BALTIMORE-No two commercial cannabis grows are made the same. This became evident as our Trilogy Wellness team had the chance to tour Evermore’s grow and processing plants.
Some of the terms and procedures that I had learned at the Kind Therapeutics grow site, became familiar with me the second time around at Evermore. But each grow and processing site takes a different approach.
A lot of indoor grows are something that the public would never know about. It turns out that when I lived in north Baltimore, I was a stone’s throw from the grow. Most grow operations want to keep it that was as to not draw attention from the work being done.
Evermore flower has always tended to be a bit fruity than most strains which peaked my interest years ago after obtaining my medical card. Gary Nusinov, Senior Vice President of Cultivation at Evermore, said he and the head growers like more of the fruity flavored cultivars. You can see it in their strains with names like Blueberry Dumplingz, Lucky Orchard, and Peach Zeason.
Genetics and Pheno Hunting:
What sets Evermore apart from most growers in Maryland, is their focus on genetics and pheno hunts to find the perfect cultivars to grow. The company wanted to break-in to that space. The result is some of the most consistent and robust cannabis east of the Mississippi.
Head growers, Tom Klasssen and Austin Weiskittel, set out in 2016 when Evermore opened, to produce some of the best breeding work in the state. It paid off as an in-house breeding project has helped the company produce some incredible genetics. Klasssen says he hopes to keep banking genetics in an effort to one day after a vast genetic library as he puts it.
Klassen says that they have nine flowering rooms where they plant and harvest one every week.
Flash Frozen Flower:
This part of our tour really captured my attention. I had always read about flash frozen and why those live resin and rosin vape carts taste so amazing. We learned from Will Reckner, Vice President of Processing & Extractions, that the top part of the plant is cut and flash frozen. This technique preserves all the terpenes and cannabinoids. Workers could be seen feeding fresh cannabis into a machine. No hanging, no drying. Workers carried massive buckets of the flower into a freezer. Reckner says Evermore says itself apart from the pack with this technique.
He says that the big difference in live resin and live rosin is butane. Butane gases are used to extract live resin. This is done is an extraction room due to the danger of flammable gases. All solvents used for concentrates are later removed in the curing process.
We are big on supporting our community at Trilogy Wellness. In April and May we had two incredibly successful community drives in support of the Maryland Proton Center and Rise Above Animal Rescue.
The Maryland Proton Center is an organization near and dear to our hearts. Our very own Adam Scher received treatment there for a brain tumor several years ago. With the support of our generous patients and co-sponsor Culta, we raised $2500 for the Proton Treatment Center! This money will go to help pay for treatments, transportation and other costs associated – your donation could help save a life.
Rise Above Animal Rescue & Sanctuary is a local non-profit based out of Pasadena, MD. They focus on animals that need the most help – the sick, injured, elderly & others in need of medical attention. We held an adoption event on site 5/28/2023 and it ended up being a HISTORICAL event for Rise Above! We found furever homes for 10 animals in need. With your generous donations and the help of our co-sponsor Grow West, we were able to raise $1400 for the organization.
We cannot thank our amazing customers enough for opening your hearts and wallets and giving back to the community. We are looking forward to more successful endeavors in the future!
In August I had a wonderful opportunity to tour the growing facilities at Grow West. The tour was very impressive and left a great impression on me. Grow West by far sets the standards in my eyes on how flower should be grown in a mass production setting.
Stop 1. Mother Room.
The first room on our tour was the mother room. At Grow West they use clippings from the mothers to start their new plants–they do not grow from seeds. These mothers are rotated every 4-5 months with new mothers replacing the old ones. They feel that after 4 months the plants start undergoing more stress from growing which effects the quality of the cuttings they are trimming to create new plants. Keeping a steady stream of younger plants is leading to better quality sprouts from the cuttings. After being trimmed, the cuttings are transferred to an “Aeroponic” tub to stimulate healthy root growth.
Stop 2. Aeroponics.
The difference between aeroponic and hydroponic is that with “aeroponics” the roots are suspended in a pocked of air above the water instead of being submerged in the water. The “aeroponic” beds have misters built in that spray the roots of the plants with water from the bin as well as enzyme that are added to help stimulate growth. I believe the grower said they prefer using aeroponics because it leads to better quality roots and faster. As you can see in the photo below, the roots of this cutting are white and healthy.
Stop 3. Young Cuttings.
When the roots of the cuttings have grown out and are healthy–its time to get potted. In the next part of the tour we were taking to a room with young cuttings.
Stop 4. Warm LED Lights.
During this early stage of growth, the plants are being grown with LED lights in a large warm room with high humidity. The growers work very hard to inspect all plants making sure there are no insect infestations, molds, or fungus. At each stage of growth the plants are giving a specially designed blend of water with enzymes to help promote growth and production of colas.
After growing about 10-12 inches, the plants are transported to the next room. This room uses LED lighting with a warm temperature but with slightly lower humidity. Throughout the growth cycle the humidity will gradually be decreased. While the plants are young, the higher humidity helps the plants to take in more water and enzymes through their leaves which will help the plant further develop. Decreasing humidity is also important as it can help prevent mold and fungus from growing. As the plant is growing and the leaves are getting bigger, there is more area for mold and fungus to grow on making it very important to control the humidity levels.
As the plants grow, they are trimmed from bottom up. This helps the plant save energy to focus on growing healthier leaves and flowering. I tried to get a nice shot but these two kept getting in the way!
Stop 5. Middle Growth Stage.
In the next room, the plants were put under a different style of lighting that removes blue spectrums. This room also happened to be very warm. The different phases of growth do best with different styles of lighting.
During this middle growth stage the plants branches are spread out using the wire that runs across the grow troughs. What they are doing is spreading the leaves out away from the center so the main stem area gets more lighting. They are also working on getting the plant to grow out wide rather than tall.
In the photo below we can see the plants are in their flowering stage. The colas on the plants were very thick and some were dripping with resin. Despite the yellow from the lights, it was quite a sight to behold. And very smelly.
Stop 6. Pre-Harvest.
The next part of the tour was the rooms in which the plants undergo the last part of their growth cycle before being harvested. In this room the plants were put under white led lights and a cooler temperature. The focus is making sure the plants are focusing their energy on growing and maintaining the colas. As you can see, the plants have grown in a short and wide manner due to having the stems spread out using the wires running across the troughs. The colors and aromas from these rooms was mesmerizing.
Stop 7. Drying, Curing & Storage.
After the plants are harvested, its off to drying and curing. During the first part of the drying process, the stems are hung from a wire with a colas dangling down. They will remain in this dry room for up to a week before the final cure and trim processes. After drying its off for trimming then finally to storage. I did not take any photos of the employees trimming. They were using a variety of techniques such as hand trimming and using a tumbler machine for their gold bags. After trimming it was off to storage. So many bags of flower! It was quite a sight to see so much cannabis being stored in a room. One part of the tour I was not allowed to take pictures of was bubble hash room. Grow West is currently working on producing bubble hash which they hope will be available soon. The employees were making hash from several different strains. The end result looks like piles of sludge. It was quite interesting. Look forward to trying the product in the future.
Stop 8. Outdoor Grow.
The last part of the grow tour was the outdoor area which will be used for concentrate production. The head grower who led the tour was not in favor of selling outdoor flower for smoking insisting there’s too many issues such as insects, molds, and fungus that are hard to manage and that only a select few of the outdoor plants would ever be good enough in his eyes for smoking. He does not believe Maryland has the climate for growing outdoor cannabis to the quality it needs to be for smoking. On an interesting note, he did mention that outdoor plants actually tend to have higher THC percentages partially due to the amount of sun the plants get.
This was a very educational and interesting tour. Learned a lot about Grow West and I came away appreciating their products much more. Overall I felt that they were a good company and it looked like the employees were enjoying working there – lots of smiles. Grow West is one of the largest employees for the town of Cumberland, they play an important role in that community. If you look behind us, you may notice a hill – that hill is West Virginia! They were located right on the border of MD & WV, I thought that was cool. There is so much more to their grow process than what I can remember. I would encourage every to try to go on the next tour and please make sure to carpool – it was a long drive but the education was worth it. SHOP GROW WEST HERE.
A big Thank You to all of our amazing patients for your support of our Spring ECSTRONG Community Drive to raise money for Ellicott City Partnership. The Ellicott City Partnership is a 501(C)3 Non-Profit organization hat works to preserve the heritage and vitality of historic Ellicott City, Maryland while creating and enhancing economic growth. We partnered with Amber Extracts to create a limited edition Tangerine Dream ECSTRONG Sauce Vape Cart that had over 12% terpenes! We featured this Vape Cartridge on sale and then donated $3 of every purchase directly to EC Partnership. Between Vape cart sales & patient donations we raised $1277 in donations for Ellicott City Patnership! If you have been a patient of ours for awhile you know how near and dear Old Ellicott City is to our hearts. We had only been open for a couple of months when the last devastating flood hit in 2018 and we felt an immediate need to help support local businesses who were impacted. We wanted to go big this year in support of our amazing town, so we decided to also be a sponsor of Springfest in Old Ellicott City. It was the first time the festival was back since Covid began and it was a blast. We had a tent set up with free water bottles & reusable grocery bags for attendees plus special dog CBD treats from our friends at cbdMD. We are so proud to be a part of Ellicott City and we recognize that we have the best patients ever! Thank You for your continued support.
Our team recently got to take a tour (FIELD TRIP!) of the Holistic Grow operation. This opportunity is something our team has dreamed of since joining the industry. Holistic grows the brands Strane and Garcia Hand Picked in Maryland. Both Strane & Garcia Hand Picked are two popular brands among both patients and staff at Trilogy Wellness. Strains like Florida Kush and Caps Frozen Lemonade are often rich with terpenes and trichomes that make for a great medicating session.
Big thanks to our very own talented Mark Dragon for taking these photos to share with our patients.
Did you know that 1 in 4 struggles to make ends meet? Our community needs our help!
This November we are hosting a Canned Food Drive. We will be collecting donations for the Howard County Food Bank. We will also choose a local family in need to host and feed a full Thanksgiving dinner.
When we ran this drive a few years back our table almost broke because of how many donations we received. LET’S DO THIS TRILOGY FAM!
#GIVEBACKGETBACK – EARN UP TO 50 LOYALTY POINTS PER DAY!
10 Extra Loyalty Points per non-perishable food item donated (up to 50pts per day) OR 10 Extra Loyalty Points for every $5 cash donation. Cash donations will benefit both the food pantry and we will sponsor a local family in need for a full Thanksgiving dinner.