Nestled amid the rolling farmlands of Homestead, in the heart of Miami’s thriving cannabis cultivation scene, sits a massive facility where, at any given moment, roughly 20,000 marijuana plants are growing. Think Willy Wonka’s factory, only with weed.
The roughly 100,000-square-foot building houses nearly 30 propagation and cannabis grow rooms in various sizes, plus a few spaces dedicated to extractions, hashish processing, and packaging. The facility is run by the Flowery, a Miami-owned and family-operated medical marijuana business.
The Flowery is one of Florida’s 22 vertically integrated medical marijuana operators — meaning it handles every aspect of the cannabis process from seed to sale, as required by the state’s so-called vertical integration rule. As New Times previously reported, this law has often led to the formation of cannabis oligopolies, in which a small number of big companies wield control over the cannabis market and leave little space for smaller businesses.
That’s why the Flowery has won praise in Florida. Though the small-scale company has been rapidly growing in the past few years — from a single employee to roughly 60, and from a 6,000-square-foot, environmentally-controlled indoor facility to one more than 15 times that size — it has managed to remain mindful of its roots. The