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Marijuana Terpenes

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My mom used to throw uppity wine parties when I was a child. She’d sit around with her friends and they’d spend more time sniffing their wine than drinking it, swirling it around in their oversized tasting glasses while they wore on their faces the serious expression of a wannabe connoisseur. They’d stick out their pinky fingers and raise their glasses, and then spout all sorts of pompous nonsense like “oh my, this one has a delightful tobacco finish,” or, “the nose on this one is reminiscent of figs on a warm summer’s day.” I’d stand against the wall shaking my head, doing everything I could to stop myself from shouting “it’s just alcoholic grape juice, you idiots!”

But then I got older and realized that there really is a marked difference between the white zinfandel sold in gas station coolers and the stuff sold in boutiques with labels inked entirely in French. Now I can appreciate the tannins and sulfites, or the lack thereof, and I don’t mind paying extra for the good stuff because that’s what life is about. And there’re plenty of parallels to be drawn between wine tasting and pot smoking because the taste matters—as it turns out, if you pay attention to the smell and flavor of your favorite flower, you can figure out exactly which type of high you can expect.

Distilled down to its essence, marijuana is a substance that we smoke to feel good and it’s possible to be too supercilious, saying all sorts of weird words like decarboxylation or cannabinoids just to sound smart, and I promise I won’t do that right now; the information I’m about to share with you is real, and we’re just now starting to understand it. Eventually, marijuana will be marketed by the specific effects each strain provides after the scientists figure it out definitively, but for now, a good deal of this is iffy around the edges. So, it goes without saying that the effects and smells listed below are subjective. Here we go…

“Terpenes” are hydrocarbons. They’re found in almost all green, leafy plants, and they serve as natural protection against mold and bugs and whatever else plants are afraid of. They’re the fancy little chemicals that make pot smell and taste the way it does, and they work in concert with other cannabinoids like THC and CBD to make you feel good when you smoke marijuana—the THC gets you high, but the terpenes effect how that high feels. Know what I mean? If THC is He-Man, a muscle-bound do-gooder who always saves the day, then the terpenes are Battle Cat, an unsung hero who helps the hero do what he needs to do. And each terpene does something different, something you can intentionally look for in your pot by taste and smell. Again, what follows is subjective, so you’ll need to fiddle around with this a little on your own to get the most out of this:

  1. Pinene. This one is easy to remember because it smells like a pine tree, just like the name suggests. It might help with asthma relief or memory problems or inflammation.
  2. B-Caryophyllene. This is a hard one to pronounce (and my spell-check hates it), but it smells like cloves or pepper, and it might help with digestive problems like ulcers or an upset stomach.
  3. d-Limonene. This is another easy one because it smells like lemons, and it might help with immune system problems.
  4. Terpinolene. This one will smell like flowers, and it’s an antioxidant with antibacterial effects and mood enhancement possibilities.
  5. Linalool. This one will smell sweet and fruity, and it might help you with pain or anxiety of depression.
  6. B-Ocimene. This one will smell like a woody orchard (I promise that’s as poetic as I’ll get) and research suggests it might be antifungal/antiviral.
  7. B-Myrcene. This is the dank stuff, the musky perfection that permeates my favorite Indica strains, and it might bring with it relaxation and pain relief and respite from insomnia.

And there you have it; I’m sure you’ve already figured out how this list might help you: if you’re having stomach problems that you’d like to try to treat with marijuana, come into our store and walk up to the counter. Grab one of our sample jars and unscrew the lid, and smell one of our strains—look for something that smells like cloves or pepper and see if the B-Caryophyllene terpene does something for your belly. Or, if you’re in a bad mood, sniff around our samples looking for something that smells like flowers to cheer you up, buttercup. And so on and so forth. Let you nose be your guide, just like Toucan Sam used to tell us in his Fruit Loop commercials, and see where it leads you—it might bring you the relief you’ve been looking for. At the end of the day, that’s what matters, and that’s why we’ve decided to put this out there for you, because we’re your Best Buds.

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THC Percentage

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Some days, life’s stressors need a little numbing, and something strong is called for, like a kickass Sativa that’ll fill your lungs and banish the bullshit. And for occasions like that, The Greenery sells Chemmy Jones. This stuff is ridiculous. We don’t always have it on our shelves because the demand is so high, but the THC level comes in at a world-record forty-percent, the flower smells like a science experiment, and the high hits you like a back-handed pimp slap. It isn’t a complex high, but it’s energetic and strong and perfect for the days when the tedium doesn’t seem to stop. But what about the other days? What about the days when you’re just looking to relax a little bit, and what about the days when you’d like to be high and functional at the same time?

Every marijuana writer in the history of marijuana writers has made a comparison between pot and alcohol because it’s such an easy analogy, and I’m about to do the same thing even though it borders on a cliché, so bear with me… Chemmy Jones is like 151 Rum—a spirit so strong it requires a metal flame suppressor on every bottle so they don’t explode spontaneously around candles. And sometimes, 151 is exactly what you need (especially if you’re in the mood to light your face on fire and become a YouTube sensation). But 151 won’t always work because your friends will start to worry if they catch you drinking it on a Tuesday. So, especially for week-days when others are watching, most people prefer beer or wine; beverages that’re enjoyable thanks to their lower alcohol content and flavor profiles. Likewise, there’s a pot for that: Flo.

Flo, Recreational Marijuana, High THC,
Flo is a strain that’s usually on our menu because we grow it (if you come into our shop and look to your right, you’ll see a large-screen TV showing a live-feed of our grow if you don’t believe me). And our guys know what they’re doing: Flo is flavorful and understated with a comfortable, happy high that’s perfect for summer days. If Chemmy Jones is 151 on a blurry Saturday night, then Flo is a cold Mexican Logger after work. For the record, Flo still packs a punch and it’ll get the job done after an especially trying Monday, but with a THC percentage hovering between eighteen and twenty-four percent, you’ll still be able to form coherent sentences after smoking it. Doesn’t that sound nice? Flo usually sells out quickly as well, but if you call or come in, one of our friendly budtenders can point you towards something comparable.

At The Greenery, we have a wide variety of strains that offer an equally wide variety of effects. We have deep Indica strains that’ll put you in the couch, we have strong Sativa strains that’ll leave your brain buzzing, and we have everything in-between. But I want you to know that if you always shop for a high THC percentage, you might be missing out on a few truly spectacular strains like Flo. Yes, I know the choices can seem overwhelming, and sometimes, it’s easiest just to buy the pot with the most THC, but I’d invite you to check out our menu before deciding. Each strain will have a little “+” symbol next to the name, and if you click on it, it’ll give you a complete description of the strain and of the high you can expect from smoking it, and it’ll display the associated THC percentage. But please, if you’d rather talk to a human, we’re always here. Just shoot us a comment via our “contact us” page, call us at (970) 403-3710, or visit us at 208 Parker Ave. We’ll do our best to answer any strain-specific questions you might have, and we’ll get you what you need, be it something over the top that’ll erase a bad day, or something mild that’s easy to enjoy with your Best Buds.

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Legal Marijuana, and Homelessness

Greenery Grown hand-crafted cannabis

I’ve never met Joseph Kolb, or anybody else from Fox News for that matter, but I’d like to. I’m pretty good at explaining things to people, especially matters of simple logic, and Mr. Kolb needs a lesson of sorts. Recently, he wrote an article for Fox News titled “Legalized marijuana turns Colorado resort town into homeless magnet,” and once I realized I was reading a nationally syndicated column as opposed to a tabloid, my smile turned upside-down. You can read it here, if you’re interested, but I’ll sum it up for you: Kolb was talking about our town, Durango, Colorado, and for twenty-two paragraphs, he wrote nonsense ad nauseam. This myopic man seriously thinks that legalized marijuana is ruining our town by luring in the homeless, even though from an objective point of view, things look a little differently. Let me explain.

It’s a logical fallacy of the worst order to tie two things together without researching the connection. As an example, I stubbed my toe when I got out of bed this morning, and at the same time, the sun was popping up above the horizon. But when I told my wife about it, I didn’t say “honey, I stubbed my toe when the sun came up today, ergo, solar radiation is making me clumsy,” because such an assertion would be asinine gibberish.

Basically, Kolb took two unrelated facts and tied them together with no regard for journalistic integrity whatsoever. True, the legalization of recreational marijuana came to our town in 2014, and our homeless population started booming around the same time, but the two occurrences are unrelated. In 2014, the ACLU sent a letter to Durango’s city council wherein they threatened to sue if our local police kept enforcing our “anti-loitering” ordinance. According to the ACLU, it’s an infringement of free speech to stop homeless people from panhandling, because when they write “anything helps” on a piece of cardboard, they’re exercising a constitutional right… seems legit. Anyway, the cops stopped herding the homeless away from Main Avenue because the ACLU isn’t an organization to take lightly. The homeless people in this town took note, they told their friends, and the rest is self-explanatory.

Our town is beautiful. We have a narrow-gauge railroad straight out of antiquity; we have world-class skiing in the winter; we have an ever-adapting whitewater course on the Animas River that runs through this town like an artery. We have abundant camping spaces and temperate weather and affluent locals. We have bars and comfortable park benches and a generous homeless shelter. And most importantly, we have cops who won’t bother you if you want to dress in a sleeping bag and stand on Main Street with your hand out.

That’s why our homeless population is booming—it has nothing to do with legal pot, and people who think otherwise are subscribing to old-think. These are the same fools who watched “Reefer Madness” and took it as gospel—these are the same people who rallied against legalized marijuana, and now that they’ve lost, they’re grasping for straws and doing their damnedest to find an “I told you so” buried somewhere amongst all the positive results stemming from decriminalization. And as a professional in the marijuana industry, my frustration is palpable.

I sell pot for a living, and I can tell you from personal experience that our clients come from all walks of life. I’ve served giddy college seniors, bubbling about the fact that they just turned twenty-one. I’ve served sweet old ladies, smiling like my grandmother, who’re happy to get carded because octogenarians have forgotten what it feels like. I’ve served people who’re just as broke as I am, and I once served a man wearing a watch worth more than my education. These people hold down jobs and pay taxes and care for their families just like Americans are supposed to. And unfortunately, people like Kolb can’t see these things because they write about our town from far away, looking at us through a tinted telescope of assumption. They tie to legalized marijuana unfair and negative “facts” because people like Kolb harbor a personal prejudice against legal pot, and at times, it seems as if no amount of factual evidence can dilute their bias. It’s unfortunate, but I guess it’s just part of the game.

All I can do is tell you this: here at The Greenery, we know that legal marijuana is a good thing, and we take our jobs seriously. We have to—we’re stewards of an industry facing a good deal of ignorant skepticism. We run a clean and legal operation, and our attention to regulation compliance borders on the obsessive. And for as long as we’re around, we’ll do our best to educate our customers and our community vis-à-vis the truth about legal marijuana, so please, keep checking in, and as always, if you have any questions, call your Best Buds at (970) 403-3710. Thank you.


The Greenery checks age requirements in Colorado

Marijuana is perfectly legal for recreational use in Colorado, and frankly, it should be. Pot is a plant that grows out of the ground, and if you light it on fire and breathe in the smoke, it makes you feel good. For many, it’s a medicine—one that doesn’t bring with it the crippling side effects commonly associated with traditional pharmaceuticals—and medicine should be legal. It’s a simple truth, one that’s axiomatic to those of us who know the difference between right and wrong, and that’s why I support legalized marijuana; that’s why I’ve chosen to work in this industry.

However, I also understand that not everybody feels this way. Plenty of people still think that pot is a problem. They look at that plant and see a vice that needs to be eradicated, and they subscribe to the antiquated paradigm that kept marijuana illegal for decades. Some people fear change; that’s just the way it is. So, occasionally, discretion is necessary.

I’m one of the fortunate few who can be who I am both at work and in my personal life because my coworkers, friends, and family all have modern views regarding marijuana. In short, I don’t have to hide the fact that I smoke pot—hell, I’m pretty loud about it sometimes. But you might not have that luxury, and here at The Greenery, we understand, and we offer a level of discretion you won’t find at other dispensaries.

For one, we have a discreet location. We’re nestled in at 208 Parker Avenue, right behind Morehart Murphy. We’re close enough to be convenient, but far enough away to keep things comfortable. When you leave our shop, you won’t have to run that downtown gamut where it seems like you recognize everyone around you on the street. You won’t have to walk down a long alley carrying a bag full of marijuana back to your car parked on Main; you won’t have to feed a meter. We’re open early and we close late, and you can come and go with a level of privacy not offered elsewhere. But that’s not the most important part: here at The Greenery, we don’t track your purchases.

I’ll admit that I shopped around at other dispensaries before I worked at The Greenery. I was a creature of habit, and I didn’t stray far from my home when I went shopping, be it for groceries or marijuana; I usually stayed on the north-side of town for convenience. And it didn’t really bother me that the other dispensaries tracked my purchases (you know, because I’m “loud about it”), but in retrospect, the practice is a little sketchy.

I’m sure you’ve noticed it. Most dispensaries will swipe your ID when you walk in to make sure you’re twenty-one. One place even has a metal turnstile that opens only after you’ve swiped your card, in case you’ve ever wondered what it’d be like to get carded by a robot. But guess what: every time your ID is swiped, the machine keeps a record of your visit. So here at the Greenery, we take the time to read your ID by hand. Granted, it might take us a little longer because we have to check diligently your picture and your birthdate and your card’s expiration date, but that’s something we do for you because it’s your business if you buy marijuana, and nobody else’s.

Secondly, we don’t track your purchases at the register. True, we have a loyalty program—an awesome one that I’ll tell you about in a different post—but we use punch cards instead of an electronic system. There’re other dispensaries here in Durango that keep track of every single purchase you make, and they do so via a computer database that’s just as vulnerable to hacking as all the other systems in this inescapable digital age. With the click of a mouse, anyone who cares to look can find a record of all the marijuana you’ve purchased, and considering the fact that federal laws haven’t yet caught up to our local ones, some people prefer the discretion offered here at The Durango Greenery.

So, come see us, your best buds. Come find a place in our parking lot and walk through our front door. Someone will check your ID with a smile and then give it back without recording your visit. We’ll sell so you some ridiculously good pot, and then you can go on your way, legally, rightfully, and discreetly. Cheers.

We’re Your Best Buds!

Marijuana Vape Pens

Open Vape Marijuana, The Greenery, Durango

I’m old, or at least it feels that way when I walk into a marijuana dispensary. When I was a kid, pot was a plant you lit on fire, and that’s about it. We’d hear stories about exotic sounding hash or kief, but we could never get our hands on it, and “pot brownies” were a rare luxury. But now, I’m a budtender at The Greenery here in Durango, and things have changed dramatically.

It seems as if there’s no limit to the variety of ways one can consume marijuana—we sell every imaginable sort of edible, from caramel-coated lollypop to THC infused root beer, and we have on our shelves a veritable panoply of concentrates ranging from simple hash to carbon-dioxide-extracted live resin. And as a newcomer entering into this industry with not much more than the memories I brought from my misspent youth, it was all a little overwhelming the first time I stepped behind the counter; I can’t imagine what it might feel like to a first-time customer.

However, The Greenery is different from the other local dispensaries for one simple reason: our knowledgeable, friendly staff. As a new employee, I’ve been testing the depths of their collective knowledge with my incessant questions, and on a daily basis, our budtenders have been thoroughly impressive. These young men and women have been able to answer all my questions in a way that doesn’t leave me guessing, and I’ve seen them extend the same professional courtesy to every new customer who walks through our door. But just in case you haven’t yet visited our dispensary, I’d like to share one of my favorite new discoveries with you: the O.pen disposable vape pen.

As I alluded to earlier, until recently, I’ve only smoked flower or enjoyed the occasional edible; I’ve never ventured into the world of concentrates because I was a little ignorant. So, for my first experiment, I asked Clay (one of The Greenery’s friendly budtenders) about the easiest way a newbie such as myself could try hash oil. In case you’re just as ignorant as I was, “hash oil” is a concentrate made by extracting with carbon dioxide all the wonderful cannabinoids that live in marijuana plant matter (hash oil is most commonly enjoyed through a vaporizer similar to an e-cigarette).

Clay told me all of this and I’m sure my eyes glazed over a bit because he slowed down and started showing me all the options, the simplest of which was the O.pen disposable vape pen I mentioned earlier. Basically, the disposable vape pens we sell at The Greenery come preloaded with one-hundred milligrams of hash oil. Each one is about the size of a cigarette, and all you do is take the vape pen out of its child-resistant packaging and take a puff. It’s that simple. Each eight-second puff contains about two milligrams of THC, and each disposable pen contains roughly fifty puffs worth of concentrate; once it’s empty, you simply throw away the vape pen and move on with life. These pens are discrete and convenient and affordable; we sell three varieties (indica, sativa, and hybrid) for $25 each before tax.

Frankly, after I bought and tried my first vape pen, I felt like a fool for waiting so long. These things really are as convenient and discrete as they’re advertised to be, and the effect was perfect. My wife said the vapor smelled nothing like marijuana, but the high was one of the cleanest and quickest I’ve ever experienced. The only drawback I noticed was the fact that if I turned the pen upside-down, some of the oil leaked out of the mouthpiece, but Clay warned me about the possibility and I left The Greenery fully educated vis-à-vis the new product I was about to try. It was a perfect experience, one that was both easy and comfortable, and I’d recommend it to anyone interested in branching out.

And that’s all I have for this post. Please, if you’re like me—a creature of habit who’s stuck to the same way of smoking for years—come down to The Greenery, even if it’s just to ask questions. We’d love to show you all the new things that’re coming on the market monthly, because we’re your best buds.

Marijuana & Pesticides in Colorado

Marijuana Plants - Durango CO

Marijuana & Pesticides in Colorado

Many of you have probably read about the rise in pesticide recalls in Colorado’s retail marijuana & marijuana products. This may have you wondering: is Colorado’s marijuana safe?
This is the first in a series in which we explore pesticides in the Colorado marijuana industry. The aim of this post is to provide you with some insight into what requirements are placed on marijuana dispensaries and cannabis cultivation businesses when it comes to pesticide application. The second post in the series will explore how the pesticide requirements have affected Colorado dispensaries.
On November 12, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper issued Executive Order D 2015-015, sometimes referred to as the “Zero Tolerance” executive order.  This executive order directed Colorado state agencies to address threats to public safety posed by marijuana contaminated by pesticides.
The executive order calls out a few important points:
• The Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) regulates pesticides in the United States;
• Given that marijuana is a schedule I narcotic under the Controlled Substances Act, the EPA has neither:
(a) assessed the potential hazards associated with the use of pesticides on marijuana; or
(b) authorized application of particular pesticides to marijuana
Colorado also regulates pesticide applications through the Colorado Pesticide Applicator’s Act (“PAA”). PAA prohibits use of pesticides inconsistent with the EPA’s labels and directions.

Therein lies the predicament:  Colorado’s PAA relied on directive from the EPA, but the EPA had not provided guidance on pesticide application for marijuana because it is still an illegal drug at the federal level.

As a result of the executive order, and in an effort to develop a list of pesticides that would be permitted for use on marijuana, the CDA consulted with the EPA. Specifically, as stated above the PAA and the  Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) require that all pesticides be applied in strict accordance with the label directions for the particular product. The heart of the issue is that pesticide labels identify the type of “crop” for which the the pesticide is permitted to be used.  At this time, there are no pesticides listing “cannabis” as a crop on the label.
Thus, the CDA created a list of pesticides that are permitted to be used on marijuana. That list is regularly updated and can be found on the CDA’s website. In testing marijuana, should the CDA find any trace of a pesticide that is not on the approved list, the marijuana will be placed on hold, likely resulting in a recall.
In the next post in this series, we will explore how these strict pesticide application rules have affected marijuana dispensaries across the state of Colorado.