Leadville, an incorporated settlement with the highest altitude in the United States, is also home to the highest-grown cannabis in the world. Nature’s Spirit grows some of the finest plants at an elevation of 10,200 feet—nearly two miles above sea level. Steve Sipes, co-owner of the dispensary, claims that the high elevation, along with organic farming, helps the plants flourish. The product itself seems to back this assertion, as the buds are some of the biggest and powerful I’ve ever seen.
According to Sipes, the ride has been long and difficult. The grow operation of Nature’s Spirit started in 2008 as a medical facility and evolved from a small business with almost nothing to a powerhouse that delivers its product as far as Boulder. Nature’s Spirit changed to a dispensary once recreational cannabis was legalized. “There wasn’t a need for a medical dispensary. We lost all of our patients, so we went 100 percent rec,” Sipes told me.
To produce such high-quality cannabis, everything Nature’s Spirit uses is natural and resourceful in an attempt to get back to the roots of growing and eliminate opportunities to create waste. Both the soil and the food are organic and the well water uses reverse osmosis, returning half the water used back to the well. They utilize electricity efficiently, heating one room with the lighting from another. Ventilation is also simple. “The plants get more fresh air because we’re cooling the building with the outside air,” Sipes explained.
Even their quality control is natural. Rather than contaminating their plants with pesticides, they use ladybugs as a natural predator and deterrent to keep the damaging pests away. Nature’s Spirit won’t sell anything that falls below 20 percent THC, ensuring that their customers see nothing but the cream of the crop. The dispensary has frequently narrowed their strains. In the last six months, they have eliminated half of their strains because of insufficient THC levels and a low yield.
The team at Nature’s Spirit takes pride in the particularities. They experiment with creating unique strains and all of their biggest buds are hand-trimmed for an ideal aesthetic. In addition, they only sell their strains in places under the Nature’s Spirit name. It would be in every cannasseur’s best interest to learn more about this dispensary.