Breaking the Stoner Stereotype

Breaking the Stoner Stereotype

Envision a “stoner” in your head. Do you see a tie-dye shirt, or a suit and tie?

The stoner stereotype is changing rapidly, and the old hippy growing ganja in his basement to sell to the high school kids is now operating a legal grow with lab tests to back it up. Yet so many people still believe the age old stereotype of the lazy stoner with the headband and flared out jeans.

Well it ain’t 1977 anymore, so get over it. Cannabis is a business, and business draws businessmen and businesswomen. While some of the “OG” industry leaders may stick to their hippy roots, many of the new faces coming into the industry aren’t like that.

Some of them might not even have experience with cannabis themselves, but see the monetary opportunity and go for it, as any smart business person would. Some may argue that this is causing issues, as people who have been in the industry since before it was legal start to butt heads with the newbies.

Ditching the Stoner Stereotype

Something that is ironic about this industry is that a customer might actually be more likely to trust a budtender that looks more like a hippy than the one rocking a polo shirt and khakis. And that is also part of the problem to some. People see the hippy-looking fella as trustworthy, simply because he looks like he smokes often.

Well, in this episode of Tony Don’t Smoke OG you’ll hear from Collin, who looks nothing like your typical stoner. In fact, you’re more likely to see Collin in a lab coat than tie-dye shirt. That’s the way this industry is headed. Professionals, business people and entrepreneurs are all getting their feet wet in the new industry, and with it they change the perception of the industry.

Some people like the stereotype though. Too many people are stressed, angry, working all the time. Why is it so bad for someone to be laid back, lazier, and happier? Maybe it’s just the emphasis our society puts on working all day every day just to get that pay check. But for some, money isn’t everything. But for a lot of new people coming into this industry, it is.

Maybe it’s a bad thing that the stoner stereotype is disappearing, but I don’t think so. The good pieces of the stereotype will remain. The light-hearted, happy stoner that isn’t stressing about every little thing doesn’t sound too bad. If we just get a little more professional, it won’t hurt.

Tune into the Finale of Tony Don’t Smoke OG Season 1 right now on iTunes and Spotify!

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Connecting to Your Cannabis: Tony Don’t Smoke OG

Connecting to Your Cannabis: Tony Don’t Smoke OG

It can get stressful in the garden. Believe it or not, your plants can feel that stress too, and it can impact their health.

Just like how science has proven that plants will react to various genres of music differently, the energy or vibrations your body can give off to its surroundings may have a similar effect. Obviously this isn’t as scientifically proven, but if you’ve been growing for a long time, you know.

Throwback Episode

In this week’s episode of Tony Don’t Smoke OG, Chip, Tony and I225 talk about how they relax in the garden when they get stressed. I225 has utilized meditation in his grow to help cope with stress. He believes it also helps him connect with his plants, feel how they are feeling and vice versa.

Then the crew talks about the 2016 election, which candidates they were for and against during the race, and why there hasn’t been a president that has really been good for cannabis yet.

Another short and sweet Tony Don’t Smoke OG episode for your enjoyment.

Looking for something a little longer? Listen to last week’s episode about finding work in the fastest growing industry in the country.

Getting Cannabis Industry Jobs: Industry Employment Guide

Getting Cannabis Industry Jobs: Industry Employment Guide

There’s a lot of cannabis industry jobs out there. They’re just hard to find.

There are now more than 30 states that have legalized cannabis for medicinal or recreational use, and the jobs are there if you are willing to look. Due to its stigmatized nature and lack of advertising, finding cannabis industry jobs can be tough, especially in states that have just recently opened their markets.

States like Massachusetts and Michigan are both projected to be highly successful markets. But whereas Michigan just legalized with plans in place for a recreational marketplace within one year, Massachusetts has been legal for two years and has yet to open a dispensary, although that looks to be changing soon.

Cannabis Industry Jobs by State

Every state has set up their legal cannabis markets differently, whether medicinal or recreational. Colorado has one of the most effective and respected programs, and it is highly regulated. California on the other hand has much less restrictions on working in the industry, but a more difficult process of starting a cannabis business in the state.

The more you know about each state’s laws, the easier it will be to decide where you want to work, and what you want to do. Some states are only giving out licenses for growing and extracting, while others have given them all out, and now just need budtenders. Some states require you be a state resident to work in the industry in that state. Other states have no such requirement.

Another way to learn about getting into the industry from the outside is to hear the story of someone who did just that…me!

This Week on The Real Dirt

If you didn’t notice by the author line at the top, I’m Travis, and I’m the guest on this week’s episode of The Real Dirt.

I have been writing for The Real Dirt for over a year, and have been writing about cannabis for roughly 5 years. What started as a fantasy of working in the legal industry developed over time into me picking up and leaving Pennsylvania to move to Colorado to work full time for The Real Dirt and Cultivate Colorado.

It wasn’t easy for me to find a job in the industry, especially from the east coast. It will be hard for you too, but it’s not impossible. You don’t need to pick up and leave with no job security and hope you find something. You just have to look. Hard.

It took me at least 6 months of doing unrelated jobs on the side and looking for cannabis-related jobs before I actually found The Real Dirt. So don’t give up.

My story isn’t anything special. I saw an opportunity and went for it against odds, and succeeded. Now I’m writing this trying to help you get past the point I was stuck at too! If you want to hear more about me and how I ended up 2,500 miles away from all my family, listen to my episode of The Real Dirt!

Plus, I wrote a nice Industry Employment Guide that goes into detail about the fastest growing cannabis industries in the country, and all of the requirements for working in them. Please check that out, download it, print it, frame it, burn it, whatever you want. But it will help you understand the basics of these state’s respective industries should you decide to start looking for a job.

I hope you get something out of this episode and the industry guide, and as always you can ask me any questions at Travis@therealdirt.com, or talk to me on Instagram! I run both Cultivate Colorado’s and The Real Dirt’s Instagram accounts, and I LOVE TALKING WITH FANS!


Read the Full Real Dirt Industry Employment Guide Here!

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The New Taxonomy of Cannabis

The New Taxonomy of Cannabis

The taxonomy of cannabis is changing. That is, the definition of what makes cannabis cannabis is changing.

What we know as indica and sativa is not the full truth. It’s been diluted a lot through pop culture and a lack of scientific information regarding the origins of cannabis and how it has been bred through the generations.

Indica and Sativa Aren’t So Certain

There are two main origins for cannabis. What we have come to know as sativa is originally from Europe. Specifically, sativa comes from European hemp. This makes sense when you consider the stretching qualities of “sativa” plants, similar to hemp.

Indica on the other hand originated in Asia. The Middle East, Southeast Asia and other surrounding areas hosted this “drug cultivar” of cannabis that grew shorter and developed heavier cannabinoid content through enduring more harsh weather conditions.

While indica naturally developed into its drug cultivar through its environmental conditions, sativa had to be bred over time to develop its drug cultivar.

It’s Mostly Just Indica

The reality is that most of the cannabis that people will consume in the western hemisphere will be indica. Technically, the only truly classified sativa is European hemp. But through evolution of the plant and breeding it has become very diluted.

While indica naturally produces drug-like effects, sativa contributed its strong cannabinoid contents to combine for what’s become known as the entourage effect in modern cannabis. The interaction of potentially over one hundred different cannabinoids combine to products the typical effects felt when consuming cannabis.

The bigger reality is that it goes much deeper. As Jessica Baker puts it, “there’s actually seven distinct biotypes, of three species, that came from six subspecies that are now extinct, or thought to be extinct.” If that sounds a little too complex, just let Jessica explain it!

Tune into to this week’s episode of The Real Dirt where Chip sits down with Jessica Baker to talk about the new taxonomy of cannabis and how everything we have come to know about cannabis in the dispensary is just scraping the surface.

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Is Hemp Constitutional in Colorado? Harvest Special Pt. 5

Is Hemp Constitutional in Colorado? Harvest Special Pt. 5

What makes hemp, hemp? Is it where it’s grown, or how its grown?

It all depends where you live at this point. The Agricultural Act of 2014 allowed farmers to grow industrial scale hemp legally, as long as the THC content was .03% or lower in the plant.

Seems simple enough. But when states have the right to make their own laws, the Agricultural Act becomes basically irrelevant. Some states require .01% THC or less to be considered legal. Other states require .05% or less, and some are even considering raising it to 1% or less THC.

Colorado’s hemp laws

Colorado is the only state in the country that actually includes cultivation in the state constitution. This means that Coloradans have the right to cultivate legally in Colorado. But that could all change soon.

A new measure being voted on this midterm would take the laws regarding hemp in Colorado, and make them statutory rather than constitutional. While the constitutional law currently allows legal cultivation of plants containing .03% THC or less, Amendment X would change that law to better reflect the federal law.

What if?

What if the people vote no on Amendment X? Hemp will remain in the constitution of Colorado, with a mandatory THC level of .03%. If the federal government were to reclassify hemp tomorrow and say the new limit is 1%, Colorado could be stuck. With the delays between introducing new laws and voting on them, it could be upwards of 2 years before Colorado could catch up with the rest of the country.

What if the people vote yes? Hemp will become statutory, not constitutional, putting it on par with federal regulation. Growing will no longer be a right, but a regulated law organized and voted on by lawmakers. There will be little noticeable change at first, as the constitutional definition of Colorado hemp is near identical to the federal definition already. But should the federal definition change to lower the plant’s controlled substance status or raise the legal THC limit, Colorado will be on par with the rest of the country.

What’s your vote?

What would you vote if you were a Coloradan in this situation? Would you want hemp to stay in control of the state, enshrined in the constitution, only to be changed by the people’s vote? Or, would you want to join the rest of the country in a unified federal regulation of hemp?

Hear what Chip is planning on doing on this week’s Real Dirt episode! In the FINAL Harvest Special, Chip talks about the new bill and what it could mean for Colorado and the country.

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Seed Breeding: luck or skill?

Seed Breeding: luck or skill?

Seed breeding is a job few take on. It takes a lot of patience and skill to hunt phenotypes, but also some luck.

You can plant 100 seeds and get 99 males, or you can plant 5 seeds and get 5 females. That’s the thing about seed breeding. There’s a lot left up to chance.

Seed breeding

Seed breeding itself is simple enough. You get your seeds, you plant them and monitor them, eventually you start to notice the sex of your plants, and you get rid of the males to ensure your females don’t pollinate, but instead flower. As simple as it sounds, it gets more complicated when you’re breeding for specific profiles.

You can plant a bunch of seeds that come out female, but the genetics of those seeds just might not be up to par. Some will take those matured plants and cross them with another to try to find the qualities the grower wants. Others get everything they want in the first try, and that’s just lucky.

Luck or skill?

In this week’s installment of Tony Don’t Smoke OG, the gang smokes on some OG and Cookies while they talk about their struggles with breeding. Purple Trainwreck is one of the favorite strains of the Tony Don’t Smoke crew, and all of them have tried breeding it themselves.

While they eventually got the right qualities, somebody else had already beat them to the punch, with just a couple seeds. It just goes to show you can be the most skilled breeder in the world, but it just takes a little bit of luck to strike gold.

Listen to the episode here on The Real Dirt, or click below to listen on iTunes and Spotify

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