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BEACON Senior News - Western Colorado

Kush Gardens provides relief without the high

Aug 01, 2022 02:54PM ● By Ursula Nizalowski
 A former health care worker, Dawn Palmer witnessed the medical benefits of marijuana, especially how it relieved pain for patients with spinal injuries. This led her to open Kush Gardens, Mesa County’s first marijuana dispensary in DeBeque. 

The dispensary, located at 4550 Highway 6& 24, is larger than it seems. Customers show their ID upon entering the small lobby, where they can peruse the menu of products displayed on a TV screen. 

Past a set of swinging doors is a circular area of glass displays and shelves with a vast selection of flower, concentrates, edibles, pipes and vapes. Friendly staff—called “budtenders”—can answer questions and offer qualified advice about affordable, top-of-the-line products. 

Marta Albee, 61, has paid regular visits to Kush Gardens since it opened. She said the staff are really nice, professional and very helpful if you’re new to using marijuana products. Her brother-in-law, 80, said some marijuana products help him sleep better and tinctures ease his neck pain. 

For older adults who are reluctant to use marijuana products out of concern of “getting high,” they can still experience the plant’s medicinal effects by using cannabidiol (CBD), a non-addictive compound in cannabis. 

At Kush Gardens, seniors get a 15 percent discount on all products. Palmer noted some products that are helpful to seniors, such as Mary’s Medicinals’ transdermal compound, a spot-specific balm featuring a blend of both CBD and THC that allows for much deeper penetration that traditional cannabis topicals. She also recommended Elite Syringe Cannabis Oil, which is often used for pain relief by breast cancer patients, and Apothecanna Body Spray, which relieves muscle pain. 

Palmer is proud of her staff’s knowledge of products and superior customer service. Staff undergo continuous training and attend classes to stay up to date on compliancy laws and regulations. They “follow the rules and do it well,” said Palmer.

In 2015, Palmer’s sons Jesse and James, became co-owners. Having raised her family in DeBeque, Palmer believes it’s important to give back to the community, which is why staff members occasionally take shifts off for trash clean-up days and other forms of community service. 

The town’s 5 percent excise tax on marijuana products also benefits DeBeque. A recent report showed an increase in the town’s funds from $515,000 in 2014 to $3.5 million in 2020, which is largely due to dispensaries like Kush Gardens. 

All purchases must be done in cash only. Orders can also be placed at and picked up at the dispensary.