Very rarely do I let a budtender’s spiel persuade me to buy a certain strain, but solicited advice is always appreciated. A new strain (new to me, anyway) called Lemon Cap was on my mind as I headed to Northern Lights Cannabis Co. in Edgewater, but after a quick conversation with the budtender, I was instead dreaming about strawberries.
Strawberries & Dream, the ripe sativa my budtender was hawking, is a sativa-leaning strain from wholesale grower LoCol Love, one of my favorite retail breeders in Colorado. The Boulder-based operation is responsible for some of Denver’s best cuts of Alien Rock Candy, Bear Dance and Lucinda Williams, so my interest was piqued. The budtender wouldn’t stop talking about LoCol’s breeding program, which is tailored to high elevations, dry air and other Colorado climate conditions. After looking at the bulbous, glow-in-the-dark buds of Strawberries & Dream he presented, it was hard to argue.
Although very similar in lineage and name, Strawberries & Dream and Strawberry Dream are different strains. Strawberry Dream is bred from Strawberry Cough and Blue Dream, while its highfalutin’ cousin demands an ampersand and is bred from Pipe Dream — a hybrid of Blue Dream and Bio-Diesel — instead of Blue Dream. Strawberry Dream is slightly easier to find on the street, but for me, the effects of both Strawberry strains are virtually identical, keeping my mind on a steady uplift as anxiety and stress melt away. The smells and flavors differ, though. Strawberry Dream follows the Strawberry Cough mold, with sweet, heavy scents and flavors of sugary strawberries, while Strawberries & Dream has more tart, skunky notes, from Pipe Dream’s Haze background.
If you’re lucky enough to come across either version while shopping for an active sativa, take the plunge. The views on your hike will pop, the music in your headphones will be more motivating, and household chores will go by that much faster. Northern Lights is the only shop around Denver that I’ve found carrying either strain so far, and LoCol Love didn’t respond to a request for a list of dispensaries where Strawberries & Dream is currently sold. But if it’s already made its way from the Front Range to Denver, expect to be see more soon.
Looks: Like many LoCol Love strains, Strawberries & Dream is completely dusted in tiny trichomes and packaged in chunky, dense buds shaped like a fist or a collection of soap bubbles; cuts have a bright-green color and stout indica nug structure.
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Smell: Strawberries & Dream might disappoint those expecting Strawberry Cough’s trademark syrupy-sweet berry flavor: Blue Dream dominates the smell up front, with subtle, creamy scents of berries rounding it out. Strawberry Dream, however, has much more berry and sugar scents, with less skunky notes.
Flavor: With Strawberries & Dream, a tart, rubbery sweetness similar to that of blueberries starts on the side of the tongue, with candy-like hints of strawberries. Users have also reported nutty and woody notes in both versions.
Effects: Despite little difference in smell and taste, both of these cousin strains carry energizing effects that are easy to manage in small doses, but their potency can make the high too racy and distorting for low tolerances. If consumed correctly, the energy lasts long and has a soft comedown, making both strains a safe sativa for daytime and activity tokers. Minor mental anguish such as anxiety and stress, as well as eating disorders and exhaustion, have been treated with the Strawberry Dream strains.
Commercial grower’s take: “I’ve heard of LoCol Love’s, but haven’t seen either cut around Denver that much, if it all. I’ve thought about bringing it into the grow before, but I haven’t talked to anyone else who has it yet. The yields would have to be right, and I expect they are, with those Blue Dream and Strawberry Cough genetics behind it. The nugs are pretty compact and round, so I doubt it stretches so fast, like Strawberry Cough does.”
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