Capturing Cannabis

A large, high-celing room is filled with hundreds of cannabis plants drying and curing in Humbolt County, CA.

A book featuring beautiful cannabis gardens in Northern California.


Adventurous Netherlands photographer Steef Fleur ventured into the heart of Northern California with a camera and an ambitious plan to capture the experience of cultivating hidden cannabis farms for the book “Humboldt – Green Gold USA.” Within the thick of the woods, she uncovered clandestine cabins, towering plants with dense, bulging colas and an entire culture centered on peacefully growing a federally illegal plant as a source of medicine.

The seemingly secluded forest of soaring redwood trees houses a community that depends on the farmers to religiously produce world-class buds every harvest without fail. Journalist Martin van de Velde explores this rural lifestyle to tell a story of dedicated, independent cultivators who continue to shape the infamous narrative of a region responsible for supplying cannabis throughout and beyond the Golden State to the East Coast – decades before the Green Rush hit the rest America. As the political landscape rapidly shifts throughout the state, it’s exciting to see a cultural staple still thriving with the pounds and pounds of perfectly-trimmed buds to prove it.

The history books may formally indicate that the California Gold Rush – that violent and lucrative period of time when settlers flocked to the coastal state in hopes of finding gilded treasure – took place in the 19th century, but many others will remember the era of cannabis cultivation in the Emerald Triangle as the real gold mine.

A worker cuts down big branches of cannabis flowers in Humboldt County, CA.

Workers harvest large cannabis plants at an outdoor grow in Humboldt, CA.

A woman sits in a cozy room trimming marijuana with the mountains of Humboldt county behind her.The book cover for Steef Fleur's book "Humboldt. Green Gold USA."

Originally published in Issue 19 of Cannabis Now. LEARN MORE

TELL US, have you been to the legendary Humboldt County before?

K. Astre is a California writer with a global appetite for art, music and culture. She fuels her creativity with tea, yoga, meditation and, of course, cannabis.

1 Comment

  1. Anthony poates

    July 24, 2017 at 10:55 am

    Cannabis needs to be legalized nation wide… actually worldwide… why won’t our government acknowledge that cannabis is not only a life saver but do much more. Bio degradable plastics,fuel, cloth and clothing, insect resistant buildng products, and so much more.

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