Hawaiian Grow Tips #1

Aloha! Hawaiian Grow Tip #1

Hawaiian grow tip #1: Introduction to guerilla growing. Learn the secret method that’s been used for years by Hawaii’s pakalolo growers to produce quality outdoor marijuana plants.

You can grow da crip kine pakalolo in the ground no matter how thick the bush is!

sativa strain grown in hawaii
Hawaii has some of the best sativa strains – Maui Wowie

Digging your Hole—Guerrilla Style

The first step is to find a good spot for growing your pakalolo. This will be your guerrilla patch. Generally speaking, the further away you are from human traffic, the better. But remember, you’ll have to go back out there whenever the plants need watering.

You don’t want any rippers finding your plants, so cover your tracks well. You can walk in a zig-zag pattern and follow pig trails to make it harder for others to track your steps—one path in, another path out.

Cannabis plants love plenty of direct sunlight, so you’ll want to find a good sunny area, like a Guinea grass field. These types of tropical grasses are extremely invasive and hard to fight back, so years ago, my Uncle Donny pioneered this guerrilla grow method that we’ll explain further below.

Our way will help you not waste any water/nutrients on surrounding vegetation.

The vegetation in your spot should be at least as tall as the plants will get. Try to find a healthy, dark green spot because your cannabis patch will be very green too. It would stick out like a sore thumb in an arid, yellow field. Remember, there are eyes in the sky and on the ground. What you can do is throw fertilizer around the perimeters to green it up.

Once you have picked the optimal guerrilla grow spot, go in there and cut it back a bit. Just don’t go too crazy; you’ll want to leave enough living grass around for camouflage. And avoid making perfectly straight lines. A rectangular patch is much easier to see than a natural blob shape.

maui wowie guerrilla cannabis patch
Weed plants blend in well when there is no clear outline of a patch

Now time to dig your hole. It should be at least 3 feet deep, so your pakalolo roots have room to grow and won’t dry out too quickly. You can keep the soil close to the hole—it will be filled in back soon.

Make sure to remove all the root pieces in the soil, or else they will grow back.

After you’ve cleared out the hole, it’s time to do the Uncle Donny method. We’ll use black polyethylene sheeting to line the inside of the hole. This will contain the root zone, ensuring that the surrounding vegetation doesn’t overpower your plants and steal all the nutrients and water you’re adding.

black plastic sheeting

Use heavy-duty 4 mil polyethylene sheeting for best results. The roll can be cut up into the right sizes beforehand, put in a backpack, and easily transported long distances.

Remember to take into account the depth of your patch. For example, a 4 x 10-foot patch roughly 3 feet deep would need a 10 x 16-foot piece of poly sheet.



Once you have your poly sheet set in the hole you dug out, poke a few drain holes thru the bottom. These holes are essential for preventing root rot in hard rains.

Fill back in the soil, and next, you can add your soil amendments. For Hawaiian soils, dolomite lime is recommended to raise the pH and add calcium.

Why calcium? Since the Hawaiian Islands are formed so recently in Earth’s history, Hawaiian soils do not contain nearly as much calcium as other places in the world. This is due to the fact that Hawaii has not had a long history of animals, insects, microorganisms, plants, etc., depositing their remains in the soil, which builds up over time to improve the soil quality.

Long-term fertilizer is easiest for guerrilla growing. The less you have to venture out to your patch to visit your plants, the better—going out too much will create visible trails and increase your chances of being seen. Examples of long-term fertilizers are blood meal, bone meal, manures, many organic dry mixed ferts such as FoxFarm Happy Frog fertilizer, or even synthetic options like Osmocote. Read our cannabis fertilizer guide for more information.

Blood Meal for Growing CannabisBlood meal has been the go-to nitrogen source for generations. It is non-water soluble, which means it will release nitrogen slowly into the soil and become available for your plant. This is essential for guerrilla growing—you need long-term slow-release fertilizer, as you want to minimize your plant visits. One of the most common beginner guerrilla grower problems is nitrogen deficiency, resulting in slow, non-vigorous growth and yellow leaves. Blood meal is rated around 12 – 0 – 0, a super nitrogen booster. Mix it into the soil as opposed to topdressing the surface. This is to minimize creatures catching wind of the blood scent.




Alright, that’s it! Now you can grow in the middle of a tropical grass field (or crop patch) and enjoy the full sun without clearing back 10 feet around your plants, all stealthy and optimized. Plus, you won’t be hauling out water and nutrients to feed the grasses and trees around them.

Keep on vegetating clones or have seedlings scheduled, ready to plug into patches as older crops get harvested. This constant rotation is achieved by treating the sub-tropical climate like a never-ending flowering room. That’s the real secret to getting non-stop harvests throughout the year!

P.S. Pack out what you pack in!


Read Next: Hawaii Grow Tips #2


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Jared Cox profile image

Jared Cox is the author behind Mold Resistant Strains. He is a cannabis grower, breeder, and archivist of seeds. His work across several disciplines extensively covers cannabis genetics, cultivation, processing, and sales.

7 thoughts on “Hawaiian Grow Tips #1”

    • I’m on Hamakua side of the Big Island where there’s around 8 feet of soil above the lava rock in most areas. For growers on parts of the Islands with mostly lava rock, guerrilla growing in pots or bags is easiest. 😉

      • Hey guys very experienced big island grower and connoisseur here. I buy the 30 gallon tubs from Walmart and slash holes in the bottom for drainage, you’ll pull about 2lbs per plant In our sweet Hawaiian sun so long as you watch for mold the higher in elevation you go and wetter it gets. I use the strain by nirvana called ICE it’s a 50 50 with great northwrlights and heavy thc heritage. By nirvana bank

    • Pretty common for here on the Big Island, a lot of the land on the Hamakua side been depleted from scraping the topsoil down to clay when they did the sugarcane. As a result, the soil is not very good alone. We perk it up for planting with perlite, coco peat, manures, bone and blood meal, dolomite lime and a bunch more. It helps 🙂


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