We started growing our kratom plant nearly 20 years ago at the request of a friend who taught children with ADHD. The state of the science then indicated that it would be an appropriate alternative to drugs like Ritalin. After he retired, it kind of hung around in the backyard until a greenhouse worker started buying the powder for extra energy. Looking at the price, we wondered if we could root it and sell the plants.
At the time, we weren’t aware of the controversy surrounding kratom. We learned the hard way when Etsy asked us to remove our kratom plants from their store.
We went back to the drawing board and after an extensive amount of research decided to put the plants on our main website even though we have very limited quantities of them. (They’re extraordinarily difficult to root, we had a success rate of less than 10% even with grow lights and misters.)
Still Somewhat Controversial
There are some issues that have not been addressed, particularly regarding liver damage at high doses or over a long period of time and the potential for addiction. We agree that further research is needed and would never consider selling kratom as a raw material. Growing the plant, however, minimizes the potential for abuse, particularly since many of the adverse effects are linked to other compounds in kratom products sold in a powder or capsule form.
Ayurvedic doctors, including Dr. Michael Tierra and Todd Caldecott, both write that its benefits outweigh its potential for damage. And even writers who are calling for legal restrictions on kratom see its benefits for people suffering with chronic pain.
As of 2020, Kratom is legal in most states except Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Rhode Island, Vermont and Wisconsin, along with Sarasota County in Florida, the city of San Diego and Union County in Mississippi. We obviously can’t ship the plants to those locations.
These plants are about two feet tall with a solid 10-inch rootball so they should transplant well. In Central Florida, “mama” is growing under oak trees so they get summer shade and winter sun with some protection from the cold. In more northern locations, they’ll need to be protected from freezing temperatures. They’re also day-length sensitive and will lose all their leaves in the short days of winter unless they have supplemental grow lights.