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Cannabis in Washington, DC – Buddaflies' Guide to Weed in DC

June 03, 2022 4 min read

Cannabis in Washington, DC – Buddaflies' Guide to Weed in DC

A basic understanding of DC's cannabis regulations can save you from doing anything illegal. Adults are allowed to possess cannabis, but DC is far from a cannabis user's utopia. Following our guide will ensure that you remain completely legal in your search for the highest-quality cannabis goods available in the DC area.


Marijuana Laws in DC

In 2015, Initiative 71 became law. Adults aged 21 and over are now allowed to use recreational marijuana in Washington, DC. I71, on the other hand, does not allow for the sale of recreational marijuana or the establishment of a regulatory body or taxing structure, unlike other legal marijuana programs in other progressive areas of the country. Instead, the initiative states:
"It shall be lawful, and shall not be an offense under District of Columbia law, for any person twenty-one (21) years of age or older to transfer to another person twenty-one years of age or older, without remuneration, marijuana weighing one ounce or less."
Basically, rather than permitting the sale of recreational marijuana, DC law allows adults to “gift” up to one ounce of marijuana to another adult. The federal status of marijuana in the United States prevents DC residents from having full access to legal marijuana. As a result, I71-compliant businesses provide cannabis goods as a gift rather than as their main product.



You won’t have to worry about being high while having weed on you (unless you are driving). Carrying up to two ounces of marijuana is completely legal in Washington, DC.


Growing cannabis and producing concentrates for commercial use is still illegal in DC. Only medical marijuana dispensaries are permitted to profit from marijuana sales. 

It is, however, legal to grow up to six plants in your home, with a maximum of three in the flowering stage, with the permission of your landlord. If you live with multiple housemates, who each wants to grow their own cannabis, the house limit is twelve, and only six can be flowering.


It is still unlawful to consume marijuana outside of your home. Smoking on the sidewalk, on a park bench, or in your car, for example, is against the law. 

“A person can still be arrested for "smoking, eating, or drinking marijuana – or having or carrying a lighted roll of paper or other lighted smoking equipment filled with marijuana – in any public space," according to the Metropolitan Police Department's website. 
While you can be arrested, the DC police department has been instructed to deprioritize the enforcement of the remaining cannabis laws.  


College Campuses

The possession, manufacturing, and consumption of cannabis on college campuses in Washington, DC is regulated by the institution. If you're visiting friends living in dorms, be aware that smoking cannabis on campus can still result in fines.


22% of Washington DC is Federal Property

We strongly advise you to avoid federal land such as the National Mall if you’re carrying around marijuana in your pocket. If a federal law enforcement officer suspects you of having marijuana, you may be charged with possession.


Will Recreational Marijuana Ever Be Legalized Federally?

The continued federal prohibition of medical and recreational marijuana has created a legal grey area. Legalizing and regulating a “Schedule I Drug” is more difficult in The District of Columbia due to its lack of statehood. Even in states with decade-old adult-use programs, federal agents can search marijuana growers, manufacturers, and dispensaries. DC residents and tourists will most likely only be able to access recreational marijuana through I71 until cannabis is federally legalized. 

A bill has been introduced on the Senate floor by majority leader Chuck Schumer and Senator Cory Booker. While many are optimistic that the bill will be passed, we've been here many times before. 

The American public overwhelmingly supports the legalization of marijuana for adults, but our politicians are more divided than ever. Schumer's progressive wish list could turn off moderate Democrats and Republicans who oppose prison reform, making reparations for the war on drugs, drug treatment programs, and putting revenue generated by cannabis sales into communities most affected by prohibition.

Buying Weed in DC Legally

For now, cannabis is accessible through the I71 gifting program. The system is unusual but respected by law enforcement and has proven to be successful for cannabis users and outlets. Many cannabis services sell apparel or novelty items and gift the cannabis product of the customer's choosing.   

Initiative 71 Compliant Outlet - The Buddaflies Brand

Buddaflies was founded in 2018 to give the people of DC access to high-quality cannabis products and premium clothing. We are passionate about the culture, which spans far beyond the cannabis plant. Our t-shirts, jackets, hoodies, hats, and joggers are designed to represent that. We take this approach as an I71-compliant vendor and clothing manufacturer, earning respect from our city as one of the most trusted sources for cannabis goods.

Support Buddaflies 

Supporting Buddaflies when receiving free gifts in DC is an investment in the future of cannabis in the DMV area. You won't only have access to quality cannabis goods on the market; you'll have a statement piece by a brand built to last far beyond federal prohibition and Initiative 71.

Contact us today at (202) 867-7715 for the modern DC cannabis experience.



DC Buddaflies
DC Buddaflies

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