Jump to content
Cultural Healing and Life

JJ the Gardener

  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Posts posted by JJ the Gardener

  1. got an update, sorry no pics at this time from our friends fighting the good fight.

    The infected mother plant is progressing positively and a clone did root from the mother.  While only one clone compared to many the clones is not a good ratio but the material used was not ideal.

    Positive steps forward and as this clone grows and has the mother improves we hope to achieve true positive results by using Chlorine Dioxide.  CL02

  2. Current Chlorine Dioxide Use


    Some independent workings going on in Spain using Chlorine Dioxide to clean a plant of this viroid.

    • It is being administered via foliar spray.  Records are being kept and pending on the outcome more detailed information will be given.
    • Thus far it appears to be working but it will take some time.
    • The infected plant is a mother and is a set of clones.
    • A positive lab test for the viroid was indicated for the mothers.  Once it is felt the viroid is clean, a new lab test will be done to prove or disprove the viroid's removal or if it remains.

    I will keep this updated as I get more information.  Thank you.

  3. Bio Security Systems



    Bio Security is a program that brings together pest, mold/mildew, bacteria/virus/viroid - disease into an encompassing program.  I can speak at serious length on bio security but then I would lose people with too much information.  So I will discuss simply but effectively explaining.

    Bio Security is typically an issue for midsized grow operations to the home grower often due to two several reasons.  One is cost.  Typically a grow operation is ineffectively funded and further still this is often due to an ineffective appreciation of bio security by the planners and managers/supervisors.

    • I will try to assist with instilling an understanding of effective appreciation and how to effectively implement those bio security into your grow operations and/or how to adapt into your current plans.

    Bio security essentially brings the management of pest, mold/mildew, bactera/virus/viroid into your grow operations.  For simple grow operations this is easier than it is for a more complex grow operation such as a rotating/perpetual operation. 

    • Regardless of size, once you understand the fundamentals bio security you then have the effective knowledge to manage your grow operation by creating a unique bio security plan for your specific grow operation.

    We will discuss prevention, treatment and how to implement into your grow environment for the following:

    • pest management,
    • Mold and Mildew,
    • Disease from bacteria, virus and viroids.

    Virtually all growers are some point will run into pest and mold/mildew issues.  Plant disease from bacteria and virus will be more on the rare side but with a viroid going around via clones raises the possibility that growers who would typically not see this type of issue may. 

    For most growers, they do not get to plan out their location and have to make due with the grow area which is available to them.  Typically these grow areas are not ideal but manageable for their purposes.  Here are some key aspects that is a necessity in an effective bio security plan regardless of size or location of the grow operation.

    • Stable environment with healthy lighting and air flow.
    • Control of temperature and humidity in both in raising and lowering levels within short periods of times.
    • Ability to control and filter incoming air and outgoing air.


    Grow area example,

    • Processing/storage areas
    • Mother area (optional)
    • Clone area (optional)
    • Vegative area
    • Flowering area
    • Harvest/dry/cure area


    Very good 4 light room setup with explanations

    While a grow room setup is not necessarily part of a bio security program it is the skeletal system for which the environment is effected.  For newer growers this section will have more value but I recommend to all viewers due to his explanations.  



    AAUvwniwSqk1ViPYnKXjSWlfaE6jvd725M70kY48  Grateful Grower


    Processing and storage area

    Processing area - Typically home and small growers will not easily have much processing space and it is understood that you have to do with what you have to work with.  Do the best that you can. 

    I tend to recommend basement grow areas for indoor growers as it typically offers a stable base environment.  If your lucky enough to use an old apartment or if their is a bathroom with a shower in the basement and/or a laundry area with a sink is useable.

    1. Water, Sink/Shower:
      • Hot and cold water
        • Sometimes cold water is good for knocking off pest on plants.
          • This is also in part why you want good water pressure.
        • Hot water is mostly for cleaning.
      • Good to powerful water spray options from direct to spray.
      • Capability to isolate and spray down a whole plant if in containers.
        • Such as a shower or deep industrial sink.
        • A shower and industrial sink is ideal.
          • A shower is perfect for effectively isolating a plant and treating the plant in an area to control potential contamination.
      • Water Storage
      • A sink disposable, heavy duty industrial strength.
        • This is not so much due to bio security as it is beneficial in helping maintain clean drain lines which is an important issue.  While mainly a maintenance issue I will add just for good measure.
      • Drain Cleaner/Mechanical and chemical/root products.
        • You want to be able to be have a drain cleaning machine that can reach to the end of the pipes for which you are responsible for.
        • Chemical and root management products should be used as needed and in the case of the root management products ensure a regular maintenance dose is consistently given per directions. 
    2. Processing area.
      • Solid tables that can withstand significant weight.
        • Sturdy metal or plastic shelving broken down in table sections with a base and top is often sufficient. 
      • Use tubs or even cement mixers to mix your media/amendments/fertilizers evenly.
        • It is vital to ensure that you evenly mix any inputs with the media.  So ensure that you have enough room to effectively mix your media and do any processing work in that area.
      • Ensure all tables and surfaces are cleaned daily, before and after use.
      • Ensure all equipment, especially cutting equipment is cleaned prior to use, during and after use.  Then stored correctly.
      • Consider if viable to the use processing area as a giant lung room.
        • This enables you to ensure a stable air out take that tempers the air and potentially better smell protection if applicable.
          • You have outtake air, smell filtered if applicable, from grow areas sent to the processing room.
          • The air in the processing room is then tempered with intake air from outside air and this air is then sent outside and back into the grow area.
            • It is important to have effective air exchange for the areas that you are managing. 
              • For smell protection purposes,
              • To create a stable intake of air for your grow areas.
              • Ideally you would have a lung room for intake air and one for outtake air.  In Frozen environments having a lung room for out take air as to temper the air before exhaust can be a necessity as to prevent ice formation at the exhaust areas.
                • This can be a tell tell sign of a grow room, generally seen in houses when growing in tents and venting out a window and making ice formations.
      • Fertilizer Processing/Storage area
        • We often do not think of a fertilizing processing area and for home growers this might not be such a thing but understanding the wisdom of it will help you keep streamlined so to speak.
        • The idea of a fertilizer processing/storage area is in part safety, sanitation, ease of use, consistency.
          • Safety, store all fertilizer material off the ground, preferably some kind of racks/shelves.  
            • Keep in dry area and at room temperature unless the product requires different storage or handling.
            • Rotate first in, first out.  (use new stuff after old stuff is used up.)
          • Sanitation, this one is very important as by not keeping the area clean issues such as cross contamination and pests.
            • Clean all measuring cups/spoons/devices.
            • Clean all areas that you work on.
            • Ensure all equipment is cleaned, calibrated and ready for use after/before each use or as applicable.
              • Ph, PPM/EC, brix meters etc. 
    3. Waste Disposal - Waste disposal is one of the biggest issues in growing that we have.  For home growers this can give the grow operation away and depending on situation this can potentially have disagreeable repercussions from a range of directions.  This is part of what I call a footprint that is important to shrink down from security to cost issues.
      • Due to this I advocate that most waste be used within the grow operation.  This can consist of virtually all plant material.
        • By combining composting/worm farming, natural farming inputs and biochar you can drastically diminish your plant material waste and footprint while creating inhouse systems that truly is a cycle.
        • Except for diseased and pest affected plant material.
          • This will need to be disposed off site and in a way to prevent contamination of disease or pest.
          • Your area may have regulations and rules to follow.
          • This system may not be as viable with crops subjected to pesticides and other similar controls. 
      • The following aspects can help you reuse plant material.  You can find a balance to where this material is used in a cycle and depending on grow methods even play a big part in your plant management care.
        • compost.
          • Traditional or by using indoor composters.
          • Can do only plant material or with other compostable scraps.
            • I preferred to make a balanced compost but you can favor nitrogen to even phosphorus based depending on what you add to be composted and its percentages.
        • Worm Castings/farms.  One of my greatest moves was to make my own worm castings.
          • plant material along with a balance of vegetable scraps.
          • You can grind material for faster use or leave whole.
            • I liked to grind most of the material but also would leave some scraps whole too.  When you grind everything up it becomes a bit more difficult to maintain dry/damp conditions so be prepared to add more paper/cardboard/carbon.
            • I also would add some biochar from fine to small particles to the castings.
        • Natural Farming Inputs.  (This was one of my dearest secrets many years ago.)  I came to natural farming as a way to reduce my growing footprint during prohibitionist times.  It turned out to not only do that but enabled me to fine tune the management of the plants especially during transitional stages of development.  
          • Natural farming inputs, click me.
            • Fermented plant juice.
              • You make this from healthy cannabis leaves from the time period you are wanting to support. 
                • Be it as a generalist all at once or once specific for specific grow periods I value this product highly.
              • I recommend making strain specific and not mixing strains that are overly different such as strong sativa and indica as we want similar chemical make up in the leaves so that they work together better and more effectively.
                • Veg - use FPJ from the vegetative period along with other applicable NF inputs.
                • Transitional periods - use FPJ from transitional periods along with other applicable NF inputs.
            • Bio Char - Bio char is mainly used to help with stems, root balls and hard bits.
              • By making bio char from hard stems and root balls we essentially are making these bits into a type of charcoal that benefits the soil greatly by helping it maintain stability which helps you with maintaining healthy consistent soils.
                • Used only in soil based medias.
                • Hydroponics grow operations could make this into biochar and sell as a product.
    4. Mother Area - Good old moms, Just like in life, we tend to take moms for granted.  In terms of bio security I see some SOP, standard operating procedures, talk about all the obvious aspects of sanitation and how to properly ensure operating procedures do not pass a contaminate on with lots of talk on cleaning and sanitizing.  However, I do not see any talk on mother health.  So I will.
      • Mother health, I see in almost every video of someone be it a person or a company grow that the mothers are stressed.  The number of leaves on a leaf is an indication.
        • With stressed mothers, this stress makes your mothers vulnerable. 
          • Now with with pest and competent cleaning pest issues are not as likely as other issues such as mold/mildew.
            • In such situations, adjust your day and night time temperatures/humidity to a bit shorter favoring dryer side of acceptance to you.
            • This reduces the opportunity time for a spore to effectively drill in the plant in which the plant becomes infected.
            • This is not a big issue for commercial growers but home growers can run into this when their environment is not ideal. 
        • However, stressed mothers from cloning also comes with other problems.
          • The uptake from the mother is often negatively affected after cloning.  As a result the plant is unable to make the optimum levels of internal plant chemicals and processes as effectively and efficiently as it is unable to make enough energy to support those needs of maintaining current growth, healing and making new growth.
            • This issue is compounded over time potentially causing such problems as a reduction in terpines, rooting quality and speed, reduction in strength of new plant structure, longer transition times and finishing times.
      • Recommendations.  Either utilizing optimum mother SOP's (standard operating practice) or utilizing tissue culture to obtain your clones depending on your size of operation. 
        • Tissue Culture - I would typically recommend done inhouse.  (the expense of setup can initially be expensive in terms of setup and implementation hiccups but over time I believe this is best practice.)
        • Traditional Cloning - Create extra mothers and manage in a way to optimize health of mother and clones.
          • Remove a smaller amount of clones per mother as to the point where the mother plant does not show stress after cloning.
          • I like to allow some stems to grow a bit longer than traditionally flat canopy.
            • By leaving some stems grow longer, we are able to concentrate a hormone that is better for growing roots once the clone is taken.
              • This is why it is recommended to take clones from lower in the plant.
          • Feed mothers a flowering feed one to 3 days before taking clones.
            • Not the same time you foliar feed.
            • This is to help get phosphorous levels into the leaves to better help in rooting quality and speed.
          • Foliar spray the 3rd and 1 day before taking clones.
            • Utilizing FPJ (fermented plant juice) designed for transition period - Foliar spray a natural farming FPJ, fermented plant juice that is designed for transition periods just before taking the clones has helped in the health of the clones.  
            • Any foliar spray that designed for transition period is usable and likely just as effective.
          • After taking clones and every other feed.
            • Utilizing FPJ (fermented plant juice) designed for strong vegetative period -
            • Any foliar spray that designed for transition period is usable and likely just as effective.
            • Foliar spray designed for transition periods tends to have more phosphorus which is beneficial to rooting and helping to control high nitrogen levels in the mothers which is unwanted.
          • Feed mothers a balanced diet after cloning.
            • This is help restore balance and keep nitrogen levels in check as high nitrogen levels in the leaves is detrimental to rooting of the clones.
          • Keep detailed records and photos.
            • This is to help to identify what works optimum for your environment and operations.
            • Start with taking a percentage of clones per mother.
              • Document, writing and in photographs and video.
              • After, the next day, following day and up until you would take clones again.  Every 3 days is acceptable.
              • Review, analyze and adjust accordingly until you find your optimal levels in mother health, clone production and stress adjustment returning to healthy cycle that along with traditional SOP, standards of protocol, that address sanitation and pest management this will enable you to enjoy a true cycle of life!
                • Ideally adjust:
                  • Environment,
                  • Percentage of clones taken,
                  • Test leaves to determine how much phosphorous and nitrogen is in the leaves before and after treatment and then determine increasing or decreasing foliar spray PPM/EC, to achieve desired percentages.
                    • Adjusting media feed may be necessary as well.
        • By implementing realistic optimized management of your mothers you are the setting the stage for success.  In many of my consulting surveys I have identified issues with the mothers in terms of their management.  I have seen professional operations failing and in part it is due to not having an effective appreciation of middle to long term care not just on the mothers but the entire operation.
          • It is easy to write a SOP for this that is detailed in cleaning and sanitizing and ensuring that continuation potential is removed to dramatically reduced to unlikely.  However, to me this is only one part of the issue and I say that combining both of these directions the benefits will be impressive to the point that it will enable to truly begin to have an optimized grow operation with little to no risk of pest, disease when the sop's as a whole are followed and respected. 
    5. Seedlings



    1. Cloness
    2. Transition
    3. Veg (early)
    4. Veg (Mid)
    5. Veg (late)
    6. Transition
    7. Flower (early)
    8. Flower (mid)
    9. Flower (late)
    10. Harvest
    11. Harvest area
    12. Sanitation of areas
    13. Cycle renews.
    14. Document: Records, analysis and adjustments
    • d
    • d
      • d





  4. Bio Security - Hop latent viroid (HpLVd)





    Hemp and Cannabis Bio-Security (HpLVd)

    I always found growing like being a sea captain.  Which I know nothing about really but my point is this.  In growing it is your job to bring to harvest quality and yield and a good part of nature is against you.  To be an effective grower you have to know how to navigate those problems just as a sea captain has to learn to read and operate in heavy and unfriendly waters to the calmest.

    The HLVd (Hop latent viroid) in growing is like hearing an old sea captain talk about a rogue wave.  While rare it happens and I will explain to the best of my understanding on how to navigate this issue from the home grower to the professionals.

    Bio Security is a relatively new term that integrates pest management to include the life cycles of the pest, mold/mildew and viruses together into a single topic.  It should be stated that I am writing this from the perspective of best practice. 

    • I personally believe that transmission of this virus is mostly done through mechanical use most typical of clones and seconded lower potential by seed germination/transmission and insect feeding.  
    • I have read for and against academic papers and studies but the results of those working on the front lines such as those at nurseries and grow operations are why I tend to believe this is largely spready by mechanical means. 
      • I find this true more for those who operate with strict SOP's and professional operationalism.
      • I find pest infection more of a potential for smaller more amateur grows operations to the home grower setups that are not operating by strict SOP's which have a higher potential to have poor environments and infestations compared to professional styled growers.  
        • It is within this area of growers that I have the largest concern.
    • Due to this conflict I have written from a best practice point of view and I cannot with certainly that I agree 100% percent it is wholly mechanical based and not by some smaller measure of pest infection in the right conditions which would affect home growers who is in part a larger part of my pointed audience.

    This is likely already part of a current security plan but for newer growers and managers this information may have more value however I recommend that currently skilled and knowledged growers still refresh this material as to ensure your security protocols and latest understandings are effectively up to date.

    So while some of this information and topics may be common knowledge to you I suggest the method by which these bio pest and virus interact may further justify a more stringent overall security plan that addresses those individual aspects into one program that strengthens the security and safety of the grow operation.  

    • If you find that I am preaching to the choir.  I would value any additional input that you would be willing to share.  It is in community that solutions are truly found and all genuine contributions are highly respected.

    I have read some great writings on these viruses but most are written in the interest of laboratories and not of independent scientific or academic writings. I have read many academic writings regarding the virus issues and one can find for and against some treatments and vectors.

    • Most of the academic and scientific papers and studies are in the hops and hemp field but cannabis has also been affected. 

    It is currently at the point I cannot say with 100% certainty if some or all of this information is wholly factual as this area seems to have only recently received larger attention and study. 

    • Due to this I may or may not alter some of this writing as more understanding and knowledge is gained as developments unfold.  Due to this, if you have interest. 
      • I would subscribe to this post as I will keep it updated as applicable.
    • As with all my writings, this is an opinion that I based the science and reasoning that I have found applicable and applied that as my basis for this writing.   

    Due to this I may alter my bio-security writing and recommendations. However, even if true, we would want to potentially implement the same bio-security measures for other reasoning with the same level of importance or close to it to justify any additional expenses and efforts. 

    The justifications of some of the issues could change but that would not diminish the importance of other connected justifications for the security protocols.


    1. Virus information and identification.
    2. Understanding the Viroid
    3. Infected Plant Protocols
    4. Testing
    5. Treatment
    6. Generic Preventative Plans



    HLVd (Hop latent viroid) information and identification.

    The following affects Cannabis and Hemp.  While there are other viruses that can potentially affect cannabis and hemp these are the two that that have most potential and likelihood of seeing at some point in your career. 

    • In the 20 years of my growing I have never seen a virus but operating procedures were far different back then compared to the relaxed settings and general protocols of today. 

    In the operating atmosphere of prohibition the necessary operating procedures naturally worked against such issues but in todays environment those safeguards currently are eroding and should not easily be confident in without gaining an understanding of these viruses and implementing preventative measurements and correct treatment protocols when and if identified.

    Depending on the size and seriousness of your operation, the level of preventative management increases but this is in tandem with due diligence.


    What is the Hop Latent Viroid?

    The hop latent viroid (HpLVd) is an infectious pathogen that causes disease in cannabis plants.

    • Also known as “dudding” or “dudding disease,”
    • plants infected with HpLVd may or may not show symptoms (symptomatic vs asymptomatic).
      • This is one of the parts that makes this viroid very difficult to remove.


    It has the following capabilities.

    • To infect mechanically such as using the same blade between clones.
      • Can continue in seed form.
    • To lie dormant.  Just when you think you got it out of your grow area and you have testing that verifies it is not present in the plants, it shows up.
    • To activate at any time during the plants life cycle.
    • Will diminish and plant quality and likely yield.
    • Can be Asymptomatic.
      • This means it can show no signs and the plant be 100% healthy and correct.
      • It can infect others.
      • It can turn on at a later time period.
      • Potentially can show negative in testing.
      • It can be active in one section or the plant or a branch and not in another section or another branch showing negative.


    Symptoms include:

    • reduced vigor,
    • abnormal branching,
    • stunted trichome production,
    • reduced potency,
    • and an overall loss of quality and yield.


    HpLVd was also previously known as PCIA (putative cannabis infectious agent) until Dark Heart confirmed HpLVd as the cause of PCIA in 2018.  

    • HpLVd has been detected throughout the United States and Canada.


    Why Should Growers Care?

    If left untreated, HpLVD can seriously reduce a crop’s potency and yield. Every garden tested in 2019 was infected with HpLVd.

    • Most gardens had an infection rate of about 25-50%, causing an estimated 44 million dollars in losses per year. 
    • HpLVd infections typically occur when an infected clone or plant is introduced into a healthy garden, where it spreads to other plants.
      • Most commonly through trimming and cloning from plant to plant.


    How is it spread?

    Research about transmission methods is ongoing. The viroid can spread through different types of contact, such as mechanical transmission.

    • This occurs when pruning tools are used on an infected plant, then on an uninfected plant.
    • HpLVd can also be transmitted through the seed of an infected plant,
      • though more research is underway to determine the transmission rate.
    • I personally believe that transmission of this virus is mostly done through mechanical use most typically via clones and trimming and seconded and at a lower potential by seed germination/transmission and insect feeding.  
      • I believe stressed plants such as plants living under poor plant conditions and a stressful environment with infected plants and heavy infestation that the percentage of insect transmission strengthens greatly. 


    The latent nature of HpLVd makes it a challenging pathogen to detect and fully eradicate. A common scenario in an infected garden is that while plants look healthy, they are in fact asymptomatic and don’t exhibit symptoms.

    • As a result, many growers are not aware that the pathogen is present and spreading to other plants in the garden.


    Videos explaining the virus.

    This is an excellent video describing the HLVd Virus.  We are not affiliated with them.  Please support them direct.  

    AAUvwniy5jPTkQdC7GRDf2ts53B2mp3xd-fSfLPQ Mushroom Cowboy


    This is an excellent video that will generally discuss this well.  We are not affiliated with them in anyway, please support them directly at - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCFACkeFHeEww8m0bt5Ug7ZQ

    AAUvwnhQhtJPFIuodH4IKOokk1_81ZWS6q0k_d2H Future Cannabis Project - Please support them directly, we have no affiliation.




    What to do once you suspect infection.

    The first step is determining if HpLVd is present in your grow operation.  This is not as simple as it would seem.  It is like looking for needles in a haystack.  We know the visible ones but some are hiding and we need to find them.

    • Initial identification and/or notice of an issue.
      • Visually is typically how most growers will first notice this viroid.
        • Growers will begin notice differences in the growth and an overall slow down in the plants development.
          • The leaf and growth will look different as well.
            • Leaves can look stunted to witches broom like.
            • Dramatic reduction to loss of terpenes.
            • Dramatic reduction in trichrome development.
            • A golden appearance on the top of the plant, referred to as golden head.
        • Not all infected plants will “look” infected or show symptoms.
          • This is the Asymptomatic stage that some go through but they can pass the viroid on and they can turn on to an active state at any time.
          • Identify all clones that come from an infected mother.  If a clone shows an infection, assume the mother is infected and asymptomatic if the mother is not showing signs.
            • Remove all applicable plants.
            • I am comfortable saying you can finish the grow if not at the beginning of the grow as this viroid is typically spread via mechanical processes such as cloning and the trimming of plants.
              • Clean trimming equipment between plants to prevent plant to plant transmission. 
              • In this manner trimming can infect clones of non infected mothers.


    Some illustrations.

    This video is very good at illustrating differences in quality and on the crop but it is only available at Youtube:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2_e9_TDfHM


    Pics - These pics are from Ripper Seeds, we have no affiliation but they illustrate excellent photos.  Please support Ripper Seeds directly.  https://www.ripperseeds.com/en/



    • Notice the severely stunted growth from the new growth area of the plant.
      • This virus affects new growth dramatically and directly impacts yield, quality and finishing times.



    • Notice how the growth hits the stress marks.  The stems changed color and growth slows and shortens in size.
    • If allowed to mature it will take longer and have significant and quality reductions.



    • Notice how you can see the growth that affects the side limbs.
    • Smaller growth and weaker stems.
    • Helps mold/mildew to better take hold with thinner and weaker cell walls to penetrate.
    • Easier for pest to attack.



    • Notice how the whole crop is affected and it is does not appear to have been had leaves removed.
    • A forest of plants susceptible to other and further infections from pest to fungi.
    • This crops quality has been compromised.


    Save A Grow Update 4 and Hop Latent Viroid Video - We have no affiliation with this video maker.  Please support him direct at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdfDnqy2aM41aGllYSEg9FA

    AAUvwni26wv8diG0X-yJnGkxheWQ54p1_wclzlsA medicropper

    •  Around the 2100 mark he will talk about the viroid.  I believe this is how most people will come to a similar conclusion.


    • Testing and treatment - Updated to include information regarding Chlorine Dioxide.
      • Unless you can afford the lab work to treat the genetic it is not a viable solution to try to save infected genetics.
        • If a special or a proprietary strain is fully infected (such as the entire grow or mother block), then eradication via tissue culture is the only way to clear HpLVd from that strain.

          • A diagnostic screening test is the fastest way to determine the presence of the viroid.

          • The tissue culture process utilizes a proprietary treatment that eliminates the viroid and leaves you with a healthy rejuvenated strain.

        • Some branches can show clean and others can show infected in testing.
          • Due to this we need to take 4 samples in a regular circular pattern at various heights from low, middle and upper branches. 
            • Approximately 12 testing points per plant.
              • As I stated, this is best practice recommendations.  It is up to you to find an effective compromise depending on your operational budget.
              • Ensure that even and consistency is in selecting locations and choices.
                • This can be seen as a costly step but it is of most important to ensure the viroid does not slip through this net.
                • With those who have cant lose genetics, it is an option to use the services of a well qualified tissue culture laboratory.
                  • Essentially plant material is taken from the meristem as these plant cells typically grow faster than the viroid can replicate so any viroid or virus is more diluted in the sample.
                  • They then heat and cold treat this plant material as to ensure any viroid present is ideally destroyed.
                  • Then through tissue culture the plant is remade and should be in a revitalized and healthy state.
                  • This is costly and takes approximately 6 months.
      • Chlorine Dioxide  - I have seen via video and pictures from very trusted friends who are testing/working with infected plant stock with Chlorine Dioxide.
        • currently this is in early stages but some positive work has been seen.  Lots of work to do but exciting to see this information and is a wonderful xmas present as we all could use some good news in 2020!
        • I can see the value of dispersing Chlorine Dioxide via uptake and via foliar feeding.
          • Give first treatment to a thirsty plant.
            • The idea is that the plant being thirsty will uptake more treated waters and gain an effective strong start against the viroid.
            • Clones
              • Soak new cut clones and seeds in Chlorine Dioxide before transplanting/planting.
              • Mist with Chlorine Dioxide
              • Clean all tools with Chlorine Dioxide
            • Foliar use in between the feeding/treatment cycles.  
              • Do not foliar feed prior if you are making the plant thirsty to increase volume of uptake.
            • Examples of home or small grower use water preparation.

    Aquamira Drops - Chlorine Dioxide - The Outdoor Gear Review

    AAUvwnidjExJ-0pqU_bDwFA6V5bCqVhSfN19YwwE TheOutdoorGearReview

    Lifesystems Chlorine Dioxide Tablets



    • Here is are some current use of Chlorine Dioxide in irrigation and municipality water. 
      • There are lots for and against of the safety of Chlorine Dioxide but I find that this system for cleaning public water and in plant irrigation is a matter of proven safety as far as my opinion goes.


    Chlorine dioxide for pathogen control in irrigation

    Stabilized chlorine dioxide (Oxine ®) for horticulture

    AAUvwnhitMuSHdig4y41MVC6jYnM94UphQPkka4N Clean WateR3


    AAUvwnhitMuSHdig4y41MVC6jYnM94UphQPkka4N Clean WateR3

    Chlorine Dioxide in Municipal Drinking Systems

    AAUvwnjTRfeX3syMmVY_5vHyIv_IOH-6OsbeQxfm Scotmas Group


    I believe that the Chlorine Dioxide is very promising in this viroid dilemma and I am excited to see how developments go.  Prevention and effective operating protocols and standards are key and Chlorine Dioxide potentially plays a role in both.

    At the very least.  I recommend understanding Chlorine Dioxide more and potentially how it may or may not fit into your growing operations.

    Safety information regarding CLo2 - Chlorine Dioxide Awareness Training

    AAUvwnikf6wfTgQwytcC2BtXe3mBDI0YezJsCEzSConvergence Training by Vector Solutions


    Limitations of Chlorine Dioxide



    Actions to take:

    • Quarantine and/or remove and discard identified plants 
    • At the end of the grow, discontinue all effected and potentially affected plants to include mothers.
      • All plants from infected mother.
      • Remove clones derived from an infected mother.
      • Remove mother.
      • Remove any seed made from infected parents.
      • Remove any plants from seed derived from infected plants.
        • If using soil or media infected with insects.
          • Consider disposing of the soil if you have had insect issues where they have a life cycle in the media.
            • This is due to concern that media living insects could potentially infect the plants.
              • Currently I can find no documentation to back this recommendation up but I add it in due to best practice aspects.
                • I personally believe that the virus is potentially spread via insect in a perfect storm of worse case scenarios such as high humidity, insects that travel from plant to plant which still may hold the virus in wetness on its feeding apparatus rather than intern life cycle within the insect or in an  transmission from internal fluids during feeding.
                  • I base this opinion on the understanding that infestations do not appear to be significant spreaders of this disease in well managed growing operations.
      • Contact everyone who received a clone and or seeds from infected plants and infected from the line of plants.
        • Ask that any seed sellers to contact their clients for those affected.
        • Ask any clone sellers contact their clients for those affected.
        • While doing this is costly, it will work more in your favor in the future than any short term benefit by not contacting and making right once you can.


    • Selecting new stock/genetics.  When selecting new genetics depending on your operating budget and level of seriousness I present the following recommendations.
      • Try to purchase seeds from certified clean parents.
        • At this time I am unaware of this being a thing but if your a large grow operation and use seed, ask for this.
        • Ask for this and try to find breeders that take this viroid seriously.
        • Consider older more reliable strains than newer strains.
          • This is due to older stock being clean but they can still be subject to the viroid but risk factor is smaller I believe.
      • When buying clones.  Try to find clones from certified clean mothers.
        • At this time I am not aware of this being a thing but ask for it.
        • Select from vendors and nurseries that take the viroid seriously.
        • Try to look at customer reviews that match your time line.
      • Quarantine/Label/Mark all brought in genetics. 
        • Grow as you normally would.
          • At any sign of viroid,
            • Test for it and/or start over if certain or when positive test is certified.
        • As you make your selections, pending no sign of the viroid within the grow than you can consider the grow operation clean.
          • To verify that, have the selected mothers tested and certified clean.


    • Standard Operating Procedure recommendations.
      1. Create standards that include for the effective cleaning of equipment between plants and/or for equipment sets for each plant or section.
        • This is easier said than done and a major pain the butt factor I understand but also is dealing with this viroid.  Mechanical transmission is the number one spreader of this viroid.  
        • I recommend making equipment sets and/or for the cleaning for each plant or section of plants.
          • Sheers,
          • Cloning equipment
          • Any piece of mechanical equipment that would be used from plant to plant
      2. Implement any applicable preventive measures for insects, mold and mildew.
      3. Implement any Environmental improvements as applicable.
      4. Work to increase and stabilize Brix levels in the plants.
        • This helps keep an eye on the health of the plants quality.
          • Stabilization is key as this can be a tell tell sign of something more seriousness going on with the plant and that the plant is functioning well depending when and if it destabilizes..
            • Always check brix at the same time of the day.


    I hope this write helps you.  This is not something to take lightly as its effects are darn right scary.  Sorta like a corona virus/Aids for plants.  Personally I know of growers who lost very prized genetics due to this and their cries were so loud in the force that I heard it. 


    Credits - We have no affiliation with those in the credits.  Please support them directly.  They have our highest respects.  If anyone is missed, please contact us and we will fix.  It is only due to an error if a credit is missing.




    A Cultural Healing and Life writing  ~JJ the Gardener





  5. Racism or Bad Management

    in the workplace.


    I find this songs line fits and the tone is smack on for me anyways.


    The following is my attempt to speak on my perspective of the issue.  It is just my opinion and some reasons for it.  Now please remember, this is just one perspective and merely is like one cricket amongst the noise of a forest of crickets.  Some parts might seem great and for this perspective may be but perhaps when viewed along with other perspectives that value may change.  So please see this an idea and I hope some portion will play a positive role

    Thus if any of this makes sense to you, I ask you to keep learning of other people's perspectives from closely similar to the extreme opposed and all in between and in so doing we may be able to find better ways to understand one and another and truly begin to heal humanity.  Work is a part of our life, part of our community for which I hope for it  to be seen as an extension of our home.  No matter the job function, we should be just as comfortable in the environment of each other as an extension of our community.

    I want to talk about the aspect of emotions in workplace management to the employees and how both sides contribute to an overall narrative that is not wholly accurate.  It is is within this inaccuracy that low moral, protest movements, passive protest that negatively affect employer performance/ quality of work and a generally disgruntled workforce.

    As a result these businesses/organizations tend to have a higher turn around of employees and are always internally struggling to maintain standard operations often suffering a lower overall quality and performance at the labor  price point for which it is expected at.

    I will try to explain how this happens from my personal perspective which has spanned to worker, to senior management and back to worker level again.  It is a unique perspective from my Quaker eyes who understands and uses aspects of quality management and has come up the German management system where you actually care about your workers.  I hope it helps you in your work and/or professional future.


    • Stop Managing, Start Leading | Hamza Khan | TEDxRyersonU - Stop Managing and Start Leading

    I like this video as to illustrate the aspects of needing to lead and manage along with his personal perspective as it very much relates to what I am writing. I want to point out the value in finding ways to work within a workforce as that that leads to higher quality moral, work performance and work life satisfaction which is key to happiness in general. 


    Working outline

    • Necessary aspects
      • Trust
        • Employee and management
      • Caring.
        • Job
          • Management and employee
            • Operations
            • Employee life aspects
      • Rewarding
        • Job
          • Management and employee
            • Operations
            • Employee life aspects



    A Circle starts at the beginning

    We will start as an employee new hire perspective


    • Pre-existing stereotypes - Understanding and how to address.
      • Diversity in management can work to help new hires feel represented and that they are accepted and heard within the business.
        • When diversity is tapered with realistic working environments that represent diversity within functioning operations it works passively to help build the initial groundwork for early trust in management.  New employee will spot this early on.  
          • Diversity as a whole must play a role in the operating procedures, rules within the workplace, discipline, rewarding and working to achieve a positive work environment.
          • When this is well worked, people want to come to work as the enjoy the community as well as the pay.  When quality pay and a positive work environment is together it is the key to high production and quality.
      • First impressions do much to set the tone and pace of new workers be it management or worker.  It is important to understand this as to determine ways to create an accurate first impression and an environment that maintains those impressessions.
        • Management
          • How they view the populace of their employees.
          • How they view the individuals of their workforce.
          • How they view the appearance of their workforce.
          • How they view the mannerisms of their individual employees.
        • Workers
          • How they view initial management makeup.
          • How they view the individuals of their workforce.
          • How they view the appearance of their workforce.
          • How they view the mannerisms of their individual employees.


    • Quality of initial management and operational procedures. 
      • When new management and new employees enter a work environment they will typically mold to that environment.  It is that environment type that the employee will operate within and very few people are willing to confront such negatives and will typically go with the flow. 
        • Enforcement of rules.
          • Equal/differences towards:
            • To employees
              • in same work group,
              • in same work task but not direct workers,
              • Different departments/sections/buildings/locations,
              • Different managers,
              • Employee and managers friends treatment,
              • Gender differences
                • Reasoning for differences.
            • To Management
              • Employees of same group and task,
              • Employees of other managers,
              • Style of different managers,
              • Manager to employee friends treatment,
              • Gender differences
                • Reasoning for differences.
          • Based on sound reasoning or control?
            • Are operational rules created out of operational/safety/security requirements or other reasoning.
              • If other reasoning what is the reasoning for them?
                • Understanding those reasons, often knee jerk reactions that essentially make matters worse regardless of the intention overall is key to finding realistic solutions to the main cause of that specific issue. 
          • consistency in rules enforcement
            • Are the rules consistently and equally enforced at all times?
              • In some industries there are fast and slow times. 
                • During the fast times the industry tends to forgive and/or temporarily forgive violations.
                  • This aspect tends to give weight to the view preferrational treatment.
                • During  the slow times the industry tends to enforce rules heavily with little forgiveness.
                  • Often during this time they lose some of the better employees.


    Quality of regular operations and management of employees.

  6. Charlotte Figi, Who Showed Americans the Value of Medical Marijuana,

    Dies of COVID-19 at Age 13

    Original article:



    Charlottes Web, A strain of CBD oil used to treat children with a rare epileptic disorder is named after her.

    A young girl whose lifelong battle with seizures helped changed many minds about the value of medical marijuana died Tuesday from the coronavirus at the age of 13.

    News of Charlotte Figi's death was posted on her mother Paige's Facebook page by a family friend. In late March, five members of the Figi family, including Charlotte, got sick and were self-quarantining in Colorado. The Colorado Sun reports that the family had not been able to get tested to determine whether they had been infected with COVID-19. But an organization that Paige belonged to confirmed today that Charlotte's death was due to the coronavirus:

    Charlotte spent much of her life fighting Dravet syndrome, a very rare form of epilepsy that causes children to suffer from long, recurring seizures and resists most medical treatment. About 15 percent of children with Dravet syndrome don't survive to adulthood.

    Charlotte's fight to control her seizures became a national story when the family reported that treating Charlotte with cannabidiol oil, more commonly known as CBD, dramatically reduced her seizures. Paige connected Charlotte with medical marijuana producers in Colorado, run by the Stanley brothers, and they developed a strain of cannabis with high levels of CBD, which they made into an oil. That medical marijuana dispensary subsequently named their strain (and later, their whole company) Charlotte's Web after her.

    The success of Charlotte's treatment drew families from across the country to Colorado from other states where leaders were dragging their feet on legalizing medical marijuana use. While Charlotte's story was known both to those who followed medical marijuana trends and to families with children struggling with epilepsy, her story became national news in 2013 when CNN reported on her case and the network's chief medical correspondent, Sanjay Gupta, reversed his position and declared his support for marijuana as a medical treatment because of Charlotte.

    When Charlotte was born, only a handful of states permitted the use of marijuana for medical purposes. Now in 2020, only three states maintain complete bans—Idaho, South Dakota, and Nebraska. And there's a ballot initiative in Nebraska for consideration in November to amend the state's constitution to permit it.

    Paige Figi founded the nonprofit Coalition for Access Now, which works to educate Americans about the value of marijuana and CBD oils as a potential treatment for health problems and advocates for changes in the law to allow for legal consumption.

    While legal changes are still a fight, especially on the federal level, it's safe to say that the Figi family and Charlotte have succeeded wildly in helping change Americans' view of the value of CBD oils. Now, CBD goods have become trendy—maybe a little too trendy, given those who want to attempt to treat it as a miracle cure for just about anything. The Food and Drug Administration is sending out letters warning CBD companies to stop telling people that their products will protect users from COVID-19. And state governments persist in meddling unnecessarily in the use of CBD in foods and beverages.

    It's a tragedy that Charlotte didn't make it to adulthood to fully appreciate how much the Figi family's hard work has helped change the landscape for marijuana policy. More children in Charlotte's situation now have easier access to treatments that can ease their suffering. More research is happening, too, to determine what cannabis can actually do as medicine.

    America is a different place now—and a much, much better one when it comes to drug policy—because of the pivotal role played by Charlotte Figi and her family.


  7. Self-care is the key to stress and anxiety management

    The following is taken from the




    AUGUST 1, 2018, 2:10 AM CDT

    Original Article http://www.abajournal.com/magazine/article/self_care_stress_anxiety_management


    Jeena Cho: “Keeping busy was a defense mechanism for not facing what’s not working in my life.” Photograph courtesy of the JC Law Group.


    It’s paradoxical that even though most lawyers would say they would like to lessen the impact of stress and anxiety, only a small percentage of us utilize concrete strategies for doing so. As lawyers, we’re conditioned to work hard, putting our well-being second to our clients. And we tend to hold ourselves to impossibly high standards. We can falsely believe that every minute not spent billing is time being unproductive, therefore wasted. We can discount the importance of resting the mind and the body.


    Simply defined, stress is a reaction to a stimulus that disturbs the body’s equilibrium. The stimulus can be anything from someone cutting you off on the highway to an unpleasant exchange with an opposing counsel. Often we place the blame for the stress on others or external circumstances, trying to change what we cannot control. We try to get others to see things from our perspective, act differently and change their behavior.

    When we talk about managing stress, there are two obvious strategies. First, get rid of or change the stimulus; two, change our reaction. But there is a third way, which is to become more resilient so that the stimulus becomes less disruptive. Resilience is one’s ability to not only survive the many challenges in life but also learn and grow from the experience.

    It’s important to recognize that each of us reacts to stimulus differently. One person may recover very quickly from an unexpected car cutting into their lane, whereas another may stew and continue to experience stress long after the danger has passed. Also, we may react to a stimulus differently based on how we’re feeling physically or emotionally. For example, you may react more strongly to an unpleasant conversation with your client if you’re sleep-deprived or already under a lot of stress.


    Anxiety is the subjectively unpleasant feeling of dread over anticipated events. It’s similar to stress in that it’s also a reaction to a stimulus; but with anxiety, the stimulus is the anticipation of some future event. Anxiety can trigger rumination and persistent worrying, which can disturb one’s equilibrium.

    With both stress and anxiety, we can get better at coping and lessen the impact through deliberate practices.


    Self-care is any activity or behavior you do to take care of your mental, emotional and physical well-being.

    Consider these questions: What do you do on a regular basis to care for your own well-being? What activities do you engage in to give yourself a sense of joy? How do you reconnect with yourself?

    The cornerstone of self-care is cultivating a friendly attitude toward yourself and treating yourself as you would someone you care about. Self-care need not take a lot of time or money. But it does take commitment and persistent effort. It’s also about drawing boundaries and putting your well-being ahead of the needs of others.

    You may be thinking, “I can’t afford ‘me time.’ That’s being selfish.” Even though the words self-care and selfish sound similar, they are opposite in meaning. If I am being selfish, I am deliberately taking something away from others for my own profit or gain. If I am practicing self-care, I am engaging in behaviors that help charge my own battery. In other words, I am securing my own oxygen mask before helping others.

    Here are some examples of self-care activities:

    • Enjoying your lunch away from your computer.
    • Engaging in a conversation with a loved one.
    • Listening to your favorite song.
    • Enjoying time in nature.
    • Treating yourself kindly.
    • Going to the doctor for a physical.
    • Drinking more water.

    When it comes to self-care, it’s not so much the activity itself that matters but the attitude you bring to the activity. Even a simple activity like washing your hands can be a practice in self-care. Rather than rushing and washing your hands on autopilot, you can slow down, pay attention to the sensation of the soap, the water, and take a moment to reconnect with yourself.

    One common objection I get to self-care is the excuse of not having enough time. I too have felt this way, but over time I recognized it for what it was—a narrative created in the mind.

    I realized the belief stemmed from thinking that if I am very busy, I must be doing something important—therefore I must in fact be very important. However, keeping constantly busy was also a defense mechanism for not confronting what is painful or not working in my life.


    Mindfulness means paying attention to the moment-to-moment experience with presence and compassion.

    You may feel both stress and anxiety when you have to deliver bad news to a client. This is natural. You can approach the situation (and yourself) with compassion by recognizing that this is a difficult moment. You can also approach the situation with negative self-talk: “I am a bad lawyer” or “I am a failure.” These thoughts only heighten the stress and anxiety response. This is called the second arrow.

    There is an oft-repeated saying: “Between stimulus and response there is space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

    With the increased connectivity and immediacy required in this digital age, it is becoming more crucial that we as lawyers learn to respond rather than react. Instead of immediately reacting and sending an angry email, we can slow down the reaction process so that we can show up as our best selves and respond wisely.

    Finally, changing any behavior starts with awareness. You can’t change your reaction if you do not recognize the habitual behavior.

    The first step I had to take in choosing to get better at managing stress and anxiety was to make it a priority. Rather than just complain about stress and anxiety, I decided to be proactive and take deliberate steps to increase my resiliency. Also, I learned that ultimately the only thing I have control over is my own reaction.

    You can access a short guided meditation on letting go of stress at jeenacho.com/wellbeing.

    Jeena Cho consults with Am Law 200 firms, focusing on strategies for stress management, resiliency training, mindfulness and meditation. She is the co-author of The Anxious Lawyer and practices bankruptcy law with her husband at the JC Law Group in San Francisco.

    This article was published in the August 2018 ABA Journal magazine with the title "Taking Care: Self-care is the key to stress and anxiety management."





    PureKNF foundation


    Get certified in PureKNF at the KNF Farm in Hawaii



    PureKNF Certification Course (1/6)

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake



    PureKNF Certification Course (2/6)

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake



    PureKNF Certification Course (3/6)

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake



    PureKNF Certification Course (4/6)

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake



    PureKNF Certification Course (5/6)

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake



    PureKNF Certification Course (6/6)

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake


    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IOD Learn more about KNF farm in Hawaii!



    ~Cultural healing and life knowledge compilation

  9. How to preserve or super saturation

    of your FPJ, Lactic Acid and any Bacterial input.



    • Jars with lids,
      • like a mason Jar 
    • Wooden stick.
      • Metal may interact poorly with the microbes.
    • Brown Sugar or Jaggery, coconut sugar, cane sugar.
      • Not Molasses as it has too much water content.


    Instructions:  This can be used with LAB, FBJ or any bacteria based inoculant.

    1. Add sugar until it begins to settle on top of water
    2. Mix well
    3. Add more sugar until sugar is floating on top of water
    4. Mix well
    5. Let sit and settle down
    6. look for a tiny ring about a 1/4 of an inch or 6 millimeters on the bottom of jar, the ring is sugar.
      1. This is saturation.
    7. Add more sugar if no ring is apparent.
    8. Mix well
    9. Let stand
    10. Check for ring of sugar.  Continue as necessary until the ring forms at the bottom of the Jar.
    11. You can now put the lid on the jar and store until needed.



    Howto Supersaturate KNF Solutions

    AGF-l78Qy5wi-NzlGx1g5UMsnOX7DoJFX-ei1IODPureKNF Drake


    This is a just a great tutorial.  While we have instructions on preserving in each of the applicable inputs we thought it would be beneficial to add preserving/supersaturing your bacterial inputs. 

    We hope this helps and as always please support the video makers direct.






    • Like 1
  10. Capitol Plant Care LLC

    We at capitol plant care LLC specialize in virtually all aspects of the Hemp and Cannabis industry. 

    Our clients consist of beginning farmers, switching over to hemp farmers, current hemp farmers and people looking to enter the industry as dispensary owners and early business plans if full legalization should pass.  

    • We currently serve Pennsylvania hemp growers with plant management and consultant services for business and perspective business within the industry.
    • www.capitolplantcare.com is our main site.


    large.1213360576_BusinessCard1of2.jpg.778619eb29e05fca4516bc7c0aebc84d.jpg       large.997826811_BusinessCard2of2.jpg.733907783fa3c5655dc9c914906dd54d.jpg

  11. This is in part why I recommend making your own compost.  You know what goes in it, the quality of it and the wholesome product it is.  While most people cannot make their own compost for those that can.  I implore you to do so for the potential health of your soils.


    State’s ‘forever chemical’ restrictions not applied to compost

    Environmental protection overseers still allow sales of the nutrient-rich product used by landscapers and gardeners, even though it’s made with PFAS-laced municipal sludge.


    UNITY — State environmental regulators have allowed companies to sell compost made with treated municipal sludge to the public this summer, even as they restrict the use of sludge on many farm fields because of concerns about chemical contamination.

    Maine has about a dozen operations that use treated sludge, referred to in the industry as a “biosolid,” to make compost, and they continue to distribute products containing PFAS as environmental regulators and a task force formed by Gov. Janet Mills try to figure out how to deal with the pervasive “forever chemicals.”

    Direct application of treated sludge on Maine farm fields has slowed dramatically this year amid new concerns at the Maine Department of Environmental Protection over levels of PFAS in the would-be fertilizer. But the DEP has granted a dozen facilities that mix sludge with other materials to make compost an extension, of sorts, to continue selling their nutrient-rich product to landscapers, nurseries, contractors and home gardeners.

    DEP officials and composting facility representatives said they are confident that the compost is safe for use because gardens and lawns likely have much lower background levels of PFAS – a common industrial chemical under increasing scrutiny – than larger farms where more sludge was spread repeatedly.

    “We have to make sure that this is safe for our customers,” said Andre Brousseau, superintendent of the Sanford Sewerage District, which recently invested $2 million in a composting facility. “I use this at my house. And we are not going to be giving out a product that is going to be detrimental to health or the environment.”

    Some environmental groups involved in the debate remain concerned, however, and are urging the DEP to conduct more testing before allowing PFAS-laced sludge or compost to be spread anywhere.

    “I would challenge the assumption that gardens and other places where compost will be used have average or below-average PFAS levels,” said Patrick MacRoy, deputy director of the Portland-based Environmental Health Strategy Center. “And the reason I challenge that is it’s only logical that gardeners are going to use compost year after year.”

    Maine’s investigation of PFAS in treatment plant sludge and compost puts the state in the vanguard of research in this field, as concern mounts nationally about potential threats to soil, drinking water, food supplies and human health. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has begun to investigate PFAS and may establish protective standards, but that work is far from completion.


    DEP permission for compost sales extends only until June 30, 2020, as the state gathers more information and conducts more testing.

    “Between now and then, we will be back in communication with those facilities because we recognize they need answers beyond that date,” said David Burns, director of the DEP’s Bureau of Waste Management and Remediation. “But we didn’t feel like we had adequate information (to go beyond a year).”

    In many ways, Maine’s sewage treatment plants and biosolid composting facilities are grappling with a problem brought on by consumers’ hunger for high-tech but low-maintenance products.

    The large class of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances collectively known as PFAS have been used for decades to create the nonstick surfaces in cookware and to help make jackets, carpets and other fabrics waterproof or stain-repellent. The hundreds of chemical variants of PFAS are commonly used in dental floss, grease-resistant food packaging, compostable paper dinnerware and in the foam that military bases and airports are required to keep on hand to battle jet fuel fires.

    “These compounds have been in use for 30 to 40 years,” said Jeff McBurnie, director of permitting and regulatory affairs at Casella Organics, which operates one of New England’s largest biosolids-based composting programs in Unity. While McBurnie understands the concerns over PFAS, he said, “What we do is such a small component of where the potential impact would be.”

    Yet the chemicals’ complex structure means they do not biodegrade in the environment and linger in the human body for years before breaking down. That means PFAS now routinely show up in drinking water and in the human waste that treatment plants must process.

    With PFAS nearly ubiquitous in the blood of people and animals around the world, there is mounting concern about the health impacts.

    A growing body of scientific studies suggest the chemicals — and in particular two phased-out versions in this country, PFOS and PFOA — can affect liver and thyroid function, raise cholesterol levels, disrupt the immune system and potentially lower birth weights at high dosages. Some studies also suggest a link to cancer.

    Most of the high-profile and most severe PFAS contamination cases nationwide have occurred near military bases or industrial facilities that produced or used the chemicals. There is growing interest in Congress to allow PFAS contamination sites to qualify for federal Superfund status to facilitate cleanup.

    Maine has several known PFAS hot spots, such as on areas of the former Brunswick Naval Air Station where the chemicals were used in firefighting foam. But PFAS in sludge emerged as an issue in Maine after contamination was found on an Arundel dairy farm that utilized and stockpiled biosolids for fertilizer.

    Earlier this year, the Maine DEP began requiring testing of PFAS in treated municipal sludge at facilities that turn those materials into fertilizer or compost. The first round of tests showed elevated levels of PFOS and PFOA in the vast majority of samples.

    The agency also collected test results from farm fields where sludge had previously been applied. As of last month, 33 of 43 fields tested had background PFAS levels that were too high to allow additional spreading. Unless treatment plants can find alternative sites, they will be required to landfill the sludge at an additional cost to ratepayers.

    The review process for facilities that convert the sludge into compost is different, however.

    The DEP cannot test PFAS soil levels on every landscaped lawn, building site or home garden where compost would be spread, so the state is relying on background soil levels gathered from studies in Vermont to determine likely levels of contamination. So far, 12 of 15 composting facilities in Maine have been given the green light to continue selling because – if the compost is applied correctly – the additional PFAS would not tip a hypothetical plot of land above the DEP’s contamination threshold.

    “For general distribution (of compost), it is not anticipated the product would be applied to soils year after year like they do with (agricultural) biosolids,” said Burns, who heads the DEP division that oversees reuse of biosolids.

    DEP staff also sampled soils from a vegetable garden owned by a person who raised concerns with the agency about repeated use of compost, and they are analyzing potential PFAS uptake in vegetables. Although Burns said he was not prepared to release the results before notifying the homeowner, he said, “It shows that we’re OK.”

    Plant uptake of PFAS is an area of ongoing research. In Arundel, however, Stoneridge Farm has been effectively shut down because high levels of PFAS showed up in the milk of cows fed silage grown on farm fields that were fertilized for years with municipal sludge and paper mill waste.

    Last week, the attorneys for Stoneridge Farm’s owners, Fred and Laura Stone, reported that blood samples showed the couple had PFAS levels up to 20 times higher than the national average.

    The PFAS levels in compost made with biosolids in Maine were magnitudes lower than those found in the soils of Stoneridge Farm.

    McBurnie, with Casella Organics, said the compost application rate his company recommends to clients has a safety margin built in. The company also lowered its maximum recommended loading rate slightly – from 4.5 to 4.3 tons per acre – in response to the PFAS tests but is not yet explicitly mentioning PFAS in those recommendations.

    “We understand and we take all of the precautions, not only by law but because we want to make sure we are giving customers a good product for their gardens and for their lawns,” said McBurnie, who is a member of Maine’s PFAS task force.


    Located on roughly 15 acres a few miles from downtown Unity, Casella’s Hawk Ridge facility is a massive operation that produces roughly 80,000 cubic yards of compost annually. While the company sells to individuals, most customers of Casella’s various compost blends are contractors, landscapers or others buying in bulk.

    Tractor-trailers deliver an estimated 4,800 cubic yards of treated sludge monthly to the Unity facility. After unloading the truck, workers combine the piles of waste with wood shavings, sawdust, wood chips and “starter” compost that adds a carbon base and bulk to the nitrogen-rich waste and begins the composting process.

    “There is a science to it but there is also a little bit of an art, too,” said George Belmont, manager at Hawk Ridge, while standing beside small mountains of wood shavings and treated sludge.

    After mixing, the piles are loaded into 128-foot-long, enclosed tunnels or “vessels” where – with the help of oxygen pumped in by huge aeration systems – the microbes that help create compost get to work. By law, the internal temperature of the pile must reach at least 131 degrees Fahrenheit to cook off any pathogens.

    After roughly a week in the tunnels, the compost is moved outside to “cure” and continue to cook for several more weeks. Eventually, the materials are piled into massive rows or blocks where sensors monitor temperature, moisture, oxygen and carbon dioxide levels in the final aging and curing process.

    All told, the biosolids-based compost could be on-site at Hawk Ridge for six months to nearly a year before it is sold as “Class A” compost that is more than 99.9 percent free of the pathogens found in human waste.

    McBurnie said Casella lost a sizable chunk of business as well as a few customers in the spring when the DEP imposed a monthlong moratorium on compost sales while PFAS testing was done. Although sales have been brisk since then, the uncertainty over what happens after June 30 of next year is still “in the back of our minds,” he said.

    Even though Casella owns or operates several landfills in Maine, the company does not want to landfill the sludge now being accepted at Hawk Ridge because it recognizes the additional value of the finished product. Landfilling sludge also increases municipalities’ costs and consumes limited landfill space.

    “I’m all for doing the right thing, but let’s not act rashly,” McBurnie said. “We understand there are clusters of issues, such as where there are large (PFAS) releases near industries. Let’s focus on them.”


    More than 120 miles to the south, the Sanford Sewerage District distributed 122 cubic yards of compost last month that was made from biosolids. While diminutive compared to Casella’s operation, Sanford’s composting facility allows the district to reduce input into its landfill, which is nearing capacity, while avoiding hundreds of thousands of dollars in annual costs to ship the waste to Hawk Ridge or elsewhere.

    “We recently spent close to $2 million on this composting system,” said Brousseau, the superintendent of the Sanford Sewerage District. “The ratepayers are paying for that, so what do we do if we can no longer compost? And that’s still a concern because the deadline is July (2020).”

    Like other treatment plant operators, Brousseau stressed that they have no control over the PFAS that flows into their facilities from human waste or industrial sources. Although federal scrutiny is increasing, PFAS chemicals are still not on the long list of substances that companies must report discharging.

    Even so, Brousseau estimated that a home gardener would have to spread 7 yards of Sanford’s compost year after year for decades in order to exceed the DEP’s cutoff.

    The task force created by the governor this spring is expected to make recommendations on future reuse of biosolids by the end of the year. Several groups involved with the task force or monitoring its work are urging the DEP to err on the side of caution by limiting or prohibiting land application of sludge with elevated PFAS levels.

    MacRoy, whose organization the Environmental Health Strategy Center also has a representative on the state’s task force, said it is wrong to automatically assume that gardens or lawns are “virgin land” without elevated PFAS levels, especially if they’ve received compost before. MacRoy also expressed concern that some home gardeners may not follow application guidelines and, in their zeal for a well-nourished garden, may overapply compost.

    “I question many of the assumptions that DEP is using,” MacRoy said.








    Soil and Microlife

    As always I would like to start with the basics of soil.  I know this sounds like a thing that is not needed.  I implore you to know it.  It will help in ways you may not be able to perceive yet but will help not only in initial selections of materials and understanding but is part of the sacred pool that ideas come from.

    Their are overlapping lessons in these videos but I wholly recommend watching both.  Together they are golden!


    Soil and Soil Dynamics

    AGF-l78Gna0r_5EaPSxVOwL-kVszM2uKqlTdPyyh Bozeman Science



    Water in Soil.

    This video works well in understanding about soil textures by seeing how water flows in various soils.

    Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech



    Soil and Dirt

    AGF-l79vkOw_nbAm87LLUBA23ArqNklHCjCxl1_B SustainableStudies



    Soil is a living organism

    AGF-l79RZRRfLWcU9Qn0JcjYsyhw6OhVk1OPUktF Plant Health Cure BV


    Mycorrihizal Fungi or "myco" for short.

    AGF-l78mEityzRA430exD1VNx2vdxYaWy9AzK6q7 Primrose



    AGF-l7-lf7Cr0aUWTCxbyangcbD86AqDTtQloWb3  OYR Frugal & Sustainable Organic Gardening


    A comment on Myco.

    Myco is largely ineffective with most growers in containers as the roots have no problems connecting to the nutrients it needs.  However, I believe myco and living soil as a whole is vital for no till setups.  In no till, you farm/manage the soil and it takes care of the rest for the most part.  My best advice is no till is to mimic nature with the layers of soil and manage that.  This will help with soils not becoming compact.

    Living soils in containers is great but myco is largely not a factor as the availability of nutrients that is soluble and ready to use is available.  Myco work with plants to obtain nutrients in hard to reach areas the plants roots cant get too.   In containers this is not a thing generally.

    I like IMO, lab and compost teas geared towards soil life as well as the plant to strengthen its specific lifecycle" for containers.


    Think of the soil in nature, the following video set will help give that understanding.




    AGF-l79cAffJQFnyz17pQkiit6oRs8V1NEVfH9tM Living Web Farms


    Now that we know a bit of soil and soil life, I recommend conducting a soil sample of your soil on a regular basis.  We are not only interested in the NPK aspects but the life within the soil.  The following below is how to conduct a soil sample specifically for evaluating soil life.  Please allow me to introduce the esteemed Dr. Elaine Ingham.


    Preparing and conducting a soil sample

    Video by Dr. Elaine Ingham




    AAuE7mBaiT5FRToP7lCOlKXRDLh3rCSfVpt8Tk-T  SustainableStudies



    How to choose a microscope for soil microbiology

    Video by Dr. Elaine Ingham




    AAuE7mBaiT5FRToP7lCOlKXRDLh3rCSfVpt8Tk-T  SustainableStudies


    The information contained within this document is designed to help instill a big picture understanding of soil and how to begin to manage soils for your operation.  By understanding the basics of soils, npk and soil life for the plants you are growing it enables a grower to begin the steps to achieving true confidence which potentially can achieve optimum soil results.   




    ~Hope that helps!!

  13. :58db45f370dbe_bulbwithplants:



    1. Cleanliness
    2. Environment.  (Temperature and Humidity)
      1. Soil temperature, around 55-60 degrees.
      2. Humidity 60%
        • Lower to 70% as the plant grows roots.
          • Initially the plant needs higher humidity as it is pulling its water from the leaves but as the roots gain we want the moisture and good turgor pressure from the roots to the plants.
            • So you manage that balancing act as the roots develop.  It can happen rather quickly from days to a week or two depending on overall temperature.  Higher temperature within good range equal faster rooting.
      3. Temperature 70-85f or 26c
        1. higher towards 80 is generally better for fast rooting.
        2. Try to keep 5 to 10 degrees difference between night and day periods.
          • Steady but not too slow from higher humidity to lower humidity during lights off to assist in preventing fungal problems.
            • Longer periods of unwanted humidity levels in the dark is a problem.
    3. VPD (advanced)  VPD charts here:  https://www.dimluxlighting.com/knowledge/blog/vapor-pressure-deficit-the-ultimate-guide-to-vpd/
      • Ideally a vpd around 0.80 kPa is a general rule but range from 0.8 to 0.95 kPa
        • If the air is too hot and dry (high VPD), plants will tend to have slow, stretched growth.

        • If the air is too cool and humid (low VPD), plants grow slowly and are prone to problems with mold or fungus.

    4. Media  (you want a light media that the new roots can quickly grow through.)
      1. I like to wic water from below.  The video above shows this in several options.
      2. Rapid rooters are notorious for dry spots causing problems.
        • Coco based ones I liked better than peat based ones.


    I sprout based on the condition and age/condition of the seed.   This video will help instill the science of seeds and give you an understanding that will help you propagate with confidence.

    This is a great video that is easy to understand for way to much information and practical information that should help you not just fix a propagating problem but help you know this process from depth.  Then, you can begin to truly optimize your systems and then you will begin to see plants like you have only seen on a screen.

    • Go to around 22:00 minute mark for examples and some instruction on different types of seed preparation depending on condition of seed.
    • 27:04 for seedling care and transplant.


    I love sprouting in soil with a bit of worm castings. 

    For hydroponics I like the water in a cup until the root looks like a sperm and transplant.

    Another very good video for using soil, to soilless medias and seed starting.


    Here are some methods, I have used these all.  He takes too many steps but he babies the sprouting of the seedlings and thus illustrates an optimum environment for each stage of the seedling process. 

    • Notice how the environment is altered and humidity is changed for each stage.  Appreciating that is key.
    • I disagree with the ones that drop are duds.   
      • I have always seen a good rate of those sprouting but after about an hour I will take out of water and plant into soil or even a paper towel method. 
      • Can take longer to sprout as well but do not blindly consider those seeds duds.
    • Where he takes the sprouted seeds and into a paper towel and into freezer bag (poor mans humidity dome)
      • I do not do that.
      • I let the roots grow a bit longer.  They will grow down and look like sperm.
      • Be careful to not harm the root when moving.
        • I used a good set of tweezers.


    Germination Problems & Questions answered video.






    Common mistakes



    Watering Section

    • So much great information in this video.

    Hope that helps.



    If this helped you and you feel like supporting, please support the makers of the videos!

  14. Oldest evidence of marijuana use discovered in 2500-year-old cemetery in peaks of western China



    Today, more than 150 million people regularly smoke cannabis, making it one of the world's most popular recreational drugs. But when and where humans began to appreciate the psychoactive properties of weed has been more a matter of speculation than science. Now, a team led by archaeologists Yang Yimin and Ren Meng of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing reports clear physical evidence that mourners burned cannabis for its intoxicating fumes on a remote mountain plateau in Central Asia some 2500 years ago.

    The study, published today in Science Advances, relies on new techniques that enable researchers to identify the chemical signature of the plant and even evaluate its potency. "We are in the midst of a really exciting period," says team member Nicole Boivin of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History (MPI-SHH) in Jena, Germany. The paper is part of a wider effort to track how the drug spread along the nascent Silk Road, on its way to becoming the global intoxicant it is today.

    Cannabis, also known as hemp or marijuana, evolved about 28 million years ago on the eastern Tibetan Plateau, according to a pollen study published in May. A close relative of the common hop found in beer, the plant still grows wild across Central Asia. More than 4000 years ago, Chinese farmers began to grow it for oil and for fiber to make rope, clothing, and paper.

    Pinpointing when people began to take advantage of hemp's psychoactive properties has proved tricky. Archaeologists had made claims of ritual cannabis burning in Central Asian sites as far back as 5000 years ago. But new analyses of those plant remains by other teams suggest that early cannabis strains had low levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the plant's most powerful psychoactive component, and so lacked mind-altering properties. One academic who works in Central Asia said he and colleagues tried to smoke and eat wild varieties—but got no buzz.


    Ancient people put cannabis leaves and hot stones in this brazier, and likely inhaled the resulting smoke.



    The cannabis burned 2500 years ago at the Jirzankal cemetery, 3000 meters high in the Pamir Mountains in far western China, was different. Excavations there have uncovered skeletons and wooden plates, bowls, and Chinese harps, as well as wooden braziers that held burning material. All are typical of the Sogdians, a people of western China and Tajikistan who generally followed the Persian faith of Zoroastrianism, which later celebrated the mind-expanding properties of cannabis in sacred texts. At Jirzankal, glass beads typical of Western Asia and silk from China confirm the long-distance trade for which the Sogdians became famous, and isotopic analysis of 34 skeletons showed that nearly a third were migrants. Radiocarbon analysis put the burials at about 500 B.C.E.

    The wooden braziers were concentrated in the more elite tombs. Yang's and Ren's team ground bits of brazier into powder and applied gas chromatography and mass spectrometry to identify chemical compounds left behind. They found unusually high levels of THC compared with typical wild cannabis, although much less than in today's highly bred plants. The cannabis was apparently burned in an enclosed space, so mourners almost certainly inhaled THC-laced fumes, the authors say, making this the earliest solid evidence of cannabis use for psychoactive purposes.

    The region's high altitude could have stressed the cannabis, creating plants naturally high in THC, says co-author Robert Spengler, also of MPI-SHH. "It is quite likely that people came across cannabis plants at higher elevations that were naturally producing higher THC levels," he says. But humans may also have intervened to breed a more wicked weed, he adds.

    "The methods are convincing, and the data are unambiguous regarding early use of cannabis as a psychoactive substance," says Tengwen Long, an environmental scientist at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom who has researched cannabis origins. But Megan Cifarelli, an art historian at Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York, who has studied ancient drug use, notes the aromatic fumes might also have had another purpose: to mask the smell of a putrefying corpse.

    Yang's and Ren's team thinks cannabis use was restricted to elites until potent pot began to spread across Central Asia through the Silk Road linking China with Iran. In 440 B.C.E., the Greek historian Herodotus wrote that the nomadic Scythians, who controlled vast areas from Siberia to Eastern Europe, made tents and heated rocks in order to inhale hemp vapors that made them "shout for joy." And Andrei Belinski, an archaeologist based at the heritage museum in Stavropol, Russia, in 2013 began to excavate a nearby 2400-year-old Scythian tomb that held gold vessels bearing residues of both opium and cannabis, supporting the idea that elites used the drug first.

    Ancient artwork and textual references from Syria to China hint at even earlier cannabis drug use, and the new analytical methods could soon provide concrete evidence of this, says Michael Frachetti, an archaeologist at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. But it's already clear that the ancient Silk Road trafficked in more than spices, grains, and ideas. "Crops weren't just about food," he says. "They were also about making contact with another world."

    Original article: https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/06/oldest-evidence-marijuana-use-discovered-2500-year-old-cemetery-peaks-western-china

    Posted in: 


  15. Keep in mind we do not know the story of the assault and even so, being sent to a place he is likely to be killed or become part of the problem is not necessarily a wise move either.

    I still am happy that this lady did this.  We do not always know the reasons for the deportations and in the USA they deport pretty much for being an illegal alien and they are looking to take away green cards and potentially revoke citizenship from those given citizenship so I am for passive resistance that helps even for a minute. 

    Turning a blind eye by saying they must deserve it is not necessarily the wise take away from this.

    I am all for sending criminals back to whence they came but we do not always know nor can trust they are truly criminals that warrant such a sentence.

    I respect all opinions on this and all are welcome as in that we perhaps can learn more on perspective but for my personal view, I am all about cultural healing and life but I do agree with accountability.

  16. Afghan migrant whose deportation was thwarted by 'hero' Swedish student was actually sentenced for assault



    The Swedish student who was branded a “hero” and captured worldwide attention after she stopped the deportation of an Afghan migrant by refusing to sit down on a plane instead prevented the extradition of a man sentenced for assault and whose asylum application was rejected.

    Elin Ersson, a student at Gothenburg University, was subjected to fawning media coverage over her stunt earlier this month when she refused to take her seat on the plane until the 52-year-old Afghan deportee was released. She was successful and authorities weren’t able to deport the man.

    However, Swedish Police confirmed to Fox News that the man whose deportation Ersson prevented had received a prison sentence in Sweden for assault. The police spokesman declined to go into more details about the crime the migrant has committed. His asylum application was also rejected.

    A representative for Ersson declined Fox News’ request for a comment.

    One of the largest newspapers in Finland, Helsingin Sanomat, reported last week as well that the man was sentenced for assault. The man will still eventually be deported, though the date remains unknown, the newspaper reported.

    Despite lacking information about the man who was being deported, most media organizations jumped on the story, with the Washington Post calling Ersson’s stunt a “dramatic act of civil disobedience” while Newsweek magazine described the student as a “hero”.

    CNN, meanwhile, spoke with Swedish authorities who confirmed that it was “forced deportation,” yet the outlet didn’t reveal why the man faced deportation.

    The Swedish student live streamed the whole incident and it was viewed nearly 5 million times on Facebook alone. In the video, she’s heard saying “there is a man who is going to get deported to Afghanistan, where he will most likely get killed” and the she won’t “sit down until this person is off the plane.”

    “I am doing what I can to save a person’s life,” she continues. “As long as a person is standing up, the pilot cannot take off. All I want to do is stop the deportation, and then I will comply with the rules here. This is all perfectly legal, and I have not committed a crime.”

    An annoyed passenger tried to grab the phone from Ersson, saying she’s upsetting others. To which the student replied: “It's not my fault that he's getting deported. I'm trying to stop this.”

    “I'm trying to change my country's rules. I don't like them. It's not right to send people to hell,” she added.




  17. Swedish student's plane protest stops man's deportation 'to hell'

    David Crouch in Gothenburg 


    ACSszfFauLdJNIv2n6uTtGHp2yVp7bzQIRSSZ4DgGuardian News


    A lone student activist on board a plane at Gothenburg airport has prevented the deportation of an Afghan asylum seeker from Sweden by refusing to sit down until the man was removed from the flight.

    Her successful protest, footage of which spread rapidly across the internet, shines a spotlight on domestic opposition to Sweden’s tough asylum regime, at a time when immigration and asylum are topping the agenda of a general election campaign in which the far right is polling strongly.

    “I hope that people start questioning how their country treats refugees,” Elin Ersson, 21, told the Guardian in an interview. “We need to start seeing the people whose lives our immigration [policies] are destroying.”

    The social work student at Gothenburg University bought a ticket for the flight from Gothenburg to Turkey on Monday morning, after she and other asylum activists found out that a young Afghan was due to be deported on it. In fact he was not on the plane but activists discovered another Afghan man in his 50s was onboard for deportation.

    Swedish plane protester Elin Ersson: ‘I knew I couldn't back down – I had to do what I could'

    As she entered the plane, Ersson started to livestream her protest in English. The video received more than 4m hits on Tuesday.

    Facing both sympathy and hostility from passengers, the footage shows Ersson struggling to keep her composure. “I don’t want a man’s life to be taken away just because you don’t want to miss your flight,” she says. “I am not going to sit down until the person is off the plane.”

    Repeatedly told by a steward to stop filming, Ersson says: “I am doing what I can to save a person’s life. As long as a person is standing up the pilot cannot take off. All I want to do is stop the deportation and then I will comply with the rules here. This is all perfectly legal and I have not committed a crime.”

    When an angry passenger, who appears to be English, tries to seize her phone, she tells him: “What is more important, a life, or your time? … I want him to get off the plane because he is not safe in Afghanistan. I am trying to change my country’s rules, I don’t like them. It is not right to send people to hell.”

    After a tense standoff, during which the airport authorities declined to use force to eject Ersson, passengers broke into applause when the asylum seeker was taken off the plane.

    Ersson told the Guardian she had been volunteering with refugee groups for about a year.

    “People [in Afghanistan] are not sure of any safety,” she said. “They don’t know if they’re going to live another day. As I’ve been working and meeting people from Afghanistan and heard their stories, I’ve been more and more in the belief that no one should be deported to Afghanistan because it’s not a safe place. The way that we are treating refugees right now, I think that we can do better, especially in a rich country like Sweden.”

    As the country heads towards a general election in September, Sweden’s centre-left coalition government is keen to keep up expulsions of asylum seekers whose applications have been turned down. “If you get rejected, you have to go home – otherwise we will not have a proper migration system,” the prime minister, Stefan Löfven, said last year after an Uzbek asylum seeker whose claim had been rejected drove a truck into shoppers in Stockholm, killing five people.

    After Taliban violence increased in January, the country briefly halted deportations to Afghanistan. But the Swedish migration board stands by its assessment that the country is a safe destination for asylum seekers whose claims have been turned down.

    In its most recent assessment, the migration board said Taliban attacks had been aimed mainly at the military or foreigners, and violence against Afghan civilians was rare. As for a bomb in an ambulance in January that killed at least 95 and injured many more in Kabul, the board said it was “unclear whether the purpose was really to attack civilians”.

    Tens of thousands of deportation cases are expected to be handed over to the police as the country continues to process a backlog of asylum applications, after 163,000 people claimed asylum in Sweden in 2015. Last year, the border police deported 12,500 people, while the rate of expulsions so far this year is slightly higher.

    Normally deportations go peacefully, according to a spokesperson for the police in Sweden’s west region. But occasionally the process is disrupted by demonstrators such as Ersson or by asylum seekers themselves.

    “You do it once or twice, and if it doesn’t work we rent a private plane to send them back to Afghanistan, or wherever,” the spokesperson said.

    Ersson’s protest was a civil and not a criminal case, he said. Should the airline and passengers decide to prosecute, Ersson could face a substantial fine.

    When the refugee crisis began to escalate 2015, Sweden made it much harder for refugees to get into the country and asylum applications fell sharply. In 2016 almost 29,000 people claimed asylum, followed by just under 26,000 last year. So far this year, asylum applications are running at about 1,500 a month.

    The fates of the young man due to be deported on Monday, and the man who was on the plane, are unknown. A spokesperson for the Swedish Prison and Probation Service confirmed that the young man would be deported again, once transport was found. The Swedish border police in Kalmar, responsible for the attempted deportation, did not return calls from the Guardian.

    Ersson believes the young man was taken to Stockholm and put on a flight there already.

    “This is how deportations in Sweden work. The people involved know nothing and they are not allowed to reach out to their lawyers or family,” she said. “My ultimate goal is to end deportations to Afghanistan.”


    A Note

    This is from the guardian site, we are not affiliated nor do we have an arrangement or receive no benefit from any payments but this was part of this article and since we used the Guardian links we list this out of respect.

    Since you’re here…

    … we have a small favour to ask. More people are reading the Guardian than ever but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help.

    The Guardian is editorially independent. This is important because it enables us to challenge the powerful, and hold them to account – free from the influence of billionaire owners, politicians or shareholders.

    The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we believe our perspective matters – because it might well be your perspective, too.

    If everyone who reads our reporting, who likes it, helps to support it, our future would be much more secure. For as little as $1, you can support the Guardian – and it only takes a minute. Thank you.

  18. Oregon’s marijuana glut forces growers to make hard choices

    By Lily Raff McCaulou, Rolling Stone 



    John Plummer, founder and co-owner of Bull Run Craft Cannabis in Boring, Oregon, got his first hint that the state was careening toward a marijuana glut two years ago.

    In early 2016, his company received one of Oregon’s first few licenses to grow recreational cannabis. In June of that year, Plummer and one of his employees stood third in line to pay at Camps True Value Hardware, in nearby Gresham. They were buying lumber to fence a temporary outdoor operation that would ensure a quick harvest while they set up their more labor-intensive indoor facility.

    The cashier asked the couple at the front of the line what they were building.

    “Recreational marijuana is legal now, so we’re going to start farming it,” Plummer overheard the couple say.

    The next people in line, an older couple, chimed in that they, too, were building a space to grow recreational cannabis. Plummer and his employee glanced at each other, eyebrows raised. Every person in line at the lumber store was farming cannabis.

    Two years later, Plummer laughs as he recounts the absurdity of the scene. “I mean, what are the chances?” Plummer says.

    Pretty good, it turns out. Oregon now has 1,012 licensed growers, with another 956 in the process of obtaining licenses. All those growers in a state with just four million residents has resulted in a mountain of marijuana. Nearly one million pounds of usable flower remains unsold — about three times what consumers purchased in all of 2017. Prices of the recreational drug have plummeted, with dispensaries selling pre-rolled joints for $1, less than the price of a cigarette.

    That leaves growers to face tough decisions. Some are getting out of the business altogether. Others are struggling to stay afloat. If the product can’t be sold before it goes bad, the legal method of disposal is to burn or compost it. For growers with no other options, that means churning all their hard work and money back into the soil or igniting it into an expensive, fragrant bonfire. Officials say desperate growers are increasingly turning to the black market.

    When Oregon launched its recreational cannabis program in 2016, the first growers’ licenses were issued just six months before retail dispensaries opened shop. Plummer and two of his business partners, growers Steve Bailey and “EZ Mike” Scarbrough, were waiting at a computer the morning that Oregon put its application online. Then it was a mad dash to get their product on shelves in time for shops to open.

    That fall, Oregon growers harvested about one million pounds of wet-weight cannabis, according to the state tracking system. Processing shrunk that down – drying weed cuts it to about a quarter of its original weight – and consumers snatched it up. Demand was high and prices were astronomical.

    Robin Cordell, co-founder and owner of Oregon Girl Gardens LLC, was a little slower to set up her farm. Cordell has a degree in horticulture and opened the business with her brother and sister-in-law on a swath of overgrown land behind their parents’ house. She had no trouble selling her first few harvests in early 2017.

    “One distributor said to me, ‘We’ll take whatever you have and we’ll pay whatever you want for it,’” she says. “You could make a very good living at $2,000 a pound.”

    But those prices didn’t last long, and expenses kept mounting. Cordell says she had trouble keeping up with regulations, not only from the state but the county.

    The two standard greenhouse fans she bought, for example, were considered too loud given the building’s proximity to her property line. To stay in compliance, she had to replace the fans with five smaller, indoor-rated fans. She says that switch cost her an extra $2,000.

    Meanwhile, more growers were coming online and adding to the state’s supply.

    David Fowler became interested in cannabis in 2014, after it helped him overcome a chronic sleep problem. An empty nester with ample savings, the civil engineer-turned-financial advisor longed to start his own business on the side. Fowler decided to start small.

    He purchased property that he felt confident he could turn around and sell, regardless of the state of the cannabis industry. The property had an old farmhouse on it, which Fowler converted into an indoor grow facility, doing most of the construction himself.

    “We started taking our product around, just to get an idea of what dispensaries would think about it,” Fowler says. “This was in July 2016. Everybody back then was in desperate need of indoor (high-quality) flower.”

    But it was January 2017 by the time Fowler’s operation was licensed. The first harvest was in May 2017, when prices were still high, around $2,300 to $2,500 per pound. That was more than he had counted on. In his business plan, Fowler had penciled in a per-pound price of $1,400, to play it safe.

    “You can’t get any loans in this business, and I knew that from the time we started, we would have zero cash flow for the first five or six months, so I made operations really cheap,” he says.

    After a few months, prices slipped to $1,900 per pound. Then, in October 2017, Oregon growers harvested 2.5 million pounds of wet-weight cannabis – more than twice the previous year’s crop. By then, there were hundreds more indoor grow operations, too, which harvest regularly throughout the year.

    Prices dropped to $1,200 per pound, and Fowler grew frustrated with dispensary managers.

    “You would start having this relationship where they would say, ‘We’ll take two pounds this week and then in two weeks, bring me another pound.’ Eight times out of ten when you called to say ‘I’ve got your next order ready,’ they’d say, ‘Give me a couple more days.’ And then when you called back, they’d say, ‘Oh, someone came in yesterday and we bought all their product,’” he says.

    When dispensaries did buy a pound or two, they didn’t pay much. Fowler was getting offers for $800 per pound.

    He laid off three of his four employees, so only he and the master grower remained. Farming is always hard work, but cannabis involves a particularly labor-intensive routine after harvest, to dry the flower and trim it without compromising quality. Fowler and his grower were working around the clock. And Fowler still had a day job. Even with no employees, the operation was barely breaking even. About a year into the venture, Fowler put his farm on the market. He sold it this month for a little more than he paid for the land. “It was a good time to get out,” he says.

    Fowler recently dropped his last 40 pounds of cannabis off at a processor who turned it into extract and split the sale price with him. When he looks back on his experience, he mostly feels relief that it’s over. He thinks it will take years for the market to stabilize.

    “The only way to really enjoy it is to have 10 employees,” he says. “I know what it takes to get to that level – you have to be producing 800 pounds a year and bringing in $1 million. We were at a point where we could do 300 to 350 pounds a year.”

    Fowler estimates that he lost between $50,000 and $60,000 in his venture, and says he feels lucky about that figure. “People in the business,” he says, “hear what I lost and say, ‘That’s it?’”

    In January, with prices plummeting due to oversupply, Cordell’s relatives decided to pull out of their company, leaving her to run the operation herself. She says she is not currently speaking with her brother and sister-in-law and compares the fallout to going through a divorce.

    She plans to grow medicinal cannabis this year and eventually switch to hemp. She also intends to grow food and medicinal herbs and to start teaching classes on gardening and making therapeutic food and body products. “I’m just looking for things that not everyone is doing,” she says. “This is the life a lot of people want to live.”

    Plummer, on the other hand, is sticking it out. Bull Run Craft Cannabis has marketed its organic farming practices and its carefully curated strains. “We’re kind of the ‘soccer mom’ brand right now,” he says, “and we’re really proud of that.”

    Plummer has decades of experience building small businesses in Portland that overcome stark odds. He owns a popular bar and music venue, and he owned a shoe store that thrived downtown for more than 20 years despite the rise of big box stores and online behemoths.

    Besides, Plummer and his partners are not strangers to risk. Back in 1998, “EZ Mike” Scarbrough served 90 days in jail for growing five marijuana plants under a light in his closet. “I was really lucky to be in a tolerant state,” he says of the experience.

    Scarbrough had moved a couple of years earlier from Utah, where the same activity could have resulted in a seven-year sentence. His record was expunged in 2015, and 10 years after he was released from jail, he applied for and received a license to grow medical marijuana in Oregon.

    But today, Scarbrough’s “tolerant state” has caused new headaches. Unlike Washington and Colorado, which control the number of cannabis licensees and who can invest in them, Oregon has taken a free-market approach, with no caps on licenses issued or out-of-state investment. “The marketplace is a closed system,” Plummer says. “We’re producing, producing, producing, which would be great if it were like our craft beer industry or our wine industry, which sells all over the world.”

    Instead, it remains federally illegal to transport cannabis across state lines. Last month, Oregon’s US Attorney, Billy Williams, issued a memo challenging the state to do something about its oversupply issue, and vowing to crack down on the illegal black market. In a press conference, he said large amounts of Oregon-grown marijuana have been seized in 30 states. Earlier this year, Oregon lawmakers earmarked an additional $1.5 million in law enforcement, to crack down on the illegal cannabis market.

    “Everybody in the industry knows someone who is doing something shady if not outright illegal,” Plummer tells us. “There are only three choices: sell it legally, dispose of it legally or do something illegal.”

    Cordell says she wishes there were a legal avenue for donating unsold product to low-income patients, for example. “It would take some crappy options off people’s plates,” she says.

    Plummer says once-friendly relationships between growers have turned sour and suspicious. He says he’s heard of growers reporting violations to the state that they spotted on other growers’ social media feeds.

    Oregon uses a seed-to-sale tracking system to log recreational cannabis as it’s grown, processed and sold. State code instructs growers to dispose of any cannabis they can’t sell by composting it, burning it or dumping it in a landfill. Any product that can’t be sold has to be marked for disposal in the online tracking system and then stored on the premises for at least three days before it’s discarded, so inspectors can stop by to verify.

    As cannabis has piled up, disposal of usable marijuana has increased. In March 2017, growers destroyed about 3,367 pounds of usable marijuana, according to the state tracking system. In March of 2018, growers destroyed 13,976 pounds.

    The agency that handles licensing and compliance recently stopped accepting new applications, from June 15 until at least January 2019, but a spokesman says that decision had nothing to do with concerns about illegal activity. Mark Pettinger, of the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, says it was based on a simple backlog of applications. Despite turmoil in the market, people are still lined up to go into the cannabis business.

    “We foresee it taking six to nine months for us to get through the work we already have,” Pettinger says of the licensing backlog.

    He adds that only the state legislature – which next convenes in February 2019 – has the power to cap licenses. “We can’t do it unilaterally,” he says of his agency.

    Growers say they expect it will take several years for the oversupply to work itself out. Plummer remains optimistic that the federal government will eventually legalize cannabis. If that happens, he thinks whatever Oregon producers remain in business will be poised for success. Oregon growers are engaged in the agricultural equivalent of an arms race to produce cannabis that stands out from the competition.

    “One positive of all of this is that Oregon is producing the most scrutinized weed that the world has ever seen,” Scarbrough says. “We’ll take the Pepsi Challenge with anyone right now.”

    Tris Reisfar is co-owner of Blazing Trails, a cannabis tour company in Bend, Oregon. Many of his tours turn into de facto consulting sessions. “Lots of people who come visit are dreaming of getting into the industry,” he says.

    Reisfar is honest with them. He tells them that prices have plummeted, that growers are desperate. He tells them about growers who lost their life savings, even their homes. None of it dulls the twinkle in peoples’ eyes. “They hear me, but they don’t really hear me,” he says.

    Plummer compares the current market to the Gold Rush, when people were dying and losing everything they owned, yet hordes more kept flooding into California to pan for gold. “There’s this romantic idea, it doesn’t matter that it’s not reality,” Plummer says.

    Even Plummer can’t really help himself. He still sees opportunities.

    “My mom’s a senior citizen and she won’t stop talking to her friends about her pot cream that helps her arthritis so much. I keep expecting to see the farm that sort of brands itself as the senior citizen brand,” he says. “That would be a really smart move.”




    Sleep like breathing is often something we typically take for granted.  However, as in breathing, we often do it wrong and form habits that are detrimental to our daily energies and to our health in ways that we seldom appreciate.

    Typically this process happens when we are kids.  For example, look at young children today and see how wide awake and full of energy they have when they awake, this is in part due to healthy sleep.  As children they tend to have bed times on a regular schedule and thus they do not suffer from sleep deprivation or a short sleep. 

    At the same time it is often the desire of the child to stay up late and they will tend to find ways to be able to stay up late at every opportunity.  It is in this that we typically begin the process that later will develop into sleep deprivation as we learn to get by with less sleep.  Almost as a right of age is that we can stay up as late as we want and for most, the effect of this is dramatic on our energy and our health.  The centers for disease control has listed insufficient sleep as a public health epidemic.



    The following are just an example of the lures that can keep people from sleeping correctly.

    • Watching late movies,
    • Going out or to parties into early morning hours,
    • Playing video games into late to early morning hours,
    • Working late hours,
    • Economic stresses,
    • Parental aspects, baby and small child,
    • Social aspects,
    • Emotional or physical distress.

    Finding solutions to address these issues will help eliminate those sleep deprivation aspects and in a short period of time you can begin to enjoy the life you want to enjoy with energy and give yourself the capability to be healthy.  We will talk more on that in a bit but first lets discuss the process of sleep.



    The Sleep Process

    Understanding our sleep cycle is not just to educate on the issue but to understand what is happening when we sleep.  This is important when it comes to addressing negative sleep issues and potentially in our sleep management.




    The stages of sleep:

    1. Stage 1 is light sleep where you drift in and out of sleep and can be awakened easily. In this stage, the eyes move slowly and muscle activity slows.
      • During this stage, many people experience sudden muscle contractions preceded by a sensation of falling.
    2. Stage 2, eye movement stops and brain waves become slower with only an occasional burst of rapid brain waves.
      • The body begins to prepare for deep sleep, as the body temperature begins to drop and the heart rates slows.
      • Adults spend nearly half of sleep time in stage 2,
    3. Stage 3, (Deep Sleep) extremely slow brain waves called delta waves are interspersed with smaller, faster waves. This is deep sleep.
      • It is during this stage that a person may experience sleepwalking, night terrors, talking during one’s sleep, and bedwetting.
      • These behaviors are known as parasomnias, and tend to occur during the transitions between non-REM and REM sleep.
    4. Stage 4, (Deep sleep continues) as the brain produces delta waves almost exclusively.
      • People roused from this state feel disoriented for a few minutes.
      • In both deep sleep stages of 3 and 4
        • A reduction in sleep drive, and provides the most restorative sleep of all the sleep stages.
          • This is why if you take a short nap (power nap) during the day, you’re still able to fall asleep at night.
          • However if you take a nap long enough to fall into deep sleep, you have more difficulty falling asleep at night because you reduced your need for sleep.
        • Human growth hormone is released and restores your body and muscles from the stresses of the day.
        • Your immune system restores itself.
        • It may be during this stage that the brain also refreshes itself for new learning the following day.
    5. In stage 5, REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, brain waves mimic activity during the waking state. The eyes remain closed but move rapidly from side-to-side, perhaps related to the intense dream and brain activity that occurs during this stage.
      • Dreams occur at this stage of sleep.
      • Infants spend almost 50% of their time in REM sleep.
      • Adults spend about 20% in REM
      • Older adults spend progressively less time in REM sleep.
      • REM occurs during the second half of sleep.  REM sleep typically begins about 90 minutes after you first fall asleep, with the first REM cycle lasting about 10 minutes.  Each successive REM cycle last longer, with the final REM stage lasting up to 1 hour.
        • Most people experience three to five intervals of REM sleep each night.
      • Waking may occur after REM.  If the waking period is long enough, the person may remember it the next morning.
        • Short awakenings may disappear with amnesia.
      • In the REM period, breathing becomes more rapid, irregular and shallow, eyes jerk rapidly and limb muscles are temporarily paralyzed.
        • Brain waves during this stage increase to levels experienced when a person is awake.
      • Heart rate increases, blood pressure rises, males can develop erections and the body loses some of the ability to regulate its temperature.
        • Younger men often wake up with erections or sometimes referred to as morning wood.


    The Sleep Cycle

    The sleep cycle is the period of time it takes a person to progress through the sleep stages however a person does not simply progress from stage 1 to stage 5.  There is a gearing up and gearing down sort of like a stick shift in a vehicle.

    The sleep cycle progress through the stages of non-REM sleep from light to deep sleep, then reverse back from deep sleep to light sleep, ending with time in REM sleep before starting over in light sleep again.  This cycle typically repeats 4 to 5 times a night.  

    For example, A typical sleep cycle order looks something like this:

    • Stage 1 (light sleep) – Stage 2 (light sleep) – Stage 3 (deep sleep) – Stage 2 (light sleep) – Stage 1 (light sleep) – REM Sleep

    After REM sleep, the individual returns to stage 1 of light sleep and begins a new cycle. As the night progresses, individuals spend increasingly more time in REM sleep and correspondingly less time in deep sleep. 

    • The first sleep cycle takes about 90 minutes. After that, they average between 100 to 120 minutes spending more time in REM sleep as the cycles progress.




    Effects of lack of sleep


    We all are familiar with being sleepy and needing some restful sleep as we have all experienced this need for sleep but outside of being sleepy and perhaps a bit cranky to confused do you really understand what is going on when we miss correct sleep? 


    Sleep and Performance

    In a study published in 2003 in the Journal of Sleep Research, 66 In a study published in 2003 in the Journal of Sleep Research, They were tested regularly on a psychomotor vigilance task.    

    66 normal volunteers spent either 3, 5, 7 or nine hours daily time in bed for one week.   This was followed by three days of recovery with eight hours daily time in bed for recovery.

    1. When people were held to sleep deprivation of either 7 or 5 hours per night performance decreased but then stabilized.
      • This stabilization remained even after 3 days or normal/recovery sleep.
    2. The people only getting 3 hours of sleep per night declined in performance over the seven days.
      • Even after three days of recovery in regular sleep, they were still under-performing compared to everyone else.
    3. The people getting 9 hours of sleep performed better than everyone else across the week of the experiment.
      • They also continued to perform better even after the sleep-deprived participants got more sleep in a recovery phase

    The authors of the study concluded that the brain does adapt to chronic sleep restriction, but we adapt at a reduced level of performance.  This illustrates that our bodies will adjust to our sleep patterns but with a decrease in performance and it is unlikely that in our day to day functions that we realize this decrease in performance with 5 to 7 hours sleep. 

    • It also shows that catching up on sleep does not effectively restore our performance levels.


    How to Reset your sleep schedule.  This will help you restore healthy sleep patterns.

    • Adjust sleep in 15 minute small increments, adjusting no more than 15 minutes earlier every two to three days.
    • This will help your body to adjust to the new schedule.
    • It can take 2 to 3 weeks to properly adjust to your new schedule.



    Sleep Deprivation Effects

    Sleep deprivation reduces your ability to make good decisions about sleep.  People who consistently get six hours of sleep a night report that they have adapted to function on less sleep.

    • However, actual investigations of their mental alertness and mental performance show that they are suffering the effects of sleep deprivation


    In terms of efficiency getting sufficient sleep is one of the best health-promoting decisions you can make. 

    • Consider the common cold.
      • Adults who sleep fewer than seven hours per night are almost three times more likely to get sick when exposed to a cold virus than adults who sleep eight or more hours a night.
      • Prioritizing eight hours of sleep per night can save you days of productivity lost to sickness


    Sleep is part of the process that regulates our body’s natural DNA repair. When you don’t sleep, you disrupt the body’s natural healing process, which can make you more susceptible to chronic diseases such as cancer.   

    • Sleep deprivation can affect postmenopausal women with breast cancer who routinely sleep less than six hours per night.
    • They may be twice as likely to have more aggressive breast cancers as those who sleep more.

    Lack of sleep can also make you more susceptible to mental health disorders. In fact, after just 24 hours of sleep deprivation, healthy people exhibit symptoms of schizophrenia, including reduced inhibition, attention deficits, a sensitivity to light color and brightness, an altered sense of smell and time.

    • Lack of sleep can literally create psychological and psychiatric dysfunction.


    Sleep-deprived people have impaired judgment.  One Swedish studies asked people to go shopping twice with a fixed amount of money.  When the same people went shopping while sleep deprived.

    • They bought more food overall, and more fatty and unhealthy food options in particular


    Sleep is also involved in how we learn and remember. In one study, preschoolers worked on a memory game, and then either stayed awake or took a nap that was about an hour and 15 minutes long. Then they played the memory game again.

    • When they stayed awake, they forgot 15 percent of what they learned.
    • When they napped, they remembered everything


    Sleep also matters for preserving long-term memory.  Researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health say that interventions to improve sleep quality may help to prevent or slow the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.


    how Sleep helps.

    Sleep helps promote health is through growth hormone which is primarily secreted at night, while you are sleeping

    • In kids, growth hormone is a primary factor in growth.
    • In adults, growth hormone is critical to maintaining and repairing tissues and organs.


    Sleep also keeps you safe. Consider that a blood alcohol level of 0.08 is considered legally drunk.

    • By 18 hours awake, your alertness level is comparable to someone with a 0.05 alcohol level while not necessarily legally drunk, but certainly tipsy.
    • By 24 hours awake, your alertness level and reflexes are comparable to a .01  alcohol level, which is drunk past the legal limit.


    Signs of aging, research from University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland shows that people who slept less had more visible signs of aging.

    • Getting enough sleep may make you feel better about what you see in the mirror and that’s going to give you more energy.






    A moment on sleepy driving, a very deadly and life impacting problem.



    Long term effects

    We often know in a sense that reduced sleep is not good for us but often when the price is to be paid for this behavior it may be a bit on the side of too little too late in terms of correcting the developed issues, at least in a quick turn.  Please appreciate that this damage may stay with us in part for the remainder of our lives depending on the severity.  However, it is never too late to return to healthy sleep patterns and begin the process of renewal and healing.


    From the CDC, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 

    As chronic diseases have assumed an increasingly common role in premature death and illness, interest in the role of sleep health in the development and management of chronic diseases has grown. Notably, insufficient sleep has been linked to the development and management of a number of chronic diseases and conditions, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and depression.

    1. Diabetes:
      • Research has found that insufficient sleep is linked to an increased risk for the development of Type 2 diabetes. Specifically, sleep duration and quality have emerged as predictors of levels of Hemoglobin A1c, an important marker of blood sugar control. Recent research suggests that optimizing sleep duration and quality may be important means of improving blood sugar control in persons with Type 2 diabetes.
    2. Cardiovascular Disease:
      • Persons with sleep apnea have been found to be at increased risk for a number of cardiovascular diseases. Notably, hypertension, stroke, coronary heart disease and irregular heartbeats (cardiac arrhythmias) have been found to be more common among those with disordered sleep than their peers without sleep abnormalities. Likewise, sleep apnea and hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis) appear to share some common physiological characteristics, further suggesting that sleep apnea may be an important predictor of cardiovascular disease.
    3. Obesity:
      • Laboratory research has found that short sleep duration results in metabolic changes that may be linked to obesity. Epidemiologic studies conducted in the community have also revealed an association between short sleep duration and excess body weight. This association has been reported in all age groups—but has been particularly pronounced in children. It is believed that sleep in childhood and adolescence is particularly important for brain development and that insufficient sleep in youngsters may adversely affect the function of a region of the brain known as the hypothalamus, which regulates appetite and the expenditure of energy.3
    4. Depression:
      • The relationship between sleep and depression is complex. While sleep disturbance has long been held to be an important symptom of depression, recent research has indicated that depressive symptoms may decrease once sleep apnea has been effectively treated and sufficient sleep restored. The inter-relatedness of sleep and depression suggests it is important that the sleep sufficiency of persons with depression be assessed and that symptoms of depression be monitored among persons with a sleep disorder.


    Common Sleep Disorders

    1. Insomnia: 
      • Insomnia is characterized by an inability to initiate or maintain sleep. It may also take the form of early morning awakening in which the individual awakens several hours early and is unable to resume sleeping. Difficulty initiating or maintaining sleep may often manifest itself as excessive daytime sleepiness, which characteristically results in functional impairment throughout the day.
      • Before arriving at a diagnosis of primary insomnia, the healthcare provider will rule out other potential causes, such as other sleep disorders, side effects of medications, substance abuse, depression, or other previously undetected illness. 
      • Chronic psycho-physiological insomnia (or “learned” or “conditioned” insomnia) may result from a stressor combined with fear of being unable to sleep.
      • Individuals with this condition may sleep better when not in their own beds. Health care providers may treat chronic insomnia with a combination of use of sedative-hypnotic or sedating antidepressant medications, along with behavioral techniques to promote regular sleep.
    2. Narcolepsy:
      • Excessive daytime sleepiness (including episodes of irresistible sleepiness) combined with sudden muscle weakness are the hallmark signs of narcolepsy.
      • The sudden muscle weakness seen in narcolepsy may be elicited by strong emotion or surprise.
      • Episodes of narcolepsy have been described as “sleep attacks” and may occur in unusual circumstances, such as walking and other forms of physical activity.
      • The healthcare provider may treat narcolepsy with stimulant medications combined with behavioral interventions, such as regularly scheduled naps, to minimize the potential disruptiveness of narcolepsy on the individual’s life.
    3. Restless Legs Syndrome (RLS):
      • RLS is characterized by an unpleasant “creeping” sensation, often feeling like it is originating in the lower legs, but often associated with aches and pains throughout the legs.
      • This often causes difficulty initiating sleep and is relieved by movement of the leg, such as walking or kicking.
      • Abnormalities in the neurotransmitter dopamine have often been associated with RLS. Healthcare providers often combine a medication to help correct the underlying dopamine abnormality along with a medicine to promote sleep continuity in the treatment of RLS.
    4. Sleep Apnea:
      • Snoring may be more than just an annoying habit – it may be a sign of sleep apnea.
      • Persons with sleep apnea characteristically make periodic gasping or “snorting” noises, during which their sleep is momentarily interrupted.
      • Those with sleep apnea may also experience excessive daytime sleepiness, as their sleep is commonly interrupted and may not feel restorative.
      • Treatment of sleep apnea is dependent on its cause.
      • Gentle air pressure administered during sleep (typically in the form of a nasal continuous positive airway pressure device) may also be effective in the treatment of sleep apnea. As interruption of regular breathing or obstruction of the airway during sleep can pose serious health complications, symptoms of sleep apnea should be taken seriously.
      • Treatment should be sought from a health care provider.
        • If other medical problems are present, such as congestive heart failure or nasal obstruction, sleep apnea may resolve with treatment of these conditions.


    Sleep management

    Naps can be a good way to boost your energy. Different naps have different purposes, and you should choose a nap based on what you need.

    • A 90-minute nap clears the brain’s short-term memory storage and helps make room for you to learn new information.
    • A 20-minute power nap primarily helps to boost alertness.
    • A German study has found that a micro-nap as short as six minutes may help boost your memory


    Making up for lost sleep?  Some people try to make up for limited sleep during the week by sleeping in on the weekends. That strategy has downsides.

    • One research study found that the greater your average daily variation in wake-up time, the higher your body-fat percentage.
    • People who have less than 30 minutes variation in their wake-up time have, on average, 6 percent less body fat than people who have 2 hours or more difference in their wake-up time.


    If you just try to clear your schedule and go to bed early one night, that can also backfire.  Some sleep researchers state that it is easier to stay up an hour past your bedtime than it is to go to bed 15 minutes before your normal bedtime.

    • If you are trying to get more sleep, you may need to move your bedtime up.
    • Move your bedtime gradually, in 15-minute increments. That gives your body time to adjust and build a habit of rest


    Banking sleep.  While you can’t really catch up on missed sleep, you might be able to bank it occasionally. If you have a work project coming up or a social outing that will require you to skimp on shut-eye, stock your sleep bank in advance by getting more sleep than normal. 

    • This will allow you to perform at a higher level even on limited sleep.
    • Use this approach as a sleep emergency fund.
    • It shouldn’t be your regular approach to sleep, but it’s good to know you can save up rest and have enough energy when you need it.


    Resetting sleep schedules.

    • Adjust sleep in 15 minute small increments, adjusting no more than 15 minutes earlier every two to three days.
    • This will help your body to adjust to the new schedule.
    • It can take 2 to 3 weeks to properly adjust to your new schedule.



    Overcoming Sleep Barriers


    • Another common sleep barrier is social interests and entertainment.
    • The world is plugged in 24/7, and it’s hard to unplug when there are so many things to see and do and watch.  This stimulation can keep you awake.


    Health and life Stresses:

    • Health and life struggles with emotional or physical challenges that interrupt sleep can be a significant sleep barrier.  
    • These are challenges that will affect both your rest and your sleep, and you will have to identify personal adaptations to make rest possible.
    • Professional help may be required.


    Mattress and Pillow.  The physical condition of your sleep space matters:    

    • Evaluate how you sleep, where you experience pain, and your preferred sleep position to find the preferred mattress for you. 
    • Your pillow matters too. The type of pillow is going to depend on the position you prefer for sleeping.
    • A good chiropractor or physical therapist can likely make recommendations about a pillow.
    •  :sleeping-in-hammock:Click for a video, not a mattress endorsement but a good video.(any good mattress that fits your sleep style is great) 


    Routine is key.  The lack of a consistent sleep routine can also disrupt sleep:

    • The simplest way to improve your sleep quality is to build a consistent routine, both for life in general and for sleep in particular.
    • It works for kids, and research shows that it works for adults.


    The light affect.  In terms of your schedule, be aware of the effect of light of your sleep:

    • Light in the day is good for your sleep.
    • Light at bedtime and during the night is bad for your sleep.
    • Blue light helps awaken and alert the brain.
    • A study in the journal of Sleep Medicine reported that nighttime light exposure led to shallower sleep and more mini-arousal's.


    Waking up during sleep.  Another common barrier to sleep is stress about sleep itself. For instance, you may have anxiety about waking up during the night:

    • It can help to learn that waking up at night is completely normal.  In fact, bimodal and segmented sleep is not unusual.
    • A normal night’s sleep includes many mini-arousals that last only a few seconds; there can be as many as 3 to 15 per hour.
    • Sometimes, especially as we get older and under stress, these mini-arousals may be full-on wake-ups, which can lead to sleep stress.
      • Working on our anxiety about sleep itself can go a long way to helping us sleep better in spite of the mini-arousals.
      • A study from Northwestern University found that when insomniacs practiced yoga for 15 to 20 minutes per day, twice per day for two months, they spent less time awake at night.


    Avoid large meals:

    • Avoid large meals 2-3 hours before bed.
    • Eating a snack before is ok.
      • Easily digestible foods such as fruit is recommended.
    • It forces your organs such as liver and pancreas to work at a time they should rest.
    • In addition, if the caloric intake of a meal exceeds the amount you need for energy you will store this energy as you are unable to work or exercise this energy off.
    • Eating at bed can also cause heartburn and this can lead to other health issues besides problematic sleeping.


    Exercising near bedtime can wake you up:

    • Exercise can stimulate us and keep us awake.
    • Exercise 2 hours before bed.


    Sleep Disorder struggles:

    • If you consistently struggle with sleep quality and insomnia, a sleep-improvement program can be valuable.
    • Your doctor can likely refer you to a sleep specialist.
    • Some mental health providers specialize in behavioral sleep training.
    • There are also online tools that can help.
      • Such as an online sleep training program, which combines cognitive behavioral strategies with practical tools like sleep logs and progress charts.



    Sleep is as most things one of the aspects of life that we tend to take for granted.  We tend to believe we manage sleep with our life schedule but the reality is that sleep manages us and enables us to be at a level that is linked by our hours of restful sleep.  We typically diminish our capabilities in this way without even knowing it.  This aspect is rarely appreciated.  This affect us physically, mentally and emotionally and can be a significant factor in all problematic areas.  Without a charged and healthy battery, we do not function well nor efficient.

    Often we believe sacrificing sleep is a necessary aspect of life when we have responsibilities but we often fail to see the big picture and suffer the long term cost of our health.  We may suffer for our families and responsibilities now but by not giving ourselves healthy restful sleep we will deny our families and fail at our responsibilities later in life as the repercussions of long term sleep deprivation affects begin.

    We owe it to not just ourselves but those we love and care about, to our responsibilities and we need to not just teach these lessons and aspects of life to our children but mold them in a way that they have this understanding and appreciation instilled in them that it becomes a core value and perhaps happier and healthier families will result.

    Sleep well my friends, sleep well!  










    ~A Cultural Healing and Life Compilation

    • Like 1
  • Create New...