One 10 foot high marijuana plant in the field is worth $ 4,000?

Is this for real? Is an individual plant really worth that much money?

Drug dealers are planting pot farms all over our national parks, and the Park Service is struggling to root them out. TIME goes on a raid.

I would guess not. It sounds like the government’s estimate. They most certainly exaggerate things such as this, to show how horrible the problem is (billions of dollars!) and how great a job they’re doing (destroying billions of dollars worth of it!). Kinda like the music industry saying every time somoene downloads a song, they lose $16.99 in lost album sales. Makes the problem sound a lot worse than it really is (when in fact it’s usually not even a problem at all, but that’s a different post for a different thread).

Lets see…
I pay $50 to buy an 1/8th of weed. I’m not talking about crappy crumbly weed. This is good homegrown sticky smelly kind. An ounce will be around $400. So…the plant would have to yield 10 ounces to be worth $4000. I really don’t know how much weed a plant will yield though.

But lets bump up the price to $60 an 1/8th. Because I know some people that will charge that. The plant would then have to yield 8 ounces and some odd grams to be worth $4000.

But again. I don’t know how much pot a plant will yield…

I’ve seen plants 12-14 feet tall that produced 1-2 pounds of marihuana.

Value is of course determined by the market and quantitiy being bought/sold.

$50 is a heavily inflated price which only reflects on the purchase of a small quantity by an end user. This is not a good way to compute the value of the plant because if one were to buy, say, an ounce at a time, one would definitely be spending less than $400. Since weed is illegal, each progressive person it goes through from grower to end user (and there are many) jacks up the price significantly; the limited nature of the market allows each reseller to heavily profit, and also results in large unit price increases for small quantities. Sorry for the hijack, just wanted to point out that it’s not a good way of measuring the plant’s value.

The cops are starting to get a good crop in here and what the newspaper reports is that the DEA or another goverment entity puts a street price of 2500 per plant regardless of size.

How much pot would a pot plant yield if a pot plant could yield pot?

This is the standard way the police reports drug values - they figure out how many of the smallest street quantities the bust will make, and multiply it by the cost of those small quantities.

That’s certainly not what the grower of the plant would have gotten for it.

As far as I know there’s no market for 10’ tall pot plants in the field.
The DEA is dishonest as hell, as people with an agenda tend to be, and one shouldn’t believe much of anything they say.
A plant that size would yield about 6-8 ounces of good $200/oz pot, IMO.
Not everything you see (the plant) is smokeable. Lots of twigs and shit. Especially that which is grown outside and left largely untended.
I think.

$200-300 per ounce for decent pot is not an unusual price to pay. To an end user, a mature plant may be easily worth 4K. But I don’t know anyone, nor have I heard of anyone, who buys plants “on the streets”.

A cutting from such a plant, or an immature plant, are higher risks because of the uncertainty of the ultimate yield, and hence would be worth considerably less.

Also, let’s not forget, it’s the cops who are responsible for inflated pot prices, and not simply by overestimating it for shock value on the news. The more effort and resources the cops put into the “war” on drugs, the higher the price goes.

My WAG is that the “real” value of a pot plant (in a freee market without “drug war” legal intervention) would be in the ball park of a tobacco plant. Here you can by tobacco seeds, enough to grow 25 plants, for under $3.

But still, $50 is expensive, jeez. In the UK it’s about 15 to 20 pounds for a henry (about $35, I think).

And I can’t believe one plant could yield 1 or 2 pounds, even if it’s 12 foot. They need to be dried before they can be sold, once they have been dried (and all the water in them has gone) they hardly weigh anything.

Especially since, if it’s 12 foot, then it will only be ordinary grass not skunk, the sticky, smelly stuff. Skunk plants get grown under lights indoors and are only a couple of feet high at best. Just one big bud, I’ve seen some fine specimens in Amsterdam coffee shops.

So if it’s ordinary grass then it will be even cheaper. I can’t see how you would make $4000 out of one plant.

Help the uninitiated. What are the differences between grass pot and “skunk” pot?

skunk is all bud. Far as I’m aware you get more THC (the stuff that gets you high) in the bud. So growers have artificially crossed plants to get ones that are just pure bud - big fluffy things. But as far as I know, you have to grow them indoors under controlled conditions.

They are much stronger and therefore cost more than ordinary grass.

Ordinary grass is just the normal marijuana plant dried out. Marijuana plants can get pretty tall but once they’re dried there’s not much of them.

The government always greatly exaggerates the value of drugs seized. I remember listening to a news story about a cocaine bust and computing the price per gram, and it was about 10 times the going rate, if you’re selling by the gram (and as people, have pointed out, there is a lot of time, effort, and risk involved in unloading it bit by bit). I think a rule of thumb is to knock off a zero from whatever the DEA claims.

I bet what it going on there is that they weighed the entire plant and then calculated its worth based on the highest possible street value for primo stuff.

Bingo! When the RCMP stumbled upon a friend of mine’s hobby farm, the court heard that more than a quarter-of-a-million dollars worth of “drugs” were seized. They didn’t just weigh the tops, they weighed the whole shebang-- tops, stalks, and root-balls. (This particular project was indoors, and in soil bags, not hydo.)

I can tell you from observation that a smallish indeavor like his was could have reasonably expected to bring him about $15,000 (CDN) – $20,000 at the outside. For an average-sized basement, that’s close to the norm. I don’t know why the people who are ostensibly trying to discourage people from cultivating marijuana are the ones who are by-and-large responsible for the myth that it’s an easy way to get outrageously rich, quick. As it is, if one person takes care of one house, they have a pretty hard job that doesn’t compare favourably with a union scale labour job as far as recompense is concerned, without even considering the additional stresses of operating outside of the law.

Anecdotal evidence suggests to me that police claims regarding the value of seized marijuana tends to be exaggerated by approximately 15%. Of course, it would be silly to expect them to harvest, manicure, and dry the product in order to assess its value before they incinerate it, but obviously some sort of automatic adjustment needs to be made.

At any rate, a grain of salt is advised.

Uh, Jojo, that’s just silly. Yes, cultivated marijuana produces fatter flowers. It is still, however, largely stalk and leaf. A typical basement crop of kind BC bud wouldn’t overtax a normal garbage bag. On the other hand, the trimmings will fill four or five. It is far from “normal” for people to sell the entire plant. The leaves are not marketable. There is a difference between the bits of “leaf” you might find in cured marijuana and fan-leaf. Take a look at this bud. See the leaves growing out of it? Although they will be trimmed off before the bud is considred marketable, the bud leaves tend to be sticky and are generally saved to make kief, hash, or oil. The fan leaves, (the discrete leaves that have their own stems and everything,) are way too nasty to ever be sold as smoking material of any description. They can be used to make ghee or low-grade, gungy oil, but usually they’re just scrapped altogether.

“Skunk” is basically just how particularly resinous pot is collectively referred to, now. If you want to be pedantic about it, proper “skunkweed” is a cross between cannabis sativa and cannabis indica with a distinct, pungent aroma that is reminiscent of nothing so much as, well, skunk. (Or possibly half a bottle of Heineken that’s been left out in the sun.)

Ok, I’ve read quite a bit about marijuana cultivation. IIRC, the US government counts each plant as 30 grams regardless of size. A typical 4-5 foot tall plant will yield 1-2 ounces. The government chose to count each plant as 30 grams because of a popular growing style called SOG or Sea Of Green in which a grower would take cuttings off a mother plant and grow large amounts of small plants that only grow to be about 2’ tall.

That being said. I know of one individual that uses training techniques and can get a pound off a 6’ plant. However, he is a guru and that can’t be considered the norm.

The horse told me this itself:

“Skunk grown indoors reaching around 4-5 feet yields 3-5 oz.”

If plants were simple geometric entities doubling the height would increase the volume eightfold, I imagine that there’s greater wastage with larger plants, say fourfold.

So that’s 12-20 oz, multiply that by the “street price” (which is standard police practice – even for seizures of a couple of tons here) and the magical figure of $4000 starts to seem, um,… “reasonable”.

How they figure prices for anything is up to them.

I bet they do it like some new math: grower 1lb:$1000 next person sells that as 2 half lbs:$2000 then street: 100 units @$65 (legal medical pot in SC, Calif): $6,500=
$9,500 per plant…

This from my undergraduate days: (I knew many users, some of whom “dealt” a little to subsidize their own use, and dealers at moderate level (mostly quarters and halves) and dealers who wouldn’t talk to you unless you wanted a quarter-weight(4oz) or more, and I knew the people who would supply resin in half-kilo “soaps” to the tune of £1000s per deal (an aside: note imperial units up to a quarter-weight, then after in metric kilos!) )

It seemed to me that for each “dealer” at each level the mark-up was a constant, regardless of the volume being sold. So, say 1oz cost a (moderate) dealer £80 (prices have not kept up the Retail Price Index), then they would sell at these rates (with a “typical” mark-up of £5):

1oz £85
1/2 £45
1/4 £25
1/8 £15
1/16 £10

So you can see a “five-pound wrap” was worth nothing.

Anyway, I’m unaware of such a bizarre pricing structure in “mainstream” markets – if I’d had the guts would have submitted my Economics dissertation on the subject.

a 10ft plant could easily be worth $4,000 imho.
in the uk a kilo of skunk goes for about £3000 i believe.
a plant that big, if cared for well could easily produce that much bud if the genetics were right but my guess would be that a plant that big wouldnt be a far bud beast but a somewhat straggly creature.
the government and pigs always overestimate on these things.
weighing the rootballs? that’s a fucking crime against humanity, who’s gonna smoke that?