- The Washington Times - Monday, February 25, 2013

The legalization of marijuana is Colorado and Washington state has opened a door to an unexpected puzzler: How the heck do you grow it?

Marijuana is tough to grow, as The Associated Press reports. And the laws that were passed giving state-sanctioned shops a right to sell also included restrictions on shop owners from teaching people how to cultivate the plant themselves.

“We can’t go there [for advice],” said Brian Clark, a spokesman for Washington State University in Pullman, which runs the state’s extension services for gardening and agriculture, in the AP report. “It violates federal law, and we are a federally funded organization.”

In Colorado, where adults now are allowed to grow up to six plants in their homes, the situation is similar.

Colorado State University in Fort Collins just warned employees via its newly created marijuana policy that workers who provide pot-growing advice will “assume personal liability for such action,” according to the AP report.

The answer is the private sector. And entrepreneurs are cashing in. At least two Colorado residents have been offering private classes for hopeful growers, with some participants driving substantial distances to attend.

“I wanted to learn to grow better,” said Ginger Grinder, a New Mexico resident who drove to Denver for a “Marijuana 101” class she saw advertised online, AP reports.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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