Gorge Greenery's Recycling Program

How amazing is it that we can simply walk into a dispensary and purchase any marijuana products we desire?! While we love this modern shopping experience, convenience comes at a steep environmental cost. An unfortunate side effect of the legal cannabis industry is the waste it creates. By law, each item must leave the dispensary in clean, child-resistant packaging. This means that there has been a significant increase in the amount of plastic filling our landfills. While much of this plastic packaging is technically recyclable in most areas, consumers often neglect to put it in the recycling bin or it is even sorted out during the single stream recycling process. In Hood River, plastics that can be recycled are especially limited. 

Gorge Greenery is committed to promoting sustainability and reducing the waste created by our beloved products. Therefore, we started a new program encouraging responsible recycling! Customers now have the opportunity to return their plastic packaging containers to Gorge Greenery in exchange for filling up a GG punch card for sweet discounts ($5 off any purchase and 20% off non-cannabis items). We will accept plastic joint tubes, edible containers, and other plastic items in addition to our glass jars and cloth exit bags. The returned plastic containers can be from any dispensary, not just Gorge Greenery. We have partnered with a reputable local Columbia River Gorge recycling company to make sure this marijuana packaging does not end up in a landfill. 

Thanks for doing your part to keep the cannabis industry green!


Cannabis in Hood River: Our Top 3 Outdoor Spots to Enjoy Marijuana

On a beautiful summer day there’s nothing better than smoking cannabis under the beaming sun. Here’s our top three picks for locals’ favorite outdoor toking spots in Hood River.

Our first choice is a convenient local gem, treasured by Hood River residents. Enjoy a relaxing hike on the pipeline walkway along the rushing Hood River, just minutes from downtown. To access the trail, take highway 35 south for 0.2 miles. Look for a turnoff to the right that leads downhill. Once parked, there is an unmarked but obvious trail to follow west.  Explore along the scenic Hood River on the unique walkway set atop an inoperative pipeline. Look out for ladders leading down to the beaches to discreetly enjoy your cannabis while basking in the sun. If it’s the height of summer and the berries are ripened, pick a few for a light snack to enjoy with your marijuana. You can walk to the end of the pipeline walkway to savor your organic weed with a spectacular view of the Hood River. 

Our second choice offers a view of the Columbia River while relaxing on a soft, sandy beach. On windy days the east end of the sandbars provides entertainment by windsurfers, kiteboarders, and sailboats zipping across the river. To access the Hood River Marina Sandbar, take exit 64 from I-84 and turn left onto East Port Marina Drive. Simply follow signs directing you to the Marina Beach and walk out to the end end of the Sandbar for some privacy. 

Another fantastic location in Hood River to enjoy your recreational marijuana is the Hook at sunset. We recommend visiting on days when the wind is gentle, because it will be less congested with water sport enthusiasts, plus it will be easier to light your joint. Relax on a rock or log on the water’s edge and take in the scenery provided by the picturesque Columbia River Gorge. To access the Hood River Hook, take exit 63 and head west towards the waterfront park, turning left on Portway Avenue. Keep following this road until it ends.  

Enjoy your summer!


[Oregon State law does not permit smoking marijuana in public places.]

The CBD Pinnacle Vortex. Why It Feels Like CBD is Everywhere.

The Dr. Oz Show, Willie Nelson, Mandy Moore. Whether it’s doctors, celebrities, neighbors or friends, people are talking about CBD. You can now find it in dog treats, tea drops, bath bombs and chocolate candies. A mainstream panacea? A spinoff trend from legalized marijuana? A new natural miracle? Perhaps. We can’t deny it - it’s in vogue these days. But why?

We live in an anxious world. News alerts, phone addiction, 24-hour news, social media notifications. It’s no wonder why our collective consciousness is searching for something to provide some relief. Not only that, we have reached a point where natural solutions and more holistic approaches are paving the way to better health and quality of life.

As Chris Burggraeve, a former Coca-Cola and ad executive called it “CBD is the new avocado toast”. Not only that, CBD is beginning to enter the land of buzz marketing, with phrases “single origin,” “small batch” and “plant based.” Considering its similarities to the emerging and fast-expanding wellness market as well as green beauty, it comes as no surprise that women are in the forefront of CBD conversations.

According to a recent New York Times article, - women are leading the CBD movement. “Women have long felt ignored and dehumanized by the medical and health care industries. They experience longer wait times for treatment. Their pain and suffering are more likely to be dismissed as anxiety or hysteria. And the male body has typically been the model for medical research.”

So, is CBD a wonder drug? Perhaps.

According the aforementioned NYT article “CBD is the most promising drug that has come out for neuropsychiatric diseases in the last 50 years,” said Dr. Esther Blessing, an assistant professor at New York University School of Medicine, who is coordinating a study of CBD as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder and alcohol use disorder. “The reason it is so promising is that it has a unique combination of safety and effectiveness across of very broad range of conditions.” This includes opioid addiction, schizophrenia, anxiety, epilepsy, and many more.

Much research is yet to be done on the drug, but little by little the public is getting exposed and becoming open to the idea of CBD and the potential it offers. According to a study from the European Journal of Pain, CBD applied on the skin (using an animal model) could help lower pain and inflammation due to arthritis. Another study demonstrated the mechanism by which CBD inhibits inflammatory and neuropathic pain, two of the most difficult types of chronic pain to treat. So far, the strongest scientific evidence is for its effectiveness in treating some of the most serious childhood epilepsy syndromes, such as Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS) and Dravet syndrome, which generally don’t respond to anti-seizure medications. As published by Harvard Medical School, CBD was able to reduce the number of seizures, and in some cases, it was able to stop them altogether.

They key is to understand there is much we don’t know about CBD with a lack of scientific studies to back up many claims that are made these days. Therefore, we must be careful not to fall too deep into the hype and adopt false expectations. If you read a brand touting ‘too good to be true’ benefits, they probably are. The best way to explore CBD is to buy high quality product and discuss with an expert what you are trying to achieve. More is not always better or more effective, in fact, it is often times consistent lower doses that offer the most benefit. In addition, there are many different ways to take CBD - from tinctures to edibles, topicals and more. Certain applications may be more effective for certain uses, and in many circumstances, it’s just a matter of preference.

So, remember. Buy quality. Get expert advice. And when researching, make sure you’re getting information from factual and scientifically based sources, not marketing hype, hearsay, or literature with questionable intentions. Otherwise, enjoy the incredible benefits of CBD and discover what works for you.

Combating the Holiday Blues with Cannabis

The holiday season can give way to a range of emotional states. Whether it’s anxiety, depression, less restful sleep or general feelings of malaise, cannabis as well as hemp can provide incredibly effective relief.

According to a report by Health Canada, “Evidence from pre-clinical and clinical studies suggests that THC exhibits biphasic effects on mood, with low doses of THC having anxiolytic and mood-elevating effects and high doses of THC having anxiogenic and mood-lowering effects. Additionally, evidence from pre-clinical studies indicates CBD “exhibits anxiolytic effects in various animal models of anxiety, while limited evidence from clinical studies suggest CBD may have anxiolytic effects in an experimental model of social anxiety.”

Furthermore, those who often feel stressed or anxious experience a drop in endocannabinoid production, which effects emotion and behavior. This is why supplemental cannabinoids, when reintroduced into the system, can have positive effects and decrease symptoms of stress and depression. A natural solution that makes us feel better? Many are now realizing that kind of benefit is worth a try.

Here are our top 5 tips for combating the holiday blues with Cannabis & Hemp:

Remember to keep in mind a strain’s terpene profile. Strains containing limonene (citrus flavor) are generally uplifting whereas high myrcene strains (musky flavor) tend towards the sleepy end. Additionally, pinene terpenes (woody, piney flavors) combat fatigue and promote focus while linalool (sweet and flowery) helps fight anxiety.  

If you don’t like feeling ‘high’, opt for CBD derived from hemp, such as CBD hemp tea. Teas offer a way to consume discreetly, they taste great, and offer a nice ritual to aid in relaxation. Gummies are also a fantastic alternative with many CBD/THC hybrid options.

Choose strains that provide a higher CBD to THC ratio. You can find this in edibles, flower, vape pens, and more. Keep in mind that high doses of THC have the potential to exacerbate depressive symptoms like paranoia and hyper-activity, so more is not always better. Be strategic in your cannabis use for the most beneficial effects. Generally, strains with low to moderate levels of THC, or strains with a good amount of CBD to provide a calming kick are the way to go.

Buy small amounts of strains you have never tried before in order to test-drive and then either tweak your strain preference or return for more! You may find the best relief for your symptoms is switching between a few, or perhaps you’ll find one magical strain that does exactly what you need.

If it’s mental and muscle relaxation you are going for, shoot for Indica dominant strains. Some Indica’s are more ‘sleepy’ than others, so chat with your local experts on what you prefer. Alternatively, Sativa strains will be more energizing and provide greater focus.

We hope these tips offer some help in your search to curb the holiday blues. Keep in mind, our experts at Gorge Greenery are always happy to offer more advice and guidance on this topic.

Gorge Greenery: The sustainable dispensary

In the era of climate change, more people are striving to help build a better Earth. Over-consumption and needless waste have long been burdens on our society, leading to a stronger push for a more sustainable life. With this in mind, Gorge Greenery has taken steps to be a sustainability leader in the cannabis industry. After being in business since late 2015, we can happily say that our practices are working.

The first step to sustainability is reducing waste. The easiest way to cut out waste from your life is to identify any “single-use” items used in day-to-day living. The word “single-use” is practically synonymous with plastics. Easy to make and cheap, plastics have been used widely as means to a packaging end, and the same goes for the cannabis industry. Many dispensaries sell cannabis in plastic medicine bottles, and all too often these bottles end up in landfills. Oregonians consumed 340,000lbs of cannabis last year, and most flower is sold from a gram to an ounce at a time. That’s a lot of single-use plastic bottles and bags. Plastics take hundreds of years to decompose and are toxic to the environment. This is both harmful to the environment and not sustainable.

Glass jars are returnable, which can be washed, sanitized, and reused.

Glass jars are returnable, which can be washed, sanitized, and reused.

In order to combat this, Gorge Greenery uses glass containers when packaging cannabis. Glass is far more versatile, recyclable and can be re-used many times without hindering the quality of the cannabis. Gorge Greenery also has a sustainability return program for our glass jars to reduce the consumption of packaging.  Our returnable glass container policy has been a notable success! More and more customers return their jars as a part of our return-rewards program. These jars are cleaned, sanitized, and re-used. This is a very sustainable practice and reduces consumption of single use packaging.  As a result of the program, Gorge Greenery receives about 85% of our packaging in returns to cycle though for another use.

Another factor of sustainability and eco-consciousness is to account for your carbon footprint. A carbon footprint is defined by the total emissions caused by an individual, event, organization, or product. For example, if you order an item off the web that needs to be shipped from across the country, your footprint is measured by the emissions generated delivering the package to your doorstep. Frequent purchasing from online stores or sourcing goods internationally generates the largest carbon footprint. In order to keep our footprint small, we source materials as locally as possible. We also receive out of state goods and cannabis packaging by freight which decreases our carbon footprint and the waste that is generated by standard shipping methods. Not only is this environmentally conscious, it also supports local business.

Reducing your carbon footprint is an important step in living sustainably, yet it is still very difficult to exist in today’s society and live a zero-footprint lifestyle. Due to this reality, we all need to take steps to help reduce our own personal footprint wherever we can.

Sustainability takes time and effort, but it is less daunting of a task than you think. Do your part in little ways and apply it to everyday life. Cut out single use plastics, say no to straws, become an avid recycler and support sustainability. Our mission at Gorge Greenery is to be a leader in sustainable business practices and lifestyle choices.

Strain Highlight: Durban Poison

A sofresh farms favorite
Durban Poison has long been a favorite in the Pacific Northwest and not surprisingly, is sofresh farms' most popular strain. Durban Poison suits itself well with the active NW crowd yet also appeals to those with a creative side. With its unique terpene profile, nothing smells or tastes quite like it. Open a jar of Durban Poison and the room fills with the scent of spicy anise mixed with pine trees and citrus. Everyone immediately knows when Durban’s in the house.

Land race genetics
Durban Poison is a land-race strain with pure African genetics. It comes from an area in South Africa near the port of Durban. The area has a humid, subtropical climate with hot summers and warm, dry winters. Since Durban, Africa, is physically far from many other well-known cannabis growing areas the plant has evolved into a unique strain all its own. Durban Poison is unlike the hash plants of Afghanistan, Sativas of South American or the Asian strains we all know so well. This exclusive breeding has led to an increase in rare beneficial cannabinoids such as THCV.

What is THCV?
Most cannabis consumers are familiar with the effects of THC and CBD cannabinoids. Durban Poison has been known to test high in THC but it also contains a unique cannabinoid called THCV. As the name suggests, it’s much like THC but with other pronounced effects. What are the benefits of THCV?

  • THCV is known to be an appetite suppressant – That’s right, instead of giving you the “munchies” Durban Poison has been shown to reduce your appetite. This is great if you’re on a diet.
  • THCV may help reduce anxiety attacks – People experiencing panic attacks or PTSD may find relief in the effects of THCV without reducing normal emotions.
  • THCV has been shown to help diabetes – THCV may help the bodies ability to reduce insulin resistance and regulate blood sugar levels.
  • THCV may help with Alzheimer’s disease -  Brain lesions, motor control and tremors appear to improve.
  • THCV may increase bone growth – THCV has been shown to promote growth of new bone cells.

Terpenes
Terpenes are a group of essential oils that gives each cannabis strain their unique characteristics and aroma. Durban Poison has always tested high for terpenes and its unique profile is like no other. What are the main terpenes that makes Durban Poison so special? Glad you asked!

Terpinolene – Think piney, herbal, floral with a hint of citrus. It’s used in many of the lotions, perfumes and soaps you find on your local grocery shelf. Terpinolene can be found in pine trees, lilacs, apples and cumin.

Potential medical benefits include: anticancer, antibacterial, antioxidant, sedative, antifungal

Myrcene – Found in many fruits and other fragrant plants such as hops, basil, bay tree, parsley, mango lemongrass and thyme. It’s thought to help produce a sedative, relaxed effect on the user.

Potential medical benefits include: anti-inflammatory, antibiotic, sedative, pain-relief (Analgesic)

Ocimene – known for its sweet fruity, herbal and woodsy scent. Ocimene is used in perfumes and occurs in other plants like pepper, mangoes, orchids and mint.

Potential medical benefits include: antibacterial, antiseptic, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antifungal, decongestant

Pinene –  As you can imagine, pinene smells a lot like a pine trees. You can also find it in basil, parsley, rosemary and even orange peels.

Potential medical benefits include: Pinene has been known to improve lung function (Bronchodilator), short-term memory loss, anti-inflammatory and alertness.

Limonene – This is the primary terpene found in citrus fruit. Everyone is familiar with the intense citrus smell of lemons, limes and grapefruits.

Potential medical benefits include: stress relief, antifungal, antibacterial, heartburn and mood enhancement. When you’ve had a hard day and need to relax, look for the strains that smell like lemon/lime.

Caryophyllene –  Think spicy! Most of our favorite spices are filled with this terpene. Pepper, cinnamon, basil, oregano, rosemary and cloves are just a few.

Potential medical benefits include: anti-inflammatory, pain-relief (Analgesic), anti-depressant, anti-cancer and anti-anxiety.

There is only one Durban Poison! If you find yourself searching for a great “day smoke” you must give Durban Poison a try. Nothing is better for a hike in the woods or hanging out with that special someone. sofresh farms grows only the best cut, using 100% organic methods, for the best tasting Durban Poison on the market. Clean Green certified guarantees you’re making a safe choice and Phylos Galaxy certification assures you’re getting what you paid for. Next time you visit your local dispensary be sure to ask for sofresh farms Durban Poison!

Guest blog written by Fred Gunnerson, sofresh farms member.

Ideas for a green Valentines

It’s that time of the year again. Love is in the air. Romances, old and new, are beginning to blossom like flowers in the coming spring.

Valentine’s day is all too often associated with doing something romantic with your partner. The holiday often evokes images of surprising your significant other with bouquet of roses or a giant teddy bear with an accompanying heart-shaped box filled with chocolates. Perhaps it’s when one finally summons the courage to ask their crush out to a date. We want to help you add something new and green to your valentine’s day.

Cannabis can be applied in many different ways to have a more romantic effect. It all comes down to what you and your partner want to do, or how you choose to surprise them with something special. This can be as simple or complex as you choose to make it. Here are a few ideas that we recommend to make this the most exciting Valentine’s day yet!

Take a hike with a joint

Lets say you just asked your crush out to a date. Fantastic! Firstly, well done for asking. Now, what do you do? Just get to know each other. A great way to do this is to go out and enjoy one of the many tails, paths, and hikes the Columbia River Gorge has to offer. You can enhance the adventure, and the date, if you bring along a mellow sativa or hybrid pre-roll for the two of you to share. It won’t put you to sleep and you will both have the opportunity to experience the space, giggle and bond. It’s all about enjoying each other’s company, however you decide to do it.

The perfect gift

If you and your partner are familiar with cannabis use, then you are both probably familiar with the munchies. It’s a common side effect that we’ve all heard of. Marijuana is known to increase the appetite of most of its users, so why not make a munchie basket for your special someone? Flowers and chocolates are overrated. Putting together a spread of gourmet cannabis treats is a very thoughtful and romantic gesture. You could include marshmallow bonbons, a mint hibiscus or peanut butter and jelly chocolate bar or even infused cheese crisps for the savory partner out there. Specializing this selection to both your tastes will be treating yourselves and your munchie urge on this special day.

Dinner for three: you, your love, and Mary Jane

Then there is, of course, the classic dinner date. The dinner date applies to both blossoming romances and long term loves, but cannabis can make this meal just a little bit more special. Now, if you’re going to pair cannabis with dinner, chances are you’ll have to cook at home. You could try infusing the meal itself (see our thanksgiving blog on meal infusion here).

The Grand Finale

Ending the evening at its finest. Everyone has their own rituals of love, but if there’s one constant among humans, it’s that we enjoy a good back rub. Try using cannabis topicals as a lotion while you massage your partner. Cannabis infused topicals are popular for localized pain relief and can help with muscle tension. Cannabis infused sensual oils and lubes are also a great add in for your special holiday. Apothecanna’s Sexy Time lube is formulated specifically to enhance sexual pleasure for both partners.

Treat yourself anyway (on your own)

If you are on your own this Valentines Day, then today is for you. Never forget to love yourself, and Valentines is all about love. Treat yourself to your favorite meal. Spend time participating in your favorite activity, whatever it may be: hiking, biking, kiting, boarding, rafting, kayaking, watching movies, writing, drawing, or just enjoying “me” time. Draw yourself a hot bath and relax with a fine indica pre-roll at the end of the day. There are even bath bombs that are cannabis infused, so you won’t miss out on the benefits of a topical treatment!

We hope some of our ideas of how to incorporate cannabis into your Valentine’s day helps bring a little more love into your life. Marijuana has been known as a plant associated with peace and love, something we all could use a little bit more of in this world. May your Valentines Day be filled with just that. 

Homemade cannabis salve recipe

Cannabis can have healing properties in many forms. Topical lotions and salves have become increasingly popular over the months, so this blog will help shed some light on how to do it yourself. It's easier than you think. Our trusted shop expert, Jenna, gives us some tips on how to make your own homemade cannabis salve.

This recipe can be made in either a Magic Butter Machine, or a crock pot. If using a crock pot, try and use one that you can program the temperature to 160 degrees Fahrenheit, and has a thermometer. Most standard crock pots have a low, medium, and high setting. The low setting is normally 160° F, and that would be the maximum you would want your mixture to cook at. The Magic Butter Machine recommends making a batch with no less than 2 cups of oil in their machine. So, I like to stick with that amount for the crock pot also.

I have found 1 ounce of flower to 2 cups of oil works perfectly for a nice, strong salve. The amount of finished marijuana product after straining ends up making about 12-14 fluid oz. That can be too much for some people, so you can cut that in half for a "half batch" (1 cup oil- 28 grams flower, yielding about 5-7 fluid oz.) That would need to be made in a crock pot which does not have a set recommended minimum amount of oil. The entire process, which is 4 different steps, takes about 5 hours. So, to make it worth your effort, do at least a half batch.

There are quite a few different oils and butters you can use. I like to stick with coconut oil being at least one of the two cups of oil used. Almond oil is another really great one for the skin. You can mix and match with other things like cocoa butter or shea butter if you want to get more luxurious. This recipe is all oil based, so finished product can have up to a year of shelf life if stored at a normal room temperature.

As far as choosing flower, it is up to you and your preference. For example, I use flowers high in THC that end up making a potent formula which helps with my pain and swelling. I then add in oils like arnica and other essential oils to give it more deep relieving effects. I personally have found using high quality buds, and not trim or leaves, makes for a more balanced potent topical. I try and source flower that has gone through a third-party certification (Clean Green Certified, Certified Kind, or Dragonfly Earth Medicine) practices to make sure my medicine as clean as possible. 

Ingredients list for a full batch:

  • 1 oz. of flower (28 grams)
  • 2 cups of coconut oil (or whichever oil you choose)
  • 2 teaspoons sunflower or soy lecithin (helps cannabinoids bond with oil, more easily absorbed in the skin)
  • 1/2 oz. of arnica oil (if making a pain blend)
  • 2 teaspoons of vitamin E oil (optional)
  • 2 teaspoons of beeswax pellets (adjust amount to type of oil: if using almond or olive oil, double amount of beeswax shown here)
  • 30 drops of lavender essential oil (or whichever you pick) 
  • If you prefer a stronger or lighter Lavender smell in your topical, feel free to add additional Lavender essential oil, or to use less, until you achieve your desired scent.

Additional materials needed:

  • Several yards of non-bleached natural cheesecloth.
  • 1, 24 oz. wide mouth mason jar, and rubber band for jar.
  • Small glass jars for storage (1 oz. glass jars work great)
  • Latex, or latex free fitted examination or cleaning gloves, a glass bowl, rubber spatula, slotted spoon.

Here are the 4 steps in the process of making a cannabis based oil

STEP 1

Decarboxylating flower:

  • Place your flower on a cookie sheet lined with foil, spreading it all out evenly.
  • Cover the flower with another sheet of foil. Set your conventional, or toaster oven to 260 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 hour.
  • Make sure to check halfway through the hour just in case your oven burns hotter or is at a high altitude.
  • The flowers should be a nice light golden brown and not over toasted or burnt!

STEP 2

Cooker:

  • Pre-melt 2 cups of oil in a double boiler or microwave, then pour into your machine with the decarboxylated cannabis.
  • Add in the 2 teaspoons of sunflower or soy lecithin, then stir until blended.
  • Let oil and bud mixture cook for 3 hours, stir gently every hour or so.

STEP 3 (Gloves needed throughout STEP 3)

Straining your oil:

  • When the 3 hours is up, take off lid to let cool for at least 10 minutes.
  • While the oil cools, secure some cheesecloth over the top of the mason jar with a rubber band.
  • Spoon flower material out from the oil and into the cheesecloth covered jar. Then undo the rubber band, and squeeze the cheesecloth over the jar. You will probably need to do this 2-3 times to get all of the flower squeezed. **Caution material will be hot!**
  • Take the oil that remains (from the oil that the flower was taken out of) and pour that through a fresh piece of cheesecloth (folded over 3 times) into the mason jar. If there are still small amounts of green material present, go ahead and pour it through one more strainer.
  • Pour all of strained oil into mixing bowl.
  • Now is the time to add whatever healing essential oils and pre-melted beeswax into the warm oil. Stir gently, but thoroughly. 
  • Have your final storage glass containers clean and ready to pour the oil mixture into.
  • Depending on what oils you use, adjust the amount of beeswax accordingly. If using oils that solidify at room temperature, like coconut oil, cocoa butter, or shea butter, you need less beeswax. Too much beeswax can make the salve too waxy, and not rub in as well.

STEP 4

Finalizing product consistency:

  • Place the filled jars in the refrigerator for an hour and a half, or freezer for 40 minutes. This will help the oil cool, and set more evenly. Additionally, this will help if you are using 2 different types of oil with different solidifying temperatures.
  • After the chill, let salve hang out in room temperature for an hour or so before putting lids on.
  • To make your home a little safer, please label jars with ingredients including cannabis first, also that it is for topical use only.

Happy Danksgiving! How to make your Thanksgiving green.

Thanksgiving is one of our favorite holidays. There is an impressive amount of food cooked. Several courses for several people are prepped. Friends come together, laugh, eat, drink, and think about all the things that they are thankful for. This breeds a wonderful environment of friendliness, compassion, and culinary delight. This makes Thanksgiving ideal for pairing with cannabis.

For those who are curious about turning their Thanksgiving into a Danksgiving, we have some tips that can help make the experience one of your favorite cannabis-infused events.

Photo by  Element5 Digital  on  Unsplash

Easily the biggest draw about a cannabis friendly Thanksgiving is infusing the meal itself. This is a great idea and there are bounties of edible recipes to find online, but we will make a very strong recommendation on this topic: Don’t infuse everything! Don’t make the mistake of assuming that every one of your guests would be ok with your “special” mashed potatoes.  Provide a normal dish for everyone to enjoy and keep the infused dishes separate. But make them organic and delicious.

First step to edibles is to make your cannabis butter or oil. You can use either, but we suggest butter as it can be used for a more diverse selection of meals versus using oil. Important note: make your canna-butter before Thanksgiving day. The process will take 24 hours and require the use of the oven.

First and foremost: decarboxylate (decarb) your cannabis. Decarbing involves baking your cannabis at low temperatures. In layman’s terms, this activates the psychoactive properties of THC found in cannabis, thus making it ready for infusion. If you or a friend have leftover trimmings from a home grow, this plant matter can be decarbed as well for the same effect.

To decarboxylate cannabis:

  • Heat your oven to 220-235 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Spread parchment paper over a baking pan, then spread your cannabis across the paper
  • Bake for 30-45 minutes.

 For Thanksgiving, you’ll want a half-ounce to an ounce of high-quality, organic cannabis. Learn more about cannabis decarboxylation.

After you decarboxylate your cannabis, it’s time to infuse it into canna-butter. It’s remarkably easy to make your own canna-butter, but here’s a basic breakdown.

You will need:

  • 1lb unsalted butter
  • 1 cup water
  • Cheese cloth or a fine mesh strainer

Directions

1.     Add one cup of water and 1 lb of butter into a stock pot or sauce pan; let the butter melt and begin to simmer on low. Adding water helps to regulate the temperature and prevents the butter from scorching.

2.    As butter begins to melt, add in your ground, decarboxylated cannabis.

3.    Let the mixture simmer for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. Keep the heat low. Do not allow the mixture to boil. The longer the mix simmers, the more potent it will become.

4.    After simmering, pour the hot mixture into a glass, refrigerator-safe container, using the cheese cloth or fine mesh strainer to strain out all plant matter from the mix. Try to get as much liquid off the plant material as possible. Discard leftover plant material after straining.

5.    Cover and refrigerate the liquid canna-butter overnight or until the butter is fully hardened. Once hardened, the butter will separate from the water. Lift the now infused canna-butter from the water and discard the remaining water.

6.    Let the canna-butter sit at room temperature to soften for use. Do not use a microwave to soften the butter.

You can learn more about canna-butter and oil infusions from Leafly here.

Now that you have your homemade canna-butter, the sky is virtually the limit on what you choose to infuse with it. Canna-butter can be applied to multiple recipes, and many traditional Thanksgiving dishes already use butter as an ingredient.

Here’s some suggestions on what to use your canna-butter with:

  • Mashed potatoes
  • Green bean casserole
  • Creamed spinach
  • Cornbread
  • Pie crust (for any pie you intend to make)

All the sides listed above have butter for an ingredient that can be easily be substituted with your canna-butter. However, our top suggestion on food infusion is gravy. Gravy is very easy to make, it’s tasty, and it can be added to nearly anything you put on your plate. This versatility makes gravy a great candidate for infusion, and it also puts you in control of how much cannabis you are eating. Overconsumption is a common concern when it comes to homemade edibles. Only going for a gentle THC effect? Just put on a small splash of canna-gravy and always consume responsibly.

cannabis-1418344_1920.jpg

As for the more classic form of cannabis use, smoking or vaping, strain choice is key. For daytime use, choose a high-quality strain that is known to have uplifting, energizing, or creativity-sparking qualities (Electric Lemon, Blue Dream, or Betty Hayes would be a good choice.) Looking for a pleasant after-meal toke? Maybe chose a strain that would pair well with sitting on the couch and digesting. Indica or CBD strains such as the Clean Green Certified Obama Kush or Blue Dragon Desert Frost could make for a fine evening delight. You could even put a scoop of Drip Ice Cream on to your pie for desert.

Thanksgiving is about being thankful for what you have in life. Thankful for good friends. Thankful for where you live. Thankful for the food on your plate. And now, in Oregon, Thankful for the cannabis that is legally available to you. Be sure to enjoy all of the good things this holiday. You know we will.

From all of us here at Gorge Greenery,

Happy Thanksgiving