Medical marijuana patients can continue to grow cannabis at home, but lawmakers limit number of pot plants
PIERRE — In-home cultivation of cannabis will remain legal in South Dakota for medical marijuana cardholders.
Voters in 2020 authorized medical marijuana patients to grow marijuana for personal use within their private residences, but the approval didn’t stipulate any limit to the number of plants that can be grown at once.
That’s been a source of worry for a majority of South Dakota lawmakers since. And Wednesday, the House and Senate came to terms on setting the limit at four marijuana plants.
“It’s a compromise, if you will,” said Rep. Fred Deutsch, R-Florence.
Initially, the House passed a measure that would have completely prohibited any in-home cultivation in the state, while the Senate preferred legislation setting the limit at six plants: three in fully mature stage and three seedlings not yet producing THC.
Sen. Mike Rohl, R-Aberdeen, said while voters didn’t want a cap on plants, he’s pleased both chambers could agree on a bill that maintained some level of home grow for medical marijuana patients.
“I’m glad to see the House is understanding that banning home cultivation isn’t the right approach, but I do wish they’ve focus more on the governor’s promise to provide the best medical program available,” he said.
The four-plant limit in Senate Bill 24 specifies no more than two plants can be in mature stage at one time. The measure now heads to the governor’s desk for her signature. It would take effect July 1.