The Right Soil for Hemp Hemp can be grown in a variety of soils, but it grows best in loose, deep soils rich in organic matter, fertile loams, and with a pH of 6.0 to 7.5.Hemp doesn't grow well in moist soil. There was a time when there were more than 100 water factories to process hemp fiber in Lancaster County alone (ten things you never knew about PA's hemp history). There were also many hemp seed oil mills that pressed excess hemp seeds into oil, which was used in paints, inks, varnishes, and lamp oil. Concerns about the use of plants for drug purposes led to the Marijuana Tax Act of 1938, which made both hemp and marijuana controlled substances and effectively eliminated industrial hemp production (with some exceptions when fiber was needed during World War II).
Industrial hemp is commercially produced in more than 30 countries around the world, with France being the largest producer of industrial hemp in the world. Growers should conduct a risk assessment of how they are going to allocate field space to hemp and the possible consequences of doing so, such as losing money on hemp when something less risky could have been planted there. It also means that hemp will grow even slower, giving way for weeds to compete with the plant if the weather is too cold and hemp can't quickly close the canopy. Growing hemp in the same place two years in a row would probably be OK, but hemp consumes a lot of nutrients.
Industrial hemp producers should carefully identify what industrial hemp products and sales channels are available before starting production, obtain the necessary permits prior to production, and ensure that production is conducted in accordance with state and federal laws. Pennsylvania industrial hemp producers should carefully consider the cost of transporting fiber or grain when evaluating the potential profitability of industrial hemp.