The Planning Phase: Hemp Production Systems

Determining Your Hemp Production System

Hemp Production Systems

You can grow hemp anywhere (though some geographic locations fair better). However, it does grow best on a well-aerated, loose loam soil with abundant and high fertility organic matter, with 6.0-7.5 pH. You can also use tilled or well-drained clay soils, but poorly structured soils or poorly-drained clay will often result in grow failures. You can also successfully grow hemp in sandy soils, so long as the fertilization and irrigation is sufficient. However, this method is typically considered uneconomical due to the costs that come with this system.

Below are the preferred hemp production systems that have been successful for organizations such as The Canadian Hemp Trade Alliance, which we share with you as you begin to plan for the system that works best for your grow.


Organic Production
Once it is established, the rapid growth of hemp makes it a great crop to successfully grow using organic production systems. Quite often, pre-seed cultivation is done early to warm the soil up and stimulating weed growth through incorporating residue. Right before seeding, you may need to work the field again in order to kill weeds. However, with proper seeding and fertility conditions, you can ensure that the crop gets off to a good start in order to compete with weeds. 

No Tillage
This is a cropping system where the remains of last year's grow is used to sow the crop. This is a viable system so long as the seedbed is moist, firm, and warm enough to create quick and uniform growth. 

Beneath the hemp plants, forage crops can establish themselves within the shaded microclimate. When the hemp crop senescences and has loses its leaves during the fall, the forage crop will establish itself to prepare for winter. Then when spring arrives, the field gets rolled in order to flatten down the hemp stalks. When they are left in the field it won't interfere with harvesting hay. That provides good snow cover and a microclimate is created that provides forage establishment with protection.


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