ALBANY, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) – Starting October 5, medical cannabis patients and caregivers who are 21 and older and are certified through the Office of Cannabis Management will be able to grow it at home.
Joseph Ortiz, Founder of Private Caregivers Collective, specializes in home cultivation. His business is now setting its sights on helping New Yorkers who want to grow their own plants.
“There’s nothing like being able to take control of your medicine and know exactly what’s into it,” said Ortiz.
According to the state, a patient will soon be able to plant, cultivate, harvest, dry, process and possess three mature and three immature medical marijuana plants at one time. This is something that only can happen at their primary private residence.
While they can lawfully be grown inside or outside, the plants cannot be located in shared outdoor spaces and must not be easily seen by the public. Patients and caregivers are also not allowed to sell the product.
Nikki Lawley, a patient, and advocate for medical cannabis said overall she thinks the state is off to a good start with the new law, but she’s heard some concerns about the number of plants allowed.
“To supply medicine for oneself, you almost need like; they call it a sea of green. A perpetual growing cycle so that every 4 months approximately you’re harvesting new medicine. But you will usually have failures in your growth. That three and three, while it sounds ideal, a lot of people are complaining that you need to have more clones, you need to have some backup plants,” explained Lawley.
Still, she said this is a big step forward for New York State.
“We need to recognize that cannabis has real benefits and can improve others’ quality of life.”