Before recreational marijuana was legalized in my home state, purchasing dried flower was a bit difficult but not impossible.
While I was always able to find someone willing to sell a baggie of weed, there was no way to be sure of the quality.
Nothing was labeled, tested or third-party verified. I had no idea of the origin or potency of the flower. Having access to safe and legal bud has been such an improvement. I have become rather particular about smoking only top-shelf flower. I am willing to pay more to avoid shake or trim. I don’t want to find any sticks, leaves or seeds among the products. I insist on dense and mature buds with plenty of THC potency. I’ve educated myself on how to tell good weed from bad. The flower should be a vivid green color, potentially with flecks of blue or purple. The surface of the bud should be covered in plenty of mushroom-shaped, crystal-like trichomes. These trichomes contain the cannabinoids and terpenes and ensure flavor, potency and both recreational and medicinal benefits. I also look for fiery orange pistils that make the weed appear almost hairy. If the hairs are white, the bud was harvested prematurely. If they are brown or grown, it’s probably old. I make sure there is no sign of any mold or webs. If possible, I like to sniff the weed before purchasing. Fresh dried flower has a wonderfully pungent aroma. It should never smell musty or like hay. I also check labels. The THC and CBD content is provided and sometimes the terpenes are listed as well.