Today, marijuana is legal for medicinal purposes in more than half of the United States, and the latest polls indicate the majority of the nation supports ending marijuana prohibition nationwide. According to legislation-tracking website Ballotpedia, decriminalization initiatives could appear on the ballot in 11 states in 2016, including Michigan.
Detroit's Seeds & Strains Novelty Seed Shop, which opened earlier this year, is one of the many local businesses poised to reap the benefits of the shifting political tide. This shop has the distinction of being Detroit's first to sell seeds, so marijuana users are able grow their own medicine.
"It's pretty new, but I have been a stern believer in it most of my life," says owner Maize Mikho. "It's nothing new for me. I'm not saying that I grew before then, but I've always been an advocate for it way before the mainstream came on."
The store sells seeds from established breeders like Cali Connection, MTG, Moxie seeds, and others. Why grow your own marijuana? With the assortment of strains available bred for a variety of traits, customers can grow their own plant with the right levels of THC or CDB to suit his or her needs.
As for the level of difficulty, Mikho says there's a learning curve, but the barrier of entry isn't high. "It's a seed just like every other seed you're used to popping in and growing," he says. "It takes a little bit of know-how and you're there."
While seeds are the specialty, Seeds & Strains has other items like soil and lighting fixtures. They are happy to direct customers to other stores in the medicinal marijuana community for help with hydroponics, lighting, and other needs as well. Mikho adds that Seeds & Strains Novelty Seed Shop will only sell to medical marijuana cardholders. But if you don't have one yet, Seeds & Strains' knowledgeable staff can help direct you to how you can obtain one.
Mikho, who says he follows marijuana politics, says he believes Michigan could be close to being one of the next states to legalize marijuana. "Michigan has taken leaps and bounds over other states," he says. "You take out the black market when you allow patients to connect in a safe environment."
Indeed, Seeds & Strains provides such an environment for customers to come in and ask questions. The business is located next to the Shake and Bake dispensary, and both share a fenced-in parking lot. "This is a business," Mikho says. "We're not wearing hoodies in the back of an alley or something."