclude,
"...hemp was the most competitive crop in this study. Selecting this crop in a rotation will cause the strongest population reduction of C. esculentus on infested farmland. This control option of hemp against harmful weeds as C. esculentus is an attendant benefit of the introduction of hemp as a commercial crop."(2)
1 From papers delivered at the Conference on Alternative Oilseed and Fiber Crops for the Cool and Wet Regions of Europe, Wageningen, The Netherlands, April 7-8, 1994.
2 Lotz, L. A., P. R. M. W. Groeneveld, B. Habekotte, and H. van Oene. 1991. Reduction of growth and reproduction of Cyperus esculentus by specific crops. Weed Research 31:153-160.
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