Where does weed grow naturally? Whether you’re curious about its natural habitat or want to start hunting for wild weed, knowing this plant’s favorite growing locations in the wild goes to show how hardy and widespread it has become.
Weed grows naturally all over the world in every continent, except for Antarctica. Originating on the steppes of East Asia, cannabis was grown for its grain and fiber, as well as for medicinal and spiritual purposes.
Today, it is widely used for its therapeutic benefits. But not all weed is the same. A feral form that grows in the wild has low traces of THC and won’t get users high. So, where exactly does this feral weed grow that doesn’t need careful tending? Let us find out.
What Is Ditchweed?
Wild cannabis, also known as ditchweed, is a common type of naturally-growing cannabis that grows mainly in the United States. Ditchweed refers to a type of marijuana that grows wild , scattered without having been planted, fertilized, or tended to.
- Ditchweed: Wild growing weed with no detectable levels of THC
- Cultivated cannabis: Commercial-grown weed with THC levels reaching 20% or higher
Ditchweed is thought to have spread from previously planted hemp back in the day. Since it hasn’t been consciously planted, it doesn’t have the high resin content of commercially-grown weed.
Where Does Weed Grow Naturally?
In the mid-twentieth century, this type of low-THC cannabis was widely grown in the Midwest of the United States. Industrial hemp is a variety of cannabis used for its fiber from its stalk for textiles, paper, clothing, rope, and more, primarily to help during World War II.
In the 1950s, hemp production was halted, but by then, it’s cultivation was rampant. Since then, its seeds have spread across great distances in the U.S.
Since they can remain dormant for up to a decade, there was plenty of opportunity for its spread and growth in the wild, especially in states in the midwest including Minnesota, Oklahoma, Missouri, Indiana, and Nebraska.
Over the years, it’s been linked with high-THC cannabis and hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to eradicate it in the US.
In fact, in 2003, ditchweed made up about 99% of the cannabis that was eradicated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). In 2006, the last year these numbers were reported for ditchweed, ditchweed accounted for 98% of all eradicated cannabis.
Based on the 2006 Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics, here were the top states where ditchweed was eradicated and the number of plants that were eradicated:
- Indiana – 80,794,808
- Missouri – 2,838,328
- Colorado – 137,695
- Nebraska – 46,853
- Wisconsin – 31,380
- Oklahoma – 30,594
- Iowa – 18,280
- Kansas – 3, 960
- Illinois – 1,497
Wild cannabis can be found nearly anywhere, but prefers some climates over others. Your best bet is to look in areas with warmer climates and plenty of humidity such as tropical environments. However, cannabis can also be found in cool and dry climates, too. In fact, cannabis is thought to have originated near the cold climate of the Himalayan mountains.
How to Find Wild Weed
Weed grows naturally all over the world. From the cold-weather mountainside of the Himalayas to the warm and humid climes of Mexico and Jamaica, cannabis can survive under a variety of environments, although better in some than others.
Today, it’s not as easy as taking a joyride around your town to find wild weed, but it can be done with a little hard work, patience, and perseverance. Along the side of the road in the country. In a long neglected open patch of field. Amongst wild plants growing in the mountainside. Cannabis can be found in the unlikeliest of places.
If you’re dead-set on finding wild weed, here are some tips to help you find this naturally-growing plant:
- Fall is a great time to start looking for wild cannabis when it is flowering or has grown seeds.
- Wild weed has no specific size or shape. It ranges from plants a few inches tall to ones that grow well above your own height. In addition, its leaves may be thin and narrow or broad and a variety of shades of green.
- Look near areas with plenty of natural light exposure, including patches of soil near man-made structures such as abandoned lots and hiking paths. Cannabis is less likely to survive in low light areas. Wild cannabis is also unlikely to grow in areas with moist and rich soil.
- Practice proper foraging etiquette and avoid taking entire plants, roots and all. Pick only a small amount of flower or seeds and spread a few seeds around in an area with a similar growing environment.
- Be careful since what you think might be a wild cannabis crop is a guerilla grow with caretakers that may not be too friendly.
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