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Photo by Wyatt Early

Budtender of the Month: Crystal Johnson aka The Latin Diamond Princess

Cannabis brings out the better version of me, helping me focus on my career and further my knowledge.

Crystal Johnson truly experienced the benefits of medical Cannabis first hand – from utilizing the plant for help with depression and anxiety, to keeping her cervical cancer in remission for over four years. She embodies a deep passion for Cannabis and is committed to continuing to break the stigma surrounding it. As an Afro-Latina with Panamanian roots from her parents, Crystal remains grounded in her hispanic heritage despite having traveled around the world with her family. Make sure to chat up Crystal the next time you’re shopping at gLeaf in Frederick! 

Why do they call you The Latin Diamond Princess?
I love smoking diamonds and sauce. My favorite go-to is our (gLeaf’s) Grease Monkey diamonds, which are lovely and delicious. My go-to bedtime would be Southwest Stomper x Willie’s Wonder. I tried diamonds about five to six years ago, and it was actually the first Cannabis product I ever tried. I was struggling with depression and a patient recommended using concentrates. Ray Charles diamond was the first dab – and it put me to sleep for three hours.

What was it like growing up in a military family?
It was really fun. I traveled everywhere I can think of overseas: Berlin, Paris, London – and so many other places. Being Panamanian I speak Spanish, but it was really nice to learn different languages and I can still count to 10 in German and understand a little bit of the language. The difficult part was building lasting friendships because I was moving every four years, but seeing different parts of the world is what helped make me so friendly.

Were you exposed to Cannabis in other countries?
My parents took us to Amsterdam to take in some food culture, not knowing it was populated with Cannabis everywhere. It showed me how broad and exposed Cannabis was at an early age, and made me realize that Cannabis use helps people.

Does your family use Cannabis?
Growing up in the ‘90s was an era of D.A.R.E. and similar programs painting this awful image of Cannabis. As I started to get older I had anxiety, depression and cervical cancer, and my parents were exploring different medications because the Seroquel was making me imbalanced. My parents became all for it, given it could take me off of medications that were causing me discomfort. Believe it or not, my mom used the 1:1 Harmony Balm on her knees after water aerobics and loved it.

How does medical Cannabis help you?
I didn’t want to be on medication anymore, I couldn’t focus and would even break down crying in the middle of class. Cannabis has helped me with those things. I don’t have racing thoughts anymore that are fueled by anxiety, I don’t shake and can speak calmly and enthusiastically with confidence. Cannabis brings out the better version of me, helping me focus on my career and further my knowledge. Cannabis helped me eat and sleep when I was battling with cervical cancer.

What is your favorite infused cocktail?
I call it ‘Pineapple Express’ – which I made with a Pineapple Express flower crossed with Cereal Milk flower. I’ll typically infuse some pineapple Bacardi and simple syrup, add them to a glass with some pineapple juice, Sprite and grenadine for color, and there ya go – Pineapple Express!

Have you read any good books lately?
Right now, I am reading Leaf Magazine on a daily basis! I like to read books about Cannabis, and right now I’ve been big on reading ‘Cannabis for Dummies.’ There are several books I read about terpenes – I really want to continue educating myself and passing that knowledge on to others.

Photos by @errlywyatt

About Wyatt Early

Wyatt is a Maryland native, stoner by nature, obsessor of hash rosin. After getting his start in the printing industry with a family company, he took on the role as state director for Maryland Leaf, and frequently contributes to the magazine with photos and articles.

This article was originally published in the May 2023 issue of Maryland Leaf.

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