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12 best marijuana strains for the 2021 holidays



Green Wednesday is the Wednesday before Thanksgiving when everyone realizes, ‘Oh man, I have to hang out with my family tomorrow. I better buy some weed.’ So it’s a good time to run down to the store and load up.

The result? The second-largest sales day of the year behind 420—50% more than an average day, according to analysts at BDS Analytics and LeafLink.

During Year Two of the pandemic, we’ve all earned some Me time. Schedule the staycation, because Leafly Buzz #11: Holiday Edition is here.

Independently reported without fear or favor, your weed sommelier highlights the top of the crops west of the Rockies.

Order up. Load a bowl. Set your phone to airplane mode, and inhale. You’re welcome.

leafly buzz data grinder

Data Grinder: Strain trends

Weed strains go up and down in popularity like rappers. Every month is different. Data Grinder breaks it down.

● Gelato 41 ⬆️ +18%

● Strawberry Cough ⬆️ +6.6%

● Wedding Cake +/- 0.0%

● Runtz ⬇️ -8%

Gelato #41

Gelato terps will never go out of style. (David Downs/Leafly)
Gelato terps will never go out of style. (David Downs/Leafly)

Win Thanksgiving with this all-American dessert strain, up 18% month over month in search interest, thanks to its creamy, fruity, sweet dank mix of Sunset Sherbert x Thin Mint Cookies. Gelato #41 comes from breeder Jigga and the Cookies fam. Pair with some philosophical cartoons like The Midnight Gospel.

Strawberry Cough

Strawberry Cough. (DavidDowns/Leafly)
Strawberry Cough. (DavidDowns/Leafly)

An oldie but a goldie finds new friends this month; up 6.6%. Strawberries and hazy grass terps go great with a beach clean-up and your buddies, giggling the whole time. Strawberry Cough is Strawberry Fields x Haze, from an unknown East Coast grower, popularized by celeb grower Kyle Kushman.

Wedding Cake

wedding cake marijuana strain
Wedding Cake from Bay Area CRAFT Delivery. (David Downs/Leafly)

Consummate the evening with a phat slice of America’s number one Cake. 2019’s Leafly Strain of the Year was also #1 in 2021, budding not an inch month over month. The people have spoken and they want sweet, earthy, vanilla cookie terps, plus chest-biting THC. Wedding Cake can be either Animal Mints x Triangle Kush, or GSC x Cherry Pie—it depends.


Ridgleline’s 2021 outdoor Runtz is the way. (Photo by Redwood Country Photos, Courtesy Ridgeline Farms)
Ridgleline’s 2021 outdoor Runtz is the way. (Photo by Redwood Country Photos, Courtesy Ridgeline Farms)

The hype on this Leafly Strain of the Year 2020 cools a bit, but Runtz remains a superb way to get zooted during some well-earned downtime. Zkittlez x Gelato yields syrupy, sweet tropical fruit over thick, dank, creamy cookie—so yeah, it’s good. Especially the award-winning Ridgeline cut.

leafly buzz new strains

New in the strain database, and on shelves

Every month, Leafly adds dozens of the most-searched and most-stocked new cultivars to its strain database. Here are four new heaters.


Zlushi takes super-Z terps and adds Mimosa. (David Downs/Leafly)
Zlushi takes super-Z terps and adds Mimosa. (David Downs/Leafly)

There’s no shame in hogging these top-shelf Zkittlez terps. Tony Mendo and The Original Z team conjure up the olfactory sensation of the original, iconic, frozen treat. The Original Z team tells Leafly that Zlushi is a cross of Z3 x Mimosa. This super tropical hybrid goes great with days or nights.

Carbon Fiber

Get some Phinest+Cannarado Carbon Fiber in your diet. (David Downs/Leafly)
Get some Phinest+Cannarado Carbon Fiber in your diet. (David Downs/Leafly)

Here’s how to disappear completely. Expect deep, dank cookie funk, finishing with grape drank from this new strain. Phinest in California is growing Colorado breeder Cannarado’s clone-only Biscotti x Cookies & Cream x Grape Pie. Carbon Fiber offers new technology to win the space race behind your face.


It’s ZMO-time: Tony Mendo's Z3 x GMO. (David Downs/Leafly)
It’s ZMO-time: Tony Mendo’s Z3 x GMO. (David Downs/Leafly)

A Hall of Flowers’ 2021 best in show Tony Mendo and The Original Z team took their Hindu-tinged Zkittlez cross ‘Z3’ to the savory strain of the moment—GMO Cookies. The resulting ZMO keeps things pungent and biting, with that chem stank. The nighttime is the right time for this racy, heavy indica-hybrid splurge.

Violet Fog

Soak up some precious rays on a lazy Sunday under a layer of PDX Organics’ velvety Violet Fog. Fuel, mint, and grape spirit you away, thanks to breeder Compound Genetics’ work with Cannarado.

Compound swirled Khalifa Mints into Cannarado’s Grape Gasoline. Now you know who really controls the weather.

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New on dispensary shelves—Forbidden Runtz by Freddy’s Fuego, WA

Runtz crosses are so hot right now. Tiki Madman’s Forbidden Runtz. (Courtesy Freddy’s Fuego)
Runtz crosses are so hot right now. Tiki Madman’s Forbidden Runtz. (Courtesy Freddy’s Fuego)

Get cozy, warm, and then a bit naughty with a bite from this complex fruit. Forbidden Runtz from Freddy’s Fuego offers even more fruitier Z terps with a dash of gas and cookies. Bred by Tiki Madman from ​​Forbidden Zkittlez x Runtz. Share a late-night date night joint for the win.

Rocketing up the charts—Beam Me Up Scotti by Insane, CA

Bag game on fleak. Biscotti to back it up. (Courtesy Insane)
Bag game on fleak. Biscotti to back it up. (Courtesy Insane)

Twist up some doinks with your tightest crew members. B-Real from Cypress Hill’s got his own legit Biscotti for your body. That Cookies with a dash of OG depth, courtesy of breeder Jigga and the Cookie fam.

leafly buzz best sellers


Ballin’ out—Caps Frozen Lemons by Billo, CO

Top-shelf Capulator terps in Colorado. (Courtesy Billo)
Top-shelf Capulator terps in Colorado. (Courtesy Billo)

Lemony fire for deep yoga poses and scary tarot readings. This awardwinning splurge from Billo in Colorado is breeder Capulator’s cross of Freezer Burn x Lemon Fire. Caps Frozen Lemons Tastes of Lemonheads, lemon cleaner, lemon slushie, and haze.

Ballin’ on a budget—Light dep everything by various brands, USA

Grab your jars, the flood’s here. Rimrock Hell’s OG from The Green Cross, SF (David Downs/Leafly)
Grab your jars, the flood’s here. Rimrock Hell’s OG from The Green Cross, SF (David Downs/Leafly)

Grab your jars—the US is awash in affordable light-dep pot. Farmers report wholesale prices are down 60% year over year. The least you can do is stock up and help smoke through the oversupply.

Pre-game Thanksgiving the OG way with bargain cuts of Hell’s OG from Rickrock Farms in Calaveras County, CA. It’s OG Kush x Blackberry for appetite and inner peace.

leafly buzz high note

High Note

We always like to end on a high note. Something from the frontier of THC maximalism.

Fidel’s Hash Hole, various strains, CA

Fidel offers 2021’s infused pre-roll to beat. (via Fidel’s)
Fidel offers 2021’s infused pre-roll to beat. (Courtesy of Fidel’s)

Show up and show out at the holiday function with this beast of an infused pre-roll. Fidel’s Hash Holes in California run average $100 per joint—why? There’s 1 gram of hash rosin running down the center hole of this joint.

And the flowers always feature some primo collaboration, like Golden State Banan Animal Mints x Dolce & Banana and Garlic Cookies x Garlic Truffles. That’s how you end the party on a super high note.

How do I get mentioned in the Buzz?

Just be undeniable. If you’ve got the terps, we’ll find you. Mentions cannot be bought. Each month, Buzz sources include:

  • Trying samples
  • Dispensary shopping
  • traffic data
  • Grower interviews
  • Leafly staff and reader tips

Buzz back issues

Get more fire flower shopping ideas from Leafly Buzzes past

What’s bussin’? Shout out faves in the comments below.

David Downs's Bio Image

David Downs

David Downs directs news and lifestyle coverage as the California Bureau Chief for He’s written for WIRED, Rolling Stone and Billboard, and is the former cannabis editor of the San Francisco Chronicle, as well as the author of several cannabis books including ‘Marijuana Harvest’ by Ed Rosenthal and David Downs. He co-hosts The Hash podcast. TW: @davidrdowns | IG @daviddowns

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As California prepares to raise marijuana tax, a top cannabis CEO calls for tax revolt – Cannabis Business Executive




As California prepares to raise marijuana tax, a top cannabis CEO calls for tax revolt – Cannabis Business Executive – Cannabis and Marijuana industry news

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Hot holiday edibles warming up US’ 2021 winter season




Being full is a holiday season rite of passage. Be it tender cuts of turkey, heaping helpings of stuffing, or an oven’s worth of freshly baked pies, the array of tasty goodies vying for our limited stomach space at this time of year can feel downright overwhelming. That goes double for those of us who like to eat our cannabis but it appears our challenges are bound to continue thanks to a bevy of noteworthy new edibles currently available across dozens of legal and medical states.

Running the gamut from fast-acting gummies to heavenly twists of fudge to a tincture that clocks in at an eye-popping 1000mg THC per bottle, the top edible makers in California, Oregon, Illinois and elsewhere have risen to the challenge of keeping us merrily medicated throughout the holidays. To celebrate, let us loosen our belts and pour on the gravy with the following curated list of bestselling edibles to elevate your winter festivities.

California marijuana edibles

Hvy Grand Tincture (Heavy Hitters)

The heavy tincture (Courtesy Heavy Hitters)
Take that, 2021: The HVY, 1000mg Acapulco Gold tincture. (Courtesy Heavy Hitters)

Are you ready to take on the world’s heaviest tincture? That mighty distinction currently belongs to Hvy Grand Tincture from California legends Heavy Hitters. Boasting a seriously potent 1000mg of THC per 1-liter bottle, the secret sauce here involves the use of proprietary Liquid Trichomes that ensure every drop is bursting with the bright flavors of Acapulco Gold, the strain from which this tincture is exclusively distilled. Act fast to snag one of 500 limited-edition HVY Grand collectable boxes, available now.

1:1:1 CBN Tranquility Gummies (Kanha Gummies)

When you need a break from the holiday madness, look no further than Kanha. Winner of second place for “Best Edible” at the 2021 High Times Cannabis Cup Northern California: People’s Choice Edition, Kanha’s 1:1:1 CBN Tranquility Gummies feature a blissfully relaxing blend of CBN (5mg), CBD (5mg), THC (5mg), and melatonin (1mg). Completing this compelling recipe geared towards putting both body and mind at ease is a curated selection of calming terpenes and essential oils. With Kahna, it’s never been easier to chill.

Camino Sours (Kiva Confections)

I get my peaches from California. Kiva Camino Sours 2021 in Orchard Peach (Courtesy Kiva)
I get my peaches from California. Kiva Camino Sours 2021 in Orchard Peach (Courtesy Kiva)

California’s Kiva Confections is always cooking up something incredible. Originating as a chocolate-focused brand, Kiva has subsequently branched into all manner of sweet, infused treats. One of their latest smash hits is Camino Sours: a line of impeccably flavored gummies with tailored terpene profiles. For those seeking some uplift, there’s Watermelon Spritz. In need of a bit of balance? Camino Sours’ Orchard Peach to the rescue! All dosed at 5mg of THC per serving, these gummies will quickly become a mainstay in your pocket and a favorite of your tastebuds.

For California, see also: Froot

Oregon cannabis edibles

Huckleberry 10mg THC Gummies (Wyld Edibles)

First off, by supporting Wyld Edibles, you’ll be putting your dollars behind a cannabis company that’s made the effort to achieve carbon neutrality. That rocks! More relevant to the medicated set is Wyld’s award-winning line of effects-specific gummies in wild and mouth-watering flavors. Though it’s hard to go wrong with unique options like Elderberry and Pomegranate, the best of the bunch may just be Wyld’s Huckleberry gummies. Dosed at 10mg of THC per piece, these potent, sumptuous treats are taking the gummy game to a whole new level.

For Oregon, see also: Tasty’s Edibles, Winberry Farms

Careful, now

Edibles dosage chart: How strong is your cannabis-infused edible?

Washington weed edibles

Pink Lemonade Pioneer Squares (Craft Elixirs)

Available in a veritable rainbow of flavors, Pioneer Squares from Washington’s Craft Elixirs are the chewy, fruity candy of which cannabis dreams are made. Utilizing full-spectrum oils, Pioneer Squares have the added benefit of also being vegan, gluten-free, and kosher. In addition, each square also features a tiny piece of actual fruit, serving as the veritable cherry atop this masterful sundae of infused candy excellence. For an idea of just what Craft Elixirs can do with flavor, try their decadently citrus Pink Lemonade Pioneer Squares (10mg per piece).

Colorado infused cannabis

Strawberry Margarita 1:1 Fast-Acting Gummies (Wana Brands)

Wana Quick technology gets in your body faster. (Courtesy Wana)

Tired of waiting for your edible to hit? Wana Brands provides Colorado consumers with a great way to get all of the effects you’re looking for, fast, thanks to their line of fast-acting gummies. Wana’s emulsion technology ferries the THC in their gummies straight into the bloodstream immediately. The result is a cannabis high derived from delta-9-THC, as opposed to an edible’s more sleepy 11-Hydroxy-THC. For a smashing mix of sweet and salty, try Wana’s 1:1 Strawberry Margarita Gummies (5mg CBD, 5mg THC per piece).

Arizona cannabis edibles

Prickly Pear Lemonade OG Kush Stoney Gummies (Baked Bros)

Baked Bros is putting Arizona’s edibles market on the map. Voted “Best Edible in the State” by Edibles Magazine in 2020, this operation from two born-and-raised Arizonians even snagged first place in the “Edibles: Gummies” category at this year’s inaugural Arizona High Times Cannabis Cup. That award was bestowed on the company’s Prickly Pear Lemonade OG Kush Stoney Gummies, which contain a trio of active ingredients in the form of THC, CBD, and Delta-8 for a total of 10mg of cannabinoids per piece.

For Arizona, see also: Pure, Kiva

Florida medical edibles

Hybrid Watermelon Soft Chews (MÜV)

When it comes to edibles, things have to be done a bit differently in Florida. As a measure intended to prevent underage consumption, cannabis edibles are not allowed to contain any added colors. Fortunately, MÜV™ Medical Cannabis Dispensary from Colorado’s Wana Brands has risen to the challenge with a trio of effect-specific soft chews (Indica, Sativa, Hybrid, 1:1) that adhere to all guidelines without sacrificing an iota of quality when it comes to flavor and experience. See for yourself by grabbing a pack of MÜV’s Hybrid Watermelon Soft Chews (10mg THC each).

For Florida, see also: Trulieve

Illinois recreational edibles

Freedom Fudgies (Revolution Cannabis)

Sometimes there is simply no substitute for fudge. In the case of Freedom Fudgies, prepare to enjoy the equivalent of a super-infused Tootsie Roll courtesy of Illinois’ Revolution Cannabis. Sold in two-packs (50mg a piece) tailored to feature either Sativa or Indica effects, Freedom Fudgies represent a potent, delicious new entry into the pantheon of superb chocolate-indebted cannabis treats. Awarded third place in the “Best Edibles” category at the 2020 High Times Illinois Cannabis Cup, this organic, non-GMO, gluten free goodie is some truly chronic chocolate.

For Illinois, see also: Incredibles, Bhang

Michigan cannabis edibles

Ripple (Stillwater Brands)

Ripple (Courtesy TGOD Stillwater Brands)
A pinch of cannabinoids helps the holidays go down: Ripple by TGOD. (Courtesy Stillwater Brands)

Sure, sugar is great, but what if you’re looking to put your calorie count on pause when it comes to getting stoned? Michigan’s Stillwater Brands has an answer in the form of Ripple: a water-soluble, powered form of THC and CBD that makes dosing on the go a breeze. Available in multiple formulas (Pure, Balance, and Relief) and in a trio of formats (gummies, quick sticks, and powder packets), Ripple can be added to tea, smoothies, or taken directly on the tongue. Offering the ability to consume discreetly while also steering clear of sugar, it’s understandable that Stillwater’s Ripple is starting to make waves.

We told you so

8 ways to sober up from being high

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Zack Ruskin

Zack Ruskin is a freelance cannabis and culture reporter. His other bylines include the San Francisco Chronicle, The Nib, Vanity Fair, California Leaf Magazine and Variety. Follow him on Twitter: @zackruskin.

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Step Aside Alcohol, There’s A New Weedy Vice King In Town




Ever since Colorado legalized marijuana for recreational use back in 2012, it’s been no secret that it would create a financial windfall for both cannabis businesses, along with the State itself. A decade later, multiple other states have followed in the footsteps of the Centennial State in allowing their citizens to purchase cannabis in a manner similar to alcohol or liquor.

Although the assumption was that recreational marijuana sales would start off strong, experts couldn’t have predicted demand for it would be as high as it has been. Here are a few key indicators that reveal that alcohol is no longer ruler of the vice kingdom.

heres what happens when you mix marijuana and beer
Photo by BENCE BOROS via Unsplash

People Are Seeking New Alternatives to Alcohol

No one has been caught more off guard by the high demand for cannabis products than beer, wine and liquor companies. Sales tax revenue for alcohol has been surpassed by those of recreational marijuana. According to David Feldman, CEO of Skip Intro Advisors, a strategic consulting firm for up-and-coming cannabis brands, there are numerous reasons why tax revenue for cannabis has surpassed alcohol.

“Some states tax rates on marijuana sales are higher than that of alcohol, so this differential may partially reflect that,” he explained. “That said, it is an important milestone to see cannabis tax revenue exceed that of alcohol, as it appears more people are turning to cannabis as an alternative to more addictive products like alcohol and pain products.”

Numbers Don’t Lie

The idea that people are seeking alternatives to alcohol is demonstrated by the fact that only 60% of American adults reported drinking alcoholic beverages this year, which is down nearly 10% from a decade ago when that number was as high as 67%. Over the course of the past decade, the public perception of adult recreational cannabis use has shifted dramatically. That’s led to cannabis usage heading in the complete opposite direction of alcohol use, which is one of the main reasons it has surpassed alcohol in sales tax revenue. Research shows that roughly 22 million Americans use cannabis each month. 

RELATED: Marijuana Is Replacing Alcohol During The Pandemic And May Have Long Term Benefits

Further demonstrating America’s continued gravitation towards cannabis as an alternative to alcohol is that more studies predict that the rate of Americans who’ve at least tried marijuana will surpass 50% soon. Both Washington state and California are current examples of how nationwide legalization of cannabis could lead to alcohol playing second fiddle for good. California, for example, collected $369,028,000 in revenue from alcohol sales, compared to more than $1 billion in tax revenue from cannabis sales. The state of Washington happened to collect more than $229.4 million in sales tax revenue for cannabis products than for alcoholic products during the fiscal year of 2020. That trend shows no signs of slowing down.

RELATED: Alcohol Vs. Weed: How The Two Affect Young Adult Brains

According to data received from the Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Bureau, sales tax revenue from cannabis products nearly tripled those of alcoholic products. While total sales tax revenue from alcohol was around $18,500,00, sales tax revenue for cannabis products totaled more than $46,503,315. The question is whether or not these sales tax figures will remain the same after the market for recreational cannabis starts to mature.

Smoking Marijuana
Photo by Jamie Grill/Getty Images

Will Cannabis’s Reign as King Last as Long as Alcohol?

After prohibition ended, alcohol was the substance of choice for several decades. The peak of America’s alcohol consumption occurred during the mid-to-late 1970s when more than 70% of Americans reported being drinkers. In the near century after the end of alcohol prohibition, Americans were likely overdue for a new vice to catch their attention and subsequently their wallets.

RELATED: Cannabis Vs. Craft Beer — How’s It Going?

As marijuana prohibition is now in its final phases, a question that’ll boggle the minds of cannabis users for years to come is what will be the substance of choice that threatens the crown that marijuana took from alcohol.

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