The Cannabis Farmer’s Market With Healthy Habits

Sonshine Organics

Every Saturday, Sonshine Organics in Olympia, WA holds a medicinal cannabis farmer’s market. I dig this place. When you walk into the door you see a wall of fitness equipment behind the cannabis farmers who are there with various strains and medicines that they provide.

The vibe here is very different from other cannabis markets that I have been to. From the feeling of family, to the on-site chiropractor, and the free raw cannabis juice for market goers it becomes clear why the energy here is so uplifted. They are focused on health and bringing their own journey’s as patients to the community as a means to help themselves and others heal.

Within the market there is a medicating lounge and live music where patients can find the moral support to deal with their health conditions and heal together.

Beyond being a cannabis market they passionately recommend 7 doctors to everybody:  Sunshine, Air, Rest, Water, Exercise, Diet, and Cannabis. I love that.

Next weekend they are hosting Hempseed 2014. Hempseed is an annual alternative health and hemp education event that is open to the public and will include special performances by the very patients that Sonshine Organics serves, their cancer-surviving children.

Thank you, Sonshine Organics for being such powerful ambassadors for health, wellness, community, and cannabis.

 

Visiting Farmer Tom’s Organic Cannabis and Vegetable Farm

Farmer Toms's cannabis garden

For the past year, every time I have talked to Farmer Tom he has invited me down to visit his farm in Vancouver, Washington. This week I finally made the drive, and am I ever glad I did.

What used to be an old nursery in the country has become the spot that Farmer Tom and his wife call home. It is also the location that he grows food to feed multiple families and cannabis to afford the costs of operating such a farm.

When we got to his property, Farmer Tom took us on a walking tour of the cannabis and vegetable gardens and shared with us his methods for growing organically and sustainably. It was a delight to be able to see so many different varieties of cannabis and vegetables and experience what they look like as they grow.

I was impressed with the simplicity and calm of his operation. From just a few minutes of walking through the garden with Farmer Tom I was able to learn much from his decades of experience about how cannabis grows and a way of growing that I had never seen in person before.

I appreciate what Farmer Tom is doing with his farm. He is growing natural, organic medicine in the form of cannabis and vegetables and he is branding himself to swim in the world of marijuana business to save his farm from financial hardship so he will be able to continue feeding others and helping sick people.

Lately, he has also partnered with Kush Tours and opened up his farm to the public who can now come down to the farm and see it for themselves. The tour walks you through the whole farm and is about 90 minutes long.

Thank you Farmer Tom and your lovely wife for hospitably welcoming us, showing us what is possible with organic gardening, and sending us home with a cooler of delicious vegetables.

 

Inside A Cannabis Cloning Micro-Grow

Some of the mama marijuana plants at Permanent Farms Micro-Grow

Some of the mama marijuana plants at Permanent Farms Micro-Grow

This week my adventures took me to Permanent Farms in Puyallup, Washington. To be honest, I had no idea what I was walking into. I mean, I’ve been in a few cannabis gardens before, but this was different.

First of all, when I heard the word “Farms” in the title, I kind of pictured rolling hills with livestock and tractors. The address I was given, however, took me to a nice apartment complex. I walked up to the door, not knowing that I would be entering a cannabis spaceship on the other side.

The door opened and I was greeted with glowing lights, narrow walkways, shelves of little cannabis clones, and small rooms full of mama cannabis plants.  The very close quarters with everything in its exact place for maximum efficiency still managed to somehow have a very open and welcoming vibe.

What they do here is clone cannabis plants. From sixteen plants of various strains they are able to produce a couple thousand healthy, organic clones per month. They have a methodical system set up that allows for maximum productivity, it’s impressive.  From the micro-grow, clones then go to collectives and are available to patients in Washington.

The whole idea of growing my own plants as a patient has been a daunting, intimidating concept but after seeing such a simple and well thought out operation, the idea of growing my own garden one day seems much more attainable. I was able to envision how it would be more possible to have a fresh cannabis garden that keeps feeding me raw leaves even with limited space.

This week, in talking to other patients and growers about my experience, it was interesting how many people responded by telling me they were either growing some Permanent Farms plants or they were intending to. Their reputation for quality clones at competitive prices apparently precedes them.

Thank you, Permanent Farms, for letting us see inside your impressive operations!

 

 

The First Of Day Legal Retail Weed In Washington

I was there for the opening of the first retail marijuana store in Seattle on Tuesday. Cannabis City, a little store in SoDo that sits beside a Subway and is now a major focal point of the city since it is the only place one can legally buy cannabis in the city. I wanted to go there to experience what it might be like to be a recreational user. I was curious to see who would show up to such an event and if it would be the major lines and masses of people like they had in Colorado.

It was not like Colorado, apparently, because there were way less people, like hundreds, not thousands. The event, while exciting, felt well planned, safe, and pretty chill. The crowd was super mellow, no surprise there. When I got there I kind of just stood across the street for a few minutes to observe from afar before jumping into the scene. There was press everywhere and camera lovers from politicians to business promoters and activists who took advantage of the event for publicity.

I made a little video while there and circulated with the people that were in line. I was surprised how many people were from out of town and how many locals were casually showing up who never thought they would be able to get a decent spot without waiting all day.  While standing near the back alley a truck drove by and a guy leaned out the passenger side window offering a quarter ounce of marijuana for $60. Everybody in line ignored him and smiled at each other as they drove off.

While these people were standing in line for hours in the blazing noon sun to get a couple of grams of marijuana, I had consumed a solid dose of cannabis coconut oil on my breakfast. As I stood among these regular “recreational users” I remembered what it was like to walk into a medical marijuana dispensary and figure out what to order for the first time.  Very exciting and overwhelming. Their experience, however, was limited to a couple of grams of prepackaged dry flower and a four strains to pick from. Still, very exciting.

My experience in a medical cannabis collective is very different. There are multiple flower strains, CBD strains, concentrates, edibles, the variety almost feels endless when it comes to the choices I have as a patient in Washington right now. I am thankful for every single one of those choices as somebody who uses cannabis daily for pain management and neurological health. I am also thankful to live in a place where my ‘non-medical’ friends now have safe, legal access to cannabis too.

Hemp Fudgesicles

July is upon us. We have Canada Day, Independence Day, summer vacations, and sunshine. All of this calls for popsicles. I seem to be freezing all sorts of concoctions into treats these days, including hemp. Adding hemp to popsicles gives them a boost of protein and essential fatty acids to balance out the macronutritent profile for efficient metabolization. In other words, we are upgrading the average popsicle from being a shot of frozen sugar to a protein pack mini-meal your body can use for sustained energy.

Hemp Fudgesicles

1 avocado

1 banana

1/2 cup coconut  milk

1/3 cup raw hulled hemp seeds

3 tablespoons maple syrup

1/3 cup cacao powder

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup water, or more as needed

Optional: Add nuts, blueberries, cacao nibs, chia seeds, flax seeds, sliced fruit… get creative!

1) Whip all ingredients except water until mixture becomes like pudding in consistency. By the way, this makes a great pudding if you were to stop right here and just eat it out of the bowl. 

2) Add water to thin out the consistency until you can pour it out of the bowl and into popsicle molds.

3) Freeze.

It doesn’t get much simpler than that. The only hard part about this recipe is having to wait for them to freeze.

 

 

Cherry Cacao Hemp Muffins

IMG_1883

I channelled my Grandma this morning to make muffins. You see, my grandma can bust out a batch of pretty much anything without much time, no recipes, and without measuring anything. I am a lot like her in the kitchen. We even make the same kind of tornado mess that drives the neat people crazy.

Cherries are coming into season and I got my first taste of them yesterday. They inspired me to make muffins for breakfast today.

Cherry Cacao Hemp Muffins

2C nuts (cashews, pecans, etc)

1/2C hemp hearts

1/3C chia seeds soaked in 1C water

1/3C coconut oil

1C cacao powder

1/3C maple syrup (or sweetener of choice)

1t vanilla

1C cherries, pitted

1/4C walnuts, chopped

1) Combine nuts and hemp hearts in a food processor or blender to make a crumbly “flour.” Set aside.

2) Soak your chia seeds in water for about 10 minutes.

3) Combine all ingredients. Put into muffin tin and bake at 350F for 15-18 minutes.

4)Store in an airtight container in the fridge.

Cannabis Cacao Coconut Mint Bars

These mint bars taste delicious and came out just right, potency wise. However, at room temperature the bars get a little crumbly. Fortunately, I figured out a fix for this.

First, I have been storing them in the freezer. Right out of the freezer they are great. At room temperature I have been putting them on top of sliced fruit and letting the crumbly nature work in your favor as you eat it with a spoon.

Cannabis Cacao Coconut Mint Bars

Chocolate Layers:

1C walnuts

1C dates

1/3C hemp hearts

1/3C MMJ coconut oil, split into two portions and gently melted

1C cacao powder

1/4C cacao nibs

Mint Coconut Layer:

2C shredded coconut

1T maple syrup

coconut oil, the other half of the 1/3C mmj oil

5 drops of peppermint essential oil, to taste

1) Place all chocolate layer ingredients in a food processor and blend until fully mixed. Split into two parts.

2) Mix all coconut filling ingredients.

3) Press one half of the chocolate layer into the bottom of a 9×7 pan.

4) Press all of the coconut filling as the next layer and put in freezer until hard enough to add last layer.

5) Press the final chocolate layer on top and freeze.

 

photo 1-6

 

I post this recipe, in spite of it coming out crumbly because I hope this inspires the perfectionists to think of different ways to use the food you make that turns out looking less than perfect but is still a delight to the senses when you eat it.

-TwiceBaked

 

 

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