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Recently I received a dispensary recommendation from my partner in cannabis critiques, Terr Thompson. Owing to the fact that — when it comes to our preferences — I’m into flower and he’s more of a dabber, he suggested I check out Living Rose Wellness for some power flower that ranks high on the Springs green scene charts. I didn’t sleep on this suggestion, and I don’t recommend you readers do either, as I found his words of potent praise to be on point!

Living Rose is a quaint dispensary (with an easy-to-miss drive), but as soon as I stepped out of the car, I could tell this was going to be a good trip. A strong skunky aroma filled the air and easily made its way through my mask. The caretakers I came across that day were particularly cool and conversational, and directed me to some Holland’s Hope when I asked what strain was currently the house favorite. Not familiar with the name, I did a little digging and found this to be quite the resilient plant. While not typically known to test very high in THC, according to Leafly, Living Rose’s Hope clocked in at a whopping 31.4 percent, so it was certainly speaking my love language.

The fluffy nugs had shelf appeal, nicely frosted with some large ’chomey colas ripe for trial by fire. The bouquet and ensuing palate play were on the subtler side, the heaviest hints being those of cedar overlaid with a peppery spice, underlaid with a slight pop of lemon — a selling point the budtender had highlighted. That limonene coyly lingers in the top chords and finishes the fragrance off with pinches of Pine-Sol-esque notes that make the overall subtlety of the aroma — beyond the earthy woodsiness — somewhat alluring.

Since I’d tried a new dispensary and a new strain, I put on some Anouk and let her smooth, melodic song “It’s a New Day” lead the way to the Holland’s Hope I had packed. And as the track reminded me that “we’re still waking up to beautiful music, and a life without purpose is no life at all,” I threw on my critic’s cap and fired the flower with hope in my heart (and throughout my system, come to think of it). 

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While the bud may have burned a little fast, owing to some fluff, those puffs proved to be more than enough to get the job done.

Holland’s Hope hits you with a very mellow, relaxed high. Not overly heavy at all; it is extremely chill and yet potent enough that you can definitely feel the effects. The budtender called it “Late for Work,” and admitted to having some trouble making it to work on time for a couple of shifts since this strain hit their shelves. It does hide a sneaky little buzz that hits you slowly, building into a deeper, headier high — so best to plan accordingly.

The year is drawing toward its inevitable conclusion, and seeing as this is my last review of 2020, it seems I may have just found a little hope after all. I simply had to go to Living Rose to find it. Anouk’s rhythmic verses echo as I write my own inevitable conclusion — have some Hope and “just go on and reach for what you want in life, ’cause it’s a new day.”