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Why a group of women reinventing the Sisterhood is giving away hemp seeds in California



The Sisters of the Valley aren’t Catholic nuns. But they do live and pray together, taking vows of service to others and the earth. Their mission? Empowering people to heal themselves. With hemp.


Inspired by the Beguines, semi-monastic communities that thrived in Europe during the Middle Ages, the Sisters live simply while helping and healing others.


In the 21st Century, this manifests as making cannabidiol (CBD) tinctures, infused oil and salves —grown and bottled according to the cycles of the moon.


After some regulatory uncertainty led to an abundance of hemp seed from their farm in California, the Sisters announced Jan. 25 that they plan to give away 1,000 seed packets to customers. At the end of the month they’ll mail a thank you card and a packet of a CBD-rich strain of seeds to each of the last thousand customers who purchased from them.

They hope people will plant them.


“Worried about COVID, economic collapse, global warming, supply chain issues, uncompassionate governments? So are we!” said Sister Kate. “Learn to grow your own food and medicine. It’s healing in itself just to be doing something.”



“Worried about COVID, economic collapse, global warming, supply chain issues, uncompassionate governments? So are we!. Learn to grow your own food and medicine. It’s healing in itself just to be doing something.”

— Sister Kate



The seeds were taken from plants originally intended for harvest and processing.


“For a brief moment in time—2018 to 2019—they made it illegal to grow on anything less than 20 acres,” Sister Kate told High Times.

For the Sisters and their one-acre farm, a “big crop" was an eighth of an acre. Nowhere near enough to dream of expanding to 20. Sister Kate let the males go to seed, thinking they’d need to be pulled. Then the 20-acre-law was dropped.


The sisters ended up with a new proprietary strain of seed: the Wee Bairn. It’s the descendant of Big Bertha and other high-CBD strains. The seeds aren’t available for sale, although the Sisters have given them away with large purchases in the past.


“Now we have so many [seeds], and with COVID causing a scare on some people, we thought it was a good idea—just to get the seeds out of the house and to say thank you to our customers.”


“Now we have so many [seeds], and with COVID causing a scare on some people, we thought it was a good idea—just to get the seeds out of the house and to say thank you to our customers.”

— Sister Kate


The seeds are likely to produce plants with varying CBD to THC ratios.

“We are always seeking the 10:1 or 12:1 ratio of CBD to THC as that is best for our products,” Sister Kate told High Times. “But neurologists and people dealing with illness prefer the 1:1 ratio.”


International customers worried about customs or other potential hang ups needn’t fret.


“We aren’t shipping internationally,” said Sister Sophia, “because, firstly, there won’t be a lot of them since our international sales have fallen from 20 percent to 3 percent during Covid. And secondly, we don’t want to get anyone in trouble. We will reach out to those international customers and see if they want us to mail them, before we do.”

Processing and shipping the gifts will start Feb. 1, the mid-way point between the long nights of winter solstice in December and the vernal equinox in March. They expect to ship 500 packets in February and another 500 in March.

There’s no minimum purchase to qualify for the gift. According to the Sisters, even those who buy a $10 tin of salve at the tail end of January will get their packet of seeds in time for spring planting.

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