Siobhan’s roots are deep in Humboldt’s Legacy cannabis market though she has proven to become one of the most adorned cannabis influencers across multiple social media platforms. The Grow Sisters Multimedia Educational Platform was created to invoke a closer connection to the consumer through authenticity and trust.
Jackee: Hey, kiddos. How you guys doing? How you feeling? What’s your gut saying right now? Do it with me. Come on, come on, come on. Deep breath. It’s April. It’s April 2020 and I’m so glad to be back here with you guys. I miss you. I love you. I love doing this with you. You can reach me at IamJackeeStang on Instagram. I am Jackee Stang. That’s Jackee with two E’s, motherfucker. Okay? Two E’s. Make it symmetrical. You know what I’m saying? On today’s show, we’ve got Siobhan Danger Darwish of Grow Sisters. I’ve known Siobhan since I started to created modern female content at High Times. Oh so many years ago, I was the VP of programming, and she just always struck me as the kind of female energy that I love to support. She’s female. She’s awesome. She gets her hands dirty. She’s low drama. She’s not trying to fucking back stab anyone or be a drama bitch. She is a happy bitch, okay?
And, she grows her own weed and she teaches people how to do it. Go to TheGrowSisters.com. They have, I believe, two series on YouTube, maybe more on their YouTube channel. I was on High Noon Sundays recently, and they’re just doing a bunch of shit. They not only grow, like I said, but they capture grow content in a way that looks beautiful. We talk about cannabis and psychedelics today. We talk about being female, being a chick in psychedelics and we talk about growing your own, and we talk a little bit about growing cannabis versus psilocybin mushrooms, which of course are illegal to grow, ladies and gentlemen. But did you guys know that you could grow six plants in California? Yeah. Check your regulations depending on what state you’re in, but wouldn’t it be cool if you grew a plant. Even just one, one cannabis plant.
From one cannabis plant, you can grow as much weed as you need and give some away. So, shout out to Siobhan and her sisters. We honor you. Thank you for being a bad bitch. Thank y’all for listening. Check me out, IamJackeeStang on Instagram. I will see you guys next time. Ciao.
Wow. The state of affairs. Remind me where you and your farm are located in California.
Siobhan Danger Darwish: Well, Blessed Coast Farms is located in Humboldt County, which is about five hours north of San Francisco, so we’re sitting in a pretty good spot.
Jackee: And it’s remote, right?
Siobhan Danger Darwish: It’s very remote.
SD: Yeah, so this way of life isn’t extremely new to us. I run my business out of my home as a content creator and as a farmer. Fortunately, I work with a lot of very close sisters as you can hear in the background. I’ve got my girlfriend wrapping merchandise that we are selling and still shipping things, so we are not on as big of a lockdown as some other towns in California, like San Francisco. I just watched your story on Instagram this morning and it was people at the beach.
SD: And I’m thinking, “My goodness.”
Jackee: I was thinking, “My goodness” too. I live near Venice and I live on a section of the coast, of the beach line, that is remote even though it’s right next to Venice Beach and Muscle Beach, and having said that for … what was that yesterday? Wednesday? For a Wednesday midday, it was busier than I’ve seen it outside of Fourth of July or summertime. I’m in the same boat as you. I run my company remotely and I’ve worked remotely on many teams many times before so this is not new for me, but it’s new for a lot of people and I don’t know what’s happening. I don’t know why people are still out walking. Obviously it’s because they’re not getting the right information or they’re not being directed by authorities to do anything different and that’s out of our hands, but all of the smartest people I know are suggesting that we hunker down and shelter in place as much as we can to starve out the coronavirus.
SD: To give it a stretch out, right? We ease it out as we stretch it out. That’s the hope so it’s not just hitting us all at the same time I joined your podcast, the Delic Podcast, that you just recently did with Dr. Cook and was very impressed with what he had to say. I continue to tell people to listen to the science. Listen to the scientists and Dr. Cook is an incredible human. I’ve listened to him a couple times now on Delic, and really great information there. So yes, everyone, please take this seriously and take a moment to enjoy your time and space.
Jackee: Oh yeah. I’ve been having that conversation a lot with experts on how do we utilize the time we have now in solitude or quarantine to get back to ourselves? To learn something about ourselves from the inside since we can’t go out? At Delic, we’re calling it the inside-out campaign. That’s the content we’re creating is from that theme.
Jackee: It’s a lot. It’s a lot.
SD: It’s a lot. It’s a lot. It’s heavy and as the days progress, it’s interesting hearing what people are saying and the experiences that they’re having but I love the inside-out idea. I really want to support that. Jokingly, someone had mentioned, “Well, maybe we’ll do some psychedelic strain this time.” I support a bit of micro-dosing at this time. Go within. Write that screenplay that maybe you have wanted to but haven’t had the time to. Spend that time with your animals. Again, I’m really fortunate because I have plants and animals that I can be focusing on here in Humboldt County and really still getting outside time.
With that being said, one of the most important things and then we can move off of current events of coronavirus and get into fun stuff, keep your mind busy. Set up a schedule for yourself, just as you would going to work Monday through Friday. Use those weekends as actual play days. Try to keep your mental state in a calm and happy and healthy manner, having trust in the science. That if we move into this correctly, we’re going to be able to work with it correctly and everyone’s going to be safe. When you’re stressing out, your immune system starts to break down. It’s going to be harder when or if you actually have to deal with this virus so stay sane.
Jackee: Yes. I’ve been dealing with stress, chronic stress and depression and anxiety my whole life and I have to tell you that nothing affects my immune system more negatively than that. I have a podcast coming out today or tomorrow with another friend, Dr. David Rabin, who’s many things… He’s a psychiatrist, an innovator, an inventor and he’s a MAPS partner, doctor, whatever. He works on the MAPS psychedelic studies, associated psychotherapy studies. We have a long chat about how to practically engage yourself and your stress and he gives us really practical tools on how to use this time in solitude to better your wellness and to address your ongoing stress that you felt before corona and now are probably likely very much feeling during.
So, check that out. Also, we have just posted on RealitySandwich.com our staff tips for working from home, and there’s a lot of little good nuggets in there, too.
Okay, yes. I agree. Let’s move on and talk about psychedelics. We could talk about growing, as well. Master grower, tell us who you are, Siobhan, in terms of a cannabis practitioner. I know you as a very prolific content creator in the cannabis space, a very confident female voice and an actual successful grower, multi-generation, I believe, in the cannabis space, which is likely probably very soon going to move to psilocybin. So, give us a brief. Who you are, what you’re up to in the cannabis world?
SD: All right. Well, thank you for that, Jackee. That’s very kind of you. Yes, I am a second generation cannabis farmer from here, Humboldt County. I own and operate California’s first permitted farm, which is Blessed Coast Farms. We are a small farm. Everyone that works this farm is a sister, so-
Jackee: I love that.
SD: Yeah, we’re a small team. Being the first permitted farm in the state of California, we had no way to promote ourselves. There was no way to get the word out about who we are or what we were doing, or obviously our awesome craft cannabis. So, my sister, Sloan Reed, and I started filming our standard operations of procedures, which ended up being a funny video versus actually standards for that so I started posting them on social media and we gained attention because no one else was legally able to do that. We’re silly and fun and the education is simple. I try to keep it comprehensive so that anyone following, specifically the home grower, can tune into that.
That’s really the Grow Sisters. We have expanded now. Anyone in the cannabis or hemp space, and soon psychedelic space that is working to better the situation for humans in the space and for the plant medicine itself is considered a Grow Sister. I am very fortunate. I collaborate with a lot other Grow Sisters… You included… and-
Jackee: Oh, I’m a Grow Sister? Yeah.
SD: You are. You are probably the first Grow Sister of the psychedelic realm.
Jackee: Wow. Does that mean I have to grow well? Actual plants?
SD: Not at all. You’re growing the movement, Jackee. That’s the point. It’s moving forward with legalization. It’s moving forward with education. It’s not specific. Grow Sisters are not specific to cannabis as much as plant medicine and mental health, right? Because that’s what we all need in these crazy times, along with some psychedelic therapy healing and herb.
Jackee: Yeah, oh man. I just want to say that I love that the female energy that you represent to me, that you emulate… As all of the sisters of the world work to find our new voices in this post-Times Up realm or whatever you want to call it really speaks to me because there’s … There’s women and then there’s women or girls posing as women who haven’t necessarily done a lot of work on themselves or they’re not yet on that part of their journey to self-discovery. There’s a lot of question marks in my head, and we don’t have to get too deep into it here because this might be for another podcast but because of my work at High Times and as I’ve tried to create a new platform within that that spoke more to the female cannabis consumer at the time, I learned a lot about actually how women don’t necessarily champion one another in general and how there’s a lot of work to do within sisterhood, if you will, to learn how to support one another.
To learn how to not compete, to learn how to use our feminine energy for the greater good within ourselves, but for the greater good within each other and the world. So, I just commend you for finding that within yourself, and patterning that for other people, for other women. So talk to me about your journey of self-discovery and did it include plant medicine? I have a feeling that it did. What part of your journey are you on in that regard?
SD: Oh, thank you. Before my journey, I’d like to give credit where credit is due. I recognized that you were creating that space in the High Times network and I never really felt like that got recognized or highlighted that you were doing that work, so I want to thank you for that because we did see a very large shift in marketing for cannabis. There was the bong girls and the girls in their bathing suits doing the deal and marketing. I really feel that there was a core group of really influential women, yourself being one of them, that moved that out of girls with bongs and more into women in the field, the reality of what we’re doing here as farmers.
And, that all came really natural to me because I grew up in a community, commune, that the women were doing most of the work-
Jackee: Oh, you did? You grew up in a commune?
SD: Well, it’s funny to call… My parents would say, “Oh no, no. It wasn’t a commune. It was a commune.”
SD: But, off and on, and my father did have multiple farms up and down the Pacific northwest, so we had communities that we stayed with and that were largely influential into what I incorporate now into Grow Sisters, which is that the women were in the fields. They were de-leafing just next to the men. They were growing next to the men. When it came to processing the plants, it was a lot of women doing the trimming. It was a lot of women dong the kitchen witch work, which was making that into products. A lot of women were ultimately the people taking the product to the dispensary, so for me it was nothing new.
For my sister, Sloan, and I, when we launched Grow Sisters, our hope was to be in our overalls getting just as much attention as the bong girls. So I think that interweaves into my journey with cannabis. My personal journey with cannabis has been I never looked at it as anything bad or illegal or wrong due to the environment that I grew up with. And once that became legalized, it was a massive celebration for me. I had this small panic the other day where I was like, “Oh, so much of my self has changed. I go into public and I give these speeches and I’m looked at as this figurehead and all of these amazing things have happened.” Yet, I was having this slight panic at the same time, and then I just sat and I remembered that cannabis has not changed.
Cannabis is still healing people. The basic heart of cannabis is still to heal and to make people happy is to be a plant medicine. So, I just brought myself back to that, and I remind myself of that each day and I’m extremely humbled to be in the position that I am in. However, I did come from hiding in the hills, not talking about what we did, not taking pictures, being chased by helicopters on dirt bikes with guns and all of that type of stuff. And now, here I stand in front of thousands of people-
Jackee: Out of the cannabis closet. That must feel amazing. I know that for Matt and I, my partner, just moving from New York to California when we moved High Times to California… What was it? Three years ago now? Just how long it took us to be able to accept that we could talk more openly about our cannabis use and smoke openly, and now I feel like we’re definitely in that same realm with psychedelics except that it’s moving so much faster than it did with cannabis.
Cannabis was what? It’s like 60 year slog. In High Times, 45 years. People have been fighting behind the scenes for psychedelics for just as long, High Times included because again, I remind people it hasn’t always been a magazine just about cannabis. The very first four issues were just about getting high. The first issue ever has a female with a mushroom on the cover. Psilocybin specifically is super hot right now, right? It’s interesting to see psychedelics, the word that encompasses several different substances. Some are more natural plant matter directly from the earth and some are synthesized in a lab. But it’s interesting to see them pull apart from each other as we enter into this new psychedelic renaissance and legalization of certain psychedelics. In this case, or currently it seems to be psilocybin is the front runner, having been decriminalized already in several cities.
And it looks like in 2020, a lot more. After crisis like this pandemic, people are going to want to go deep, go inside and escape. Or, not. Or find themselves. Yeah, and I would say too back to your earlier point about consuming during this crisis, I make it a point as an owner of a media brand that I don’t push any specific agenda outside of safety … Safety being super cool and that knowledge is power, but yeah, psychedelics have done worlds for me in terms of mind expansion and awareness expansion, and I can only imagine what that would do for our entire species if more people were to do it.
Micro-dosing or regular dosing, macro-dosing, whatever. I, of course, don’t recommend macro-dosing but people do. The recreational world far outnumbers any research or study population in psychedelics. Just like with cannabis, right? It was like the recreational use of cannabis far out measured the medicinal because that’s where we started in terms of legalization. So because people are, it’s like, “Let’s talk about it. Let’s have these conversations.”
SD: Education, education, education. I love that you touched on… There’s going to be an awakening. There’s going to be a shift in consciousness. We’re all going to be considering things that maybe we didn’t consider in our normal days-
Jackee: Well, Mother Nature is forcing it.
Jackee: She’s like-
SD: Isn’t it kind of beautiful?
Jackee: She’s like, “I was telling you guys to … I was soft about it. I was gentle and you’re not fucking listening.” I think that’s one way to look at it. Of course, not making light of the fact that people are passing but people pass all the time every single day from the opioid crisis to other viruses and diseases to suicide. Suicide rates for the younger generations are at an all-time high and psychedelics have proven so far to have in some cases 80% efficacy rate in effecting PTSD and depression in people whereas the old school ways of cognitive behavioral therapy and just talk therapy, while still useful, it was I think a success rate in some instances is 3%. 3-6%.
Jackee: So, the shits working.
SD: It’s working in the emotional distressed and cancer patients, that are helping them deal with death. These plant-based medicines… I should say all psychedelics. Let’s be honest… All psychedelics, anything that can help, we need to start implementing. I feel that there is going to be more now than ever, speaking with that enlightened shift that we are experiencing currently… I believe, and I’ve been saying this and seeing this come down the line with legalization, we all joked about cannabis being the gateway drug. It is. It most absolutely is, and the reason for that is people are more likely to try drugs for the first time now that they’re seeing the research done and the education.
We are no longer putting that into the fear bracket and we’re putting it into the healing bracket, and that’s really what’s important here. I feel that moving into the future with that, we need to continue to do these studies and see these results and start educating the public, and that is exactly what you are doing with Delic.
Jackee: Well, thank you. I’m doing my part to create platforms for civil discourse. I say I don’t have all the answers. I have very few answers but I have a lot of questions. I know a lot of people have questions, especially a mainstream consumer, which I consider myself to be a part of and because we have all these questions, let’s talk about it in a civil way, even if we don’t agree with one another, which I’m sure you have many thoughts on because in the cannabis space… And I say this all the time. In the world that I’m currently in, and it changes every single day, there aren’t as many cannabis people inside of the tiny, tiny budding psychedelic movement in terms of policy as you would think considering how close these substances are.
I want to change that because who knows better about what didn’t work with policy and regulation in cannabis than cannabis people? I lost my train of thought there, but yeah-
SD: You have hit the nail on the head with this, Jackee, and as a matter of fact this was one of my three talking points. I know this is silly but I go on one of the coolest podcasts I know and I only have three talking points …
Jackee: No, I like it. That’s my style, too.
SD: Yeah, I was excited to talk to you and it’s a great opportunity to really focus on these basic things, and you have hit the nail on the head with this one in particular. The legal structure that cannabis has … I don’t know, what adjective should we use? Battled, confronted, manipulated. Where do we want to go with this? Because the legal structure that has had to be implemented for cannabis to become a legal substance and still, we’re still dealing with all these news and regulations from the simple basic end of where the product is being sourced to the consumer, to all of these other facets. It’s a major, major thing.
Not to mention that we predicted that there would be so much money coming in to the cannabis industry that it actually caused issues in the cannabis industry with all of these projections. This term, I don’t know what other term it would be, but as the cannabis industry bolstered, this fluff came about and when I say fluff, I mean just fluff. It was just all this, “Oh, we’re going to make this much money and we’re doing this and so-and-so is doing this.” I’m being really careful not to drop any silly names because we don’t want to have the attorneys in on this but-
Jackee: I would say bullshit. All the bullshit?
Jackee: You could say noise, interference, and yeah, I love that. I know you agree with this. I don’t name names because in my family we say snitches dig ditches but I think a lot of cannabis people agree with that, but I feel you. A lot of noise.
SD: I love your family already. It was an interesting thing to myself as well because there’s so much controversy happening in the cannabis industry as far as the structure goes that I really am hopeful to see more people in that arena get interested in that because for cannabis, I can… I’m not a doctor. Obviously I’m not a scientist. I’m not a biologist. I am a former black market farmer who got a farm, who moved into media and marketing. I can speak on the legalization of the cultivation side. I can speak on the media side of it. With that being said, what I saw as a small farmer was really detrimental to small farming through legalization, through regulations, all of that.
As we know, we’re finally all starting to talk about it. The small farmer got hit, so with that, I really would love to see that translated into people being aware that that’s going to happen in the psychedelic industry and fortunately … Now it’s a psychedelic movement morphing into an industry, correct? And, we do see a lot of the bigger players, MAPS putting themselves out there. Again, I apologize. Maybe you could give some shout outs, people doing good work in the psilocybin movement that are standing up and taking these steps towards being aware that when legalization hits for this plant medicine, it’s going to be a long road and-
Jackee: Yeah, and here’s what’s interesting. We could talk about this for days. What’s interesting, what I’m finding is because like you said, it’s emerging into an industry, it’s a burgeoning industry, there aren’t a lot of keynote players who are very specifically avoiding what, let’s say for exactly, happened in cannabis. A, because they’re not cannabis people. Like I said, there are very few full-on, full-hearted experienced cannabis people currently in the space and that needs to change, but also because even MAPS, for Rick Doblin … I’ve interviewed him several times. We have a relationship with him. I love his spirit and all the work that he’s done for 30 plus years. Super renegade, very important dude if not one of the most important people in the psychedelic movement, but even MAPS has recognized … Because they’re 501(c)(3), right? Which limits them in a lot of ways, but just from a financial standpoint or capitalist standpoint, they have to constantly fundraise and constantly ask for money.
And they even identified a way to become less burdened by that requirement by creating a public benefit corporation is what they’re calling it where they’re essentially going to have a patent on all MDMA that is prescribed for assisted psychotherapy medicinally by the government once their trials finish successfully and go through as we believe they will, they’re going to have basically a monopoly on the MDMA medicine that’s used for at least five years, and essentially because they have access to it and they’re going to sell it back to their practitioners and clinics and all these other things in a way to create revenue for themselves so they don’t the burden of constantly having to ask for money.
Super smart. Makes a lot of sense, but I say that because it’s a point to … I don’t know what the point is. I don’t know exactly what the point is. I think that’s interesting for people to know because we think of 501(c)(3)’s as one thing, as anti-capitalist, and that’s my point is that there’s capitalist conversation happening within psychedelics now. Should we be able to make money off of them? Should we not? Which is a similar conversation that happened in cannabis, and even the biggest 501(c)(3) that’s not for-profit, even though all 501(c)(3)’s are regular businesses in America … I grew up in 501(c)(3)’s for 10 years. I raised money for them for 10 years. They’re all businesses because we live in America. We live in a capitalist society.
So because that’s where we are, that’s who we are, and people are consuming psychedelics at an increasing rate to escape, yes, recreationally but also to treat their mental health in a positive way, let’s have these conversations from what’s already transpired in the cannabis space so that we can learn what worked and what didn’t work as these things start to become legalized.
SD: Absolutely, absolutely. I love that you say more people need to be involved from the cannabis industry. Totally, completely agree. We have been rolling through it, so there’s no reason that people shouldn’t get involved and I think that as more of this starts happening, more people are going to get involved. I also believe that you and your psychedelic family and what not that’s moving this movement forward are really on the brink of this. Your frustrations are coming from the fact that you are in the front for legalization of psilocybins and psychedelics in the United States. You’re leading this, so of course you’re going to be frustrated that there’s no one there yet.
But, be patient. People are interested in this. There’s definitely a following. Also with that being said, I wanted to point out one of the things. It’s not just legalization, but it’s also advocacy, and really in that is people voting. We had Proposition 64 in cannabis that it seemed really incredible. It was a really great proposition and lots and lots of people went and voted for this, and there was a lot of things that were in this that were going to be incredibly helpful to the small farmer, to people being released from prison for prior … There was just a lot of good things. And, overnight Proposition 64 was mangled and somehow was able to be presented to the public in a sense that was not at all what the people had voted for.
So, if we had more people and I do … There was Jackie McGowan was out there. There was a lot of people really stood up and tried to raise question as to why this proposition changed but it’s just one of those things that in the structure that be was able to do that. And it was really detrimental to a lot of people here. It was one of the things that potentially smacked Humboldt County’s economy in a really nasty way. It handed the opportunity to grow cannabis legally over to large corporations versus the people who had been legacy farming here in Humboldt County, which is really unfortunate because as you know a lot of legacy cannabis farmers have been doing this for generations.
So the people that are currently in the psychedelic space, we need to honor them. We need to push forward with recognizing that these forefathers or pioneers … better words … pioneers in the movement were pushing for that. It gets recognized in the cannabis space, but there’s definitely still movers and shakers that were here previous to the green rush that are not being really honored. Again, the advocacy that needs to be rallied around something like that is very real, so if you are listening and you’re going to be joining us at the Delic conference, which is now going to be held in August-
Jackee: Yeah, meet Delic. Meet Delic.
SD: Please show up and show your support and become an advocate for plant-based medicines across the board and if-
Jackee: Well, and yes- … Go ahead. Go, go, go, go.
SD: Get it, get it, get it. If a proposition does get changed or something like that, there should be questions. There should be a movement behind that to say, “Actually, that’s not what we voted for.” I’m not saying that was all of the issue in the cannabis industry. There unfortunately are many things that happened along those lines, but that’s just one example that the powers that be, this needs to be kept in the hands of the people. We need to continue to have a voice in this.
Jackee: Yeah, agreed. Totally. I would say because I’m not an expert in the policy, I think DECRIMCalifornia.org is really leading the charge in getting it on the ballot across the state. There are other DECRIM movements. Of course, there’s the DECRIM movement in Colorado that got it decriminalized in Denver. There’s currently a DECRIM movement probably in every state but Utah, so go to DecrimCA.org to learn more about them. They’re also partners in Meet Delic. The gentleman that runs that, whose part of running that, did a lot for decriminalizing from county to county throughout California. He is actually an example of somebody from the cannabis movement moving to in this case psilocybin, so we’re talking about psilocybin when I say DECRIM California.
That’s one organization people could look at, but also if we are to keep it more in the hands of the people, as you say, I’d ask the listeners let’s find out how to do that because we know that it’s a good idea but we need to come up with solutions on how to actually practically implement that this next go around with psychedelics. And also, from a practical standpoint let’s talk about why it behooves the consumer to focus more on the local farmers, to celebrate them, to make it easier for them to do what they do to do their craft, their talent basically. For cannabis, for probably psilocybin, and all these other substances coming behind because practically as a consumer, there’s a better chance that you’re getting a higher quality product in that scenario, you’re getting a craft product in that scenario than if you’re getting it from a Monsanto version of whatever for cannabis or whatever psilocybin.
That’s not to say that you can not grow great cannabis on a mass scale. I know lots of friends who do that, but there’s a lot lost in the quality of the product the bigger you go to scale. It’s just how it works. You know this, Siobhan, but maybe not all the listeners know this or have felt this, but you can hold a few to-do lists in your head until it starts to pile on and you get busier and you get busier and you say, “Yes” and you say, “Yes”. And then you lose the quality of your output if you’re overloaded, and that’s probably a bad …
SD: No, it makes sense. It absolutely makes sense.
Jackee: As a consumer, I want to consume the best quality product ever. Period. It’s a self-love thing. Why would I want to consume shitty weed? There’s a lot of shitty weed out there, and I certainly don’t want to consume crappy mushrooms. I won’t.
Jackee: I just don’t.
SD: Or dirty weed. Or dirty … So yes, thank you, Jackee, you are singing to a topic of my heart. Why is it important that we continue to support these craft farmers and here’s why. It’s very basic. It’s probably not the answer that you would have expected, but it’s the answer that makes the most sense to me personally because I am experiencing it on a very real level here in Humboldt County. The number one reason to support craft anything is economy. If we are not supporting our craft farmers, we are going to lose craft farmers. Look at large agriculture as an example. Look at agriculture in history throughout the United States as an example.
We see that boom and bust really are affecting small farmers, and I’m not just talking cannabis farmers. I’m talking farmers. They are not getting enough attention. They are not getting subsidized well enough. They are not having tax breaks, and especially cannabis farmers. I’m going to say this and this is going to relate directly to the psilocybin movement as well. Small farmers, small businesses are feeding the economy and that is what is really driving the individual counties and states and what not. We let that go to a large facility, you are correct, to a large company … You are absolutely correct … you’re going to lose that quality. You’re going to lose the money that’s coming into that society, that community and it’s going to drop in care, love, quality.
Comparing the two as they grow in the same space, I really want to remind people that anything that you are purchasing that is handmade or of craft quality, more now than ever especially with the current times and us looking differently at how things are shipped, how things are packaged, these are all things that we are going to need to decide to act very seriously upon. I believe that the small craft farmer in any realm is going to need more support and more love now more than ever.
Jackee: Oh, yeah. And it really comes back to consumer education, doesn’t it? Because I truly believe that the average person if given the choice of this cannabis grown from a small farm with love or this bud of cannabis grown at scale that maybe a human paid almost zero attention to, and whatever all the other pesticides and things that go into this mass produced bud, they would choose the thing that they know is better for them to consume. They would choose the thing that allows them to have the best experience and relationship with the plant, but we don’t know. It’s packaged and sent to MedMen and then you choose from the package. You can’t even… This breaks my heart. You can’t even smell the weed really in the dispensaries anymore.
I mean you can, but there’s a weird plastic thing over it that seems very germy and I never … I’m like, “Ugh, what is that?” So, we’ve really taken ourselves away from the cannabis plant in this case with regulation and people are busy and we’re distracted, and we’re not educated. Again, what I’m trying to do in the psychedelic movement is empower people to know. It’s the same thing we were doing in the bio-hacking movement. It’s cool to test, to know for yourself, to pivot, to research, to change your mind, to do more research, to empower yourself with knowledge because that’s a superpower. You have the ability to know. You just have to do the work and maybe this time … And another thing that came up for me as you were talking just now is talking about scale, it’s like greed does not grow good weed.
In terms of scale, we should scale coronavirus tests. We should scale coronavirus vaccines. These are things that it’s totally fine to go through the system and scale and mass produce and all these things because they will save people. But not everything needs to be scaled.
SD: Yes. Good call. You know, I would like to encourage people when they go into dispensaries to ask for the local. When you go into your grocery store, ask for local. Support your local economy. Yes, absolutely it is about your personal health. It is about getting the best product that is clean. It’s about getting the best high. It’s about getting the best healing. Absolutely. For you.
However, there’s a huge other entity to that which is our community, and when you buy local, that’s supporting your community meaning your community has more tax revenue to do better. Better schools, better cities, better, better, better, better. Right? Going into those dispensaries and not knowing what to choose from or where to go, this is really what spurred my series, the Know Your Farmer series, because I am going to these farms, telling their stories, connecting consumers directly to this product that they can trust because they know the people growing it behind the product.
Again, education, education, education. I’m going to totally take this into a different realm … I hope that’s okay.
Jackee: Do it.
SD: Yeah. I want to encourage people that they are capable of growing their own cannabis. Even if you are growing a plant, one auto flower on your deck, in your window, that will provide enough cannabis for a decent amount of time. I don’t know. I smoke five or six joints a day, so maybe that’s not conducive to my situation but-
Jackee: For most people, it would.
SD: For most people. And, if you are able to grow in the state of California … Figure out, research your legal amount to grow. In the state of California, it’s six plants which is amazing. I am going to brag right now just so that I can give a punch in the conversation to this. I grew nine pounds last season. I was able to gift to many people my allotted amount and those people still today, my neighbors, are still smoking off of that today. I hope to see the same movement happen in psilocybin because I believe-
Jackee: Yeah, grow your own.
SD: Yes. I believe that there’s a whole movement that’s just waiting to… And, I have been growing my own cannabis and psilocybin for a minute now, and I’m very excited because I have been connecting with other people who are growing their own and experiencing that and how magic is it to smoke something that you know the person who grew it? And what if that person is you?
So, there’s a lot of exciting things happening in this. What that does, by you growing your own, not only are you educating yourself on something but there’s multiple resources out there, not just the Grow Sister’s Sister Grow Your Own Summer Project… Drop… where we provide you with cannabis cultivation educational content. There’s tons of stuff-
Jackee: You should do that for psilocybin. Or, not. I’m sorry. You should do that just for mushrooms. How to grow mushrooms.
SD: I have been, my friend. I’ve been working on that thing and also psilocybin, but I’m really focused on the cannabis. I have not really been creating too much content around that as it’s new to me. I am only trying to figure out what I’m doing. I didn’t start talking about growing cannabis until my 36th year on earth, and I had been around it my whole life, so maybe when I get to the point that I’m more established in that, I will definitely start talking about it. And I encourage people to do that. Granted, it is one of the ways that I make money. I am more than happy to see that way go away and everyone to just do it themselves.
I also am a farmer, so I know that it sounds crazy for me to be pushing the Grow Your Own movement, but it’s not about that and it’s really about where we’re moving in this time and what an opportune moment to speak on this. We all should be creating our own victory gardens in our own ability to do so, and what I mean by that is if you have the space, if you have the land, if you have the area to grow food, start doing so. Is this not the most opportune moment to speak on that? Here on the farm, we have all of our little vegetable sprouts sprouting. If we are in our own personal quarantine for the next couple months, my sisters and I here on the farm are able to feed ourselves.
Jackee: I think-
SD: And eat the psychedelic mushrooms.
Jackee: Right. So, a couple things. I want to know in your opinion is it easier to grow cannabis or psilocybin? Because I have historically tried to grow psilocybin… One of our very good friends is the largest purveyor of spores in the country-
Jackee: Yeah, at-home grow kits that include spores, of course, which is totally legal. I tried that twice to no avail, but from what I understand it couldn’t be easier to grow mushrooms and yet I totally failed. And then also, from a marketing standpoint I know you’ll appreciate this as a marketer, marketing has this bad reputation, “Oh, marketing advertising …” but that’s bullshit in the same way that all capitalists are bad. It’s so binary and in my opinion stupid to think like that because no, marketing is a presentation, okay? And, if we encourage-
Jackee: And education. So I always say make safety cool again. We got to make safety cool. D.A.R.E was cool in its own way even though it was a bunch of lies. They had good marketing. Yeah, how do we make safety cool again? How do we make growing your own cool and not this hippy-dippy thing because it’s so much farther … It’s not hippy-dippy at all. It’s who you are as a human. Like you said, Siobhan, you can grow your own. Just one plant. You can grow your own cannabis, and I’m hoping that that slowdown times, crisis like we’re in now, crises that we’re in now, will allow people the space to feel empowered. That they can do it, or at least try to do it and then see what happens.
SD: Absolutely. And I believe that it is cool. Maybe I’m a nerd, but the farm-to-table movement, the farm-to-bong movement has become really large. People are interested in it. I believe that we as a society are very bombarded on a daily. Not lately, but in … This is an interesting podcast to be doing in our current situation, however we are very bombarded with the daily. This and this and this and this, and I think that people are seeking something else in their lives which really ultimately is a great thing to include is growing your own food especially with what we are seeing now. It is going to get hard for us if we are sitting for two months to get vegetables. It’s going to be very hard for us if we’re sitting for two months to get cannabis.
And that’s what they’re saying. They are telling us two months. We’re looking at China. China’s been sitting for two months. One of the bloggers that I follow on YouTube, she is in one of the larger cities in China and they have started growing their own food on a 10×10 deck for their family. This is something that we’re going to see more and more. People are moving out of the cities. The cities are getting harder and harder, and with the current state that we are in … Obviously, here we are sitting on a podcast that we’re Skyping with one another. I believe that we’re seeing a lot of business go to these platforms that are remote and that we can do across digital things. I think that we’re going to see a lot more of people wanting to grow their own, a lot more people looking within. A lot more people starting to realize that shipping goods or going to the grocery store, taking that trip to buy that plastic bag of lettuce and then throw away that plastic.
Don’t even get me started on plastic. That’s a whole nother-
Jackee: I live at the beach, man. Every time it rains, the LA River pours it out onto my front yard and it’s really sad.
SD: So, if we started taking these steps as humans to better ourselves, better our environment, and I believe that right now with what is happening with the coronavirus, we are being forced into having this different mindset. And again, that goes back to the beginning of the podcast where we both were speaking on an awakening, a change in thought.
Jackee: Yep, it’s time. It’s time, and I want to say before we close out too, before you tell me if you think it’s easier to grow cannabis or psilocybin that for everyone to remember you can. Being human is magical. We’re spinning in multi-directions in this black space of the universe past balls of gas and scary things and females grow humans inside of your belly essentially. We have so much capacity for empathy and for creativity. I think creativity is really what makes us human and unfortunately the more stressed out, the more distracted you are, the less creative you are because your nervous system is in flight or fight.
And if your nervous system is constantly thinking that it’s running away from a fucking tiger, how can you have a grand idea about some business you want to start or some piece of art you want to create? Right? It just doesn’t go hand-in-hand, so I want to remind everybody that you can do it, that you have what it takes to awaken. And whether it’s psychedelic substances, time, meditation, crying, talking to people, just literally staring at a wall and breathing, growing your own food, one step at a time, man. One step at a time.
SD: Absolutely, Jackee. You’re so awesome.
Jackee: No, you’re awesome.
SD: Let me answer that for you because I avoided that.
Jackee: Oh, no.
SD: And the reason that I did is as we’re moving into this and looking at growing all of our own vegetables and all of that, I encourage people to experiment. I encourage you to experiment, and what I mean by that is put some vegetable seeds in some soil. Come now. The cannabis itself, right now I very rarely call cannabis weed. I try never to call it marijuana. I think that that’s a word of the past.
Jackee: I say weed. I say weed.
SD: Cannabis is a weed.
Jackee: It is a weed.
SD: Put it in the ground. Now, growing mushrooms is a whole nother situation. That is not easy and though it is fun, it’s so much fun and it’s so interesting and what a great thing to dive into and learn and educate yourself on, and I can’t advocate, I can not tell you to go get your own can’t, though you can … They are out there and it is fun to experiment with. So in this time of us all sitting in our home, pick up a new cool hobby that is going to bettering yourself and those around you.
Jackee: Yeah, well you can try and grow any mushroom like a shiitake or whatever the white ones are at the store. I think that the key here is getting back to the plant and having a relationship with something outside of your phone, especially the stuff that fuels you because again, we forget that immunity starts with well, what you eat, the quality of what you eat and the stress level around what you’re eating. To bring it full circle-
Of course. All right, well, Siobhan, thank you and thank you to the Grow Sisters and Blessed Farms and for just being a fabulous female, or as my friend, Flora, would say a “Na-Na”. You really represent behavior for younger women, and even older women, to emulate and I thank you for that. Outside of being female, just a craftsperson is super amazing so thank you. Thank you for being on the show. And, where can people find out more about what you’re up to lately?
SD: We’re pretty easy to find. Type in TheGrowSisters.com. That’ll lead you to any of our social media platforms. TheGrowSisters.com is the best place to come check us out. Our website. We have created a large community there as we were being shadow banned on some of the other social media sites, so you can find all of our content on TheGrowSisters.com. Thank you so much, Jackee. It was such an honor to get to be on Delic. I’m absolutely starry-eyed that I get to be here because I’ve been listening to your podcast and you are just opening the eyes of acceptability and I just really applaud you for that.
This is not easy. It’s going to be a long road. However, it is a very needed position that you’re filling here and I just love you for it, sister. Thank you. Thank you, thank you for everything that you do and I’m bummed that I don’t get to see you next month, but I am very much so looking forward to seeing you August 8th and 9th.
Jackee: Thanks, doll. I mean I’m going to receive your compliment. I’m going to say thank you and we’ll talk soon. Mad love. All love, one love.