Colorado's Top CBG Grower Just Happens to Be Blind
Colorado’s Top CBG Grower Just Happens to Be Blind
Surrounded by snow-capped mountains, spindly Aspen forests and their own cattle herd, Rob and Linda Trotter of Pot Zero Farms in Western Colorado have discovered a spot that’s ideal for growing special cannabis in an eco-friendly way.
The Trotters have harnessed the magic of this environment–uncontaminated “snow-to-grow” mountain water, intense ultraviolet light, and biodynamic farming practices–to create some of the most CBG-rich cannabis plants in the business.
Snow melts off nearby 12,000 ft. mountains, trickles down collecting mineral nutrients and feeds Trotter’s 3,800 plants, which are never treated with chemicals or pesticides. Instead, they use a horde of 100,000 lady bugs to protect against aphid infestation, and a heard of Scottish highlander cows fertilize the soil.
What’s more, for the last 30 years Rob has lived with Retinitis Pigmentosa, a degenerative eye condition that causes his retina to deteriorate and has left him 85 percent blind.
As a result, Rob’s farming methods are intense and peculiar. He wakes up every morning before the sun has a chance to crest the horizon.
‘Eyes are an overwhelming sense. They block out other senses. Once you remove it, the other ones go way up.’
Rob Trotter, cannabis farmer, CBD specialist
He navigates winding, rugged terrain in the dark, unlocks a secured gate, toggles some equipment, and walks through the plantation to feel and smell plants.
As his vision worsens, he says his cultivation acumen improves due to what he considers a “sixth sense”. Rob is capable of detecting slight changes in temperature on the back of his neck, allowing him to strategize his planting accordingly. He picks leaves by feel and smells buds to determine optimum time to harvest.
“Eyes are an overwhelming sense,” he says. “They block out other senses. Once you remove it, the other ones go way up. There’s a lot of benefit there.”
While driving his four-wheel buggy, he points out the hydroelectric pump, which he services and maintains based on how it sounds. This single turbine powers the entire facility and contributes to a zero-chemical, zero-waste operation. The Trotters pride themselves on marrying the green industry with green energy.
“It’s all about the plants, and all about this place, and me not screwing it up,” he said.
Fire and Snow Muck Up Your Plans
The environment isn’t always this forgiving, though. The Tritter’s grow cycle has been threatened by drought and the Lake Christine Fire, which burned more than 12,500 acres about seven miles away. And in October of 2017, eleven inches of snow dumped on the plants during harvest.
Surprisingly, the unexpected storm enhanced Pot Zero’s cannabis plants. After the snows, the Trotters discovered their plants were suddenly loaded with 15-30 percent THC and 1.5-4 percent CBG, the latter of which is one of the rarest and most therapeutic cannabinoids.
“Pretty much like the human race, with these plants what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger,” said Trotter. “They can be tortured by the weather, as long it does not kill them, and they are actually just stronger from it. They adapt, they cope, and they perform.”