wooden figurine holds a pause button

Five Ways to Manage Cannabis Tolerance Like a Pro

There comes a time in every dedicated cannabis consumer’s life when they realize things aren’t working like they used to. If you’re facing the dreaded tolerance break, this blog is for you. 

When it comes to cannabis consumption, it can be tempting to overindulge. A market flooded with highly potent cannabis products means that the body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS) will quickly grow used to high levels of THC exposure for many people.

While this can be fun in the short term, overindulging in cannabis can lead to your system developing a tolerance–resulting in weaker, less satisfying experiences. So let’s take a closer look at cannabis tolerance; what to look out for, and how to reset if your favorite heavy-hitters just aren’t hitting the same.

What is Cannabis Tolerance?

From caffeine to cannabis, the human body is good at adjusting to altered chemical states. This normalization is excellent for us on an evolutionary level. Still, on the day-to-day, it means it’s easy for our bodies to stop responding to the substances that used to help elevate us beyond our normal resting state–just ask anyone who needs a cup of coffee in the morning to feel normal!

Cannabis tolerance develops when THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, repeatedly binds to CB1 receptors in the brain’s endocannabinoid system. Repeated exposure causes these receptors to have reduced responsiveness to the presence of THC, meaning you won’t experience the same high from using the same product over and over again. When and how your body develops cannabis tolerance depends on a few key factors, including how often you consume cannabis, how potent that cannabis is, and your biological response to the presence of THC.

Can You Build a Tolerance to CBD?

The short answer: yes, theoretically. Your body processes CBD like any other chemical and can build up a tolerance to it, especially if you take the same dose every day. 

However, unlike THC, CBD doesn’t bind directly to the receptors of the endocannabinoid systems. This means that if you experience a CBD tolerance, it’s likely due to other metabolic processes. Your brain won’t stop responding to CBD the way it does to THC, and in fact, some studies show that CBD responses grow stronger over time. So when we’re talking about cannabis tolerance, it’s mostly THC rather than CBD that’s of concern.

How to Tell if You’ve Built up a Cannabis Tolerance?

There are a couple of warning signs to look out for if you suspect you’ve developed a cannabis tolerance. First, like any other compound, the definition of tolerance varies by individual. Some people can use the same products and experience no diminishing effects, while others need to increase their dosages to obtain the same experience. 

The main thing, of course, is your own individual responses to ingesting familiar cannabis products. If a favorite pre-roll or tincture isn’t hitting the way it used to, it might be a sign that you’ve developed a heightened cannabis tolerance.

How Do You Reduce Cannabis Tolerance?

Ok, you’ve developed a tolerance, so what’s a pot-loving person to do? Here are our budtenders’ top ten tricks for reducing cannabis tolerance ASAP.

  • Take a T break

Taking some time away from cannabis is the fastest way to let your endocannabinoid systems reset, so let’s start with the obvious; taking some time away from cannabis is a great way to return, refreshed, with a newly lowered tolerance. 

  • Opt for lower dosages

If a T break isn’t an option, you can reduce the wear and tear on the ol’ receptors by opting for products with lower doses of THC. Using products with the lowest possible amount of THC needed for you to feel an effect has the added benefit of letting your body go for longer without building a tolerance. 

  • Try altering up your ratios.

Ease out of THC tolerance by experimenting with higher ratios of THC and CBD. Starting your way with a THC-heavy product and easing into a higher CBD, lower THC alternative can help your system reset. 

  • Plan a cannabis-friendly snack session

Nothing goes together better than cannabis and a snack sesh, and studies suggest that indulging in foods high in Omega-3 fatty acids can help boost THC absorption within the bloodstream. 

  • Stretch it out

Cannabis isn’t the only thing that activates the endocannabinoid system! Both Yoga and tai chi have been shown to interact with CB1 receptors potentially. Pairing your cannabis with a stretch sesh could help encourage your receptors to activate.

abstract green lights circle a 3d metallic head

How Long Does it Take for Cannabis Receptors to Return to Normal?

If you’ve decided on a T break, you’re probably wondering how long it will take before you can get back to business as usual. 

There’s no exact data on how long it typically takes for CB1 receptors to reset because so much depends on your biology. Some people report that their sensitivity has returned after just a few days, while others need as long as a month or two.

The best thing to do for your first T break is to take it day by day and see what works for you. Try taking a few days off and then indulge in just a little bit of cannabis, waiting before redosing to see how you feel. If that doesn’t work, give yourself a little more time. Your cannabis tolerance will be back to normal before you know it!

Do you want answers to your cannabis questions? Our friends a Leaf411, are here to help. Check them out at https://leaf411.org/.


Lightshade delivery pizza style box

Everything You Need to Know About Cannabis Delivery in Colorado Today

Cannabis delivery is starting in Colorado but don’t celebrate until you read this blog. Why? Because there are still a few things you need to know before your first weed delivery.

There’s something magical about delivery. From pizza to literally anything you impulse-order from Amazon, the moment that box shows up, it always feels a little like Christmas morning. 

And for Coloradans, delivery just got even more exciting. Our state is finally rolling out a new licensing system for cannabis delivery. So what’s better than a hot, fresh pizza? An extra sticky pre-roll for dessert, that’s what!

Lightshade Cannabis Delivery

Lightshade is celebrating the rollout of weed delivery in Colorado with a retro commercial featuring former Denver Bronco, Super Bowl champion, and all-star cannabis reviewer Reuben Droughns. We’ve been granted our first delivery license, so if you’re in Aurora, Colorado, you can get cannabis delivered straight to your front door. 

Still, there’s a lot you should know, so let’s take a look at the ins and outs of dispensary delivery–where it’s legal, how to order, and what the future of weed delivery looks like in Colorado and beyond.

Cannabis Delivery in Aurora

If you’re an adult (21+) resident of Aurora, Colorado, we’ve got great news! As we mentioned before, Lightshade is ready to bring you cannabis on-demand within our Aurora delivery area.

While it has the bonus of enabling you to stay couch-locked until reinforcements arrive (Big Lebowski-style robe optional), ordering weed for delivery in Aurora, Colorado, is pretty similar to buying cannabis in a dispensary. 

Under the new Colorado guidelines, any Aurora resident over 21 is allowed to order cannabis delivery. All you need is a home address within Aurora city limits and a valid, government-issued ID like a passport or driver’s license.

Households can place one order per day, with the same set of legal limits that apply in an in-person dispensary pickup. 

That means 1 oz of THC per day, in any form. Feel free to mix and match products while staying within the limit. Consult with your friendly neighborhood budtender to create the perfect 1 oz care package for your at-home cannabis needs. As long as it adds up to fifty dollars or more, we’ll be delighted to bring it to your door.

And even better news; there’s no limit to the number of pizzas you can order to go with that cannabis. Nice. 

 

Here’s a recap:

  • 21+ adults can order cannabis delivery from Lightshade in Aurora, Colorado (you must be an Aurora resident). 
  • You must present a valid government-issued ID when purchasing and taking delivery of your Colorado cannabis products. 
  • You can place an order online here: https://lightshade.com/cannabis-delivery/#menu.
  • You can order up to 1 oz of THC products per day in any form. 
  • You must spend $50 or more to take advantage of Lightshade’s weed delivery. 
  • Unfortunately, we can only deliver cannabis to homes in Aurora, no hotels or other locations.

Cannabis Delivery in Denver

While cannabis delivery is legal in Denver, so far, residents can only indulge in limited city areas. As a result, demand for weed delivery is high (pun intended), leading to waiting lists and long wait times. But as the government approves more delivery licenses in the city, all that will change. 

So how will cannabis delivery in Denver work? It’ll be similar to the way it’s currently working in Aurora. The same limits and ID requirements will apply, and the same minimum order will be in place for Lightshade customers. 

Since Denver is a popular cannabis tourism destination, frequent visitors have asked us if they’ll be able to order weed delivery straight to their hotel rooms. Unfortunately, that won’t be an option for Lightshade’s customers. Still, according to the state of Colorado, hotel room delivery is ok if you clear it with the staff and have the proper identification to prove you’re a guest. 

But to keep things easy, Denver visitors might want to book an Airbnb for their next visit. The same rules apply to short-term housing rentals as they do to other residential cannabis deliveries. Just make sure to clear it with your host!

 

Here’s a recap:

  • As of now, Lightshade isn’t delivering in Denver, Colorado (only Aurora). 
  • The daily purchasing limits are the same when purchasing in-person from a legal dispensary throughout the state. 
  • Denver says it will allow hotel room deliveries (we expect more specific information soon). 
  • Colorado cannabis tourists might want to book an Airbnb if they anticipate ordering weed delivery in Denver. 

The Future of Cannabis Delivery in Colorado

Statewide cannabis delivery is in Colorado’s future. 

In states like California, dispensaries use legal cannabis delivery to help supply weed enthusiasts with the products they need to curb anxiety and make their time on the couch a little more enjoyable throughout the pandemic. 

With new licensing mechanisms in place, Colorado is sure to legalize delivery throughout the state soon. So if you don’t live in Aurora, but are ready for that order, hang tight! Your first cannabis delivery is likely right around the corner.

Want to make sure you’re the first to know when Lightshade starts delivering in your area? Sign up for our email list to stay in the loop!

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weed in box: fresh, sticky, fast

Lightshade Dispensary - Peoria and I-70 Denver

The Rules of Cannabis Consumption for Newbies in Colorado

Are you getting into cannabis for the first time? Are you returning to cannabis after a long hiatus? Are you a cannabis tourist traveling to Colorado? Here’s everything you need to know to have a great experience. 

Since 2012, Coloradans have enjoyed recreational cannabis legally without a qualifying medical condition (way to be a cultural trailblazer, Colorado!). 

Because of our early adoption, Colorado has gained a reputation for being an excellent place to (legally) indulge in the world of cannabis. With beautiful natural scenery, a famously laid-back vibe, and legal weed, it’s no wonder our state is a cannabis industry hub.  

But if you’re new to the world of legal cannabis, it can be hard to keep track of the rules and regulations regarding consumption in Colorado. 

Fortunately, Lightshade is here to help with our handy dandy guide to the rules of cannabis consumption in Colorado.

Where can I legally purchase cannabis in Colorado?

You can legally buy cannabis in Colorado from any of the state’s 500 plus retail stores, including one of Lightshade’s many accessible locations. 

We think we’re the best, but whatever location you decide to visit, ensure the state properly licenses them. Otherwise, the cannabis you purchase might actually be a sneaky alternative, like synthetic cannabis or salvia. And when it comes to cannabis, we think there’s nothing like the real deal.

How can I legally purchase cannabis in Colorado? 

Suppose you’re a Colorado native; good news! All adults living in Colorado can legally purchase up to 1 ounce (or 28.35 grams if you’re fancy) of cannabis at any licensed retail store in the state. Nonresidents are still welcome to purchase cannabis, but the limits are slightly lower. Visitors can buy just a quarter ounce (or 7.08 grams) at their licensed dispensary visit.

In both cases, you need to be at least 21 and have a valid government-issued ID to show at the dispensary—passports, driver’s licenses, and even, in a pinch, your birth certificate all count. In addition, you must consume the cannabis you purchase yourself – no gifts allowed! 

So how about paying for your cannabis purchase? While you used to be able to buy cannabis exclusively with cash, due to a complicated network of regulations on the federal level, most Colorado dispensaries will now allow you to use a debit card to pay for your purchase or withdraw the necessary cash from their onsite ATM. Just don’t try to put it on the AmEx–federal laws make it impossible for the major credit companies to handle cannabis transactions.

How do I legally consume cannabis in Colorado? 

You’ve got your legal cannabis–now comes the fun part. But how can you consume cannabis legally in Colorado? The answer is, it depends where you want to indulge. 

Public cannabis consumption, whether indoors or out, isn’t allowed. Since cannabis is still a controlled substance on a federal level, you’re also prohibited from consuming on federal land. But there’s good news–indulging in marijuana in any form, smoked, eaten, or vaped, is allowed on private property for any adult over age 21. So if you have a private place to enjoy that cannabis, go wild! 

Lightshade Cannabis Products for Valentine's Day

One thing to note is that property owners are allowed to decide whether or not they’re comfortable with cannabis consumption. So check your lease to make sure your landlord hasn’t explicitly prohibited cannabis if you don’t own your residence, with the same rule of thumb applying if you’re visiting a friend. 

Out of town visitors should check with their hotel or Airbnb host to make sure they’re comfortable with on-site cannabis consumption. If not, Colorado has a few private lounges and event spaces where visitors are invited to indulge in cannabis in a legal, social setting.

How do I consume cannabis in Colorado for the first time? 

You’ve got your cannabis, found the perfect place to unwind, and you’re ready to begin your legal cannabis journey. Congratulations! Let’s talk about the best way to consume legal cannabis for the first time.

For many Colorado residents and visitors, legalization takes a substance that used to feel out of reach and transforms it into a fun, accessible resource for unwinding with friends. If this is your first time, make sure to let your budtender know. They’ll suggest the perfect product for your experience level and desired outcome and help you manage your experience. 

As always, our advice is to start low and go slow, beginning with the smallest amount of cannabis and ramping up slowly as you get a better feel for your tolerance and what kind of cannabis experience you enjoy.

Whether you’re a resident or a visitor, Lightshade welcomes you to the world of legal cannabis. Enjoy your exploration!


lady smelling lavender in field

What Are Cannabis Terpenes and Why Should You Care?

We’ve only started to scratch the surface of understanding the full potential of cannabis, but there’s one thing we do know for sure: terpenes are essential. 

Most of us know to look at THC and CBD percentages when we’re exploring new cannabis strains. But while those are decent (and traditional) indicators of a strains’ effects, our expert budtenders say there’s an unsung hero that might have more of an impact on your cannabis experience. 

These mysterious compounds are called “terpenes,” which help create the unique smells, shades – and experience – of individual cannabis strains. But what are cannabis terpenes? And why should you care?

Read on to learn how terpenes might be the secret to predicting your next cannabis experience.

What Are Cannabis Terpenes?

When we say cannabis terpenes, what do we mean? Put simply; terpenes are a naturally occurring compound responsible for the flavors, scents, and colors of certain types of vegetation, including cannabis.

Like many other plants, cannabis produces terpenes to repel predators and attract pollinators with their sweet aroma. However, many different factors impact how and why a cannabis plant has terpenes, including the soil type the plant grows in, the weather it experiences, and even the time of day it blooms! So far, researchers have identified over one hundred distinct terpene varieties in cannabis (every strain produces its own unique composition).

What Do Cannabis Terpenes Do?

Terpenes are most known for the flavors they impart to our favorite cannabis strains. For example, a strain like Lightshade’s popular Blueberry Headband is packed with terpinolene and pinene, two terpenes that give the strain its distinctive sweet berry undertones. 

But some researchers believe that cannabis terpenes might interact with THC to produce a distinctive effect. This is one theory about why strains with the same proportions of CBD and THC have unique effects, depending on the terpenes they contain.

Some individual terpenes are considered psychoactive like THC and interact with the brain’s endocannabinoid receptors. While they’re not intoxicating alone, these terpenes might help intensify the effects of THC. In addition, some preliminary research suggests that terpene content could help make particular strains more beneficial to specific unique mental health conditions.

Popular Cannabis Terpenes You Should Explore

With such a vast world of terpenes to explore, it can be challenging to know where to start! So to help kick off your terpene adventures, we’ve consulted with our expert budtenders to discover the most popular cannabis terpenes and the effect each one creates.

Myrcene 

Sweet with a delicately herbal aroma, Myrcene is also found in mangos, lemongrass, and hops. It creates a soothing, calming effect that promotes a relaxing yet euphoric experience. A myrcene heavy strain like The White creates a potent sensation, perfect for indulging in on a relaxing evening unwinding with friends.

mangos and flowers

Pinene

The scent of pinene reminds many enthusiasts of a noble fir forest – which makes sense because this terpene is commonly found in many pine species. It also appears in herbs like basil, dill, and rosemary and has a calming, subtle aroma. Blue Dream is one of the best-known pinene strains, offering a perfectly relaxing experience with energetic undertones.

basil, rosemary, and dill

Limonene

Just as the name suggests, limonene has a deliciously citrusy flavor. Found in citrus fruits and herbs like rosemary, juniper, and peppermint, limonene is a lively terpene that brings a little zest to any cannabis experience. A limonene strain like Mother’s Milk is perfect for kicking back and getting creative – get ready to break out that sketchbook!

citrus fruit: lemons, limes, oranges

Caryophyllene

This terpene has a peppery, slightly spicy kick, which makes sense, given that it naturally occurs in black pepper, cinnamon, and cloves. Some caryophyllene fans say the taste reminds them of the perfect cup of chai. A caryophyllene strain like Orange Herijuana is right at the balance of soothing and energizing, making it the ideal companion for a long walk through nature.

Perfecting Your Cannabis Experience 

These four popular varieties are just the beginning of the beautiful world of terpenes – each with its own distinct flavor profile and effect. Once you begin looking out for them, you’ll find terpenes everywhere. And by paying attention to what terpenes create an effect you enjoy, you can mix and match to create your ideal cannabis experience. 

Need help finding your new favorite strain? Drop by any of our Colorado Dispensary locations, and our budtenders will guide you to a product you’ll love! 


people huddled. Putting their hands in the middle

Everything Denver Dispensary Shoppers Need to Know About the Entourage Effect

Everything’s better when you have an entourage – even cannabis. 

It’s no secret that high-quality cannabis often has a sticky, shiny appearance, thanks to the resin coating the bud. Some weed fans consider these visual signs a surefire indicator they’re about to have an enjoyable experience. 

And for cannabis consumers who enjoy getting their THC from a natural source, there’s a scientific explanation behind the power of resin. It might be the source of the “entourage effect,” a process that many believe gives cannabis flowers their unique therapeutic appeal.

What is the entourage effect?

By now, you’re probably familiar with the two heavy hitters of cannabis compounds; THC and CBD. But while each of these compounds is beneficial (and enjoyable!) on its own, something special happens when you consume them together. 

Studies show that medical cannabis patients treated with both compounds simultaneously received more significant relief than those who used just one or the other, an effect called the “entourage effect.” This means that consuming THC and CBD together will generally produce a stronger and more enjoyable experience than enjoying one isolated compound. 

Just like peanut butter and jelly, or bacon and eggs, the entourage effect means that THC and CBD are better together!

How does the entourage effect work?

Like any rockstar, CBD and THC work best when they have their entourages. That means for the optimal cannabis experience, both compounds should be present within your body’s endocannabinoid system, which is why cannabis affects the human brain and body.

Believers in the entourage effect say that these compounds interact within the body to elevate and support the desirable effects of cannabis by making it easier for them to bond with your endocannabinoid receptors.

But fans of flower say it doesn’t stop there. They believe the entourage effect also helps intensify the cannabis experience when you pair THC and CBD with the other organic cannabis materials, including cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes, all of which interact within your body’s endocannabinoid system to create an elevated experience.

It's Inside Us All - Where is the ECS? - Blue Neon Image of human body outlined with a pink neon image of a brain
Mutiple Hands plams up faceng up with a green heart painted on them

What does the entourage effect feel like?

While there’s little formal research on the entourage effect, proponents of its power say that it feels like an intensification of everything they like about cannabis. 

People who use cannabis to relieve short-term inflammation or anxiety say the entourage effect helps suppress undesirable symptoms for longer. In contrast, those who enjoy the psychoactive properties of cannabis say it’s the ultimate shortcut to a long, strange trip.

TLDR: The entourage effect is your favorite cannabis experience, only more so.

Which cannabis products help promote the entourage effect?

So the entourage effect sounds pretty awesome, right? Here are some of Lightshade’s favorite products to help you experience it.

Flower

Because it’s sourced directly from the plant, flower contains a wide variety of cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes that can help you achieve the entourage effect. Look for a flower with a good balance of THC and CBD for maximum results, like the Star Dawg, Fruity Pebbles, or Mother’s Milk strains.

For a more convenient take on the world of flowers, check out Lightshade’s selection of pre-rolls. Kaviar’s Hybrid Joint is the perfect way to carry your entourage in your pocket.

Full Spectrum Cannabis Extracts

If flower isn’t your favorite, never fear! You can still enjoy the benefits of the entourage effect with Lightshade’s library of full-spectrum cannabis extracts designed to supply user’s endocannabinoid systems with the perfect combination of cannabinoids, flavonoids, and terpenes.  Extracts like fan-favorite Banana Bread create a distilled form of cannabis flower that preserves the power of those aromatic extras. 

Even if your preferred cannabis delivery method doesn’t contain terpenes, you can still benefit from the entourage effect by blending THC and CBD in a single dose. Products like Stratos’ 1:1 Energy Tincture have a perfect balance of THC and CBD, designed to encourage the entourage effect. Or try Midnight’s (1906) 50/50 blend of THC and CBD in delicious dark chocolate form.

Whatever method of consumption you chose, we hope you enjoy the relaxing benefits of the entourage effect! So tell your fans to hold off on the autographs for the time being–you’re chilling with your entourage.

Want more product recommendations? Drop into your favorite Lightshade Colorado Dispensary location and talk to our budtenders – we’re always here for you. 


Lightshade Cultivation Expert standing inside a cannabis grow facility

Five Strains Lightshade’s Cultivation Team is Excited About Right Now

As breeders continue to experiment and legalization expands, there are now thousands of cannabis strains available. These five have Lightshade riding high.

Cultivators are always on the hunt for the next big green—the cannabis strain sure to spark a chilled-out frenzy among mellow-minded pot purists. It’s a search that transforms cultivation teams into a band of botanists and explorers, with the noble goal of blazing a trail for all seekers to follow. 

The cannabis industry’s pace of ingenuity and innovation, a far cry from the stoner stereotype of slow-witted stagnation, has seen the germination of strains that are in a constant state of growth, diversification, and country-wide proliferation. Exactly how many strains are there? Well, it could be hundreds, but it could just as easily be thousands. There are so many strains being developed at any given moment that any estimation is hazy at best. It’s what we in the cannabis business call, “a good problem to have!”

Thankfully, we’re not here to provide you with an exhausting list of every strain ever to be packed, rolled, eaten, or vaporized. Instead, our cultivation team clears the smoke with five hand-picked strains—of varying potency, texture, and character—that we believe should be on your list of puff, puff, pass-worthy weed.

Keebler Cookies

An ultra-rare and ultra-dope hybrid strain sprouting from a cross between Platinum Cookie and Locktite, Keebler Cookies features large flowers, a trait that sets it apart from the similarly grown Girl Scout Cookies strain. Deep purple hues highlight the finished buds, which waft a sweet OG nose reminiscent of baked confectionaries. Toking this strain results in a super relaxing high with a relatively high potency that easily quells high-tension situations and the typical rigors of everyday stress.

Garlic Breath

Cannabis cultivators love a unique nose, and Garlic Breath delivers with a punch that speaks to its namesake pungency. An indica-dominant hybrid strain (a mix of GMO and Mendo Breath), it fills the olfactory with notes of freshly peeled garlic and unmistakably spicy undertones. Garlic Breath leaves you with a relaxed high that gradually becomes more sedative, making it the perfect bedtime bud. Speaking of buds, Garlic Breath’s are gorgeous, dense, and bright with a zesty funk that belies its sleepy potential.

Cannabis Plants inside of Cultivation Facility

Ice Cream Cake

Like the fever dream of a mad genius cultivator, Ice Cream Cake billows with large, dense buds, some serious weight, and a full structure that stands tall and proud. Vivid purple buds give off a rich, floral scent that transforms into a flavor profile of creamy vanilla and sugary dough. Relatively new to the strain gang, the indica-leaning Ice Cream Cake crosses Wedding Cake with Gelato #33 and offers a sedating effect that relaxes body and mind and relieves gnarly discomfort.

Grease Monkey

A real funky monkey of pot, if there ever was one, Grease Monkey grapples you into sweet submission with a high potency that occasionally hits more than 30 percent total THC. This indica-dominant hybrid strain crosses classic Gorilla Glue #4 with Cookies & Cream, forming a rich inhale of nutty vanilla and sweet, skunky diesel, with an earthy, pungent aroma. The Grease Monkey high is a real creeper, starting in the eyes and spreading to the rest of the body in a relaxed, calming euphoria.

Mandarin Sunset

An indica with an uplifting, sativa-like high, Mandarin Sunset’s unique terpene profile squeezes a citrus-rich candy aroma with subtle notes of Chinese five-spice powder. While the strain is a cross of Herojuana and Orange Skunk, the flavor is supremely singular in the cannabis world. As for the high, Mandarin Sunset ushers in a surprising numbness that quiets physical frustrations and pushes a positive take to the forefront of the mind. Body soothing and mind-melting, Mandarin Sunset is a facility staple at Lightshade.

Upl Close shot of Lightshade Mandarin Sunset Cannabis Strain

Be Your Own Strain Conductor

The search for your preferred strain is a magical ride of sights, smells, tastes, and textures. So whether you’re a first-timer or a cannabis connoisseur, always keep an open mind and stand at the ready to expand your green horizons to a new crop of strains.


The Colorado Dispensary Guide to Cannabis Concentrates

7/10 might be in our rearview, but that doesn’t mean we have to stop celebrating.

With 710 behind us, we bet you’ve heard a lot more about cannabis concentrates lately. Still, these potent doses of THC are less familiar to many cannabis consumers than more traditional forms like flower or edibles.

So what is a concentrate? How does it differ from more familiar forms of cannabis? Let’s take a closer look at the beautiful and ever-expanding world of cannabis concentrates.

What Are Cannabis Concentrates?

The fundamental nature of cannabis concentrates is made pretty clear by the name: cannabis concentrates are concentrated, and thus more potent, forms of our favorite plant.

When making a cannabis concentrate of any type, processors begin with plant matter, like the flower you might have smoked or vaped in the past. They then use a process called extraction to remove all the inessential biological matter, leaving only the active components of the cannabis plant behind.

What’s left? Cannabinoids and terpenes; the chemicals that give the cannabis plant its flavor and power. Concentrates often have high levels of THC, the psychoactive component that produces the sensation of a high. However, there are blended CBD/THC concentrates and even CBD-only variants available on the market.

 

How Are Cannabis Concentrates Made?

The history of cannabis concentration began in the 12th century when smoking hashish became popular throughout the Middle East. Back in the olden days, cannabis concentrate was produced by hand by rubbing flower between your fingers. Processors would scrape the trichomes they collected into a dense block, creating an old school, but still highly potent, cannabis concentrate. 

While there are still some parts of the world where this processing method remains common, today, concentrates are typically produced with chemical rather than physical distillation processes. 

The most common chemical methods include hydrocarbon and CO2 extraction, each of which creates a specific array of cannabis concentrates. But whatever chemical method they use, cannabis concentrate producers use these solvents to separate the plant’s active components from the excess greenery, leaving the roughage behind.

guy wearing shades vaping a weed pen

What Does Using Cannabis Concentrates Feel Like?

Because of their concentrated nature, cannabis concentrates provide a more intense sensation than traditional flower. 

The potency of raw flower is generally between 10 to 25% THC content. On the other hand, a concentrate generally has a THC potency of between 50 to 80%, with some getting as high as 90%! 

The TLDR is that concentrates provide an amped-up version of the traditional cannabis high. As a result, concentrate fans appreciate their potency and power–and their ability to take a familiar cannabis experience to a whole new level.

Lightshade Cannabis Shatter Concentrates

What Are The Different Types of Concentrates?

Shatters

One of the purest forms of cannabis concentrate, shatter, gets its name from its tendency to shatter into shards when broken apart. Shatters are made using butane extraction and undergo a second round of filtration for a pure, heavy-hitting high. Our latest favorite shatter is Chronic Creations’ Sundae Driver, a terpene-rich, flavorful extraction with a smooth, glass-like finish.

Rosin

Made without solvents, 710 Lab’s Bruce Banner #5 is produced with a potent combination of heat and pressure to create an oily golden sap of pure THC power. Bruce Banner, and other rosins, contain an extra high concentration of terpenes, making this a more flavorful choice for the concentrate connoisseur.

Wax

Sesh’s Cake Breath Rozay is a perfect example of wax – a smooth, crumbly substance with the texture of creamed honey. Waxes come in various consistencies, from honeycomb brittle to goey moisture-rich budders—smoke with a vape or rig for a next-level experience.

Hash

If you want to keep things old school, there’s no better throwback than The Greenery’s line of Lebanese Hash. Crafted from dry-aged Kief, this hash is produced by compressing crumbled resins into a brick using a top-secret process that creates a seriously potent blend of terpenes and THC.

Lightshade Cannabis Wax Concentrates

How Can I Start Consuming Cannabis Concentrates?

There are several ways to consume cannabis concentrates. The most old-school solution to cannabis concentrate consumption is dabbing, although, with specialized tools required, it can take a few times for newbies to get the hang of the technique. 

For an easy boost of potency power, try topping your flower with a bit of additional concentrate. This DIY method requires no other tools and is an easy way to try concentrates to see if they suit your cannabis needs. Simply add a little cannabis concentrate, in whatever your chosen form to your bowl, and enjoy the bonus terpenes and THC! 

When using any new cannabis product, we tend to adhere to the same standard advice: start low and go slow. This is especially true for our favorite cannabis concentrates, which are as powerful as they are delicious.

So what are you waiting for? Get concentrating!


Up Close Shot of Lightshade Durban Poison Cannabis Strain

Classic Cannabis Strains: Durban Poison, Pineapple Express, and Lavender Jones

Get to know three of our favorite classic summertime cannabis strains – and learn how to pair them with your special summer activities expertly. 

Sometimes you can’t beat the classics. Especially during summer when school’s out-style nostalgia sends us hurtling into the arms of familiar favorites. Those perfectly broken in cutoffs. The scoop of vanilla soft serve. Watching 80s movies on the lawn. Summer is the ultimate nostalgic season.

And this is certainly true when it comes to cannabis! While there are days when you want the biggest, baddest, newest strain on the market, sometimes you feel like hanging with a familiar friend. Summer and classic weed strains go together like PB&J – or like sunscreen and the beach.

To celebrate the spirit of summer, we’re highlighting three classic strains, perfect for pairing with your favorite summer activities.

Up Close Shot of Lightshade Durban Poison Cannabis Strain

Durban Poison

Durban Poison is a pure sativa (or as pure as a sativa can get these days) from Durban, a South African port city (hence the name). The strain is a certified classic with a history dating back to the late 1970s! People say High Times columnist Ed Rosenthal first discovered Durban Poison, but like most things in cannabis, the truth is somewhat hazy. Still, we know that Rosenthal was in South Africa in the 1970s looking for new cannabis genetics, so it’s possible he located Durban seeds and started cultivating them. 

Because Durban Poison is a “landrace strain,” it doesn’t have a complicated history of cross-breeding or mixing and matching with other strains. Instead, its genetics go back to an era when cannabis strains were closer to nature and experienced little human intervention. As a result, it’s a true cannabis classic! 

It’s a sweet, aromatic, uplifting, and energetic strain which is why we think Durban Poison is perfect for your summertime Colorado activities.

Up Close Shot of Lightshade Pineapple Express Cannabis Strain

Pineapple Express

Most likely named after the classic 2008 stoner film of the same name (for which Seth Rogan claims he and co-writer Evan Goldberg rolled over 100 cross-shaped joints), Pineapple Express was an early breakout hit of California’s legal dispensary scene. 

This sativa-dominant hybrid is a blend of Hawaiian and Trainwreck. It includes a touch of CBD that gives it an extra potent power to relieve generalized aches, pain, and minor anxiety. 

The pineapple isn’t just in the name, either! Fans say pineapple express has a distinctively fruity aroma, with notes of mango, green apple, and, you guessed it, pineapple. In addition, pineapple Express’s terpene profile includes caryophyllene, which gives it a spicy, clovey bite, and humulene, which lends a herbal scent.

Like Red Headed Stranger, Pineapple Express is an energy-stimulating strain that boosts creativity and mood while creating a relaxing, energetic full-body high that lasts all day long. It has a higher and more variable THC content, meaning it’s ideal for laid-back lounging on a pool floaty, or relaxing with your favorite classic summer flick. Do you have to smoke Pineapple Express while watching Pineapple Express? Nah, but we bet it’s a lot of fun!

Up Close Shot of Lightshade Lavender Jones Cannabis Strain

Lavender Jones

Unlike the pop culture inspiration behind our first two classic weed strain lineages, Lavender Jones got its name the same way that kid in your elementary school with the hyphenated spot on the seating chart did – by taking one each from its parents.

Lavender Jones is a dreamy blend of Purple Urkle (hence, Lavender) and Casey Jones. This balanced hybrid is rumored to be a Colorado original, and its unique, floral flavor and perfectly balanced effects give us some serious hometown pride.

This classic strain comes on like a Sativa, elevating mood, relieving tension, and boosting creative inspiration. After the initial upswing comes the Indica kick, a seriously relaxing sensation that washes warmly through the body for the perfect full-body high.

We love indulging in Lavender Jones on weekend afternoons when we’re in the mood to meditate and unwind. This happy strain will lift your spirit while keeping nerves calm and the mind at ease, making it the perfect companion for an afternoon in the sunshine.

What’s your favorite classic cannabis strain? And what are your favorite summertime activities? Drop by and tell us; we’d love to know.


bubbles in amber colored distillate

Lightshade’s Guide to 7/10 (aka Oil Day or Dab Day)

Is 7/10 the new 4/20? Let’s find out. 

Even the most casual cannabis fans are familiar with 4/20. The iconic stoner celebration is so mainstream that even people who have never seen so much as a single leaf of cannabis are familiar with its meaning! 

But as legalization spreads across the US, cannabis fans are reluctant to limit their celebrations to a single day of the year. And thus, 710 Day (otherwise known as Dab Day, or Oil Day) was born, celebrating the potent side of cannabis–in the form of resins, oils, and wax.

What the heck is 710 Day?

So why 7/10? We don’t want to speculate about the mental state of this noble holiday’s inventor, whose identity has never been confirmed. 

What we can say, though, is that they must have been feeling loose enough to look at their calendar upside down. If you squint, 710 looks a little bit like the word OIL turned on its head!

Whoever this innovator was, they wanted to set a day to celebrate the world of cannabis beyond 420s celebration of flower power. OIL day is all about indulging in concentrates in its many delightful forms.

Dabbing Away

Concentrated oils are one of the most ancient ways of consuming cannabis, second only to the flower itself. The history of medicinal cannabis oils goes back to ancient Chinese herbalism, where it was used for its restorative powers. Basically, people have been using concentrates as long as they’ve been consuming cannabis, so in a sense, dabbing has been a common practice for a long, long time.

In the dark days before legalization, dabbing was considered one of the riskier ways of consuming cannabis. Since there were no safety regulations in place pre-legalization (after all, how can you regulate something that’s against the law?), creating cannabis oil was a highly combustible, often dangerous process. The fact that dabbing remained as popular as it was is a testament to the enthusiasm its fan base has for the dab experience.

These days, consumers coming to the world of dabbing and concentrates will find a higher quality, safer, and more potent product. Legalization has brought a new atmosphere of regulatory oversight, eliminating the use of flammable or hazardous solvents in the creation of concentrated cannabis oils and leading to a rise in rigorously tested high-quality cannabis concentrates. It’s the perfect time to celebrate your first 710 in safety and style!

Our Favorite Ways to Celebrate on 7/10

It’s official–concentrates are a safe, powerful, and generally delightful way to enjoy 7/10. So what’s the best way to indulge in this exploration of the power of cannabis? Here are a few of our favorites:

This high potency oil packs a serious punch–with delightful flavors available in various targeted strains. We love these cartridges for their ease of use, which makes them perfect for beginners. Simply attach to your go-to vape pen and puff away. But go easy, especially the first time! Select doesn’t mess around. 

These infused joints are the dream product for those who appreciate the classic flower experience but long for a little extra oil kick. Full bud flower is infused with live resin and wax to create a powerfully perfect smoking experience. It’s everything you’ve always wanted a joint to be!

Dedicated to increasing minority participation in the cannabis industry, Viola’s products are as powerful as their mission. Both the Badder and the Live Resin showcase their expertise in whole plant extraction to create BHO (Butane Hash Oil), making the purest concentrates that provide an elevated experience every time. 

Whether you’re a brand new dabber, or an old hand looking to discover a favorite new product, we hope you have an excellent, enjoyable 710 day. Happy dabbing!


Person holding a cannabis leaf up to the sun

The Summer Solstice and Cannabis: What’s the Connection?

Have you ever wondered if there’s a connection between our favorite plant and the summer solstice? It turns out there is! 

If you’re an astronomy nerd, you’re probably already familiar with the concept of the summer solstice. The longest day of the year, the solstice is central to many of humanity’s oldest spiritual traditions—in fact, Stonehenge is home to one of the world’s largest solstice celebrations – thousands gather to witness the sun rising through the structure. 

But what you might not know is that there’s an equally strong connection between the summer solstice and the cannabis growth cycle. The solstice has traditionally been used to measure out the growing seasons of this ancient plant and is still used today, even in the era of high-tech indoor cannabis farming.

Cannabis plant in a sunny field

Sunshine and the Grow Cycle

To better understand why the summer solstice is so critical to establishing an ideal outdoor growing schedule, we need to take a closer look at the world of traditional agriculture. Before developing traditional weather forecasting technology, people used publications like the famous Farmer’s Almanac to determine when to plant, tend, and harvest all kinds of crops. 

Each plant has its ideal conditions for growth. Understanding the different sun exposure of plants in the northern and southern hemispheres is critical to creating the conditions plants need to thrive. This is especially true for cannabis, which uses a process called photoperiodism to determine when to flower. So even for growers working indoors, recreating the cycles of the natural summer solstice can help produce a superior cannabis flower.

The Sunshine/Cannabis Connection

Like many of the people who indulge in it, cannabis loves the sunshine. Photoperiodism enables cannabis plants to register times when there’s a variation between the daily sunlight and the darkness of night. This ratio changes as the earth tilts in its spin across the sun, causing seasons to change. The hemisphere experiencing warmer weather is tilted towards the sun in the summertime, meaning the people (and cannabis plants!) in that hemisphere experience shorter nights, longer days, and warm, sunshiney weather.

Cannabis plants track light patterns to know when they need to grow and when the time has come to flower. This tracking helps ensure they’re using their resources appropriately, flowering only when they’ll have the environmental reserves to support new growth. Indoor growers who want to encourage their plants to produce new growth use grow lights and other forms of indoor farming technology to simulate the earth’s natural light pattern–mimicking the cycles of the solstice. The plant responds to the long days and short nights of summer (whether simulated or real) to use excess energy from the sun to grow new shoots and leaves before the autumn comes.

When Does Cannabis Flower? 

After storing up the excess energy of the summer sun, cannabis plants enter autumn, ready to flower. The extra leaves grown during the summer solstice help the plant harvest more energy from the shorter sunlit hours, while the vigorous shoots grown during that period can help support the weight of new flowers. As soon as the solstice hits and the nights begin to grow longer and longer as the earth tilts away from the sun, plants receive the signal to start bursting into bloom.

Although the summer solstice marks the official start of cannabis flowering season, the actual time plants produce flowers varies considerably depending on the needs of the particular strain you’ve chosen to grow. September marks the start of harvest season for some indicas, but other sativa strains only become ready to harvest from December onwards. Each variety has its own particular photoperiodic needs–but whatever your strain, the solstice signals the beginning of the flowering season to come.

Celebrating the Solstice with Cannabis 

Since the solstice is such an important day for both ritual celebrations and the cannabis growing cycles, it makes sense that many people like to honor both with a little solstice ritual to celebrate the spirit of summer.

Try lighting up a little flower (we love an enlivening, sativa dominant Blue Dream) to celebrate the coming of the flowering season. Pagans traditionally celebrated the solstice by wearing a garland of protective herbs and flowers designed to chase away evil spirits with their beauty and good smells. Recreate the experience with a scented cannabis and herb balm or beauty product, combining the healing power of topical cannabis with a selection of potent botanicals. Or take your solstice picnic to the next level with a quick-absorbing cannabis tincture paired with traditional herbs for an even more powerful solstice experience! 

However you chose to celebrate, the solstice/cannabis connection is a powerful one. So get out there and enjoy the sunshine!