Can You Grow Weed in Ohio?

Within the state of Ohio, adult residents are now allowed to cultivate of up to 6 plants (12 plant max per household)
RXD Co Website Blog Post Poster 240322 Ohio
March 5, 2024 • 6 Min Read
By Alison Lucek
Understanding New 2023 Cannabis Legalization in the Buckeye State

Welcome Ohio! The good people in the state of “Three C’s”–Columbus, Cleveland, and Cincinnati— just added another “C” for cannabis! Known for its fertile soil, the Buckeye State has embraced a new kind of green, securing its place among the first half of the country to legalize recreational marijuana.

With the November 2023 Election Day passage of Issue 2, Ohio became the 24th state in the union to vote in favor of an initiative that legalizes and regulates the cultivation, sale, purchase, possession, use, and home growth of recreational marijuana.

The Basic Goods in the New 2023 Ohio Cannabis Legislation

On November 7, 2023, a 57% majority of Ohio voters approved the Issue 2 measure to legalize cannabis for adults.

As written, the new law went into effect on December 7, 2023 to permit adults 21 and over to legally purchase, possess, and consume cannabis without a medical card—up to 2.5 ounces of flower and up to 15 grams of marijuana concentrates.

The new initiative also governs home cultivation, allowing Ohio residents 21 and over to legally grow their own cannabis. As of the December 7, 2023 enactment of the law, the state now permits cultivation of up to 6 plants per adult resident, with a maximum of 12 plants per household.

The Deets on Ohio Cannabis Use & Possession in 2024

With the passage of November 2023’s ballot Issue 2, Ohioans can now possess up to 2.5 ounces of cannabis and up to 15 grams of extracts legally without a state-licensed medical marijuana card.

Legislation emphasizes responsible use, discouraging consumption in public spaces and forbidding operation of a vehicle, bike, boat, or aircraft while under the influence. Consuming cannabis in public or as a vehicular passenger is a punishable minor misdemeanor with a fine of up to $150.

The state of Ohio “decriminalization” laws date back to 1975 making it one of the oldest in the books. While adult cannabis use is now legal, for those under 21, the “decrim” penalties continue to apply. Minor possession of under 100 grams (about 3.5 ounces), gifting 20 grams or under, or a grow of under 100 grams (about 3.53 oz) of marijuana are each punishable “minor misdemeanors” with fines of up to $150 and the possibility of a driver’s license suspension for a period of six months to five years.

The Deets on Growing Marijuana in Ohio

As of the November 2023 vote, Ohio joined the list of states permitting home-grown cannabis for both medicinal and recreational purposes with a clear and responsible framework for legal home cultivation.

Within the state of Ohio, adult residents are now allowed to cultivate of up to 6 plants (12 plant max per household) with the stipulation that home cultivation must occur within a secure, enclosed area on the grounds of one’s primary residence that is both inaccessible to those under 21 and not visible from public spaces.

On leased property, landlords still retain the right to forbid cannabis cultivation if specified in the lease. It is advisable that tenants speak directly to their landlords if terms are not clarified in their current lease and can avoid any potential disputes by opting for a discreet grow box or small indoor grow tent.

The Deets on Ohio Cannabis Purchase in 2024

While it is now legal to possess, grow and use recreational marijuana in Ohio, the good people of Ohio are not yet able to buy cannabis from stores. In fact, recreational marijuana sales in dispensaries are not even expected to begin in Ohio during the 2024 calendar year. Though the details differ by location, in the days and months following the adoption of Issue 2 in the state, local governments have been quick to ban recreational marijuana sales. Across Ohio in suburban and rural communities alike, recreational sales prohibitions are in effect, some for the next several months, others with no prescribed end date.

Issue 2 calls for marijuana product THC level testing and requires product information on packaging to be clearly marked. In addition to state and local sales taxes, cannabis purchases are subject to a 10 percent excise tax but as outlined in the ballot text, a portion of that tax revenue is intended to bolster social equity and employment programs in the state.

Ohio Medical Marijuana Maintains

The Buckeye state’s medical marijuana program remains unaffected by the new law at this time, though it will change to allow existing dispensaries to obtain “dual use” licenses to sell recreational marijuana in addition to the sale of medicinal cannabis. Medical marijuana continues to be recognized in Ohio as an effective, low-risk treatment option for symptoms related to 25 conditions. The therapeutic benefits of cannabis remain available to Ohio Marijuana Cardholders with access to cannabis dispensaries throughout the state with allowances for purchasing in other states with reciprocity.

As of its June 8, 2016 medical marijuana legalization, Ohio residents 18+ can apply for medical licenses and those under 18 can apply via a 21+ caregiver. The Ohio Board of Pharmacy oversees the regulation of all legal forms of medical marijuana including edibles, oils, tinctures, plant material for vaping, and patches. As a friendly reminder, transporting marijuana products across federal lines is illegal.

The Future of Ohio Cannabis Legalization & What You Can Do

Currently, the new 2023 law decriminalizes possession and allows for home-growing. Eventually, recreational dispensaries will open in Ohio but because Issue 2 was a citizen initiative, Ohio lawmakers can propose and pass modifications to the new law following the election. Given the nascent stage of recreational marijuana legalization in Ohio and the potential regulatory uncertainties, it is important to stay updated on changing laws and regulations and critical to let your voice be heard!

Jim Canepa, Ohio’s new Superintendent of the Division of Cannabis Control, has stated that he will be considering three guiding principles for the state’s new recreational marijuana program: access, black market effects, and ensuring there is not an overconcentration of dispensaries in the same area. He has noted that the statute lays out program timelines that he will uphold: permit applications should be available for existing medical marijuana dispensaries on June 7 and the state will begin issuing those permits on September 7, 2024. If lawmakers are going to assert rules governing the Ohio recreational marijuana program, the time is now to communicate your preferences! Let Mr. Canepa and your elected representatives know what you think. Speak up to let legislators know that any changes to the people’s initiative should be expanded, for liberty and justice, not restricted.

Need It All?

Our friends at the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), the number one organization in the U.S. dedicated to legalizing cannabis, have composed a great resource detailing all aspects of the new 2023 Ohio Cannabis Legislation Law Summary and even created a concise PDF for download.

Need a Quickie?
What You Must Know About Weed in Ohio

How much recreational cannabis can I possess in Ohio?

As written, the law allows anyone over 21 to have 2.5 ounces of cannabis flower and 15 grams of extract.

Where can I buy recreational cannabis in Ohio?

Right now, there are no authorized sellers. The Division of Cannabis Control won’t begin processing retailer applications until June, which means legally buying recreational marijuana won’t happen until late summer or early fall at the absolute earliest!

Can I order recreational marijuana in Ohio?

Federal law prohibits ordering weed or weed products through the mail.

Can I buy it recreationally in another state and then return to Ohio?

It’s against federal law to transport marijuana across state lines.

Can employers still test employees for marijuana in Ohio?


Can I grow recreational marijuana in Ohio?

As of now, Ohioan adults 21+ can grow up to six plants as an individual and up to a dozen plants in households with more than one adult. The Senate is attempting to change that to six plants for one household so use caution and pay attention.

Where can I smoke marijuana in Ohio?

Though more is still to be determined, it is advisable not to consume in public places. Smoking weed follows similar rules to smoking cigarettes and is forbidden in indoor public places.

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