April 13 2011 12:00 AM

330 S. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Lansing Hours: 10:30 a.m.-6:30 p.m. seven days a week (517) 574-5075


Casa de Verde (Spanish for “green house”) is a small, unassuming dispensary just west of downtown Lansing. It is easy to overlook, as it is set back from the road like most other businesses on MLK.

The shop offers medicines, clones and a limited variety of medibles. Optional memberships are $10, good for discounts on products. I’m told the fees will go toward a local nonprofit organization, although this process was not yet formalized on a recent Sunday.

Patrons enter a small lobby complete with a few chairs, a newspaper rack and a service desk. The employee was quite affable and conversational about today’s strains and clones. He also explained how to make cannabutter, which is produced differently than THC oil. Both are cooking agents for medibles, but the oil has more consistent effects than cannabutter.

About 30 different strains sat behind the counter — some of which I hadn’t seen before — including Cinderella and three different “Widows” (blue, white and black). Grams ranged from $10to$20 each. It was difficult to choose given the wide selection and my limited knowledge of some of the strains.

I opted to vaporize the $10 Blue Widow and was pleased with the cool, simple, clean taste of the medicine, which left me feeling subdued and pain-free. This sensation lasted for several hours before I felt the need to medicate again. Blue Widow is a California-native hybrid of Blueberry and White Jackson Widow, with indica and sativa properties and notable cerebral sensory effects.

Casa’s limited selection of medibles includes the classic chocolate brownie, Rice Krispies Treats and peanut butter cups. All were appropriately labeled with ingredients and a notice that the Health Department did not inspect the home kitchen. I went with a peanut butter cup and, although the employee warned me of its potency, I don’t think I was fully prepared for it. Effects came on very slowly and peaked after about four hours. However, my body felt it for about eight hours, which means consumption is a time commitment and activities requiring superior reasoning or motor function are discouraged.

This shop is a good option for patients in west Lansing interested in a wide range variety of strains. Do your research and know what you want or need before visiting, as its dozens of strains can be perplexing and a decision time-consuming.