The most prolific growers learned their craft out of necessity. Many cultivators are inspired to learn more about cannabis cultivation when they suffer a personal injury and use the plant as medicine. This is how Green Life Productions (GLP), a closed loop cultivation based in Pahrump, Nevada, first got off the ground. Owner and operator Steve Cantwell hasn’t always been a cannabis cultivator. Before this career, he trained in mixed martial arts under One Kick Nick. After injuries forced him to retire from the UFC, Steve began searching for alternatives to opioids for treating chronic pain. Through this experience, the former UFC fighter first found medical cannabis and, soon after retiring, he got his medical marijuana license.
Before coming up with and founding GLP, Steve had big dreams of cultivating clean cannabis for patients. After dreaming up the entrepreneurial endeavor, he wanted to tell his anti-cannabis kickboxing trainer One Kick Nick about his plans. Although Nick didn’t have objections, he suggested that if the cannabis was being grown with chemicals and synthetics, then it was a drug. That idea clicked for Steve and, inspired, he built an indoor cannabis cultivation that most closely matched nature, using zero chemicals. Years later, Steve and GLP have perfected a no-till living organic soil system indoors while still meeting Nevada’s stringent safety regulations. They use no synthetic fertilizers, fungicides, or pesticides — just compost tea and the occasional fish emulsion or liquid kelp. The soil is rarely disturbed and is currently on its 23rd cycle! Their philosophy is to take the best of nature indoors while following the basic permaculture principles in a closed-loop system.
“Over the years, we’ve designed a highly efficient facility — both from the LED lights to the amount of yield that we pull out,” Cantwell said. “It’s pretty minimal and