We had a chance to sit down with Rob Bramhill, a fellow Canadian grower, plant and photography enthusiast. We spoke about what inspired his love for growing plants, first cannabis and then many different vegetables and houseplants. Rob also shared some tips for plants enthusiasts who are just starting.

Rob, please tell us a little bit about yourself

I am a city-born, rural living veteran. In 2010, I enrolled in the Canadian Armed Forces as an armoured crewman. That journey took me to New Brunswick where I learned my trade and furthered my career. At the beginning of 2012, I was posted to The Royal Canadian Dragoons at CFB Petawawa. I had an amazing opportunity to work and serve beside people I view as personal heroes. Unfortunately, I was injured during my time serving and was medically released in 2017. Since then, I have been on a journey of finding a balance between my mental and physical health and searching for my true purpose. Currently, I feel that growing great medicine and food, as well as helping other veterans and growers to get started in their plant-growing journey is that purpose.


Please tell us about your cannabis growing journey

My cannabis growing journey began shortly after Canada legalized cannabis for recreational use. I was a medical cannabis user prior to legalization. Since releasing from the CAF I used it for my physical and mental health. Prior to legalization, it felt to me that the licenced producers (LPs) cared a lot about their customers. Cannabis quality was great and so was the customer service. But post legalization, it felt as if we were no longer patients to the LPs but merely customers. The stock was low through many of the LPs medical programs but they had a ton to offer to the recreational market. To me, the whole situation seemed more profit-based. The decline in the quality of the cannabis and the quality of the service prompted me to start learning everything I could about how to grow cannabis myself.

My first cannabis grow was an outdoor grow during the summer of 2020. I started with just four plants as there is a recreational plant limit for non-licensed home growers.

Looking back, no matter how bad that grow was it was the best cannabis I have ever had because I grew it with love and care. Since that grow, I have had two successful outdoor grows and am currently on number three. Receiving my grow license for my medical plants now allows me to grow more than four plants. So I get to search for those cultivars that work best for me and my needs.

Every day I try to learn more about growing cannabis, veggies and house plants. Also, growing cannabis has led me to becoming passionate about photography. I started photographing my cannabis plants in November 2021. I want to show off the beauty and wonders these plants have to offer. My hope is to help end the stigma around cannabis by showing just how beautifully complex it can be.

How did you learn how to grow cannabis?

Prior to my first outdoor grow and first-ever cannabis grow I spent a better part of a year on YouTube and googling anything and everything I could about how to grow cannabis. I also had and still have to this day some amazing “growmies”. We continue to support each other, help each other thrive and grow the best medicine we can.
Some amazing podcasts and YouTube channels I frequent are: The Dude Grows Show, Grow from Your Heart Podcast, Mr. Canucks Grows, and Garden Talk with Mr. Grow It. I have also read some amazing books written by Ed Rosenthal and Jorge Cervantes.


If you were to start growing cannabis from scratch again, which mistakes would you avoid or what would you have done differently?

If I were to start from scratch, I would spend more time learning how to create the perfect environment for growing cannabis for it to thrive in, outdoors and indoors. As for mistakes, I can’t say there have been any mistakes, only learning opportunities and lessons. I feel that if we just chalk it up to a mistake, we don’t learn from it and evolve our craft, skills or mindfulness. If you can learn a lesson from any of your “mistakes” and have it help you better yourself, was it truly a mistake?


What plants did you start growing after cannabis?

My next adventure after cannabis was creating two 4×12 raised vegetable garden beds. Since I was able to have a successful cannabis grow I wanted to try to have a small supply of fresh produce from my own garden. We are 3 years in and I am still getting veggies each harvest season.

You have a very nice garden now. What are you currently growing in it?

Currently, I have a few different gardens. There are three flower beds, two 4×12 raised vegetable garden beds, two cannabis gardens (one medical and one recreational), and since the Spring of 2022, five no-till rows down by our creek. The latter has been a very fun but anxiety-filled experiment. I also have over 100 houseplants indoors.
Our flower beds mostly consist of simple perennials; Hostas, Sedu’s, Lillies, Iris, and Peonies. As for veggies, this year we have red and yellow onion, two varieties of garlic, romaine lettuce, carrots, radish, beets, peas, corn, broccoli, three varieties of beans, two types of melon, a few varieties of pumpkin, Brussel sprouts and two types of potatoes. The houseplant collection is a combination of tropical and exotic plants. Way too many to list!


How did you discover MARPHYL and how did it help you in your plant journey?

I discovered MARPHYL through a personal growing mentor who helped me throughout my first ever grow. Ever since, MARPHYL has been a staple in my gardens and my lawn. When people ask me about MARPHYL, I simply say “It’s a plant crack. Your plants will thrive and be the happiest you’ve ever seen them using it.” I have used and continue to use it as lawn fertilizer, for my veggie beds, flower beds, house plants and my cannabis. And the results I have seen are incredible. I have used it on plants that had seemed to have stalled out in growth indoors and within a week or so there was a noticeable difference in vigour and they have thrived ever since.


Do you want you plants to thrive like Rob's?

Try our MARPHYL® Organic Soil Enhancer made of 100% wild phytoplankton

Plants rely on potassium to facilitate the circulation of nutrients and on nitrogen as the essential element in photosynthesis, while the roots need phosphorus to thrive. MARPHYL® Organic Soil Enhancer is high in potassium, nitrogen, and phosphorus, and also contains trace amounts of other nutrients, such as calcium and magnesium for optimum plant health and growth.

500 ml and 1L MARPHYL Soil Enhancer bottle

What are the benefits of gardening that you personally experience?

Gardening has truly changed my life. When I was struggling to find reasons to get out of bed, I would remind myself that there are plants that need to be watered and tended to. And maybe I could also use some water and tending to.
Being in the nature, slowing down and being mindful of the environment have allowed me to look from a different angle at my future and journey in ways I would never have imagined three years ago. I had heard one saying somewhere and it has stuck with me since; now I say it to people often – “I love plants. Plants, especially cannabis, made me realize that I too am just like a plant only with complex emotions.”

For more beautiful plants from Rob follow him at @doc.grows and you can get some merch with Rob’s photography at www.society6.com/docgrows

Stay tuned for more conversations with passionate creatives by following MARPHYL Marine Phytoplakton on Instagram and by subscribing to our Newsletter.

Do you have a question for Rob? Or maybe you want to suggest a person or a topic for our next blog post? Leave a comment below!

Arantza and Benjamin, founders of MARPHYL Marine Phytoplankton