I don’t currently grow marijuana, but I did for a handful of years. I always tell people that there are three plagues that should be dealt with swiftly and completely when growing marijuana – bugs, heat, and mildew. There are a lot of battles that will be fought while growing marijuana, but those three were the toughest to deal with. Powdery mildew is especially harsh in the Pacific Northwest where I live because of so much rain. We don’t deal with heat all that often, but it does happen during the summer during some stretches.
Bugs for the most part are a universal problem that plagues every geographical area. Spider mites seem to be the most common nuisance, but there are of course others that like to feed on marijuana plants. The best thing to do is avoid getting bugs to begin with, but that’s easier said than done, especially for newbie growers. Once bugs are discovered, they need to be taken care of immediately. Growers don’t (or shouldn’t!) want to use harmful chemicals when battling pests, so they usually look for an organic way to deal with the problem.
A very popular product for battling bugs is a product called Guardian, which a lot of organic growers that I know have used for quite awhile. There’s one problem with that product though – it contains abamectin, which is not on the label at all. The labeling problem was discovered by a Eugene, Oregon testing labratory called OG Analytical, which brought it to the attention of state regulators. Since then Oregon has halted all sales of the product due to various alleged violations, and it sounds like the product has been pulled off store shelves wherever it’s sold. Per OregonLive:
The Oregon Department of Agriculture said the pesticide, Guardian, should be removed from store shelves and asked growers who bought the product not to use it. The manufacturer is All In Enterprises of Machesney Park, Illinois.
A statewide stop sale order is unusual and typically does not involve labeling problems, said Bruce Pokarney, a spokesman for the agency.
Tommy McCathron, listed as president of All in Enterprises in Illinois Secretary of State records, said Monday that he didn’t want to discuss Guardian.
The company that makes the product is making it sound like they weren’t intentionally doing anything wrong. I can’t say with the limited facts available that anything nefarious was going on or not, but the fact remains that abamectin was in Guardian, yet it wasn’t on the label. That’s very concerning for growers that want to battle bugs, but in a way that is organic. There has been a mad scramble to find a similar product, but that has correct labeling and is organic. Expert marijuana grower Ed Rosenthal recently posted the following info on his Facebook page. I haven’t tried his product, but I will attest that he is a marijuana growing genius, so I’d imagine the product is very legit: