Beyond The Green Screen, A Cannabis Column: The WellFlower

The main entrance at WellFlower. Photo by M.F. Dibella.

Michigan is one of the better places to live from May 1st through Halloween. For the excruciatingly long winter months, at least weed is legal. The esteemed Green Screen crew will create a series of profiles of Southeast Michigan dispensaries along with some other notes and findings from the green trail. Dispensary profiles will be from the user experience perspective for the time being.

This month we are showcasing one of Ypsilanti’s finest, The WellFlower. We’re not going to cast (many) aspersions on the proliferation of Big Weed dispensaries throughout The Great Baked State, but we are going to try to focus on the spots that are unique (not necessarily “boutique,” mind you). 

The WellFlower operation was founded in Manistee by two cousins, one a former ER doctor (Dr. Rob McCurren) and the other a former marketing exec (Trent McCurren) with plenty of experience in the hospitality business (i.e., beer and consumer product goods). The cousins came up with the idea for the dispensary while listening to records in Dr. Rob’s living room; the Ypsilanti expansion opened in early April (a third dispensary opened in Whitmore Lake on Aug. 27). 

The inside of WellFlower includes a turntable with a variety of records. Photo by M.F. Dibella.

The layout of the Ypsilanti dispensary reflects its genesis: a foosball table in the foyer and inside there’s a turntable and other little welcoming flourishes.

While Michigan’s medical dispensaries have been around since the passing of the Compassionate Care Initiative (Nov. 4, 2008), the recreational side of things is still in its relative early stages. 

Some dispensaries feel like Big Boxes or McDonald’s while others have a mom-and-pop feel. WellFlower is far from a fast food chain, the staff is cordial yet familiar and you don’t feel like you’re being hard-sold anything. One of the budtenders is Ypsilanti City Council member, Steve Wilcoxen (who helped obtain the ordinance); he’s down-to-earth and relaxed, like the rest of the staff.

The sign outside of WellFlower in Ypsilanti. Photo by M.F. Dibella.

WellFlower patterned their Ypsilanti dispensary around Oakland, California’s model with an eye towards a social equity partnership with the community. This notion makes you feel better about spending your money here rather than lining the pockets of some libertarian venture capitalists.

I find WellFlower’s product to be better than 90% of what I’ve sourced in the state. With recreational, as long as the taste isn’t too synthetic, I think you’re in good shape. 

Nothing can top the harvests of an experienced homegrown operation and I really hope the best growers in the state have stayed afloat in the dispensary age. For me, there are only about three or four dispensaries in the area that can compare to homegrown. WellFlower is one of them. I’m a preroll guy and often buy just one or two at a time. The budtenders at WellFlower never make me feel like I’m inconveniencing them even when the guy next to me is buying major weight.

Great news, Bloom, one of Ann Arbor’s best dispensaries, is opening a location on Michigan Ave. in Ypsilanti. No official timetable for opening but seems like they’re readying for the fall. 

Each month, we’ll give you one to smoke to and maybe even sign out of capitalism on. Here’s the inaugural. 

Next month we’ll launch a thorough survey to award our strain of the month. Our staff has legendary lungs, just ask us. Until then, puff tough and be good enough.

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