In The News

Customer Review

The Herbal Alternative dispensary is the real deal!! I am a long (long)term cannabis supporter and user and The Herbal Alternative Dispensary is the real deal. It doesn’t get any fresher than this!! Oliver gave me a tour of the process and blew me away. It is the only dispensary that I have been to that everything is processed in house(everything)none of the plant is waisted. So you can purchase the freshest of anything from the precious plant. “The Herbal Alternative” well They Know How To Grow!!! I have traveled the West Coast, across the desert, to the Rockies visiting dispensaries and “The Herbal Alternative” hands down know what they are doing. Excellent quality, excellent staff, so really if you want the real deal treat yourself saves loads of time trying to find that special favorite stop, or if you are from out of town head straight to “The Herbal Alternative” This is the place……Pure love for the plant…Thanks for the tour Oliver I will never forget it!! Just look for their awesome flag (if the wind is blowing)can’t miss it with compliments of a grand view!!! See you soon , Sending some love from…. Tammy from Austin


Tour our facility

Enjoy this video tour of The Herbal Alternative’s marijuana cultivation facility.  These beautiful plants are grown year round in 100% organic soil, producing the most clean, potent and aromatic buds of your favorite strains.  Using only all natural grow supplements, and never any chemical pesticides, we let nature work it’s miracle, then carefully hand trim and cure the flowers to the perfection you can find on our retail shelf.

Come see it for yourself, we offer free tours everyday!

The Herbal Alternative, 1531 Lebanon Road, Cortez, CO.

Recent Ask The Grower Q&A

Cloning… What time of light is best to clip for clones?

A.  The best time to take clippings is during the vegetative stage to reduce stress and likely hood of inducing hermaphroditic tendencies or cause unwanted stretching.  Though you can clone a plant all the way to the end of its life cycle which is called reverting from clone, it is harder and takes longer to clone and becomes vigorous the longer the plant has been flowering.  The vegetative stage is any time 18-24 hours of light.  There isn’t a big difference in time of day you actually take the clipping.  Water your plants right before taking clones for best results.

Recent Ask The Grower Q&A

Q. What is the best way to recover from heat shock?

A.  If you are indoors raise your lights up a bit higher, mist your plants with water before the lights come on and as they are going off.  If you are outdoors use shade netting.  Supplementing with small amounts of silica and or kelp have been known to help plants recover and adapt to heat better.  Supplementing your atmosphere with CO2 helps plants adapt to hotter climates as well.  The other thing you could add to the water while misting your plants is Epsom salt as it will help with any deficiencies that are usually created by hot conditions as little as 1/4 tea spoon per gallon works well some people suggest more, but if you are misting consistently then i’d go with smaller amounts, say if you are misting once a week then 1 teaspoon per gallon.  Just don’t go overboard on trying to many things at once, the best thing to do is keep is simple and be patient tell the heat off the summer breaks. 

Recent Ask The Grower Q&A

Where to Begin?

Q:  Made my first trip from AZ to your store last week! completely satisfied with the quality!

I’ve been thinking of starting my own little garden but have no real experience growing marijuana plants. Not sure where to begin. Could you suggest just a basic set up?

Do you use filtered water for your plants?




A:   Thanks for the visit!  For beginners I suggest getting two books that will make life easy.  The first is George Cervantes Marijuana Horticulture: The Indoor/Outdoor Medical Grower’s Bible and the Second is True Living Organics by The Rev.   As far as equipment I suggest a 400 watt metal halide, if you can afford it I’d go with a digital ballast, but  magnetic ballasts are fine too.  Make sure you find good solid genetics to grow, its a very important factor in having success.  Yes you will need to get at least a basic carbon filter, for simple and cheap you can get a RV carbon filter at a hardware store that will screw right on to a garden hose, or you can upgrade and find KDF 85 filters that not only remove chlorine but remove fluorides and chlorimides as well from city water which can be detrimental to organic grows.  You can even get reverse osmosis filters which are a bit more expensive and you are using a lot of water in the filtering process, but its pure water.  I suggest using high quality organic soil and nutrients such as the Fox Farm Happy Frog Line.  The other thing if you can afford it I suggest buying a grow tent which keeps any messes and humidity contained inside the tent and won’t ruin anything in your house.  The other extras you may need is a small fan and ducting to help cool the light and one oscillating fan to keep air circulating across the plants.    The books I suggested above go into great detail about everything i just talked about and can help you make very informed decisions on how you want to set up your grow for your own wants and needs.  The biggest thing is don’t let any set backs stop you from learning and continuing moving forward the best medicine is growing your own.  Good luck on your grow journey and feel free to ask questions and share pictures of your progress.



Recent Ask The Grower Q&A

Growing Question

Q:  I have only 1 plant female, of which I am growing for seeds. The buds are currently stenchy like strong lemon, ? best way to harvest for seeds? Outdoor in vegas, I am wondering if i should sacrifice my seed plan to endulge, seeds are now white solid, when to pick


A:  From Truck:

Hello Larry,

I would wait tell the seeds are dark and tiger striped.  Another method is to pinch one or two between your fingers.  If its hard they are good to go.  If they squish or crush most likely not ready.  The longer you weight the better the seeds will be.  If you want to smoke it you got to separate the seeds, just like in the good ‘ol days of shwag weed.

Your Friend,


Recent Ask The Grower Q&A

Curing Marijuana to Smoke

Q: I have a plant that has produced flower that is crazy grapey, like a grape jolly rancher, after 10 days of dry time and a few days of curing and burping..  I am scared that it will lose the grape flavor in the cure process.  Any recommendations on how to better preserve or develop certain flavors during the cure process?

A: Other than growing, curing is the most important step in getting good quality cannabis to smoke. Please know that relative humidity inside and outside the jar and how dry or not dry your bud is will greatly overall change each time and depending on the time of year and moment to moment weather patterns.   The best advice i can give is keep following your nose. The stems should snap before jarring to cure. More burping more often in the first 2 weeks of curing 3-4 times a day, 30minutes to a couple hours open depending on your feel for humidity and overall need to dry vs just let the bud breath and let out what ever has been off gassed in the curing process.  The second two weeks it can be once or twice a day.  After a month you should have fully cured bud.  Stored properly in a glass jar out of light the bud should be good for long term storage after 30 days.  Most weed is like a fine wine, cured for 3-6+ months you have something very special.  If it starts to smell like grass its too wet, pull it out and let it dry out more.  If it doesn’t smell or seems to not be coming out fully use a humidity packet.  Follow this link for more information on the humidity packet and their idea on curing.

In The News

Giving Back to Our Community

What a wonderful feeling it is to be able to give back to the community, and to reassure any concerned citizens of Cortez that we are truly here to support kids, not hurt them.

This month we were able to make a generous donation to the local elementary school, a donation that will no doubt make a difference in supporting teachers and improving student education locally.  And this is only our first step!  We are exciting about moving forward with a plan to partner with local businesses in order to donate a fully implemented student computer lab to Mesa Elementary as well.

Below is a thank you letter from Mesa Elementary. But the real thanks goes out to all of our loyal customers, it is their support that has allowed us to do this.

Stay tuned for more good news!

Garrett Smith


Article in Cortez Journal

Mesa Elementary would like to thank, owner Garrett Smith and general manager David Pozzi of The Herbal Alternative shop, for graciously supporting Mesa Elementary teachers in their endeavor to improve student discourse in the classroom.

The Herbal Alternative donated monies to purchase all the books needed for our teachers to conduct a book study on classroom discussion in math. The book is significantly helping teachers foster vocabulary development for students while teaching kids to articulate their thinking in problem solving. The Herbal Alternative shop also generously donated, enough money to purchase 2 more chrome books for Mesa Elementary. Mesa Elementary staff and students truly appreciate the generosity of The Herbal Alternative shop supporting our students’ education.

Roxanne Stevens



Recent Ask The Grower Q&A

Growing in Hawaii

Q:  I’m not able to grow in an in-closed environment and must grow outdoors in a residential area in Hawaii. Everything goes after my plants. What is an effective spray for my plants to eliminate and or repel most or all insects that I can use daily and still have safe smoke? I used to use dish soap but the ingredients have changed and the soap burns the plant now at any effective level like one drop of soap per gallon of water.


A:  Aloha friend and fellow grower! You may not want to spray every day since you are in such a humid environment already, unless you have a system for keeping the morning dew off your plants or after rains when the buds are starting to harden, you don’t want bud rot or other fungus problems. You never want beads of water sitting on your plant can act as a magnifying glass burning holes in the leaf under direct sunlight.  A leaf blower is real handy for getting all the water off easily and quickly each morning or after rains.


I have bugs all over the place, in my soil and on my plants.  Its a actually a good sign of biodiversity in an ecosystem, true bio organics at work.  Just don’t allow one bug to proliferate and take over, when a pest or any thing over populates it brings disease to the plant and soil.  You just want to keep pest population balanced through spraying or introducing a predator to the ecosystem that will attack them naturally and restores balance.  Lady bugs and predatory nematodes are the two most reliable in natural living pest management.


As far as treating your plants with a “spray”, you can spray the plants as many as every three days to as  to as little as once every two weeks depending on how bad your issue is and how long it takes to get things back into balance.  Best times to spray is two hours before sunrise, or dusk, right when the sun hits the horizon as its setting.  This allows time for the plant to dry off to avoid photo burn.  The products of spray i recommend and i use, is ORGANICIDE (fish oil) and Neem oil.   Use one ounce of Organicide and 1/2 tea spoon of the Neem oil you have per gallon of water.  P.H. the water to 6.0 first and shake the mix tell its totally solutionized…. this takes minutes of vigorous shaking…. but its the only way it will ensure you will get the results you want.  Warm water (85F*) is important too or the oils will solidify in cold water and not be affective.  Keep shaking or mixing the solution throughout the spraying process to ensure an even and consistent spray.  Drench the plant as thoroughly as possible, focusing  on the undersides of the leaves is most important, then the main stalk, and branches getting the entirety of the plant. You may want to spray the area around your plants too, the soil and any other surface area that can help create a barrier of protection.  Spray with just water in between treatments and the last two weeks before harvest to help ensure you have rinsed off any residues.  The sun or high intensity light does cause oils to off-gas/volatilize in 7- 14 days which is why you have to always re-apply oils.  So if you don’t rinse them off with water the oils should naturally leave the plant by then end of harvesting process. Thanks for the question.