Cannabis for connoisseurs

A book review for the blazed

People can now add cannabis to their list of DIY artisanal projects. Grow Your Own: Understanding, Cultivating, and Enjoying Cannabis is a new book co-authored by Liz Crain among a team of marijuana growers from Olympia, Wash.

Grow Your Own gives a play-by-play on how to grow cannabis and comes fully equipped with stylistic and informative charts, illustrations and easy-to-understand methodology.

It’s about cannabis, but it’s more about the artistry of the product, describing the care and cultivation of marijuana in the style of artisanal wine and beer.

The team behind the book introduces craft by giving a brief history of cannabis, from its use as a holy anointing oil in 1450 BCE to when Bob Dylan rolled The Beatles’ first joint in 1964.

Following an introduction of what cannabis is, the authors delve into a detailed methodology of how to grow, from setting up your own grow room and getting the right tools and equipment to different growing mediums and processes.

The guide also includes a cannabis flavor wheel alongside short descriptions of different terpenes, which are chemical compounds that have different effects. For example, pinene can function as an anti-inflammatory antiseptic, and limonene is a natural relief for heartburn. The book also discusses the benefits of cannabis, from reducing stress and pain to eliciting creativity and relaxation.

Grow Your Own field experts Nichole Graf, Micah Sherman, David Stein and Liz Crain show readers how to build a greenhouse and include ideal conditions for airflow, humidity, pest control and soil compositions. Drying, trimming and curing instructions are available toward the back of the guide, and an FAQ–style dialogue follows each section.

One of Grow Your Own’s best qualities is its ability to relay information clearly while keeping cannabis chemistry interesting for the general 420-friendly public. It also includes an illustration and guide on how to properly roll your own joint and trivia such as which strain won back-to-back High Times Cannabis Cups. Growth notes accompany strain descriptions if you want help growing.

Grown Your Own isn’t only for growers, it’s for anyone interested in learning about cannabis, the different strains and how what is grown becomes what you consume. From Prohibition to cannabis couture, marijuana has come a long way, and as stereotypes turn into understanding, Grown Your Own is the guide to viewing cannabis cultivation as an art form; it’s an indication of the direction cannabis is headed in our culture.

The team behind Grow Your Own include Nichole Graf, Micah Sherman, David Stein and Liz Crain, with photography, visual aids, and illustrations provided by Allen Crawford.