Browsing: Growing

04202018_bruce_polis_420_0019 (1)Kenzie Bruce

Colorado’s cannabis history stretches much further back than November 2012, when voters approved legalizing recreational marijuana. The state’s skunky roots were planted decades earlier, when home growers and college students began creating a real Rocky Mountain High. Now, some of their sons and daughters are helping to shape the current commercial market.

Lama Brand Cannabis owner Tony Karas grew up in Evergreen, and, after graduating from Colorado State University nearly twenty years ago, slowly waded into the pot industry with his friends. Today, the avid fisherman and father runs his own cannabis supply company, Lama Brand, growing award-winning strains while still sharing laughs with the people he grew up with.

pot_zero_grow-buds-marijuana-holschuc-2018Jake Holschuh

In a random assessment conducted by the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment in September, Denver dispensaries failed health inspections for mold and yeast. Westword studied reports for tests conducted at 25 dispensaries over a two-day period, and at twenty of them, some form of cannabis tested over the state’s limit for total mold and yeast. That’s an 80 percent failure rate. Many of the failing products came from outside growers whose marijuana had already passed state tests.

The results of the assessment and what they might mean for city and state pot programs are still under review by the DDPHE, which won’t publish its report on the study for some time. But the department acknowledges that concerns over contaminated cannabis inspired the test. In 2019 alone, Colorado has seen a handful of commercial pot recalls over mold concerns. Rumors of shady practices to pass mold testing abound, and industry insiders also gripe about the state’s testing process for mold, as well as the lack of context that most testing labs provide for mold and yeast specificity.

papaya cakeHerbert Fuego

No disrespect to strains from previous decades, but there’s no comparison between the potency of early chronic and today’s sugar-dipped space nuggets. I’m not saying that’s always a good thing — nowadays strains can be too strong for a simple afternoon toke — but we’d be fools not to recognize the evolution of cannabis. That’s like saying LeBron James wouldn’t dominate the NBA in the ’90s. Save those stale takes for the Moose Lodge.

During our recent conversation with hash-maker extraordinaire Kennn Wall, he talked about the need for stronger, sturdier strains for worthwhile cannabis extraction. According to Wall, only 5 to 10 percent of strains on the market today have the quality and quantity of trichomes to make those stiff, terpy rosins and live concentrates that connoisseurs love. Some of his favorite strains that do? Papaya cuts, specifically from Oni Seed Co. So what did I buy during my next trip to the dispensary? Papaya Cake, a mix of Papaya and Wedding Cake, bred from Oni Seeds.

reconHerbert Fuego

Growing up in the rural desert gave me lots of opportunities to shoot things. Nothing living, of course, other than my friends. Before discovering fireworks, we lit each other up with paintballs and air-soft BBs without mercy. The welts and burns were temporary, but the memories should last a lifetime.

The baddest mother bleeper in the paintball squad was always the one who scouted the enemy’s defense — or did recon, as a bunch of tweens playing war liked to call it. That job usually involved getting pelted by the other team, and groin shots were always on the table. As a tall kid with a long groin, I thought the concept of recon could fuck right off. Now, as a pothead with road rage and little tolerance for dumb questions, I don’t think Recon’s so bad.

the_green_solution_collins20171215_008 (1)Jacqueline Collins

College students looking for courses next semester may have a new option, as Denver-based Cannabis Training University’s curriculum on the burgeoning pot industry is now offered in two and four-year institutions in the United States, with plans to expand into Canada.

Online Cannabis Education, CTU’s online set of courses for cannabis entrepreneurs, growers, chefs and more is already offered at Mount Wachusett Community College and Worcester State University in Massachusetts, where recreational cannabis was legalized in 2016. But CTU CEO Jeff Zorn says he plans to expand the course to more colleges in other states.

resized_20191011_110007_7477_1_Courtesy of the Chronic Method

Growing cannabis at home is legal in Colorado, but some of the weed we’ve seen harvested from basements should be outlawed. Seeds, pests, mold and larf are all common challenges faced by inexperienced cultivators, and can result in poor smell and taste, as well as waste a lot of time and money most of us don’t have.

Tyler Morley and Jeremy Deale, two commercial cannabis cultivators in Colorado, believe they’ve created an online cannabis curriculum, the Chronic Method, that will help home growers avoid those costly, buzz-killing issues. Similar to the Three a Light method, the course gives growers step-by-step instructions from seed to harvest, and the duo makes pretty bold claims on the strategy’s success rate.

We recently sat down with Morley and Deale to learn more about the Chronic Method, and how growers can maximize their yields.

cheesyHerbert Fuego

I once received an email from a woman who claimed to have worked at a cheese shop across from Cheesman Park in the ’70s where employees allegedly sold weed under the counter. I couldn’t find much to confirm that story, though I did find that a place called The Big Cheese won a Best of Denver award for Best Cheese Shop in 1984, the first year Westword produced that edition — and maybe that bonus helped sway the judges.

Sad to say, the Big Cheese isn’t around anymore, but when I came across a strain by the name of Cheesy Rider at a dispensary in Cap Hill, it seemed like a fitting time to honor a cool place that might or might not have existed. An old head in the bud room told me that Cheesy Rider was actually a motorcycle-riding rodent mascot for Cheetos before Chester Cheetah took over, so the toking connection was too strong to pass up.

strain_10-17Herbert Fuego

If there’s anything I miss about school, it’s bartering at the lunch table. Nothing was more satisfying than trading a limp PB&J and apple slices for a Lunchable and Hot Cheetos. (I hear prison offers a similar rush, but I don’t miss haggling that bad.) Rich, spoiled kids flaunting their junk food were always an easy target, as their friends selling Herbalife products have subsequently found out.

Although candy was still a rarity at school even for the rich and spoiled, other sweets weren’t. Twinkies, Fruit by the Foot and Squeezits were all hot commodities, but one dyed, sugary treat outranked them all: Gushers. The immense amount of corn syrup and colored goop was an instant draw for kids. So naturally, some of those same qualities are an instant draw for stoners.

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