(Kathryn Scott Osler, Denver Post file)

Cannabist Q&A: Grow room tour, penny stocks, strain hunting website

Welcome to our Ask The Cannabist column. Clearly you have questions about marijuana, be it a legal concern, a health curiosity, a Colorado-centric inquiry or something more far-reaching. Check out our expansive, 64-question Colorado marijuana FAQ first, and if you’re still curious, email your question to Ask The Cannabist at askthe cannabist@gmail.com.

Hey, Cannabist!
I will be traveling to Denver for a medical conference and would like to visit/tour a grow room during my stay. The reason for the grow room tour is really out of pure curiosity, since I have never visited one before. It is simply tourism.  I have sent emails to three “weed tour” companies asking information regarding a grow room tour. Only My420Tours answered, saying that there will be no tours next week, but I could have a private custom tour starting at $2,500 a day. Of course, anyone in reason finds this price exorbitant. Would you recommend/advice another option for a grow room tour? –Rockwool Rubberneck

Hey, Rockwool Rubberneck!
Yes, $2,500 seems like a lot of cash to fork over to satisfy a simple curiosity. It’s not the most exorbitant cannabis tour I’ve heard of, though!  So Mile High offers a signature three-day marijuana tour (includes a grow room visit) that costs $38,000 for two people.

I double-checked with JJ Walker, CEO of My420Tours about your quoted tour price. Not mentioning your specific quote, Walker said the starting cost for a private tour is $800 for 4 hours.  A  single-day custom tour by Roots and Cannabis Culture Tours is $420.

One option is to join a scheduled tour group.  Tour packages and prices vary widely. Here’s an Ask the Cannabist recap of a few Colorado cannabis tour companies:

For grow tours, My420Tours offers a weekly Saturday tour of a dispensary and grow room for $150. Spiro cannabis tours has a half-day outing that includes a stop at cultivation facility for $399. Cultivating Spirits, a Summit County cannabis tour company, includes a grow room stop on their Day Excursion for $500.

Shane Martin checks out the grow room at 3D Cannabis Center in Denver. (RJ Sangosti, The Denver Post)
Shane Martin checks out the grow room at 3D Cannabis Center in Denver. (RJ Sangosti, The Denver Post)

Another option is to visit a recreational marijuana center that features observation windows looking into grow rooms.  3D Cannabis Center has a large viewing corridor and  Lodo Wellness has a window too. MMR of the Rockies in Frisco has a viewing window to its clone room, but it is accessible only to those who have a Colorado medical marijuana card.

As a general rule, growers are cautious about the amount of foot traffic inside the production grow rooms.  Indoor plants are more susceptible to pests and diseases, so the more people who walk through a grow, the bigger the risk for contamination to the plants.  Realize it’s a big deal when a grower opens production rooms to tour groups. XO

Two views on pot tourism
Lessons from Amsterdam: Beware the aftermath of pot tourists, Colorado
Activist: Marijuana tourism should be welcomed in Colorado, not feared

Hey, Cannabist!
How should I invest? I am not a large investor. Penny and OTC stocks would be more suitable for me. Where do I go? –Bhang Backer

Hey, Bhang Backer! 
For investment questions, my go-to expert is Troy Dayton, CEO of The ArcView Group, the angel investing group for marijuana businesses.  Dayton has both a recommendation and warning for investors in penny or over-the-counter (OTC) stocks.  First, Dayton suggests joining  420 Investor, which is a monthly subscription service with investment information on pot stocks.

Dayton also cautions OTC investors. Basically at this time, according to Dayton, “Public cannabis companies are overvalued, and I recommend people hold onto their money.”

Other investment options shared by Dayton (and mentioned in previous Ask the Cannabist columns) include investing in ancillary marijuana businesses, such as software, soil or security companies. Also, since marijuana businesses do not have access to traditional banking services yet, many marijuana businesses get investment money from friends and family. XO

“High risk, high reward”: Who is penny pot-stock wizard David Weiner?
Pot stocks trading: GrowLife suspended by SEC; Advanced Cannabis returns

Hey, Cannabist!
I know what I want.  I am looking for a few specific strains.  Rather than spending arduous hours perusing a gazillion website store menus that may, or may not, accurately reflect current inventory – or crisscrossing the city in a futile automobile search – it would be real cool if a website had a dependable clearing-house inventory capability.  Type in a strain – voila – a list of stores that currently have it on their shelves pops in to view.  Is there a website in existence that will direct consumers to vendors that currently inventory specific strains?   47 years ago I never would have believed I would be venting one day about “professionalism and convenience” in cannabis advertising.  Great job, all! — Computing Cola Consumer

Hey, Computing Cola Consumer!
Indeed, it is a great idea to make strain hunting as easy as possible for consumers. It’s mind boggling the number of strains available. The best resource I’ve found for searching shop strains is Leafly.com. Type in the strain you’re looking for in the search box and a list of marijuana centers is generated.

Determine whether the center is a recreational licensed center, accessible to adults over 21, or a medical dispensary for patients holding a Colorado medical marijuana card (although many centers are licensed for dual sales).  I recommend calling the center to make sure your desired strain is currently in stock. If it’s not, ask for an estimated arrival date for the next harvest. This website should make your strain hunting a lot easier. XO

Map: Colorado recreational marijuana shops and medical dispensaries