Some of us are too young to remember the days when you could smoke a whole joint without being blasted to the moon or passed out on the couch within 20 minutes of ashing it. We've only heard tales of such simpler times when sharing a joint at a concert was not only part of the culture but welcomed with the nonchalance of accepting a swig of water from a friend's water bottle. Now, this choice comes with a potential consequence — one that the founders of Dad Grass continue to righteously rebel against with their newly minted venture, Mom Grass.
Today's weed just gets you too damn high. In the last fifteen maybe twenty years, there's been this equivalence for potency to equal quality. We just simply don't think that's the case.
Ben Starmer, Dad Grass Founder
It's a line of CBD-centric pre-rolled joints and flowers that takes the ritual of smoking a doobie with friends to new highs of NOT getting you too high. Founders Ben Starmer and Joshua Katz understand the woes of cannabis enthusiasts past and present. That's why they've dedicated their brand to embodying the kind of weed your dad used to smoke, promoting the experience of rolling up a joint without any of the anxiety of overdoing it. "Today's weed just gets you too damn high," Starmer says. "In the last fifteen maybe twenty years, there's been this equivalence for potency to equal quality. We just simply don't think that's the case."
While they recognize the value of modern cannabis — the powerful effects of which are on par with that of medical-grade marijuana — for their brand and its newest extension, Katz and Starmer set out to create a product with a focus that goes beyond the high-inducing THC cannabinoid. "As soon as the recreational market came into being, then all the flower cultivars were being genetically engineered to favor THC over any of the other cannabinoids, including CBD," Katz says. These days, cannabis users practically need a degree in higher education to understand the ingredients that make up the joint they're smoking. If that sounds counterintuitive to the laid-back experience of packing a bowl to unwind after a long day, that's because it is. Katz muses, "Hey, can't we take it back to the times when you wouldn't get couch-locked and paranoid and completely anti-social?" Thus, Dad Grass was born.
Scientists call it the mother of all cannabinoids and we call it, of course, 'Mom Grass'.
BEN STARMER, DAD GRASS FOUNDER
What's the biggest difference between Dad Grass and Mom Grass you might be wondering? Dad grass provides deep relaxation, whereas Mom Grass provides a more focused kind of calm. The dominant cultivar in Mom Grass is CBG (Cannabigerol, a non-psychoactive cannabinoid) while Dad Grass's initial line of twoobies (two .75G hemp CBD doobies nestled together in a single tube), flower, and joints feature CBD as its primary ingredient. Katz goes on to describe the effects of CBG in relation to CBD as familial; a welcome analogy to contextualize all the jargon that encompasses the cannabis world. CBG exists as a precursor for other cannabinoids and is hailed as a building block for THC and CBD, which couldn't exist without it. "Scientists call it the mother of all cannabinoids and we call it, of course, 'Mom Grass,'" Starmer says.
As a novice to the world of cannabis compounds, I received quite an education during our conversation, with Katz and Starmer trading off translating the elusive science behind the brand into layman's terms. "If you select cultivars that are low in THC, then it allows those cultivars to be high in CBD or high in CBG," Katz explains, adding that, "It's not just a matter of being below the federally legal limit of THC, it's actually more about creating a well-balanced flower."
As I lit a candle, cracked a window, and dressed in clothes that I planned to immediately throw in the hamper to mask the stench, I was transported to a different time.
Avery Felman, R29 Contributing Writer
A well-balanced flower indeed. I've had a fraught relationship with Marijuana, as I've come to learn over the years that it's directly incompatible with my low simmering anxiety and often exacerbates the stress that the flower is ordinarily used to quell. When I tried Mom Grass, it was a different story. As I lit a candle, cracked a window, and dressed in clothes that I planned to immediately throw in the hamper to mask the stench, I was transported to a different time. Maybe not a friend's garage, like my Dad might have been, but to a nostalgic time when passing around a joint with friends was something to look forward to, not an experience you might come to quickly regret. To my surprise, not only was there no lingering stench, but I enjoyed the best effects of getting high — slowing down for the ritual and feeling at ease — without that sense of being totally out of control. Initially, I felt like something was missing. I could hold a conversation and every creak in the floorboards didn't leave me with an impending sense of doom. Then I realized, this is how it should be.
We don't see Mom Grass and Dad Grass as an either/or. You shouldn't have to choose between Mom and Dad. They might play different roles and they're not specific to genders and they work best actually together.
Joshua Katz, Dad grass Founder
When I recalled this experience to Katz and Starmer, they nodded knowingly. "The truth is everybody's body and physiology is different and everybody reacts a little bit differently to it," Katz points out. Clearly enthused about their newest venture, the duo expressed excitement to receive feedback from their other customers in order to provide a product that can be incorporated into their lives in a meaningful way. "We don't see Mom Grass and Dad Grass as an either/or. You shouldn't have to choose between Mom and Dad. They might play different roles and they're not specific to genders and they work best actually together." While Mom Grass and Dad Grass do have distinct differences, with Mom Grass being more of a body high and Dad Grass's effects translating to more of a head high, Starmer and Katz make it clear that they're not specific to gender. "Mom Grass is not just for moms or females, just in the same way that Dad Grass is not just for dudes," Katz emphasizes. However, with Mother's Day just around the corner, I can't help but think of a better gift for the moms in our lives than the gift of relaxed focus and clarity.
If you're looking for more evidence that Mom Grass's grounding effects make for an excellent introduction into the new world of CBG, their smokable quality goes right to the top of the list. With prices ranging from a pre-rolled 1 gram joint at a modest $10 to a five-pack that could easily be mistaken for a carton of American Spirits for $35, there's no going wrong with your choices. "Smoking it is still the most classic way of getting all the benefits, the easiest, and kind of the most holistic at the end of the day," Katz says, with Starmer chiming in, "It helps that it's also the most fun."
At the center of their brand is a humor that is sorely lacking in many other areas of our lives, including pockets of the weed industry. It's easy to get stuck on the very technical aspects of cannabis production and forget how it all began: with dads and dad-adjacent personalities toking in a basement and laughing about something they're very likely to forget a moment later. Starmer aptly notes, "If you're not having fun running a weed brand, especially one that's called Dad Grass, you're doing something wrong."
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