An example of DJ Short's Flo from a different Colorado dispensary (Ry Prichard, The Cannabist)

Flo (marijuana review)

Strain Theory: There's an inoffensive quality to this strain that bores me to death.

Flo (DJ Short)
$12/gram, max purchase of $40/eighth at Mile High Recreational Cannabis, 1705 Federal Blvd. in Denver.

For me, Flo is the “Eh, let’s just order pizza” of strains when you’ve seen too many jars and need to walk out with something. If it were a re-run on TV, it’s an episode of “Friends” that’s all Phoebe. Sure, it’s fun and light, but you really wanted a good Chandler zing. Why do I keep buying this?

It’s chaos at Mile High Recreational Cannabis, hours before kickoff as fans clamor around jars before returning to the sea of orange and blue with a little green. It’s not the one-on-one service I’m used to, jammed between 20-somethings to look at strains that don’t reflect what I had scouted on their online menu.

“No Blue Dream left? OK, I’ll take some Flo.”

Next to Blueberry, it’s arguably the biggest strain that DJ Short has ever produced. He’s never spun a record professionally — although I’m not sure DJs still do that — but he is an extremely influential cannabis breeder who takes great pride in this Purple Thai and Afghani sativa hybrid. Available through online seed banks and basically anyone who sells clones, it has taken over the Denver market.

Most iterations have the trademark purps that you’d see if you Googled Flo and scrolled past the Progressive spokeswoman, which is what I ended up with instead of the light green and bright orange hair version that I prefer. The vaunted purple tends to grow wispy, but these buds are tight and covered with resin glands, so I can at least take solace in knowing it is a decent expression of the genetics.


Read more Cannabist strain reviews: Grandaddy Purple, Triple Diesel, Girls Scout Cookies


The problem is all in the smell, which leads to problems in the smoke. Most notably, the lack of anything discernible. Good Flo has a nice sweetness behind the pine notes, almost like powdered sugar on a rosemary beignet. This Flo, on the other hand, falls flat as I break it up and whiff away. “Generic weed smell” is not what I’m looking for.

When using nutes — short for nutrients — there’s a requisite “flushing” period needed to get chemicals and salts out of the plants. If done improperly, some claim they can taste exactly which line of plant food was used with alacrity, a skill I’ve never honed. The smoke in this Flo lacks flavor and is excessively harsh, a quality I’d generally attribute to a poor flush.

At its best, Flo is a great substitute for your morning coffee, providing a boost in energy and mood. I used to recommend it to older patients who weren’t looking for extreme pain relief or a severe high. Basically a baby aspirin to start your day. It’s not particularly engaging mentally, which is great for those looking to avoid more paranoia-inducing sativas. This was not Flo at its best.

After three generous puffs to start the day, I started concocting ideas for a breakfast hash with the random foods available at the Snowmass condo we rented for the X Games. I prepped my bacon and veggies and smoked again, as cooking high is great and I was definitely not high enough. I finally reach a mild buzz, but that’s usually accomplished in half the time. I’m not a stoner’s stoner, and I’m more than fine with that. It saves me money on herb.

Money which I unfortunately spent on Flo.

There’s an inoffensive quality to this strain that bores me to death. It’s the training wheels of pot, something I’ve outgrown but know that I won’t crack my head open if I take it out for a spin. There will always be a market for Flo, especially with so many out-of-staters to bamboozle. I, however, will be accepting applications for a new backup strain.