Clean Water, Clean CBD





Robert Lundahl

Adam Francis

Clean Water, Clean CBD

By Robert Lundahl

One of the most productive food growing regions, and the sixth largest economy in the world, California’s water is scarce, and not of uniform quality; it is expensive, and what’s in the water is questionable, even in an organic food production environment. 

California’s water travels a long way. 25% of San Diego’s water comes from Bay/Delta to the North, and 75% from the Colorado River to the East. Giant pumps require massive power systems that are inefficient in the extreme.  San Diego is at the end of the line, where concentrated metals, fluoride, hard to remove chloramines, birth control, anti–depressants, heavy metals, and agricultural chemical inputs, reside in our cup of tea, shower, greenhouse and vegetable garden–if we use water from the tap, or the spigot. 

Resident compounds and unwanted elements of all kinds are in concentrations as high as 550 parts per million in San Diego, 230 parts per million in Los Angeles, and 27-30 parts per million in San Francisco, where water flows downhill from the relatively pristine Hetch Hetchy reservoir near Yosemite.

The food we eat, the crops we plant and value, including vitamin–dense greens and antioxidant super–foods, along with cannabis (CBD medicine), guarantee the quality of our lives.

In a typical organic farm setting toxins are transported via PVC (polyvinyl chloride) irrigation pipes. PVC leaches Bisphenol F (BPF; 4,4′-dihydroxydiphenylmethane), absorbed by plants, and likely not what you want in your superfood salad or medicinal grade cannabis. 

The better choice for agriculture means controlling local water quality and balancing nutrients for production for restaurants, medicinal products, and community supported agriculture (CSA) programs. 

Cannabis, greens, tomatoes, and vegetables are an annual crop. Their vegetative and fruiting cycles are short lived with rapid nutrient uptake and consistent watering requirements. Vegetative and fruiting cycles deplete the soil, with the plant requiring increased soil care and nutrients to remain healthy and disease resistant. Advanced growers use nutrient solutions in non–soil media and special blended soils that holds and concentrate nutrients and beneficial microbes to produce high-quality, nutrient dense and potent products. 

Water sources can be controlled through RO filtered inputs or by condensate capture through atmospheric water generation.

This presents an opportunity for waste stream management and repurposing organic material into plant food, which we will address in the third episode of thei series.

Taking something with negative value and turning it into an asset, one output becomes an input for another system. That’s how nature works.

One system “feeds” another in an interconnected and symbiotic loop. Maximizing the productivity and quality of a grow environment involves taking your cues from nature herself.