Purple Chemdawg (Cannabis review)

Produced by: Green Goddess Gardens

Lab report: 30.4% THC, 0.39% CBD

Price: $ 12 a gram

It’s December in the Umpqua Valley. Cool winter storms bring forth enormous lush ferns, usnea, and mushrooms from the ancient forests, as waterways swell several times over. Between rains, breathtaking clear skies stretch endlessly above. Rivers rush below, calls of wild turkey and coyotes dot the soundscape, and large migrations of ducks and geese flock overhead.

The seasons make a powerful shift, marking the end of another cannabis harvest. The final buds have been snipped into their bins, jarred up and are ready for market. Now, farmers across Oregon take a well-earned moment to rest their tired bones.

Southern Oregon is home to some of the worlds most epic cannabis production, in terms of both scale and quality. I would love to take a moment of your time to showcase a personal favorite.

Looks and jar appeal:

If you ever find yourself shopping for herb, here’s a tip. When you smell a jar and something clicks deep in the back of your mind, just buy it. “The Nose Knows” is not just a cheesy sales line — it’s the truth.

When I open a jar of Purple Chemdawg, a lightly pungent, rubbery smell meets halfway with an earthy grape musk. Pushing a button buried in my subconscious, the rubbery smell I expect, but the grape musk? Purple perfection. Think Dimetapp, if Dimetapp grew from rich soil.

Precious nuggets seem to drip a sappy amber. Distinct from the lightly colored “trichome forest,” which denotes quality to many, the resin here is deep in character. I see classic Chemdawg traits, combined with skillful greenhouse cultivation. It may miss the mark for some, passing this jar over for one with more visual “pop.” I give aesthetic trends little to no credence, letting my internal compass decide. To me, these buds are beautiful. Variety is the spice of life, after all.    


Everything I want from Chemdawg ’91, and everything I expect from The Purps. This herb is the best of both parents, and then some. Coming from such royal stock, this says a lot.

From a vaporizer, a refreshing grape and citrus burst catches me off guard. I had my vaporizer set to it’s lowest heat, and still managed to bogart the grape experience in one hit before passing it to my partner. The pine forest, humus and oily notes make their way to the fore, setting the stage for an aftertaste which lingers about as long as I can fight off the munchies.

Rolled in a joint, flavor combines into something intoxicatingly greasy and full of character. Burning perfectly to ghostly white ash, clean inputs and careful cure are evident. The taste of this joint reminds me of high-quality kif, my favorite form of cannabis. I imagine this flavor is, partially, why so many smokers fell in love with Lebanese hash. Looking at you, over-40 tokers.

From the bong I enjoyed the flavor so much, my taste test only left enough herb for the most comically undersized joint I have ever rolled. Oops! Lung expansive smoke translates to rubber, followed quickly by deep, deep earthy tones. We’re talking “Journey to the Center of the Earth” here. I find myself spelunking into caves of flavor, this smoke has serious nuance in the low tones. Finally, the grape-gooey flavor creeps in, setting a sweetness around the edges – like mortar around bricks of earth. I know this flavor is complete as I become subdued, happy and hyper-aware of the contents of my mouth.


I’d like to take a moment here to address high-THC varieties, before you go out hunting for some. My goal is to spare you from any negative side effects, including – but not limited to: a compulsive need to fortify your home from zombies, rearrange furniture, and/or vacuum your blinds at 3:00 AM. Your neighbors will thank me.

Just as looks alone define very little of my cannabis experience, so do THC numbers. Some of my favorite varieties are in the 15% THC range, and not every 30% THC flower is enjoyable for me. Again, trust your compass. If you desire more of an effect, you can always have more herb. It seems simple, but remembering your agency here is empowering.

From anxious in a crowded room to public speaking with ease: this herb has been known to give me superhuman abilities. I think of this cannabis as an all-purpose tool. Purple Chemdawg not only obliterates my stomach issues, it also enhances my experience into something truly lovely. Rather than reducing the effect to simply “daytime or nighttime,” I would stress the utility here as universal.

One hit from a bong and things improve from the ground up. Appetite and mood elevate while my body slows, mental and physical tensions relax to an ultimate chilling out. Finding motivation here is not immediate, but absolutely attainable. If directed, the cerebral effects can grow to tempest-level energy, something I would typically avoid if it weren’t such a positive trip.

Creative pursuits are the perfect outlet.

With friends, I become talkative, spacey and intensely cheerful. If you catch me enjoying this alone, the good mood could be mistaken for simply sedated and mellow. Eyelids droop and cheeks feel prone to laughter. This effect lasts for a surprising duration, while I suspend my inevitable snack attack with whatever catches my attention. For the aforementioned public speaking, I would take a micro-dose: maybe one or two small hits from a vaporizer. For the weekends relaxation, bong bowls and joints of this are in order. Don’t mix the two up, or public speaking may turn into public babbling.

Final thoughts:

This earns the designation: Desert Island Weed. If I had to grab a few jars for an endless stay on the proverbial Desert Island, Purple Chemdawg is on the list.

While most herb seems to have a limited scope of applications, this is Swiss Army dank. Grown by a dedicated wife-and-husband team in the Umpqua Valley, this small-yielding, ultra-precious variety is the definition of craft. Experience, discipline, reverence, and of course love, all helped bring this organic greenhouse herb into full fruit. Amazing work.

For the time being, this variety is exclusively available at Cherry City Compassion in Salem. If you find yourself in the central Willamette Valley, check and see if this hidden gem is in stock. I’m especially excited to watch the future of Southern Oregon farms like these as the market grows.

Happy New Year, and thanks for reading my love letter to sun-grown weed. If you need me, I’ll be celebrating with a nice bowl of Purple Chemdawg, eagerly awaiting the returning spring.

Wylie Atherton can be reached at Wratherton24@gmail.com and on Twitter at @wratherton

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