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Rosenthal E: Closet Cultivator USA 1991 - 128pp.

Disclaimer: "The material in this book is presented as information to which the public should have free access. The publisher does not advocate or condone the breaking of the law. As we go to press, it is still illegal to possess, cultivate, or harvest marijuana in the United States of America. The author is considered to be a leading expert in the field and has brought his observations based on documentary research to the printed page"

In the foreword, the author expresses his intention to explain the issues in a manner understandable to the average layman. In the preface he gives a brief history of marijuana, and potential industrial uses of the hemp plant in the present day or near future.

Chapter 1 - the theory, recommends growing many small plants in confined spaces rather than fewer larger plants, flowering when 8-16" high, and harvesting when no more than 18-30 inches tall.

Chapter 2 - perspective - cites the advantages of small gardens and the need to separate areas for vegetative growth and flowering

Chapter 3 - the space - gives several suggestions for converting rooms. closets and attics into growing areas. Recommends under-floor heating or insulation to stimulate root growth. I have examined many systems in attics similar to those suggested by Rosenthal.

Chapter 5 - Novel gardens - mainly concentrates on training plants to grow in particular ways. There is a diagram of a sideboard converted to a growing area, again similar in concept to the Kushti box.

Chapters 6 & 7 discuss the plant and various varieties, recommending Dutch seeds such as Skunk, Northern Lights, Early Pearl and Big Bud - giving some information as to the development of each strain.

Chapters 7 to 17 deal with requirements of cannabis plants, with lighting (fluorescents, High Intensity Discharge lights, - metal halide/HPS) with a lumens/square foot chart, discussion of the spectrum, reflectors and cost. A separate chapter deals with lighting accessories such as systems to move lights around in a circle to illuminate a wide area, and on reflective sheeting for the walls of the growroom. Chapters 10 and 11 discuss rooting, container sizes, and growing media, citing advantages and disadvantages of soil-based and hydroponic systems, without recommending either. Chapter 12 suggests a soil pH of between 6.2 and 6.8 (just on the acidic side of neutral). Chapter 13 describes the watering needs, and discusses automatic (drip feed) irrigation and hydroponics, wicks & ebb & flow flood systems. Chapter 14 discusses nutrients and fertiliser, warning of the dangers of overfertilisation, and suggesting high nitrogen for growth, and high phosphorus for flowering. Chapters 15 to 17 deal with the air temperature (65-78oF), humidity (40-65%) additional CO2 to replenish that lost by photosynthesis, and use of filters or negative ion generators to neutralise give-away odours.

Chapters 18 to 23 give practical instructions on taking plants through the life cycle, including setting up (testing the system), planting (recommends planting directly in the growing medium, and discourages the use of tissue paper) and transplanting cuttings. During vegetative growth advises 18 hour light cycle, and has photographs at different stages of growth. Advises flowering when plants are 8-16 inches high, and harvesting at 18-36 inches. During early flowering, advises removal of male plants as soon as their flowers appear. Shows photographs of the flowering and fruiting stages with explanatory text. Advises drying by picking the buds and leaving in a warm dry place for several days, cautions against forced drying. Chapter 23 gives details on how to produce cuttings and clones.

Chapters 24 and 25 deal with problems, Ch. 24 deals with plant diseases and insect pests, stating that most losses are caused by overfertilisation. Chapter 25 outlines the problems US growers face with the law, in a summary of legal sanctions, their implications for human rights and the US constitution, sentencing guidelines, and a call to support cannabis law reform organisations. Inside the back cover there are advertisements for other growers guides and literature, but no hardware or growing equipment.

Comment: Rosenthal has produced a simple, well-written book detailing all the major steps of indoor cannabis production, with photographs and diagrams of grow-rooms and self-contained boxes, with separate areas for different parts of the growth cycle.

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