This article is a complete guide for growing Kratom, which is an incredibly difficult process, but it can be very rewarding if done correctly.
First off, it is important to learn about where Kratom comes from, in order to understand what conditions Kratom requires in order to thrive.
Kratom’s Native Growing Regions Are Near The Equator In The Southeast Pacific
Kratom grows in the moist tropical regions near the Earth’s equator in the Southeast Pacific. Most of the Kratom imported into the United States comes from Indonesia, but Kratom also readily grows in Malaysia, as well as in Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), Vietnam, Papua New Guinea, and the Philippines.
The common denominator between all of the regions where Kratom naturally grows is that they are hot and moist all year round and don’t experience even a hint of winter. Literally, there are not any real cold fronts even in the deepest part of winter in the regions where Kratom naturally grows, since just one real cold front is enough to kill a whole forest of Kratom trees.
Indeed, the Kratom growing regions extend to roughly 15 N in the Southeast Pacific, perhaps to 20 N at the most. Compare this to Key West, which is considered the most tropical city in the continental United States yet has a latitude of 25 N.
It Is Possible To Grow Kratom In Southeast Florida, But Eventually The Trees Will Get Killed By A Freeze Or A Hurricane
That being said, I have seen proof that people have successfully grown huge Kratom trees in Southeast Florida, a region which does get significant cold fronts in the winter.
However, growing Kratom in Southeast Florida, which is literally the only part of the continental United States where growing Kratom outside is possible at all, is a game of chance, and eventually the house will win. If a powerful cold front drops the temperature into the 30s F, which happens once every several years, then the Kratom trees will either be badly damaged or dead. Also, if a hurricane hits the Kratom trees they will probably die as well, since Kratom trees are not capable of handling hurricanes.
Grow Your Kratom Inside Or In A Greenhouse
Thus, the first major rule for successfully growing Kratom is to grow it inside. Of course, growing Kratom inside has major drawbacks since the Kratom tree will never be able to get that big due to a lack of natural sunlight and a lack of space, and also the fact that room temperature is not an ideal temperature for Kratom trees.
Personally, I like to keep my AC below 70 F, and apparently that would completely stifle the growth of a young Kratom tree. Imagine how annoying it would be to have to keep your house at tropical temperatures just so your resident Kratom tree doesn’t die.
Perhaps a better approach is to start growing a Kratom tree in a big pot outside during the middle of summer, and then to take it in inside before Autumn begins. This is a good strategy since once a Kratom tree becomes more well-established it becomes more temperature resistant.
Basically, a properly matured Kratom tree won’t die if it drops below 70 F, although it may stop growing.
Beyond trying to grow your Kratom indoors, a greenhouse would be the absolute best method, since the Kratom tree will be able to get full sunlight while simultaneously the greenhouse could be kept at high levels of heat and humidity. Of course, it would be very expensive to build and run an effective greenhouse, but some Kratom growers do this and are highly successful.
Growing Kratom From Seeds: Fresh Seeds Or Bust
For almost all fruits, vegetables, and flowers it is quite easy to germinate a seed. However, Kratom seeds are among the most fragile and tenuous seeds on the planet, and it takes a miracle to germinate them.
Above is a zoomed in picture of Kratom seeds. They are literally like tiny hairs, and a teaspoon can hold hundreds of seeds. Unfortunately, they can be killed easily due to their tiny and fragile nature. Also, they can go stale and just die on their own.
Therefore, if you are going to be growing Kratom from seeds, you need seeds that have been handled with impeccable care and were on the Kratom tree less than two days ago. Basically, the only surefire way to get viable Kratom seeds is to pick them from the actual tree, and then quickly plant them.
If you do find really fresh seeds and proceed to germinate them, the best technique is to sprinkle the seeds on top of rich soil, and then to slightly cover the seeds with the tiniest layer of dirt, leaving some seeds above and below, and then keeping that soil wet in order to stimulate germination.
If you successfully germinate the seeds, they will turn into incredibly tiny plants, and they must be kept in high heat and humidity and given plenty of sunlight. In other words, a Kratom seedling can be killed by even the slightest disturbance, so you must be extra careful.
Growing Kratom From Cuttings
Growing Kratom from cuttings may seem like it’s gonna be easier, since the basic premise behind cuttings is that you snip a small branch from the tree, basically a stem with a few sets of leaves, and then root it in water. However, the process is extremely difficult.
First off, choose a healthy stem for the cutting, and then cut it off with a razor blade. Do not use regular garden cutters or a knife, a razor blade is the only thing that will work. Basically, the razor blade cuts cleanly through the tree’s vascular system, leaving it open so that it can still suck in water, whereas using anything duller than a razor blade crushes the vascular system, which will cause the cutting to dehydrate/starve to death even if it’s in a cup of water.
Also, trim off all but the top set of leaves, since more leaves than this will stifle root growth, since the plant will be focusing on keeping all of its leaves alive instead of growing roots.
Immediately put the cutting into a glass of water, or plant it immediately. If you wait even for a little while the cutting will die at a fairly quick pace.
When you plant the cutting use rich soil, personally I prefer Miracle Gro which naturally contains rooting compounds. A lot of other people use regular soil and put rooting compound all over the bottom of the cutting.
After that give the cutting plenty of heat, humidity, and sunlight, and do not disturb it physically, since the root growing process is extremely delicate.
One of the trickiest aspects is that the Kratom cutting needs lots of water, but it cannot get too wet, since if it gets too wet it molds up and dies. Therefore, make sure your pot has an excellent drainage system, so that you can soak the cutting multiple times a day without perma-flooding it.
On a side note, one of the only ways to get cuttings is through the mail, and that is quite tricky considering how fragile Kratom cuttings are. If you are going to buy a Kratom plant in the mail, make sure that it is relatively mature and well-rooted, or you’ll end up receiving a sick and stunted plant.
Just remember, even if you do everything right the Kratom tree still might not grow, and it might take a lot of trial and error before you successfully grow your first Kratom tree. However, it is worth the effort, because once you succeed you will have access to fresh and highly potent Kratom leaves, which are excellent for both chewing and making tea.