Is there a Patient Journal in your stash? Perhaps a Recreational Tasting Journal – something to keep track of the many wonderful cultivars and products you sample? How about a record to help you keep track of your daily cannabis protocols? Or, how about a Grow Planner for tracking the phases of your grow cycle; or a Cooking Journal, created specifically as a “Culinary Companion” for your kitchen apothecary?
What if all these record-keeping journals and more were available in high-end, beautifully detailed, compact publications that fit into your satchel?
Charles McElroy was thinking the same thing, as he created the intelligently penned Goldleaf line of journals, reference cards, recipe cards, and a plethora of scientific reference material for the modern-day cannabis farmer, patient, and partaker.
From its website: “…Goldleaf is a science-forward printing company for cannabis growers, patients, and enthusiasts… empowering people by helping them better understand their interactions with the plant…”
“I wanted to make something that people who are passionate about cannabis could further engage with,” McElroy explained. “The cloak of the [illicit] market wouldn’t allow growers to write down their process, now they can.”
Courtesy of Charles McElroy
From Ignorance, to Realization, to Action
McElroy hails from Ohio, attending Ohio University in Athens, graduating with a dual major of Business and IT in 2004.
“I began using cannabis in college,” he shared. “I had a couple of health conditions since I was 15 – autoimmune disorders, chronic pain. The first time I tried cannabis it wasn’t pleasant, but it wasn’t too bad, as I tried it again the next day. I was always a little anxious about how it would affect me, because I was uneducated. Then I learned about the social injustice of cannabis prohibition – the oppression, discrimination, how people are treated as criminals for using this plant.”
Cannabis was McElroy’s gateway to learning. He said the plant not only taught him about the injustice of prohibition and the lack of education thereafter, it taught him what his own body needs, and how to be more proactive about his health.
“Cannabis changed the way I handle my symptoms. I microdose now – that’s where I found my secret sauce,” he laughed.
Stints in audio engineering for both the Library of Congress in Austin, Texas; and in a studio with recording artists, taught him about audio fatigue.
“Your work will go downhill if you ignore the signs,” he said. “Cannabis reset my mind and ears – it helped me work better and smarter.”
After working in Texas and Colorado, McElroy made his way back to Ohio, and helped start up a company called Noble, with a line of organic and sustainable jeans, Bespoke.
“I worked in every aspect of the supply chain, distribution, and product design, but it wasn’t my passion,” he said. “We sold the company to a group in Australia, and I started Goldleaf in Cincinnati in 2016.”
The Noble team helped with the initial designs and photography, while its legal team got him on the right path.
Courtesy of Charles McElroy
“We wanted Goldleaf materials to be beautiful, but we also needed all the information to be accurate,” he said. “It took one year for the Patient Journal to be developed because we had to vet experts in the space. The first four doctors we used wouldn’t let us use their names, but that was alright – we wanted their minds and expertise.”
Learning how to navigate providing educational materials on cannabis in a formerly covert environment had its pratfalls, as misinformation is rampant in the industry.
“It used to be a common belief that Myrcene, one of the terpenes found in cannabis, enhances THC uptake – like when you eat a mango,” he explained. “But, we found that’s really not what’s going on. We could not find one single peer reviewed paper on this theory. We had to update the language in our Patient Journal and everything else that referenced terpenes.”
Goldleaf makes it simple for the average reader, but they also stay close to the scientific vernacular.
“For people who are into the culture of cannabis, the scientific aspect is often new to them,” he said. “We aim to be the encyclopedia of cannabis and offer proven scientific facts only, but you won’t find any recommendations on dosing – we leave that up to the medical professionals in the space.”
Like cannabis, the journals and educational materials Goldleaf publishes are used around the world – even in non-legal countries.
“We have customers on every continent except Antarctica,” he laughed. “We even shipped to one small country we had never heard of – Seychelles, a tiny island off the coast of Africa/Madagascar. There are 95 thousand people on this island, but they found us and are using the journals.”
Courtesy of Charles McElroy
Journaling the Stash
Prominently displayed with McElroy’s stash is his own Patient Journal by Goldleaf.
“I always keep notes when I’m medicating – or traveling and trying new cultivars,” he explained. “I like to use colored pencils to give myself a little more flexibility with details and notes – plus it keeps it fun and exciting.”
His rolling tray is made by Cannador, and although he generally vapes, he enjoys smoking blends when burning flower, adding mullen and spearmint to the mix. His favorite cultivars are Jack Herer, Orange CBD, and Chemdawg.
“My personal choice for a vaporizer is the Arizer Solo 2 Vape,” he added. “It has a long battery life, is built like a tank, and has an all glass path. It’s great for my regimen of micro-dosing, since I can easily monitor the amount used. I also enjoy the granular temperature control – allowing lower heat for tasting more of the terpenes, and ensuring the dose is mild when it needs to be.”
He uses a Canndescent Stylus vape pen, as it has a clip and can attach to his journal; a course herb grinder, keeping material from slipping through smoking implements; dark glass flower jars, keeping his herb fresh and potent; and an MJ Arsenal glass bubbler, for sharing.
“I also take 1000 milligrams of CBD oil in the morning, made by Rosebud,” he said. “It helps with some of my joint and lower back spasms. This, mixed with some yoga in the mornings, keeps me going and keeps the tightness and throbbing at bay.”
The Future Looks Green
In the works are art prints, likened to vintage travel posters, with cities depicted with their relation to cannabis – picture Ohio with a focus on hemp. The first phase of posters will include Ohio, Northern California, Southern California, Oregon, and Colorado; set to launch winter of 2019.
“They will be stylized conversation pieces, helping people talk about issues related to cannabis and sustainability,” he said. “We’ve been working with some famous artists, and are really excited about their launch. They are absolutely beautiful – a priority in everything we publish.”
Goldleaf is also collaborating with a veterinarian to create Pet Journals, helping pet owners keep track of products and protocols with confidence.
“Humans aren’t the only species on the planet who needs cannabis,” he surmised. “The reason I was so nervous when I tried cannabis for the first time was simply due to a lack of education. We at Goldleaf are trying to change that – in a beautiful and intelligent way.”