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Julia Glasse

Birchville Botanicals
Nevada City, Nevada County

About the farm

Julia Glasse is the owner of Birchville Botanicals, a small outdoor cannabis farm in Nevada County. Glasse and her husband, Brad Peceimer, were growing cannabis for about 15 years before receiving their commercial license and working with partners Scott Wellman and Moriah Fitzpatrick to manage the farm.

Glasse and her husband were motivated to work in the cannabis industry because of their mutual belief in the medicinal benefits of cannabis.

“My husband’s previous partner died of cancer and both of our fathers died of cancer. For them, cannabis helped to lessen the pain and improve their quality of life while they were sick,” Glasse shared. “Cannabis has tremendous healing properties and can be such an important form of medicine.”

Commitment to the legal market

“We were 25th in the county to get licensed, so we were really excited to be on the frontier as cannabis was legalized,” Glasse said. “We look forward to seeing how the industry will grow and thrive over the next 10 years, and we are delighted to be a part of it.”

Glasse said getting a license for their farm was, at times, difficult, and required a significant investment, especially for a small farm. Some of the costs to get their license were unexpected, but the entrepreneurs figured out solutions and perseverd. 

“We made it through, and we are proud of that,” she says. “We were not the most organized or the most prepared, but that’s how we roll. We make it work.” Throughout the licensing process, Glasse has been grateful to have the support of other local cannabis farmers and the Nevada County Cannabis Alliance. “This community made all the difference for us, and we look forward to supporting others who are making their way through the process,” she added.

Proud to be a licensed grower

Maintaining a newly legal business can be a bit of a culture shock for the state’s cannabis farmers. “I am a bookkeeper,” shared Glasse, “I have cannabis clients who don’t want to tell you what’s going on because everything had previously been off the books. They have to develop a new whole skill set after spending years or decades suppressing for the sake of anonymity.”  

For Glasse, removing the stigma of cannabis was a significant reason to get licensed. “I never told my friends or family from back East that I was growing cannabis. Now I can tell them I’m a licensed cultivator and talk about my work with people in the community,” she said, adding “I’m very proud to be a licensed cultivator!”

And while some people in Nevada County are wary of commercial cannabis farming, Glasse hopes this will change. “I was really excited to be the first cultivator in my county to pay our local tax,” Glasse said. “I am proud to pay taxes and contribute to the greater community [through this work].”