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The 5 Signs of Top-Shelf Weed

Low-grade and top-shelf weed are worlds apart. Optimally, high quality cannabis is grown from strains with good genetics, then harvested and trimmed by experts. But there isn’t an exact science for finding it, and the differences can be hard to tell, even for pros. 

‌You can find clues by smelling the bud, observing its shape and appearance, and feeling it between your fingers. Here are our tips for how to tell premium weed apart from low-quality “shwag.” 

It Has a Distinctive Smell

The aromas of premium cannabis will vary depending on the terpene profile of each strain. But top-shelf weed tends to be pungent, sweet, and floral — while still smelling fresh. 

Good cannabis flower should have that distinctive musk that makes it unmistakably weed. The strong scent of top-quality, or “dank,” weed will also be difficult to hide in your pocket, even if you’re trying to be discreet. 

It Has Plenty of Trichomes

Trichomes are the tiny, sparkly, crystal-like hairs that coat the surface of good bud. They hold the compounds that produce the powerful effects, aromas, and flavor of weed. Under a microscope, they resemble pretty white mushrooms. 

A high concentration of trichomes doesn’t guarantee that the nug will deliver the effects you’re looking for. However, top-shelf cannabis will always have a visible, thick, and frosty coating of trichomes. 

Its Colors Catch Your Eye

 You can read a lot into the colors of a cannabis flower. Strains, when produced well, should all have a vibrant, healthy green color. But you simply won’t be able to ignore top-shelf buds and their array of hues. 

The best cannabis you can get will usually be deep green with hairs that range in color from bright orange, red, deep purple, or blue. You may even find the buds themselves have a blue or purple tint. 

It Has a Sticky, Spongy Feel

Top-shelf weed should be slightly sticky to the touch — because of the presence of trichomes —but not moist. And when you squeeze the bud gently, it should feel a little spongy between your fingers, but not soft. 

If your flower is wet or soft, there’s a higher chance it’ll contain mold or mildew. The buds and stems should be easy enough to break apart. At the same time, completely hard, dry, or crumbly weed may be a sign of an unpleasant taste. 

The Flower Should be Fluffy but Dense

Top-shelf cannabis usually has dense and chunky buds. Each nug should also be carefully trimmed in a way that perfectly shapes and showcases the original bud shape and avoids any loss of trichomes. 

Unfortunately, more and more companies are using trimming machines for faster product turnaround. But cannabis flower requires a human touch. Premium bud will feature a minimum amount of fan leaves, with maximum chunky flower material, trichomes, and hairs intact. 

Visit our Denver Dispensary

Now that we’ve taught you all the signs of dank bud, you’ll know how to tell premium weed apart from middle and bottom-shelf products. So why not put your new skills to the test? 

‌‌Swing by our Denver dispensary, where you can buy top-shelf cannabis from the best growers in Colorado. For a preview of the flower we currently have on sale, take a look at our Diego Pellicer menu.

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