What is Hemp?
For hundreds of years, hemp was considered one of the most important agricultural crops. It was noted specifically for sails, ropes, and canvas, but also for clothing and medicine. In fact, hemp was considered such an important product, that even as late as in the 1940s, the United States was still encouraging farmers to grow it, even though they had outlawed ‘marijuana’ ten years earlier. Generally speaking, up until 30-40 years ago, there was absolutely no difference between weed and hemp. They only differed in how they were used by the consumer. This all changed when the US government legislated a new definition of hemp as being a cannabis plant with an ultra-low level of the THC cannabinoid. Farmers could grow hemp but not cannabis, despite them being the exact same plant, just bred for different purposes.
Another major change has occurred over the last 5-10 years. While the current legislation mandates THC in hemp be kept low, no restrictions are placed on how much of the CBD cannabinoid can be present in the plant. As CBD became increasingly popular in the world, many farmers turned from growing hemp for its fiber, seeds, and husks, to instead growing hemp for CBD. It should be noted that most hemp also has a fairly low concentration of CBD, so you need to grow quite a bit of it to produce a useful yield. Also, most commercial hemp strains are bred to grow very tall, sometimes above 12 feet. These two factors make commercial hemp unsuitable for most home growers.