4 tips to protect your cannabis garden from thieves
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Considering cultivating outdoors, but worried about becoming the target of would-be cannabis thieves? The best way to protect your plants is to apply crop security that won’t get you in trouble with the law. When it comes to smart growing, the best strategy is a strong, but safe defense.
KEEP THIEVES OFF YOUR LAND, AND YOUR MARIJUANA
Unfortunately, not all pests can be beaten with an organic pesticide or some companion planting. In a world where the legality of cannabis cultivation is on the rise, green-fingered growers are becoming prime targets for would-be cannabis thieves. Whether it is through jealousy or just a simple case of wanting free weed, outdoor growing projects are increasingly at risk from a pest not so easily deterred.
That is unless you have some essential advice to help you out. Thankfully, Cannabis.info has got you covered. Below, you will find several ways you can protect your crop—without getting in trouble yourself. As tempting as it may be to opt for more extreme methods of protection, you cannot enjoy the fruits of your labor if you yourself are in trouble with the law.
CANNABIS CROP SECURITY 101
The first rule of growing weed is: don’t talk about growing weed
It is a simple, oft-overlooked rule of cannabis growing. Even in a world where all corners of society appear to be turning to marijuana in some form, the topic is still bound to raise a few eyebrows. Although your latest project may be a likely topic of discussion on a night out, you never know who's listening, or how far that information will travel. Your outdoor crop cannot become a target if no one knows it exists.
Make sure whenever you discuss your outdoor grow, it is with like-minded individuals who will honor and respect the level of privacy required to cultivate successfully. It is, by far, the simplest and most effective way to stop your hard-earned work from disappearing overnight.
Keep your cannabis plants out of sight
With the risk of spilling the beans out of the way, we can focus on the next logical step—keeping your grow hidden from prying eyes. A secret crop is not so secret when you have a towering sativa rising well above a shed or fence. The strategy for keeping plants under control involves several steps.
First, regular topping and pruning is essential for plant health, and make sure it doesn’t outgrow the boundaries of your garden. Don’t be afraid to train plants from early on in the vegetative stage to keep their size under control. Second, although we have already implied that companion planting won’t stop cannabis thieves, under the right circumstances, it can help prevent them.
The strategy involves using companion planting to hide your cannabis plants from view (and minimize its recognizable scent). If there is an area of your garden that is easily visible from a path or walkway, block the view with other plants so that your cannabis is less obvious. The type of companion plant you use will come down to the amount of coverage required, and which species will complement the strain you are growing.
Protect your plants with cameras, lights and alarms
If you want to keep your weed safe, then chances are there is going to be some financial outlay. We are not talking thumbprint access points, but a few well-placed cameras and lights should do the trick. Many thieves like to act under cover of darkness, so motion-sensitive lights are a must for keeping your grow safe and sound. If you are out of the house a lot for work, then security cameras are also worth considering.
The sight of a camera is usually enough to deter cannabis thieves, and even if it isn’t, at least you will have some evidence to pass onto the police (if it’s legal to grow where you live). Security cameras are relatively cheap and may include the option to access live footage via an internet connection. That way, even when you are away from home, you can gaze lovingly at your blossoming buds.
Another way to let intruders know that they have been spotted is an alarm. A basic tripwire rigged up to a high-pitched buzzer will do the trick in most cases. For a more sophisticated (but also more expensive) option, motion detector alarms are also available.
Just be wary that these devices are easily set off by wandering animals, and your neighbours probably won’t appreciate a deafening alarm going off while you are at work.
When growing weed, a dog is truly a man’s best friend
If you don’t already own a dog, then you can also consider this an additional cost. If you do, it’s time for your beloved pet to earn their keep. That doesn’t mean training your trusted K9 to attack intruders on sight, but instead, just letting them roam the garden throughout the day is usually enough.
If a thief has spotted your cannabis, it won’t take them long to clock your dog. In most cases, the idea of having to contend with a defensive animal will be enough to put off any snatch and grab attempts. Dogs also double as an early warning detection system, and even from inside the house can alert you to any unwanted visitors.
A STRONG OFFENSE IS NOT A GOOD DEFENSE WHEN GROWING CANNABIS
Although it may be frustrating, especially if months of hard work get taken away from you, don’t fall victim to extreme methods of protection or retaliation. Don't set up any booby traps or dig any dangerous holes that might actually hurt somebody and get you into serious trouble. Home Alone was just a movie.
Several of the tips above can be put in place with minimal financial investment, and in the majority of cases, will be more than enough to deter any pesky weed thieves. Best of all, they won’t get you in trouble with local law enforcement—as long as cannabis cultivation is legal where you are.
Play it smart, and you will be reaping the delicious fruits of cultivating cannabis for years to come. With the prospect of a never-ending supply of homegrown buds, there has never been a better time to consider growing outdoors.