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Cohen Law Maine Compliance Update – Personal Cultivation of Cannabis in Maine

The spring is here, and it’s time to pop those seeds and get your grow on! Cohen Law Maine breaks down how to grow personal adult use cannabis, as well as how to grow cannabis as a Maine Medical Program patient below. Keep in mind that our blog posts are not legal advice and do not create an attorney-client relationship.

Personal Adult Use

You want to grow your own cannabis, but you aren’t sure how to do so in a compliant way. Luckily here in Maine, state law allows anyone over the age of 21 to grow cannabis, as long as they follow a few rules.

First things first – check to make sure your municipality hasn’t put any ordinances into place that would change the requirements for growing cannabis for personal adult use. Usually, the department that is responsible for code enforcement within your municipality can answer this question for you.

State law allows you to grow cannabis in a few places, including:

  1. On a parcel or tract of land on which the person is domiciled
  2. On a parcel or tract of land owned by the person on which the person is not domiciled
  3. On a parcel or tract of land not owned by the person and on which the person is not domiciled so long as the owner of the parcel or tract of land by written agreement permits the cultivation and care of the cannabis plants on the parcel or tract of land by that person.

A person may cultivate the cannabis plants and seedlings authorized under this subsection at multiple locations so long as such cultivation activities otherwise meet all requirements and restrictions of this section.

Did you catch that? If you live on the property or own the property, you can grow there. If you do not live on the property and do not own it, you’ll need the property owner’s written permission. If you are a renter, it is always a good idea to check with your landlord about growing personal adult use cannabis on their rental property to avoid any surprises or concerns arising (much like it isn’t illegal to own a pet, but your landlord may not like it).

When you’re choosing your place to grow, the state requires you to do so in a place that is “not visible from public way without the use of aircraft or binoculars or other optical aids.” Simply put – if you can see it from the road, or other public pathways, you’ll need a fence or some sort of barrier that will ensure it is not visible. The state also requires you to take reasonable precautions to prevent unauthorized access by a person under 21 years of age. This could mean that if you’re growing in your backyard and there is a someone under 21 years of age in your household, you’ll need to consider a solution such as containing your cultivation area with a fence/barrier that they cannot easily maneuver through or climb over and placing a lock on the door if there is one. The key to this lock must also not be readily accessible to them. If you are cultivating indoors, the room must not be accessible by minors, and the key to this area must also not be readily accessible.

We have established the place – now what can you grow?

Maine stipulates that each person may cultivate up to:

  • 3 mature (flowering) plants,
  • 12 immature (vegetative) plants, and
  • an unlimited number of seedlings for personal adult use.

When does a seedling become an immature plant? Great question – a “Seedling” is actually defined by state law, and means a cannabis plant or rooted cutting that is:

  1. Not flowering
  2. Less than 24 inches in height; and
  3. Less than 24 inches in Width

Attached to each mature cannabis plant and each immature cannabis plant must be a legible tag that includes:

  • The person’s name
  • Driver’s License or identification number
  • A notation that the cannabis plant is being grown for personal adult use as authorized under title 28-B Chapter 3 §1502 Home cultivation of cannabis for personal adult use
  • If the cultivation is on a parcel or tract of land owned by another person, the name of that owner

Lucky for you – we have included a template tag that you can download and use on your plants (Right Click Image -> Save Image As.. -> Open Picture -> Print). Make sure that you print in landscape mode for best results. It may be a good idea to place tape over these, or laminate them if you have the ability to do so. While cutting these tags out does create a tag that can wrap around the limb or trunk of a cannabis plant, consider using a zip tie to affix them to the plant rather than the barbs, so that you can prevent ripping or having the tag too close to a wet surface.

Disclaimer: If you elect to cultivate either under Title 28-B: Adult Use Cannabis or as a patient under Title 22 Chapter 558-C: Maine Medical Use of Cannabis Act, the state does NOT permit you to sell your harvested cannabis.

Medical Patients

We would consider it good practice for medical patients to use the same considerations as adult use cultivators when selecting the place that they wish to grow, particularly involving the line of sight from public pathways/roads, and restricting access to those under the age of 21. It is never recommended to bring public attention to cultivation areas, for the safety of your household and those around you.

Medical patients differ from adult use cultivators in the number of plants they may cultivate, up to:

  • 6 mature (flowering) plants,
  • 12 immature (vegetative) plants, and
  • An unlimited number of seedlings

If you skipped down to this section, check out the definition of a seedling above in the personal adult use cultivation section.

It is important to note that 2 or more qualifying patients who are members of the same household and cultivating their own cannabis plants may share one cultivation area.

Keep in mind – a patient may possess up to 8 pounds of harvested cannabis. A patient also maintains the right to bring their harvested cannabis to a testing facility for testing and research purposes. If you are a patient that likes concentrates and other manufactured items, you have the right to provide harvested cannabis to a manufacturing facility and obtain cannabis products and cannabis concentrate from the manufacturing facility that are produced from the harvested cannabis that you, the qualifying patient, provided to the manufacturing facility.

Disclaimer: If you elect to cultivate either under Title 28-B: Adult Use Cannabis or as a patient under Title 22 Chapter 558-C: Maine Medical Use of Cannabis Act, the state does NOT permit you to sell your harvested cannabis.

If you would like to read more about the rules surrounding adult use or patient cultivation, find the statutes below:

Adult Use Cultivation Rules

Patient Cultivation Rules

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