Recent Posts

High Times Fails to Meet Requirements for Cannabis Event Permit

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We wrote a few months ago about proposed changes to California’s rules governing temporary events, and last week, we saw the first big casualty of the current permitting requirements under the Medicinal and Adult Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act (“MAUCRSA”). High Times hosted its Southern California Cannabis Cup over the weekend, but was forced to do so without cannabis sales and without open consumption.

Pursuant to MAUCRSA, a state licensing authority may issue a state temporary marijuana event license to a licensee authorizing onsite cannabis sales to, and consumption by, persons twenty-one years of age or older at a “county fair or district agricultural association event, provided that certain other requirements are met.” One of these requirements is local approval: In all circumstances, licensed commercial cannabis activity must be conducted in accordance not only with state law, but with local law as well.

marijuana cannabis california event
It probably won’t be the first time.

Two days before the event was scheduled to begin, the San Bernardino City Council unanimously (by a 6-0 vote) denied High Times’ permit to conduct the SoCal Cannabis Cup at the National Orange Show Events Center. This denial was based on an ordinance passed the week prior that requires city approval for these types of cannabis events within city limits. The City Council also noted High Times’ failure to …

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Visit a Cannabis Clinic to Get Medical Marijuana for Insomnia

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Can’t sleep? Medical cannabis can help. If you’ve tried different medications for your insomnia, but you’re still having trouble getting a good night’s sleep, consider it time to pursue new avenues. Medical cannabis has been used to successfully combat insomnia. Keep reading to found out how.


Source: http://www.medicinalmarijuanaassociation.com/medical-marijuana-blog/visit-a-cannabis-clinic-to-get-medical-marijuana-for-insomnia…

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Dreaming of an Oregon-California Cannabis Exchange

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Yesterday, we received a call from Congressman Earl Blumenauer’s office here in Portland, Oregon. The purpose of the call was to discuss an idea to deal with the oversupply of marijuana in the state sanctioned Oregon market. Specifically, the idea was to explore the possibility of an interstate compact with California, where Oregon would sell its excess cannabis to the Golden State, much like Oregon has sold its excess renewable energy over the years. Unfortunately, we don’t think it’s a great idea.

Could a west coast cannabis exchange really work?

We have been writing about the oversupply issue for a while (see here and here). Recently, oversupply has also begun to receive a surge in media coverage (see here, here and here). To be sure, we have a ton of clients who have been affected by depressed cannabis prices lately: These clients include not just farms but processors and retailers who are struggling to move product and cover costs, let alone turn profits. This predictably has resulted in fair bit of industry consolidation as of late, and we have been buying and selling cannabis businesses nonstop for a while now.

Various approaches have been suggested to deal with the oversupply issue in the regulated Oregon market. These approaches include having the state legislature cap the issuance of …

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How to Get Your Colorado MED Badge and Start Working in Cannabis

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If you live in Colorado and you’re hoping to get a job in the cannabis industry, you’ll have to get a Marijuana Enforcement Division (MED) occupational license (or badge as they’re commonly referred to). These badges allow individuals to work for MED licensed medical and retail marijuana facilities or vendors that provide services to said businesses. Obtaining an occupational license from the MED is crucial for anyone looking to work in the cannabis industry and many companies will not hire someone without one. Thankfully, the process is rather simple and we’re here to help guide you every step of the way!

Types of MED Badges

There are a couple different MED badge types available: key and support. A “key” employee is defined as someone that makes operational or management decisions that directly impact the business, like a manager or grower. A “support” employee badge is for someone who works within the business, like a budtender or trimmer.

It’s also important to note that there’s a pretty big difference in price between a support badge ($75) and a key badge ($250).

If you’ve recently taken a job in the cannabis industry and are asked to apply for a MED badge, be sure to ask your hiring manager which type you will be needing for your day to day tasks. If …

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California Cannabis: an Unlikely Convergence of Enforcement Priorities

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california cannabis marijuana
California and the Feds are an odd couple in canna law enforcement.

When the Cole Memo was rescinded in January, uncertainty was rife on all sides of the state-regulated cannabis industry. Neither the regulators, the regulated, nor the unregulated knew what to expect from the federal government. The U.S. Department of Justice told each of its 93 United States Attorneys to exercise his or her own discretion when it comes to enforcing the federal prohibition on cannabis. While some indicated that they would more or less continue to follow the Cole Memo, the nature and status of enforcement priorities suddenly became an open question. Through the recent budget bill, thankfully, we learned that Congress would continue to prohibit the DOJ from enforcing against state-legal medicinal cannabis operators, but case law interpreting that law is relatively undeveloped.

On the other side of the equation, California regulators continue to struggle with the still-unlicensed operators who have decided that it’s better to continue operating unregulated and unlicensed—and tolerate the ongoing risk of a crackdown—than it is to incur the costs of compliance. That calculus depends largely on the robustness of the state’s enforcement efforts, which, like the federal government’s priorities, has also been somewhat of an open question. Two recent developments in California suggest what direction the Department of Justice may be …

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Why Does Weed Make You Hungry?

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Why does weed make you hungry

Have you ever mixed Cheetos and Sour Straws? Have you ever covered spicy pickles with whipped cream for an afternoon treat? Have you ever emptied the contents of your refrigerator into the kitchen sink and eaten it with a large spoon?

If you can answer yes to any of these questions, you’ve experienced (maybe “enjoyed” is a better word) the munchies. Having the munchies is an integral part of the marijuana experience, and every cannasseur has their own hilarious story to tell (peanut butter/marshmallow fluff/caramel corn sandwich, anyone?).

But why does weed make you hungry? What’s going on in your body that makes any and every combination of food sound like the best thing ever? The experts at Honest Marijuana are here to peel back the foil, remove the plastic, and pop the top, if you will, to reveal the chemistry and biology that causes you to become ravenous after toking a doobie.

Before we get to that, it’s essential that you understand the natural feeling of hunger (without the influence of weed). That’s what we’ll focus on in the next section.

Why Do You Get Hungry?

The simple answer is that you feel hungry because your stomach is empty. But that’s much too basic an explanation for our readers, so let’s break it down. Stand back—we’re going to do …

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What Is Medical-Grade Marijuana?

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People often confuse recreational and medical cannabis for the same product, but there is a distinction between the substances people use for enjoyment and those who need it to relieve pain and alleviate symptoms of medical conditions. Keep reading to discover what medical-grade marijuana is and what it’s used for today.


Source: http://www.medicinalmarijuanaassociation.com/medical-marijuana-blog/what-is-medical-grade-marijuana…

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Baked with Baked Mac & Cheese

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The bitter cold is still roaring in parts of the world, and that means I’m going to cook up the type of meal that sticks to my bones like stews, goulash, oatmeal, mashes, pot roasts, etc. Nothing beats a warm and hearty meal to sail you through the winter until Spring roles around. And what’s […]

The post Baked with Baked Mac & Cheese appeared first on LIWTS.

Source: https://www.liwts.org/edibles/baked-baked-mac-cheese/…

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Legal Hemp: Coming Soon Nationwide?

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hemp federal law
Are the glory days of hemp returning?

Senator Mitch McConnel (R-KY) recently introduced S.2667, a bill which would allow states and tribes to regulate hemp production. The proposed law is appropriately titled the “Hemp Farming Act of 2018” (the “Act”). As the Senate Majority Leader, McConnell is one of the most powerful politicians in Washington, so it goes without saying that this is a big deal. In addition, the Act is being fast-tracked through the Senate, bypassing the standard committee review process.

The Act is currently in draft form and the details are subject to change. As written, “hemp” would be defined as:

“the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of that plant, including the seeds thereof and all derivatives, extracts, cannabinoids, isomers, acids, salts, and salts of isomers, whether growing or not, with a delta-0 [THC] concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”

This proposed definition is significant, because it specifically includes the term “extracts”, thereby undermining the DEA’s much-maligned “marihuana extract” rule, which broadly defines any extract from the cannabis plant as “marijuana” and not hemp. The proposed “hemp” definition also includes “cannabinoids” contained in hemp which could add much needed legal certainty to the already booming CBD market. The Act would also explicitly remove hemp from the Controlled Substances Act’s …

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California Cannabis Countdown: Town of Truckee

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California has 58 counties and 482 incorporated cities across the state, each with the option to create its own rules or ban marijuana altogether. In this California Cannabis Countdown series, we cover who is banning cannabis, who is embracing cannabis (and how), and everyone in between.  For each city and county, we’ll discuss its location, history with cannabis, current law, and proposed law to give you a clearer picture of where to locate your California cannabis business, how to keep it legal, and what you will and won’t be allowed to do.

Our last California Cannabis Countdown post was on the City of Cotati, an before that, the City of San Luis Obispo, the City of Redding, the City of San Rafael, the City of Hayward, Alameda County, OaklandSan FranciscoSonoma County, the City of Davis, the City of Santa RosaCounty and City of San BernardinoMarin CountyNevada County, the City of Lynwood, the City of CoachellaLos Angeles County, the City of Los Angeles, the City of Desert Hot SpringsSonoma County, the City of Sacramento, the City of BerkeleyCalaveras CountyMonterey County and the City of Emeryville.

Today’s post is …

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How to Have the Best 4/20 Ever

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Happy 4/20 everyone! We couldn’t be more delighted to celebrate yet another year of cannabis reform and progression with you all. In the spirit of marijuana’s biggest holiday, we wanted to do our part to help each and every one of you have an awesome day. So, light up some cannabis and continue reading as we give you some ideas for having the best 4/20 celebration ever!

4/20 Celebrations: An Overview

People all over the world know that 4:20, am or pm, is an excellent time to blaze. How 4/20 became a national marijuana holiday and made its way into our cultural consciousness, however, is clouded in urban legend.

The real story, or at least the most likely, begins in an almost mundane way. In 1971’s Northern California, turns out some high school buddies would meet after their extracurricular activities for the day – 4:20 pm – and have a joint together.

As friendly code, they would say “4/20” to signify weed.

These friends, Steve Capper, Dave Reddix, Jeffrey Noel, Larry Schwartz, and Mark Gravich, became known as the “Waldos” because they met at a wall to partake. Years later, Reddix became a roadie for Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh, and it’s believed that the band brought the term into wider use.

Joint Smoking
According to legend, the term 4/20

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Industrial Hemp: Oregon and Interstate Sales

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oregon hemp cbd
So it goes with Oregon hemp.

In the past six to twelve months, we have seen an extraordinary increase in businesses and individuals interested in growing and processing industrial hemp. This is especially true in Oregon, where Department of Agriculture (ODA) grower and handler registrations are fast, cheap and easy to acquire. In many cases, these registrants are cultivating and processing hemp in order to create cannabidiol (CBD) based products. The products can be sold state-wide without limitation, including into the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) adult use marijuana market via hemp-endorsed OLCC processors.

Other entrepreneurs, in Oregon and elsewhere, are extracting CBD for sale interstate. This is a legally nebulous area at the federal level, although interstate sales are not prohibited under Oregon law. With CBD isolate changing hands at upwards of $4,500 per kilo, however, and given the proliferation of CBD products making their way into big box retail, many businesses and individuals feel the risk is worth taking. Perhaps for this reason, we have been getting numerous weekly inquiries as to the viability of CBD sales interstate, especially as of late.

From a state rules perspective, Oregon has taken significant steps in the past several months in building out its industrial hemp regime. We wrote about the recent OLCC rules promulgated in December, which allowed …

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Why Get Medical Cannabis from a Licensed Producer?

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Buying medical marijuana from a source you can’t verify isn’t your best option. When so many different strains are available—each with their own benefits, you want to ensure you’re receiving the right strain for you.


Source: http://www.medicinalmarijuanaassociation.com/medical-marijuana-blog/why-get-medical-cannabis-from-a-licensed-producer…

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5 Auto strains that you must grow

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5 autoflowering strains that will surprise you

The quality of autoflowering (also known as automatic or simply auto) genetics have been greatly improved over the past years. Today, cannabis breeders develop top quality auto versions of some of the most acclaimed photoperiod varieties, so this type of genetics is being increasingly used by many growers.

Auto strains are ideal for those with small growing spaces, to make several outdoor crops per year easily or for those who have an outdoor growing space with light pollution (which can make it impossible to grow photoperiod strains). While just a few years ago the quality of these strains was mediocre, today you can find literally hundreds of autoflowering strains coming from the best genetics on the market.

We want to make things easy for you, that’s why today we present you a list of 5 extraordinary auto varieties that you should definitely try if you’re interested in this useful type of cannabis plants. New and classic strains, CBD-rich plants, high yielding genetics…you’ll find whatever you’re looking for!

Commercial auto strains where created from Cannabis Ruderalis genetics

Commercial auto strains where first created from Cannabis Ruderalis genetics

High Mass ASB S1 by Xtreme Seeds

If you’re looking the get the most out of your growing space, Super Auto strains are your target. While keeping the autoflowering trait, these genetics grow much larger than …

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What Are You Smoking? Episode 32: Talking Edibles With The Goodship’s Jody Hall

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Cannabis edibles are coming into their own, and we spoke with Jody Hall, CEO of The Goodship, about how her team develops recipes, sources ingredients, and more.

The post What Are You Smoking? Episode 32: Talking Edibles With The Goodship’s Jody Hall appeared first on Leafly.

Source: https://www.leafly.com/news/podcasts/what-are-you-smoking-32-goodship-edibles-jody-hall…

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New Era Cannabis Consumers: Breaking Past Stigma

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In the modern era of cannabis consumption, we are witnessing a paradigm shift. Who smokes marijuana? Why do they do it? By and large, these demographics are changing, or rather coming to light, and they subvert the traditional understanding of cannabis culture. The new cannabis consumer is active, productive and on the move with the help of the good green plant.

This “new era” of cannabis consumers is aiding in the breakdown of past stereotypes and helping to encourage the normalization of marijuana use in general. As more and more people begin to realize that cannabis consumers aren’t just lazy stoners, but rather productive members of society, the stigma surrounding cannabis is likely to make a positive change.

Who is Buying Cannabis These Days?

Anyone who has spent time in the retail end of the cannabis industry will tell you an open secret: everyone consumes marijuana. There are extremely few professions not represented coming through the doors of a cannabis dispensary. From doctors and lawyers all the way to pro athletes, veterans and everything in between, people from all walks of life choose to consume cannabis for a number of reasons.

People expect the line at a dispensary to look like a crowd waiting for a concert, when in reality the everyday variety of people in

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Federal Cannabis Prohibition: Is The End Finally Near?

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marijuana cannabis federal policy
Let’s hope so, when it comes to prohibition.

The election of Donald Trump as president of the United States caught many pundits and prognosticators off guard. President Trump’s victory also instilled a level of uncertainty in America’s burgeoning state-legal cannabis industry. During the presidential campaign, Trump routinely professed his adherence to states’ rights when it comes to cannabis legalization (at least for medical cannabis activities). Once elected, however, President Trump appointed known cannabis prohibitionist Jeff Sessions to be his choice as U.S. Attorney General for the Department of Justice (DOJ) and cannabis operators went from feeling uncertain to outright fear.

It now appears that those fears may have been unfounded. After his confirmation, Sessions didn’t immediately seek to enforce federal laws against marijuana operators (to the pleasant surprise of many in the cannabis industry). The honeymoon lasted until January 4, 2018. Just four days into adult-use cannabis sales being legal in the state of California, Sessions formally rescinded the Cole Memo and the cannabis industry was once again thrown into turmoil. The rescission of the Cole Memo, when added with the Environmental Protection Agency’s refusal to register pesticides on cannabis crops and the Federal Drug Administration’s (FDA) threatened crackdown on medical cannabis claims, painted an ominous picture for the cannabis industry throughout the United States (although some of us were

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Cannabis Intellectual Property Licensing: How to Avoid Litigation

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marijuana intellectual property licensing
Licensing agreements can get complicated. Start with who owns what.

We’ve written extensively about the potential pitfalls of intellectual property (“IP”) licensing deals, which are prolific within the cannabis industry. (For a few select articles, try here, here and here). Recently, news broke of another licensing-related lawsuit, this time involving Tommy Chong. According to the lawsuit, Chong and his son allegedly conspired to steal profits from Evergreen Licensing LLC. The complaint seeks damages for breach of contract, fraud and unjust enrichment.

The complaint alleges that after three years and $1 million spent on the project, Chong and his son conspired to “take it all away, even hacking into Evergreen’s Gmail account in order to misappropriate social media sites that plaintiffs created for the project.” The plaintiffs further allege that they were cut “entirely out of the picture, the project and the revenue and profits the project was going to generate and is generating.” It all sounds pretty unfair.

Unfortunately, these types of allegations come as no surprise given some of the proposed deals that have come across our desks. IP licensing is often seen as a quick and easy way to enter the marijuana industry, without having to clear the hurdles of state and local licensing and regulatory compliance. But unfortunately, this simply is not the case. …

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Have Chronic Pain? A Medical Cannabis Clinic Can Help

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Many patients suffering from chronic pain have known about the benefits of medical marijuana for some time. If you’ve tried other treatments with little to no success, it might be time to try something new. See how a medical cannabis clinic can help ease your chronic pain.


Source: http://www.medicinalmarijuanaassociation.com/medical-marijuana-blog/have-chronic-pain-a-medical-cannabis-clinic-can-help…

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How to Celebrate 4/20 in a Non-Legal State

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Not going to make it to any of the excellent and legal 4/20 events in America? Stuck in an illegal state? Have no fear, we’ve got you covered! There’s still plenty of things you can do to celebrate cannabis on its biggest day. Here’s how you can make the most out of 4/20 this year and help make cannabis in your area more accessible in the future.

Enter to PotGuide 4/20 Giveaway

Even though you may not live in a state with some form of legalized cannabis, there are still some pretty awesome ways you can get in on the action this 4/20. In fact, we’re running an exclusive giveaway this 4/20 to show some love to our loyal fans.

PotGuide 420 Giveaway
Don’t forget to enter to win the PotGuide 4/20 Giveaway!

Featuring products from My 420 Tours, HempLife Today, Goldleaf and Elevate Accessories, this is one giveaway you don’t want to miss. Even better? In addition to selection one grand prize winner, we will also be choosing two runner up winners to receive prize packages as well.

Click here to learn more about the PotGuide 420 Giveaway and sign up to win!

Start Planning for Next Year

If you can’t make it to a cannabis event this year for 4/20, there’s always next year! Getting a …

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Oregon Cannabis Wage and Hour Basics: Final Paychecks

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There are no shortage of employment laws related to cannabis businesses.

Cannabis businesses, as part of a highly regulated industry, have a lot of rules to follow. In addition to state regulatory rules, cannabis businesses have to follow a multitude of other state and federal laws specific to employment. Among these, the subset of wage and hour laws are particular, fact-specific, and can be some of the most difficult to comply with. Unsurprisingly, even the most sophisticated of cannabis business owners may be unaware of some of the more obscure wage and hour laws.

When it comes to cannabis employment matters, one of the questions I see most frequently relates to final paychecks. Like many states, Oregon has complicated laws surrounding final paychecks. Knowing the requirements and complying with them to a T can save money and expensive litigation. And we have definitely seen a recent uptick in cannabis litigation related to employment (see our posts on recent filings here and here).

To begin, timely payment of final paychecks in Oregon depends on how the employment relationship was separated. If an employer terminates an employee, or the employment relationship is terminated by mutual agreement, the final paycheck is owed at the end of the first business day after the termination. This means that if you plan on terminating someone, …

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Dogs, cats and CBD: Cannabis and pets

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As research on the different cannabinoids and terpenes  – and other compounds produced by the cannabis plant – advances, more and more testimonies claim that the efficacy of these substances is beyond doubt. While further research is needed in both humans and animals,  cannabinoids like CBD are being increasingly used to treat diverse symptoms and pains in pets, since many users have realised the great benefits it can provide in some cases.

Cannabis can help our pets to have a healthier life

Cannabis can help our pets to have a healthier life

The endocannabinoid system of animals

Mammals, as our beloved dogs and cats, all have an endocannabinoid system composed of CB-1 and CB-2 receptors, which also produces endocannabinoids. When they detect the presence of other cannabinoids in the body, these receptors react in much the same way as they do in the case of humans, so it is believed that cannabinoids and terpenes could provide similar benefits in animals. While the CB-1 receptor is focused on the activity of the brain and central nervous system (CNS), the CB-2 receptor is mainly found in peripheral organs like the immune system. The most important here is that phytocannabinoids (cannabinoids produced by plants) activate these receptors, providing a number of beneficial effects.

However, and before starting any cannabis-based treatment, we must stress that psychoactive cannabinoids like THC or tetrahydrocannabinol have …

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How To Diagnose And Treat Magnesium Deficiency In Cannabis | HMJ

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magnesium deficiency cannabis plant

If you’ve ever done any kind of gardening—any kind at all—chances are you’ve said these words at least once: “What the deuce is wrong with these plants?!” All right, maybe not those exact words, but something to that effect. This sentiment is usually followed by some level of panic because there’s now a very real possibility that you could lose the plant completely (i.e., it dies).

This is especially true when you’re growing cannabis because the end result is a homegrown psychedelic trip or some much-needed medication. So there’s real value waiting for you at the end of this particular rainbow.

One of the more common “What the…” problems is magnesium deficiency in cannabis. It can affect any strain at any time and eventually leads to the complete failure of your crop (again, that’s DEATH, boys and girls). So what’s a concerned cannasseur to do if magnesium deficiency rears its ugly head? Treat the problem and prevent it from happening again, that’s what.

But how exactly can you tell if it’s magnesium deficiency or something else entirely? The experts at Honest Marijuana are here to help. We’ll be your superhero!

In this article, we’ll tell you how to diagnose, treat, and prevent magnesium deficiency in your cannabis plants. Along the way, we’ll also answer some other important questions, such …

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Cannabis Countdown Update: Alameda and Marin Counties

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california alameda marin marijuana
Alameda and Marin Counties are moving ahead, slowly.

Our offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles constantly get calls from entrepreneurs looking to launch or expand their cannabis businesses. By far, one of the most challenging aspects for any attorney advising clients in the cannabis industry is staying up to date on all the developments in the Golden State’s 58 counties and 482 cities. And although it’s a daunting task, we work hard to stay on top o things.

Avid readers of our California Cannabis Countdown series are well aware of the ever-changing cannabis regulatory landscape at the local level. Every week there are a number of Board of Supervisors or City Council hearings throughout the state where cannabis-related rules and ordinances are enacted and amended. We are constantly advising our clients about any changes in the cannabis ordinances of the local jurisdictions of interest.

It’s this constant flux of change at the local legislative level that brings me to today’s topic: an update on the counties of Alameda and Marin. We last covered Alameda here and Marin here.

Let’s start with Alameda County. The County passed its most recent cannabis ordinance last September (with some minor amendments since then). That ordinance created a medical cannabis pilot program that authorized up to three dispensaries, and up to four mixed-light …

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Can Anyone Go to a Medical Cannabis Clinic?

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If you’re considering the use of medical marijuana for your illness, you no doubt have a few questions about where you need to go to obtain this authorization. In order to receive medical marijuana, you’ll need to visit a medical cannabis clinic. Although anyone can go, it’s not without its complications. Here’s what you need to know before you walk in.


Source: http://www.medicinalmarijuanaassociation.com/medical-marijuana-blog/can-anyone-go-to-a-medical-cannabis-clinic…

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4/20 Events and Other Ways to Elevate Your Cannabis Celebrations

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There’s no better way to show your love of cannabis culture than to celebrate 4/20, and you don’t have to live in a legal state to do it. With over half of the United States enjoying some type of cannabis reform, there are more reasons than ever to celebrate! 4/20 is also a fabulous time to acknowledge cannabis history and the work of all the activists who laid the groundwork for the legality cannabis enjoys today, like California medical marijuana trailblazer Denis Peron; Harborside Health and ArcView Group co-founder Steve DeAngelo, and hemp legend Jack Herer, author of the quintessential hemp manifesto, The Emperor Wears No Clothes.

2017 was a killer year for both recreational and medicinal markets, and more people than ever have access to the plant. With increased access comes more opportunity to let your cannabis flag fly, so here’s a sampling of some ways you could celebrate cannabis’ big day.

Find a Cannabis Event near You

Cannabis events are a great way to take advantage of a lot of activities in one spot, like music, food, educational seminars, and booths selling 4/20 friendly merchandise.

Events NL Signup
Click the banner above to sign up for our weekly Events Newsletter!

But the best part of going to a festival is being free to enjoy cannabis culture with …

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California Cannabis: Scams and Schemes of the Week, Part 2

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california cannabis marijuana

Welcome back to “California Cannabis: Scams and Schemes of the Week.” We are publishing this series to shed light on the unscrupulousness of certain attorneys, consultants, and operators in the California cannabis industry, with the goal of establishing a more ethical and regulated industry in the state. You can find last week’s post here.

Scam #1: Attorneys Representing Buyer and Seller and Taking Commission

We continue to see attorneys representing cannabis entities on both sides of mergers and acquisitions, and in addition to taking an hourly rate, they’re taking a commission on the deal (from both parties)! We are seeing the same attorneys appoint themselves as counsel for the purchased corporation. We’ve seen some shocking deals that harm both parties and benefit only the attorney. Most often, troubling information about a business or property is concealed for the benefit of the seller and the attorney, to the detriment of the buyer. We often see good, trusting people get taken for a ride by attorneys with unethical motivations. The incentive to close a deal as quickly as possible to get a commission is at odds with the incentive to conduct careful due diligence. Make sure your agents and attorneys have your best interests at heart, and if a lawyer tells you he or she can represent “both sides” in a …

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Cryoptocurrency and Cannabis: A Difficult Relationship

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cannabis cryptocurrency bitcoin
Not just yet.

Two of the biggest buzzwords of 2018 have been cyrptocurrency and cannabis. Both industries have seen an tremendous influx of investment from people trying to capitalize on these new business ideas. Almost every week, I see a new event pop up for people who are interested in finding the synergies between these different industries. Everyone knows that banking is a huge problem for the cannabis industry (as we’ve discussed here, here, and here), and many see the obvious connection for how cryptocurrency could help resolve that. However, that connection will not likely occur anytime soon (at least not before the cannabis banking issue is resolved).

The cannabis industry is a highly-regulated industry at the state level, and marijuana remains a strictly controlled substance under federal law. In order to prevent theft, product diversion, and other criminal activity, states have required businesses to use state-run track-and-trace systems. This system also tracks the amount of money businesses are making and where that money is coming from.

Cryptocurrencies are peer-to-peer networks of decentralized currencies that are traded on a public ledger by using blockchain technology. A cryptocurrency platform could allow cannabis businesses to transact with digital currency instead of cash, making the business safer for all players, and bypassing the need for banks in many cases. It …

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BREAKING NEWS: Trump Makes “States Rights” Cannabis Deal, Sessions Back in Doghouse

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gardner marijuana cannabis
Martin Sheen? Or Cory Gardner? Either way, good news!

In January 2018, Cory Gardner, Colorado’s junior senator (and Martin Sheen doppelgänger) made news by announcing that he would block Trump Administration Department of Justice appointments after Attorney General Jeff Sessions released a memo suggesting that U.S. Attorneys could consider prosecution of federal marijuana laws despite state legalization. In keeping his promise, Gardner has held up about 20 DOJ nominees proposed by the Administration.

Senator Gardner released the following statement today, April 13, 2018:

“Since the campaign, President Trump has consistently supported states’ rights to decide for themselves how best to approach marijuana. Late Wednesday, I received a commitment from the President that the Department of Justice’s rescission of the Cole memo will not impact Colorado’s legal marijuana industry. Furthermore, President Trump has assured me that he will support a federalism-based legislative solution to fix this states’ rights issue once and for all.

Because of these commitments, I have informed the Administration that I will be lifting my remaining holds on Department of Justice nominees. My colleagues and I are continuing to work diligently on a bipartisan legislative solution that can pass Congress and head to the President’s desk to deliver on his campaign position.”

White House legislative affairs director Marc Short confirmed on Friday that Trump “does respect Colorado’s right …

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Cross-Breeding and Pollinating Cannabis: An Overview

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Fifteen years ago, buying a bag of weed was like rolling the dice. Sometimes, the product was fire, other times, not so much. But with the help of legalization, cannabis has evolved over the last few decades at an incredible rate. Today, thousands of different strains line dispensary shelves each with their own unique terpene and cannabinoid profiles (and some pretty interesting strain names, too) carefully designed to elicit a variety of outcomes – from energetic to lethargic and everything in between. But where do these strains come from? And are they really as different as they make themselves out to be?

The answer to the latter question is a simple “yes.” Unless it is an exact genetic copy, every strain – even strains with the same name – will vary to some degree. The answer to the former question regarding the origin of cannabis strains, however, is more complex. If done correctly though, it could be as close as your own back yard or grow room.

Why Cross-Breed Cannabis?

Have you ever wondered why some cannabis strains make you super sleepy while others make you talkative? Why some taste like pine needles and dirt while others taste like soap or grape soda? Or even why the great indica versus sativa debate is important to begin with? …

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Cannabis Mergers and Acquisitions: Preparing for Success

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merger cannabis marijuana

The cannabis industry in California in 2018 is still finding its feet on many fronts – with both a regulatory framework and a banking solution being very much under construction. As these normalize, companies will establish their business metrics and get a firmer idea of the size of their opportunity, and then naturally increased M&A activity will follow, as has been the norm in other states, like Oregon and Colorado.

There’s a strong argument to be made that the M&A market for cannabis ancillary technologies will be very active in coming years, with companies having tremendous opportunities for exits at high valuations relative to their business metrics. Certainly those companies that create technologies and prove business models now stand to gain from future expansion in legalization of adult use, and any future, positive change in federal policy. With a few exceptions, such as Constellation Brands (makers of Corona) buying a minority stake in a Canadian medical cannabis company, almost all large U.S. companies cannot be owners in the cannabis industry, meaning the future acquisition of established companies is likely to be at a premium.

M&A activity for direct operators will continue to be driven by regulatory concerns, including local ownership requirements, political pushback against widespread “big marijuana” acquisitions, and the transferability of underlying permits and licenses. State licenses are …

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Flowering in Cannabis plants

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Cannabis plants go through different stages of life before reaching harvest. These stages are: germination, pre-growth, growth and flowering. Depending on the phase of life, the care and feeding required can vary greatly, in this case we’re going to focus on the flowering period of cannabis and the changing nutritional demands upon our plants.

Plant life cycle

Phases of plant life

Pre-bloom phase of cannabis after the photoperiod change

At this point in their life cycle the plants are growing well, they’ve already occupied a little over half of the available space, and now is the moment to change the timer, so instead of using 18/6 we will switch to a 12/12 photoperiod and induce the plants to flower.

Depending on the type of plant and the genetics being cultivated, the time between changing the photoperiod to 12/12 displaying the first flowers can vary a great deal, and more if we are talking about differences between pure Indicas and Sativas.

Indica compared to Sativa

Indica vs sativa

The stage between switching the photoperiod to 12/12 and seeing the first flowers appear is known as “the stretch“, as plants will tend to elongate and stretch in growth at this time. There’s a huge difference between the stretch of an indica plant and that of a sativa.

Indica plants stretch far less

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Cannabis Trademarks in Canada are Attainable, Even for U.S. Companies

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marijuana trademark canada
Some U.S. companies are looking north for trademark protection

With U.S. federal trademarks being impossible to obtain for cannabis goods and services that violate the Controlled Substances Act, my trademark clients are beginning to ask questions about their options for international trademark protection. Canada, having legalized cannabis and being our closest neighbor, is usually one of the first countries my clients are interested in.

According to a recent piece written by a group of Canadian attorneys at Torys LLP, the number of trademark filings covering cannabis-related goods and services in Canada has increased dramatically since talk of cannabis legalization began.

Canada has made some big changes to its Trademarks Act that will likely be implemented early next year, and these changes will make it much easier to register trademarks. In particular, Canada will remove the requirement that a trademark be “used” prior to registration issuing. In the U.S., an applicant can file a trademark application prior to making use of their mark in commerce if they have a bona fide intent to do so (this is called an “intent to use” application), but in order for a registration to actually issue, the applicant will need to submit a “Statement of Use” to the USPTO within six months from the date the Trademark Office gives a “Notice of Allowance.” One of …

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