Flower power: Richmond cannabis dispensary now able to sell buds and joints

Green Leaf Medical now offers 18 strains of dried marijuana flowers for sale under its own brand. (Photos courtesy of Green Leaf Medical)

After months of only being able to sell oil-based cannabis products like edibles and vape cartridges, the Richmond region’s only licensed dispensary can now sell a more traditional form of marijuana.

Green Leaf Medical (stylized gLeaf) kicked off sales of smokable marijuana, both dry whole flower (also called bud) and pre-rolled joints, at its South Richmond dispensary last week.

Adult use of smokable marijuana was legalized in Virginia in July, which paved the way for Green Leaf to expand its offerings. The company already sold its smokable marijuana in Maryland, Pennsylvania and Ohio, where it also operates.

From its 82,000-square-foot Richmond facility at 2804 Decatur St., the company now offers 18 strains of dry whole flower and pre-rolled joints for sale under its own brand. Green Leaf sells an eighth of an ounce of dry flower for $65.

Phil Goldberg

Green Leaf co-founder and President Phil Goldberg said the introduction of smokable marijuana allows it to cast a wider net for local customers, both those whose ailments may respond better to the new offering and those who buy marijuana illegally.

“One strain or product may work for one person and not work for another,” Goldberg said. “It’s important we provide many routes of administration because we want to convert the customers who are buying in the illegal market into the legal market.”

Green Leaf is the sole state-approved medical cannabis processor for Health Service Area 4, which includes the Richmond region. It can only sell to registered and prescribed customers.

State law allows it to have up to five satellite retail dispensaries in the region to supplement its dispensary that operates at the same Southside facility as its Virginia-based cultivation and production operations.

Green Leaf expects to open its first satellite location in Short Pump within two to three weeks, followed by a Carytown location in 90 days, Goldberg said.

Colonial Heights is on deck for a dispensary, too. Goldberg declined to share the exact location and said talks with Colonial Heights officials regarding how cannabis fits into the locality’s retail zoning rules were still ongoing.

Pre-rolled joints for sale at Green Leaf Medical.

“We’re hoping to work with Colonial Heights and explain where we see things differently,” Goldberg said.

The company has plans for a couple more dispensaries. It has scouted the Midlothian and Ashland areas to round out its permitted dispensaries, Goldberg said.

Green Leaf was acquired by New York-based cannabis company Columbia Care in a $240 million deal that closed earlier this year. Goldberg was formerly CEO of Green Leaf.

Columbia Care holds the medical cannabis processor license for Health Service Area 5, which covers eastern Virginia.

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Bruce Milam
Bruce Milam
1 month ago

I suspect within a month we’ll be seeing the first privately legally grown crops reaped and “distributed” throughout Virginia. Will there be a black “green” market?

Michael Morgan-Dodson
Michael Morgan-Dodson
1 month ago
Reply to  Bruce Milam

Uhm there is large black market that includes locally grown buds; organic ones from Colorado and California, cheap stuff from Mexico, and everything in between. Been around for decades and decades. Heck in the City everyone knew about the “Blunt” house on Blanton that was Chuck Richardson kid’s set up.

Matt Merica
Matt Merica
1 month ago

$65 for an 1/8 is robbery. Enjoy being the only “legal” show in town for now, but seriously, you aren’t doing ANY medical MJ folks a favor at those prices. Ridiculous.

Laura VanNess
Laura VanNess
1 month ago
Reply to  Matt Merica

I agree about the pricing! My Dr wants me to try this so I can get off of or reduce my narcotic use for chronic pain control. Sadly, my narcotic Rx costs a lot less than the MJ. What is the right choice when society wants to reduce narcotic consumption yet the alternative is unaffordable ??

Matt Merica
Matt Merica
1 month ago
Reply to  Laura VanNess

Maybe you could find a strain of MJ that works and then grow your own at home? They should have two price points – medicinal and recreational

Ashley Smith
Ashley Smith
1 month ago

PoC are still in jail for selling, but let’s make the industry a monopoly and let a certain demographic profit in piece. Genius.

Craig Davis
Craig Davis
1 month ago
Reply to  Ashley Smith

That’s a fair description if this was the only change to Va law that had been made. A lot happened since the medical statute was passed and the legal sales that begin have protections built in to insure minority ownership and investments.

JORDAN TUCKER
JORDAN TUCKER
29 days ago
Reply to  Ashley Smith

The sad thing is you probably actually believe that comment

Kelvin Barnes
Kelvin Barnes
1 month ago

Is there a website for Green Leaf Medical? Can anyone over 21 year of age come and make a purchase there.

Jackson Joyner
Jackson Joyner
1 month ago
Reply to  Kelvin Barnes

Are you familiar with Google?

Michael Kane
Michael Kane
1 month ago

This was rigged from the beginning. They should have allowed ANYONE to get a permit and sell it legally.
Instead same old same old – rich guys manipulating the system. Total B. S.
Just plain RIGGED – Avoid this place.
Look up this guy – the whole thing was set up from the jump. Follow the $$$$….

Matt Merica
Matt Merica
1 month ago
Reply to  Michael Kane

Will NEVER get a penny of my money

karl hott
karl hott
1 month ago

The black market will grow further as the price of legal cannabis increases. The black market in California has exploded since that state legalized cannabis, albeit because it was taxed so heavily (thus inflating prices statewide).

Debi Cooper
Debi Cooper
1 month ago

The price is crazy! I agree, they want to limit opioids but I can get a months supply of those for $8. Through my insurance. The way I see it, if my dr has prescribed MMJ then my medical insurance should pay for it! Especially since the prices are so much higher than “street costs”. $65 for 1/8 oz is ROBBERY! I thought street costs were high for “good stuff” but even the best is only $320 oz. as opposed to $520 oz “legally”! Ridiculous!

Jack Coleman
Jack Coleman
1 month ago

Way overpriced!! Ridiculous!! I get OZs for $150 & you guys charge $65 for an eighth !!?? That’s CRAZY !! DESPERATE PEOPLE I GUESS. Thank God for ARIZONA