Here’s a breakdown of what will become legal and what will remain illegal:
—Buying or selling cannabis seeds or cannabis products.
—Marijuana gifting schemes, for example, giving away marijuana with the purchase of another item.
Christopher Haynie, who co-founded Richmond-based CBD, hemp, and home grow products store Happy Tree Agricultural Supply advised
Virginians thinking of navigating the new regulations to grow the plants at home to proceed with clarity and caution.
The new law does provide at least one legal loophole for interested parties to get started.
Del. Chris Head (R – Roanoke County) called the bill “a train wreck.”
Republicans, who overwhelmingly opposed the bill when it initially went through the General Assembly, railed against the latest version.
It will not be legal for that “gift exchange” to happen in public.
How does one grow marijuana without first breaking the law to acquire the seed?
“What we don’t want in Virginia is for people who think they’re doing the right thing to inadvertently break the law and get in trouble for it,” he said. “It’s incumbent on us as responsible adults now that cannabis is legal in Virginia to follow the rules. I’ve never been much of a rule follower, but a lot of us have been waiting for this for a long time, so we’re not going to mess it up.”
Katz said, to be in compliance, they needs to be out of public view and out of reach of children. Plus, each plant needs to be labelled with the owners name, state identification number and a disclaimer that they are for personal use only.
“There was no appetite from some to allow dispensaries to do that because the rationale is they didn’t want them to have a leg up on the business of recreational marijuana,” Herring said. “Honestly, I lost on that one.”
“It can burn down houses and apartment buildings, between the lights and dehumidifiers needed to run all of this, it pulls a lot of power,” Anderson said. “That’s I think another reason the state of Virginia didn’t go huge. Four plants is plenty. It makes it so people can do it safely.”
“People have to read the fine print”
“You have to be careful when you’re ingesting it to make sure it doesn’t have mold on it. That can make you really sick,” Anderson said.
Now, the law has changed and Netzel is among those hoping to grow at home as a cheaper alternative. Currently, she said she pays about $800 per month to use cannabis for her condition, not including the cost of periodically renewing her medical card recommendation.
“Everything you need…except the seeds”
“It’s very frustrating that we don’t have a direct legal path to acquiring seeds,” Ickes said. “That is going to lead people down the road of finding seeds that are not legal and there may not be a safe way to do that.”
“People have to read the fine print. We’re going to do our best to educate people but we’re not going to not enforce the law,” Katz said.