Following the Spirit | High Times
Cracking open a jar of Pink Boost Goddess is an olfactory wandering into a field of mint and not-quite-ripe strawberries. Terpinolene, a terpene found in the Jack and Haze strain families, provides a hint of orange rind alongside a woodsy floral aroma from the terpene ocimene. For Katie Jeane, this particular type of cannabis has continued to be a guide. Jeane has cultivated Pink Boost Goddess for the past seven years through her farm Emerald Spirit Botanicals and appreciates the insight it provides.
“What I’ve found is it helps me to go, in my life, into these kind of trickier, more challenging places and gives me a larger perspective to be able to find solutions,” she says. “That is unique for me, that this medicine offers that, and it offers it from a joyful place.”
Jeane, a former preschool teacher from Mendocino County, was called to work with the cannabis plant by her internal spirit guide. Following her “soul path” and listening to the insight she gained from beyond everyday consciousness led her to initially begin growing cannabis that was high in the cannabinoid CBD. After working with different cultivars (Dancing Sun, Equinox, Crystal Hope, and Harmony Rose) to bring them into a balanced 1:1 THC to CBD ratio, she was looking to explore other cannabinoids with unique medicinal properties and came across THCV.
THCV, or tetrahydrocannabivarin, has shown promise in animal studies for its ability to decrease appetite and speed up metabolism. These qualities mean the cannabinoid may help treat conditions like diabetes and obesity.
“THCV has been shown to restore insulin sensitivity in diet-induced obese mice models and [reduce] obesity by modulating the metabolic processes,” a 2020 study in the Journal of Cannabis Research reads.
Additional studies have also shown THCV has neuroprotective qualities and might be a promising therapy for delaying the progression of Parkinson’s disease. Unlike THC, which brings on the “high” associated with cannabis, a 2015 study in the Journal of Psychopharmacology shows THCV has a much more muted psychoactive effect.
“Because we were working with CBD there wasn’t necessarily this relationship to getting high like THC has, but [THCV] brings in gifts that cannabis has to offer in a different way,” Jeane’s son and business partner Joseph Haggard says. “I think what it’s doing for people is it’s bringing in a subtle difference in their cannabis experience. They’re not necessarily aware of what they’re missing, but they just like what it’s adding.”
Cannabis interacts with the endocannabinoid system so that our bodies can achieve homeostasis, or balance. Both Haggard and Jeane believe the best way to use cannabis as a medicine is through balanced cannabinoid ratios.
“When you look at the endocannabinoid system—which is a system inside our body which is responsible for balance—it’s responsible for homeostasis,” Haggard explains. “And so if we’re going to feed that endocannabinoid system—and that’s what we’re doing by using cannabis we’re essentially supplementing that system—we want to be supplementing that system with balanced cannabinoid ratios. That’s kind of our intuition.”
Cultivating a Goddess
Pink Boost Goddess is a cross of Black Garlic, Boost, and an unknown Goddess. The cultivar was created by Linda Lu and came to Jeane as a seed from friends. The first plants Jeane grew only had a small amount of THCV, but throughout the years she has bred the plant to show higher ratios of the cannabinoid.
With her plants now expressing as much as 11% THCV, Pink Boost Goddess has been recognized for its unique attributes. It won first place in the third-party certified sungrown category of the 2021 Emerald Cup and took home the highest THCV content award and regenerative farm award that year. In 2022, Pink Boost Goddess won the Emerald Cup’s sungrown category again and was honored with a Gold Ribbon in the California State Fair Cannabis Awards unique category.
Pink Boost Goddess is a medium-sized plant with long branches that Jeane describes as “dancing arms” with a quality of flexibility and movement. The leaves are relatively narrow, and the buds have magenta and pink pistils and are generally ready for harvest after eight weeks of flowering.
“Of course, it’s really good medicine for many people, but it’s like a special gift to me, a special medicine,” Jeane says of her long-term relationship with the cultivar and her belief that the plant is repaying her for all the years of love and support.
Founded in 2015, the Emerald Spirit Botanicals farm is located in the Noyo River Watershed near Willits and is where Jeane lives with her son and his wife Catherine and Jeane’s other son, River. The area of the farm where the male plants are kept is called both the “vision quest garden” and “origin.”
“It’s in the forest in native soil. It’s more shady. [The male plants] don’t get as much water and care and whatnot; they’re much more in the wild,” Jeane explains. “In that place they’re much more connected, without interference, to the earth. Sort of like when you go out on a vision quest, you’re more connected to those rawer elements.”
For Jeane, keeping her male plants in this wild environment is a way for them to tune in to natural rhythms and “receive the gifts from the future or receive the gifts that need to come down for the future or to go out to the future.”
“The medicines are evolving on the planet,” she says, “and the medicines need to be evolving on the planet because we are evolving on the planet and the medicines are here to help us.”
In accordance with honoring the medicinal properties of the plant, cannabis and other crops on the farm are grown with regenerative farming practices that align with natural systems and work to improve the environment.
“I definitely feel cannabis is a medicine and it needs to be respected and, you know, I want it to be honored and for me, it’s honored when it’s able to be in its natural environment which is in the earth and having sunlight shining on it,” Jeane says.
For Haggard, growing outdoors is “harmonized with the larger cosmic rhythms that create the seasons.” He says growing the male plants in the way they do at the farm allows them to develop the resilience and vitality of wild plants, important attributes to bring to the seed lot for future plantings.
“There’s this belief that the more that you work closely with a plant, there’s a consciousness within the plant and that plant gets to know you over time,” he says of his mother’s long-term work to refine Pink Boost Goddess. “And as you’re growing and breeding and working with it because you’re taking care of the plant, the plant, energetically, wants to be taking care of you.”
This story was published in the October 2022 issue of High Times Magazine.