For our Concentrates Issue we wanted to highlight the flower behind some of our favorite hash. Secret Lemons by the Archive crew is one of the most pungent and unique cultivars we’ve come across – and it especially stands out as rosin – so it’s no wonder that the crew has been bringing home awards with it up and down the West Coast.
We talked to Adam Bush, head of Archive’s in-house garden, about what makes this plant so special. “Mostly it’s a pain in the ass,” he jokes. It’s not exactly an ideal flower for extraction. The resin has a greasy quality that insists on the coldest temps when working with it. Collection is a mess and washing the bags that separates the trichomes from everything else is an added chore after every run. “We’re soaking and cleaning bags the moment we’re done with the wash,” Adam reveals. “It’s just all worth it. There’s nothing else like it.”
This flower earned the moniker “secret” when Adam grew it out in the garden without a nametag, to get an unadulterated opinion from the crew. As the flower developed, they started referring to the nameless plant in the corner with the heavenly scent “the secret.” This one stuck around. It wasn’t long before they were filling rows with Secret Lemons.
The buds are bright green with a pleasant density, but we aren’t really here for the bag appeal. The scent on the other hand, is off the charts. So many cultivars in the past have claimed to smell like lemons, but this one actually does. The base note is pure lemon essential oil with all of the woody funk of an actual lemon grove – and just as pungent. Adding it to the grinder reveals big, boozy, limoncello flavors alongside that first whiff from a bag of marshmallows. Top all of that off with hints of cedar and pine sap, and you have a complex citrus flavor that impresses from the moment we crack the jar to the last hit of the joint.
There are big trade-offs to running cultivars like this in the garden when you have higher-yielding strains that don’t keep you working late in the hash lab. Adam says it best: “The only reason it’s worth it for us to wash it is because it tastes so damn good.” Let’s call it a labor of love … and lucky for us, the crew at Archive’s Portland dispensary keeps this one in rotation.
This article was originally published in the July 2022 issue of Oregon Leaf.
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