Marijuana in Germany: Know the Vernacular Before You (Accidentally) Start Growing the Reefer

Marijuana Cannabis Leaf Germany Law Drugs
“Hey… hey guys, how do you say, ‘I’m so high right now I’m afraid I’ll never come down’ in German?” — Image Credit: DonkeyHotey ( — Subject to CC 2.0 License.

Remember that post not too long ago in which I described the frustrations my German wife and I experienced trying to grow rhododendrons in our back yard? That was an example of the kind of quotes which make my wife so unintentionally hilarious. This post, however, is an example of Denglish at it’s finest… and potentially most illegal.

What we’re talking about here is marijuana. Cannabis. Pot. Weed. Reefer buds. The Green Meany. Matanuska Thunderfuck. Whatever you want to call it, marijuana is still illegal in Germany. Oh sure, the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (Bundesinstitut für Arzneimittel und Medizinprodukte, AKA: BfArM) has granted medical licenses for about 400 people with terminal cancer to grow it, but in a country with a populace of 80 million, that’s like 0.0005% of the population — and all of them are fucked.

It’s definitely illegal to walk around with weed on you, but if you’re arrested for it in Germany and you happen to have just a little bit, the cops and lawyers won’t do anything but laugh at you. NOTE: A “little” bit varies from state to state: In smelly, hipster places like Berlin, you might not even get a fine for anything less than 15 grams. But in states run by uptight nerds who sit down to pee, you’re only safe with about 5 grams. (I’m looking at you, Bavaria.)

Anyway, my wife and I did a lot of gardening last summer. We planted all sorts of things in our raised beds — all of them perfectly legal, NSA, BND or whoever else might be reading this — and I suggested it might be fun to start some potted plants, like blueberries or tomatoes, so we could bring them inside during winter if we wanted to. My wife nodded, stroking her chin sagely and gazing out over our garden as the sun began to set, saying:

“Yes, we should grow some pot plants.”*

*From the German word, “Topfpflanzen,” (literally, “pot-plants”) which refers to plants grown in pots. (We Americans typically call them “potted plants,” but my wife’s version is way more awesome.)

15 thoughts

  1. One of my neighbours discovered some ACTUAL pot plants in pots in her garden when she arrived in South Africa. Her gardener pleaded innocence and blamed it on the previous occupants’ teenage sons.


  2. Wow I should remember the quote “But in states run by uptight nerds who sit down to pee, you’re only safe with about 5 grams. (I’m looking at you, Bavaria.)” LOOL


  3. Bavarians have a wide variety of wonderful beer, excellent wine and delicious fruit brandy, we don’t need large amounts of hemp like bleak Prussians.


  4. Hahaha…You’re influenced by northern “Saupreißen” (Prussian swines).
    I’m one myself.
    Just yesterday enjoyed a harmless Bavarian outburst, calling him a Bazi. He cooled down fast when he saw my dirty grin while I started to sing the famous song:
    “Zieht den Bayern die Lederhosen aus!”
    We’re not in war anymore with these traitors, who mingled with Napoleon. Well, we still like to tease each other. You know, in real the Southlanders don’t drink wheat beer…they drink weed beer! :-)

    Some Pirates had a great idea to demonstrate for legalization:
    Hemp plants everywhere!
    Easily done, cause hempseeds are in birdy food.
    Alas, this kind of hemp doesn’t make high…but looks the same.

    This happened in Berlin:

    And this happened in South Germany:

    You made a very good choice with your northern german wife!
    Let’s join the hemp demonstration!


  5. Our 3-year-old grandson speaks Denglish, as his father is American and his mother is German. He had a broken toy that his father fixed and he said, “Daddy hat es gefixt.” The only problem with that is that here “fix” refers to drugs, as in “gettin a fix.” Lord only knows what the folks at the Kita think goes on at home.


  6. Oh god, moving from the Netherlands to Munich 3 weeks ago, with a van with Belgium numberplate… Tired & sweaty from moving my stuff upstairs, cops were waiting near our van to hand us a fine for parking on the pedestrian path. When they saw my boyfriend’s passport was registered in Amsterdam + us both sweaty and a little red-eyed, they started mumbling and eventually my boyfriend and I both had to pee in a cup at the police station (we apparently looked stoned). I was free to go (don’t smoke) but since my boyfriend had been partying 2 days before, and of course smoked pot – because the Netherlands – he had to go to the hospital and take an €800 blood test. Apparently, you’ll get fined when the % of “cannabis” in your blood is too high – this means driving under influence, even if the effects are not there anymore.
    Haven’t received the result from the blood test yet, but if indeed the % is too high, we’ll lose this €800 for the blood test + the fine for “driving under influence”…


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