Stay strong and healthy

Ngaio Bealum is a Sacramento comedian, activist and marijuana expert. Email him questions at

Recreational weed is cool, I guess. But what about medical cannabis? Is the state still working on it?

Meddie Calyouse

Good question. The state had been working on a bunch of medical cannabis regulations separate from the recreational side. But just last week, those agencies charged with drafting the regulations decided to withdraw their new rules. Weird, right? They were so close! This is what happened: Back in April, the governor signed the Medicinal and Adult-Use Cannabis Regulation and Safety Act, which placed both recreational and medical cannabis under the aegis of the recently renamed Bureau of Cannabis Control. So now the BCC has to come up with new regulations for both medical and recreational. The BCC is expected to publish the new rules in November. Good luck to everyone involved. It’s hella important to keep protections for medical cannabis patients in place. We don’t want to be like the state of Washington, which phased out their medical cannabis program to the detriment of many patients. You can learn more (and offer your input) on the BCC website.

I have heard that gray ash indicates good weed. Is this true? I am skeptical. Road flares also have gray ash. Just saying.

Rex N. Effex

You are close. Gray ash indicates that the plant was well flushed. This doesn’t always indicate good weed, but it does suggest well grown cannabis. Cannabis growers use all sorts of chemicals and fertilizers. During the last two or three weeks before harvest, good growers will stop using additives and use only clear water in their gardens, so as to “flush” out all the chemicals and salts and stuff, leaving only pure, clean and delicious cannabis. Cannabis that isn’t well flushed will burn with a black ash and may even crackle. Crackling weed is no bueno. Don’t smoke that shit. Throw it away. As for the “good weed” part: There is no one indicator of “good” weed. I mean, there’s aroma, appearance, texture, flavor, effect and gray ash. And while I have never smoked a road flare and would in fact recommend against such activities, I am willing to bet that the road flare you saw was well flushed.

Happy harvest season! Any early favorites?

Green Tongue Tommy

Yes, indeed! I’ve spent the last few weekends up in Mendo and Humboldt, and the early returns are very promising. Folks are still harvesting and it’s gonna take a little time to get it all cured properly, but I smoked a Super Master from Giving Tree Genetics that was frosty and phenomenal. Southern Humboldt has excellent Skittlez and OG Kush, and while russet mites seem to have been a problem all over the state and in parts of Oregon, I haven’t heard of any large scale devastation. Just an ongoing battle. All in all, The state of the harvest is strong.