Hug Deprivation Syndrome HDS

With the varying degrees of physical isolation which the world is currently experiencing on the most personal levels, I am concerned about the impact of what I call HDS Hug Deprivation Syndrome  on our mental health and psychological and physical well being.

Personally, I’m a hugging kind of guy. From the now-shelved warm handshake to the hug of love with a friend, it is part of how I’ve related to people over the years. While respecting others boundaries, my leaning is towards contact as appropriate.

I suspect that although the level of the de-physicalization varies with the people, that the the specifics of those boundaries vary with the person, that overall, the norm as we’ve known it was  far far closer than what we now have; closer by masks and feet.

Assuming that many people and animals have a basic need for physical contact, and assuming that the degree of physical contact we are currently living with is a drastic reduction from what we’re used to, what does that mean? It means that there is a most important physical/emotional basic need which has   suddenly become a victim of COVID19.

How can we reduce the impact of this loss? My suggestion is that we increase the amount of hugging among those of us who are locked-down or partially locked-down together.  My wife and I hug. If I get her to buy this theory, we’ll both be getting more hugs from each other.  I think she’s buying it.

That’s actually the easy answer. The challenge is having concrete suggestions for those who have no safe or permitted physical contact. I do find that contact with visuals, like Zoom and Skype, are far better than contact by  modalities which are audio only.

Love & Hugs


How Many Plants Can I grow at home in Colorado? The short answer!

Is there a short answer to the question “how many plants can I grow in Colorado at home?”

“I have a really quick question. How many plants can I grow at home in Colorado?” So many who call expect an answer like “six” or something clear simple and direct. If such an answer existed, I’d happily share it as a “quick phone questions.” That is simply impossible. A real answer not only is not absolutely clear, it also involves a long list of factors. For me to give someone a real answer, a lawyerly answer, takes me generally 2 hours. No quite the 10 minutes people anticipate as a brief question with a quick answer.

The shortest possible answer is “six, comprised of 3 in veg and three flowering.” BUT you are on a lawyer’s website, so you already knew that a very short answer was unlikely if not impossible.

Is the grower a Colorado resident over 21 years old? So far so good.
Now we begin to get to the beginning of a better answer.

Is the grower a renter or subject to HOA rules? If so, those sets of rules and arguments based upon legal interpretations of the lease or HOA regulations need to be considered. A lease clause as simple as “tenant will engage in no illegal behavior” has ended up in court based upon the landlord arguing that federal law still has marijuana as a Schedule I Controlled Substance.

Are there any minors living in the house?
Depending upon the County and depending upon what that County and the State of Colorado are currently doing. This can range from “make sure the grow is locked up, secured from any possible access by the minors” to “you are at risk of having the Department of Social Services will remove the minors from the home. This becomes either an issue, or just a potential future risk.

Are you a city dweller, subject to municipal ordinances on growing marijuana, or do you grow in an unincorporated part of a county, subject to the county’s marijuana growing ordinances? The ordinances are generally on line, and generally updated so what you see is current. Of course that is not always true.

One household, two adults, you may be fine at 12 plants, 6 in Veg, 6 flowering. Unless…

One Municipality purports to have a limit on grow size, at 10’ by 10’ along with a plant count limit at 6/12, and finally, 1200 watts limit for lights. I wonder if you get a break if you have some solar or wind boost for the lights. Some Muni ordinances attempt to overcome the Constitutional provision that a person has an affirmative defense (raised at trial) that they medically require a higher plant count. It does appear that 99 plants is a “hard line,” and we are now dealing with the original laws, modified to eliminate “loopholes.” The most common “loophole” was having one grower become a “caregiver” for a number of others, each of whom has a 99 plant medical recommendation. Anything to do with caregivers and extended plant counts is beyond a “short” answer.

Note, to add criminality where it may not be, the Colorado criminal law defines weight differently than the state constitution. Plants are counted differently. While the constitution is clear that an ounce of flower is equivalent to an ounce of hash or an ounce of extract, the criminal law is absolutely inconsistent with that, having a doubling factor for concentrates compared to flower. The penalty for one pound of flower is the same as the penalty for ½ pound of extract or concentrate per Colorado criminal law on marijuana.

I could go on, but I promised a short answer.


Lenny Frieling

Growing at home? Whose home? Can you do it?

If you own the residence in which you are going to grow, you must know if you are controlled (along with the rest of the controlling laws and regulations) if you are in a municipality or in an unincorporated part of a county? Generally, every single city has its own cannabis grow laws, and none of them match.
If you are in a development with an HOA, there will be additional rules controlling what you can and can’t do.

The HOA might even have rules purporting to forbid a home-grow in the controlled neighborhood. Apartments, Section 8, and shared living arrangements can introduce added levels of law, regs, rules, etc.

If someone is renting, are there limitations on growing in their lease? Is their lease even the “Master Lease” or are you leasing from someone who is in turn leasing from someone who is leasing from the owner? Are there any prohibitions anywhere limiting home grows?

Lafayette Colorado, for example, limits the plant count, the size of the grow, and the wattage! No more than 1200 watts!! As an old NJ boy, I feel a twinge in my Thomas Edison tendon. I believe that section of the Lafayette Municipal Code was put in place before various LED options were extant.

Plant count limits apply generally though not consistently to a living unit, a residence unit. That may, or may not, consist of a place to sleep, a bathroom, and a place to cook. Some locations, some cities, define a “residence unit.” Some care about whether it is one of a group of more than one residence located on a single property.

My experience is repetitive in that first, there is never a “quick easy 5 minute answer.” Second, a real answer, worthy of a decent lawyer, takes one to two hours,, and sometimes more. Your lawyer will absolutely need the address of the grow, preferably including the city or county of the location. A google earth picture is helpful. To put together an answer that I am confident with generally takes me the hours, and sometimes there are follow-up questions. Lawyers charge differently of course. I charge hourly.
Lenny Frieling