Welcome to my favorite issue of the year —our annual “Tips Issue”—which will hopefully be one of your favorites as well. This month, we go full bore and provide more than 160 tips aimed at helping you with all facets of your grow.

I am confident that from this issue you will learn at least a few, if not many things that will impact your cultivation operation. I learned from it as well. This issue made it even clearer to me that just like editors—few cultivators are alike.

For example, editors have different preferences on content direction, writing style, word usage, punctuation (don’t ever get a group of editors started on the Oxford comma), the separation of advertising and editorial, and much more.

Likewise, growers have many different methods for cultivating their crops based on their growing environment—from climate control and pest management strategies to nutrient and pH levels to lighting choices and business management practices.

I also learned that, like editorial, cultivation relies heavily on feedback. “Your ladies will tell you what they need,” commented one cultivator (yes, about his plants) who participated in our research for this issue’s “Smart Nutrients Special Report."

Readers also express their needs to editors, and we adapt our work to accommodate.

Because if you aren’t listening to your readers, or your plants, you’ll lose them.

To listen to you, our reader, our editorial team talks with growers, visits facilities and conducts reader research to discover what we can provide to help your business and your crops achieve their maximum potential.

Cultivators and editors also share an interest in testing. As editors, we introduce new columns and topics, then track how they’re received by readers. We monitor web traffic to see which articles are most read and shared. Throughout this issue, testing in cultivation has also been a common theme: Start here, then incrementally add x, y and z inputs, and track and measure your results. Data, data, data—the growers’ and editors’ path to success.

The importance of research and testing also means that no matter how much we think we know, we always can learn more—even if you have 20-plus years of experience, as I do. I learn from other editors, art directors, our publisher, our readers and more. You might learn from a remote cultivator in Alaska who is experimenting with innovative nutrient or lighting tests, a Ph.D. in plant science, or a business advisor or regulatory professional. Knowledge knows no boundaries.

This is the idea behind the tips issue: Provide as much information as possible from as many types of people as possible, so that you are sure to learn something.

So here’s to us: our confidence in what we know, and our desire to keep learning.