To start with a small disclaimer: The purpose of this piece is to give you the general overall on the micro cultivation of marijuana, its practitioners, and some of the basic setup required to successfully mico-cultivate weed.

The purpose is not to provide detailed information on how to apply for a micro-cultivation license in the U.S. or Canada for several reasons, but the main one being: laws in the U.S. vary from state to state and Canada has its own provinces, laws, and practices, all of which you can easily find detailed information about by searching for it online based on where you live. So, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way! Let’s get into discussing what micro-cultivation is and why there are more and more micro cultivators out there, etc.

Micro Cultivators

What are micro cultivators?

Micro-cultivation might bring to mind the image of miniature weed plants growing in a miniature grow room where tweezers and dollhouse-like implements are used to cultivate and harvest the plants. Alas, this is not the case. Though come to think of it–that would make for a pretty great social media account, right?

Micro cultivators are defined as: “a skilled horticultural practice focused on maximum yields of marijuana in a limited indoor space.” So, it’s all about growers using their expertise and tools to grow as much weed as possible in a small space, as opposed to in a massive 40,000 square foot grow house that is not only expensive to build or rent, but to just operate and maintain on a day to day basis. Also, depending on licensing laws in your state or province, the larger your space the more costly your license. For example, in the state of Oregon, where growing, selling, buying, and using weed are fully legalized, indoor micro-cultivator can be licensed to grow in a space up to 625 square feet and their license costs $1,000, as opposed to a grower using up to 5,000 square feet indoors will pay $3,750 for their license.

In short, micro-cultivation gives micro cultivators access to what is a constantly-growing and evolving regulated market and allows them to fill a niche in this market. Micro-cultivation also makes it possible for micro-cultivators to specialize in strains with tailored fragrances, flavors, and effects, allowing them to grow and try out new weed strains that meet the needs and demands of their specific target audience, without quite as much of a financial risk. 

Micro Cultivators

The demand for craft products

Craft products are in-demand these days from microbrews to coffee roasters, locally-brewed kombuchas, and so on. People desire authenticity and quality over quantity. When you hear that a product you are considering buying is a “craft” product it tends to conjure the notion that more time, expertise, and care has gone into its creation of it–that it has more of the maker’s personal touch and is, therefore, more “special” or set apart from something that has been mass-produced. All of these truths apply to weed as well. Think about it like this: When you go into a dispensary are you more likely to buy a tincture or pre-roll that is small-batch and locally grown that has been bred for its unique smell, taste, and/or specific benefit(s) or something that is mass-produced and widely distributed?

Micro Cultivators

Micro cultivators versus macro cultivators

While this is definitely not a diss against those who are macro-cultivators, micro-cultivators are able to do things that macro-cultivators cannot. Listed below in no particular order are some things that micro-cultivators are able to do:

  • Grow and make “craft” unique weed strains accessible and available to users.
  • Have the ability to dedicate their time to nurturing their marijuana crops.
  • Provide a more personalized approach in the way that your favorite microbrewery can to their IPAs and Saisons.
  • Oversee the work themselves as opposed to outsourcing the labor, building, and setup.
  • Make their brand (weed strains/products) more relatable to local consumers because of being able to personalize their approach
  • Have the ability to produce higher-quality products than a large macro-cultivation company that is more focused on creating and distributing in mass quantities.

Again, this is not to say that macro-cultivators are “bad;” in fact, these larger distributors are important to the survival of micro cultivators and vice versa. Micro-cultivators need large distributors to get their products out to state or provincial distributors and retailers and the larger producers of weed need the specialty weed strains that micro cultivators are able to grow. In short, micro cultivators and macro cultivation companies have a symbiotic relationship where ensuring each other’s success ensures their own survival.


While micro-cultivation as a business component and practice has been mainly covered here, the reality is, that someone who is growing just a couple of plants on their balcony or in a corner of their basement in a small grow tent for their own personal use is micro cultivators. That’s another thing that makes micro-cultivation so wonderful, as it makes the growing of weed accessible to almost anyone regardless of experience level. For at-home micro-cultivators, autoflowering seeds are especially great as not only are they much lower maintenance in pretty much every regard from space required to climate to light and resistance to diseases, etc. they also grow significantly faster meaning that they are harvest-ready in a much shorter period of time. 

And, it goes without saying that if you are an at-home practitioner of micro-cultivation, not only are you able to experiment with different strains in a way that is cost-effective, but just like brewing your own beer at home, you get to be the taste tester and determiner of what does and does not best suit your own personal preferences.

  1. Tom Q. Public says:

    More is not always better. I’ve reduced my plants by half while maintaining quantity and even better quality.

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