TH.UG. The Underground
Growers have always been the most important part of this business. The underground cannabis community has survived and thrived for generations. These men and women are so dedicated to their trade that vacations are non-existent. Many of the best, and indeed most of the better growers are still underground. They are underground for a ton of reasons. Just to name a few:
- They never wanted legal cannabis in the first place. There are many who control the markets in certain states who do not want the competition it would bring. These guys and gals risked their lives for their art; they don’t want some Monsanto lobbyist pushing out their small businesses and making all the money. This happened in Colorado, where businesses are getting bigger and branching out. They are gobbling up real estate, driving up those real estate prices, and dumping the price of cannabis.
- They do not want this plant to get sprayed with toxic chemicals that the plants need as food; these growers are often the biggest proponents of growing their own food and the organic food movement.
- They are used to a certain level of compensation for their work. Nobody wants to grow a million dollar plant and then in their peak-earning years trade it for paid minimum wage and health insurance. Who wants to trade a $3000/lb. payday for a $12 /hr. paycheck?
- They know what they are doing. Many of these big grows are not going to give the keys to the castle to any stranger. The grower has to either know the owner or be the owner if (s)he wants to have decent compensation for his/her time and knowledge. That, or suffer the indignities of starting over again and waiting for his/her chance. At minimum wage.
- Then there is the issue of learning bad habits. Or habits that the grower perceives as bad habits. You have to do things a certain way in order to be a part of a system. It can be difficult for some people to repeatedly do things that they see as fundamentally wrong in the growing process. It is even worse if the grower becomes desensitized to the issue and integrates it in his/her own system. This is like taking kids from their families and replacing their birth language with the acceptable social language, taking the clothes they have always worn, burned them, and then made them wear nice suits and dresses.
The recent laws here in Colorado have opened up the market so much that the experts are no longer in charge. But it is more than that. The great growers will never put their stuff on the market because it is not for us. They do it because they love themselves. Philip Morris and Monsanto are the new experts. Market trends, administrative offices, oversight, and supply-chains are now much more important than the quality. For now.
Personally, I have had a long history of successfully identifying growers in a prohibitory world. I have seen the gamut of herbs too. I even got a bag once that was rolled in spice. Fucking spice! Shithead. I still have the full bottle to remind me that some growers want to slang shit.
Fortunately, the guy who let me sample his Afghan Kush is one of the kindergrowers- growers who really know what they are doing. (On a side note, I tried talking him into getting some goats, just so I could kick it with a goat. He said they raise his anxiety because they sound like babies crying.) It was apparent in the Afghan Kush buds he gave me. These Afghan Kush buds are nice, healthy, and meaty buds.
This Afghan Kush is also light green and absolutely coated with crystals. It smells like a dank basement. But it is subtle and not too overpowering.
The smoke is nice and light and smooth, just like the high. I only needed a little bit to get good.