Orange & Blue Magazine // Fall 2003 // Gainesville Green
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Gainesville Green isn't just a color.
Finally, we answer the burning question
about Florida's most renowned bud.


Jerry Lewis was having another one of his infamous telethons, this time here in Gainesville. The building was filled with the rings of phone calls from citizens eager to help stop muscular dystrophy. One group in particular was especially eager.

They placed a brown paper bag outside the building. Inside was $10,000 and a note that read: "Compliments of Gainesville Green."

What, you ask, could Gainesville have possibly stamped its name on that was so magical as to generate this amount of cash and this amount of generosity?


MATCH POT QUOTES -- Do you know every pot-related quote by heart? Test your knowledge with these audio clips.

ARE YOU A POTHEAD? -- Take the quiz to find out!

SMOKING ETIQUETTE -- What every smoker needs to know


NORML -- Visit this site to learn more about the proponents of the legalization of marijuana

CANNABISNEWS.COM -- Click here to visit the site that informs the public about all things cannabis

I'M ADDICTED -- Where to go and what to do to get help

DRUGS AND YOU -- Visit this site to take quizzes on personality, drug knowledge and consumption risk

THE ANTI-DRUG -- Parents. Find out how to help

SMOKING WITH STYLE -- Take this quiz to find out what you know about pot etiquette

ISSUES WITH THE LAW? -- Find out what to do if you've been caught with pot at

POTPOURRI -- Get the facts at


The explanation, according to Jodi James, executive director of Florida's Cannabis Action Network, is not some "cute" little story. Instead, this locally grown strain of marijuana, prevalent here about three decades ago, was "the thing legends are made of."

In fact, she recalls "pot in the trees, teepees, dancing, drumming, joints everywhere…"

Today, when you walk through Plaza of the Americas, you will probably find some free food from the Hare Krishnas and maybe a flier or two from someone advocating something. Back then, in the '70s and '80s, though, it was more likely that you would be handed a doob or spliff, not just a pesky flier.

Gainesville resident and Vietnam veteran Scott Camil remembers, "We used to sit in the Plaza of the Americas and smoke dope. It was no big deal."

Back then, people were free-spirited and so, apparently, was UF's faculty and staff. Love, peace and marijuana smoke filled the air.

The only problem those kids had was that most of the available pot was imported from Mexico. It was usually leather-brown or a dirty green mix, compressed into kilogram blocks—called bricks—and then wrapped in paper. The Mexicans would harvest entire fully-grown stalks of marijuana and compress the "fucking branches and everything," prepping it for transport across the border, according to Camil. Compressing everything, not just the buds, makes for some pretty shitty weed.

These kids were quickly becoming restless from relying solely on shipments of sub-par Mexican "dirt-rock" weed that would sell out in a week anyway.

What Camil recalls as the good stuff— Jamaican Rainbow, Colombian varieties and Panamanian Red— flooded Gainesville, too, but it simply sold out in a matter of days.

The only hope— the vital solution— was to grow it here in Gainesville. And that's exactly what the marijuana connoisseurs did.

And good lord, did they ever.

"The locally grown cannabis was green and fluffy," says James.

"No mystery to the name, the strain was very green and grown in Gainesville, thus 'Gainesville Green.' Gainesville Green was also [of] higher potency than the Mexican that most people were used to it at the time, so it was considered premium."

Given this, and the no-less-than amazing fact that in the early '70s pot cost about $120 a pound, the stuff was selling fast, spawning Gainesville's mass marijuana production. But the thriving business would not go unnoticed by area law enforcement. continued on next page>>