Otto II Seed Is Back!

Last year I formed a partnership with a Colorado industrial hemp farmer to produce an Otto II seedlot for the 2017 planting season. That seedlot is harvested and undergoing testing in our lab. Once the seedlot has been proofed and germination tested it will be available for purchase.

This partnership accomplishes a major goal of mine, that is to produce seed at a much larger scale while maintaining high standards in performance and reliability. Producing more seed allows me to address larger customers growing on a “from seed” basis. This increase in production also allows me pricing flexibility that wasn’t possible when producing seed at the bench-scale.

If you’re planting industrial hemp for CBD production and you need seed, please consider the Otto II hybrid from Centennial Seeds.


1216 Commerce Ct, Number 7

Lafayette, CO 80026

(720) 961-0525


CBD Seed Co. a partnership between Hemp Depot, and Ben Holmes

This is an exciting time for those of us interested in high-CBD hemp seeds and clones.

Both lifestyle-oriented consumers and scientific researchers have shown a growing interest in the potential health benefits found in cannabidiol (CBD)-derived products.

For us this is more than a passing fad. We’ve been working in the legal cannabis industry since 2009 and have been pioneers in the production and growth of the highest quality CBD hemp for several years now.

CBD Seed Company is the result of a partnership between Hemp Depot, our parent company, and Ben Holmes.

Ben is founder of Centennial Seeds. He’s also a pioneering plant geneticist who established the first registered label in the U.S. for the production of medical grade cannabis seeds.

After working initially on THC, Holmes heard about CBD in 2009 from a Hawaii-based physician named Clifton Otto.

“He asked if we had the ability to make a seed that would produce CBD exclusively, with very little THC,” Ben remembers.

Soon afterwards Holmes produced his first CBD hybrid, Otto I. And after years of additional cross-breeding and testing that strain was eventually fine-tuned.

“Developing those inbred lines takes many, many generations,” he says. “The outcome…creates these super-high vigor plants.”

It also led to the creation of Otto II, a top-quality industrial hemp plant that has some of the highest levels of CBD available.

Hemp is a form of the cannabis plant and a “cousin” to marijuana. As per the legal requirements for hemp CBD compared to marijuana, the CBD produced from Otto II  plants contains only trace amounts of THC (under 0.3%), the intoxicating chemical compound that many associate with marijuana.

Working with the CBD Seed Company has helped Holmes’ work stay years ahead of the rest of the CBD market, especially in terms of commercial production and a stable seed base. And while competitors continue to spring up Ben says he shares a vision with Hemp Depot founders Andy Rodosevich and Luke Pickering; to present the rapidly-growing CBD seed and clone market with the highest-quality product available.

“This industry has legs,” Holmes says. “A lot of it is as yet undefined and certainly untapped, but that’s an upside. If this is a plane ride then we’re still on the runway. But the regulation of a transparent and successful hemp industry is serious business and it all starts with your seed choice.”

“What we’re doing with CBD Seed Company is taking my work, which has to be done in a lab, and expanding it outdoors into vast quantities,” he continues. “We’re not yet even on the radar of the major seed companies. But in this market, which is a very early market, we’ve managed to develop a good reputation and a good distribution of our seed types – and that’s given us a great head start.”

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A Look at The Beginning of an Industry, Hemp in Colorado

 Hemp Depot is the brainchild of Andy Rodosevich and Luke Pickering. The two began working in Colorado’s legal medical cannabis sector nearly a decade ago and have been breaking new ground ever since.

Several years back they sensed a shift in the legal cannabis market and began to focus their efforts on the production of pharmaceutical grade CBD hemp oil, hemp seeds, hemp clones and hemp flower.

Hemp Depot began with 120 acres of land in eastern Colorado, and was started from scratch.

“There was no power, water or even a survey on the property,” says Andy, “so we had to bring everything in.”

Their hemp farm was built from the ground-up and is based on traditional agricultural methods:  using the water-efficient drip irrigation, organic compost and tractors you’d find at any progressive farming operation.

The big difference, of course, is the hemp itself. Otto II was used for the majority of their 2016 production. The strain was created by Ben Holmes, a pioneering plant geneticist who established the first registered label in the U.S. for the production of medical grade cannabis seeds. The combination of Holmes’ genetics and the Hemp Depot’s production techniques has led to the mass production of Otto II, a top-quality industrial hemp plant that has some of the highest levels of cannabidiol (CBD) available.

Hemp is a form of the cannabis plant, and a “cousin” to marijuana. As per the legal requirements for hemp CBD compared to marijuana, the CBD produced from Otto II  plants contains only trace amounts of THC (under 0.3%), the intoxicating chemical compound that many associate with marijuana.

A hemp plant with high amounts of CBD not only makes economic sense, but also contributes to crop sustainability. “Higher ratios of CBD mean you can process a lot less material for the same amount of yield,” says Holmes, “which helps efficiency.”

Compared to more traditional crops, hemp farming has its advantages.

“Hemp is naturally pest resistant and fungus resistant, which makes it easy to grow without pesticides,” says Luke. “The biggest challenge is the weather; you can’t control the weather.”

Weather was responsible for one of the company’s early setbacks, when a summer storm destroyed their major greenhouse and all of the plants in it.

“But we quickly regrouped, built another greenhouse and put 6,600 plants in the field,” notes Andy. “During that same summer we built a 4,000 square-foot, below-ground greenhouse dedicated to seed and genetics – as well as an 10,080 square-foot steel building that would provide us a drying facility for all of our product at the end of the year.”

The result was the company harvesting around 10,000 pounds of CBD-rich industrial hemp in 2016. For 2017 Hemp Depot is expected to plant 25,000 plants, with an anticipated harvest of close to 50,000 pounds. “We currently have the room to multiply that volume five-fold,” says Andy, “and we hope to be at full capacity by the end of 2018.”

The company has also branched out and in late 2016 launched three consumer product lines for their industrial hemp. It’s also putting efforts into a new seed, Otto HD, that’s expected to improve on the CBD ratios and production of Otto II.

“These are very exciting times for hemp production,” says Rodosevich. “Consumers are catching on to the potential of CBD while researchers continue to explore its potential health benefits. Hemp Depot is prepared to lead the way for our industry as we create, develop and produce newer and more productive CBD-yielding industrial hemp.”

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The Cheapest Steel Building Became a Very Expensive Mistake

“I bought a cheap steel building and it was the most expensive mistake I’ve ever made.”

Andy R: The Cheapest Steel Building Became a Very Expensive Mistake

To the average consumer, all steel buildings often appear to be the same. So long as the building provides you with the space you need and it’s made of steel, you can’t go wrong, right? Wrong!

When it comes to the construction industry, the experts will tell you that cheaper doesn’t always mean better. In a nutshell, a lesser quality building solution comes with its fair share of problems – from missing parts, or poorly manufactured components – and might be the most expensive project once all is said and done. But it’s almost certain that a cheap building won’t last. Andy R. of Yoder, Colorado learned this the hard way.

“In January of 2016, we erected a greenhouse building from what we were told was the ‘largest greenhouse manufacturer in the country.’ On one particularly windy day, the whole building started shaking, and the building flexed and moved about 6 inches. Next, the film of the roof tore, the wind got under that tear, and the whole roof blew off. This was in 60 mph winds.”

That’s not all. The walls buckled. The outside film tore. The frames warped. The building structurally failed.

Struggles for a Small Business

“That greenhouse only lasted 6 weeks before it came apart.”

Andy is the owner of an industrial hemp and CBD producer in Colorado. The company is slowly growing, and currently looking for ways to survive this not-so-small setback.

“Looking back, we tried to initially save some money. We were told the building could hold up to wind. At the end of the day, we probably have a 4-8 million dollar loss in production this farming year because of the late start that is causing us to play catch-up, not to mention the thousands of dollars in purchase orders that we won’t be able to fill.”

Andy didn’t purchase an Armstrong Steel building. He went with a cheaper option. An Armstrong Steel building might not be the most inexpensive option in the marketplace, but it’s America’s preferred metal building system for a reason. When it comes to your business, your family, your livelihood, or your safety, why trust an inferior product?

You Get What You Pay For

There’s nothing cliché about Andy’s cautionary tale. Hopefully, this isn’t an experience that happens to everyone. As a savvy entrepreneur, he acknowledges this incident and chalks it up to a learning experience…an expensive learning experience at that. Simply put: the prospect of initially saving money on a purchase vanishes when you have to replace parts or the whole structure entirely.

“We might have saved $80,000 on a building, but we lost millions of dollars – maybe more – by choosing an inferior product. There aren’t many times where going ‘the cheap route’ on equipment or any building project makes sense in the long run.”

Rebuilding with Armstrong Steel

There is a silver lining for Andy and his business. For what it’s worth, his current building is in the process of being replaced. Also, he’s going to complete the next several phases of his grow operation, this time, with Armstrong Steel.

“We’re glad Andy decided to build with Armstrong Steel,” said Ethan Chumley, Armstrong Steel Founder and CEO. “We were able to present him with building options that would absolutely survive the wind loads of his area, stand the test of time and help him expand his business.”

“It goes to show you that, in a customer’s pursuit of savings, there are certain times you shouldn’t skimp on quality,” said Eric Beavers, Armstrong Steel Executive Vice President. “While Andy’s story has a happy ending of sorts, the downtime he’s had to endure doesn’t make a cheap building worth the trouble – even if they offer to replace it for free. That says a lot about the quality if they can afford to do that. Plus, what’s to say it doesn’t happen again?”

“I’d like to tell your potential customers to make sure the building you have is the right quality. Had I had an Armstrong Steel building, I know the roof wouldn’t have come off. It’s engineered to withstand those strong winds. I should have gone that route the first time.”



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