You will want to try these: 19 TOP Indica strains from around the world
From “seed to sale” it all starts with the talent, patience and insight of the breeders
Breeding is not easy. It requires a keen eye, an acute sense of taste and most importantly, an ability to discern a plant with outstanding properties.
Breeders are a different kind of people than you or me. They are determined; they are, competitive, and driven by obsession. Breeders must be tough, tenacious and focused in order to pursue their careers. Not many people have this ability—a sort of perfect pitch in the area of THC and cannabis. In addition to skill, an inspired breeder has an intuitive ability to choose the right one.
The history of Indicas
Indica plants originated around the 30th parallel in the Hindu Kush region of the Himalayan foothills. This includes the countries of Afghanistan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Northern India, and Nepal. The weather there is quite variable from year to year. For this reason the populations in these regions have a varied gene pool. Even within a particular population there is a high degree of heterogeneity, which results in plants of the same variety having quite a bit of variability. This helps the population survive. No matter what the weather during a particular year, some plants will thrive and reproduce.
Pure Indica plants are short, usually under 5 feet (1.5 meters) tall. They are bushy with compact branching and short internodes and are arranged to capture all the light that falls inside the canopy. They range in shape from a rounded bush to a pine-like shape with a wide base. The leaves are short, very wide, and dark green when compared to most equatorial Sativas because they contain larger amounts of chlorophyll. Sometimes there is webbing between the leaflets. At the 30th latitude, the plants don’t receive as much light as plants at or near the equator. By increasing the amount of chlorophyll, the cells use light more efficiently.
Indica buds are dense and tight. They form different shapes depending on variety. All of them are chunky or blocky. Sometimes they form continuous clusters along the stem, but their intense smells ranging from acrid, skunky, or musky to deep pungent aromas reminiscent of chocolate, coffee, earth, or hash. Indica smoke is dense, lung expanding, and cough inducing. The high is heavy, body-oriented, and lethargic.
Indica-Sativa hybrids naturally tend towards the Indica side of the family. They usually have controlled height. They don’t grow very tall and after forcing flowering, their growth is limited. Side branching is usually not prominent so they can be grown in a small space. However, they have both Sativa and Indica influences, which may include surprising hints of Sativa in some aspects of the plant’s makeup, flavors, or high.
*All the strains below contain greater than 70% Indica and are listed in alphabetical order.
Plant characteristics of Indicas
Height: 2’ to 6’ (0.6m to 1.8m)
Shape: Conical to bushy
Branching: Lots of side branching usually wider than its height
Nodes: Short stem length between leaves
Leaves: Wide short leaves, short wide blades
Color: Dark green to purple
Flower: Wide, dense, bulky
Odor: Pungent, sticky or fruity
High: Inertia, desensitizing
Flowering: 6 to 9 weeks
Here are 19 TOP Indica strains bred by seed companies around the world
All that follows are not just pretty pictures. These are the varieties and seeds that are part of the new industry.
These strains are commercially available providing both home growers and licensed cultivation centers with predictable results.
1. Barbara Bud
Barbara Bud is an Indica-dominant medicinal cross of a Shishkaberry mother and an Afghani Indica hybrid father that has extreme trichome coverage. The Shishkaberry mother is a favorite of the breeder, who has worked with compassion clubs across Canada for years. Barbara Bud, available since 2003, gets her name from a well-known Canadian radio host who was supportive of one of the House of the Great Gardener breeders during his constitutional court battle for medical cannabis.
Barbara Bud is well suited to indoor growing and adapts easily to size constraints in hydro or soil, staying small in small containers and going big in big ones. When vegetating, Barbara Bud branches considerably, forming an iconic Christmas-tree shape ornamented with crystal-frosted buds. During the 7 weeks of flowering, this strain doubles in size. At ripeness, buds are desirably compact — neither too tight nor too loose — and happily cloaked in trichomes. Some buds may take on a tinge of red when nutrients are properly flushed at the end of flowering. This durable strain shows good resilience to heat, cold, drought, and pests, making it a fine choice for beginners or commercial gardeners.
The citrus-berry smell hints at a terpene profile dominated by limonene yet balanced with others that produce floral, peppery, and herbal notes. THC levels that run upwards of 14% have made it a favorite in Canada’s compassion clubs. Medicinally, it works broadly for depression, anxiety, inflammation, and acid reflux, while stimulating the immune system, inhibiting tumor growth, and reducing pain. The high comes on fast and lasts a long time, with an uplifting, creative, social effect that is more “up” than sleepy, making it nice for social activities that benefit from a bit of imagination.
2. Big Bang 2
Big Bang 2 is the offspring of two of the greatest: Northern Lights and Jack Herer. If cannabis originated from a primordial “big bang,” these would be the progenitors of most modern strains. The classic Northern Lights, a tasty breeding Afghani/Indica, has figured in many Indica crosses. Jack Herer is a more complex variety, as befits the man who nearly single-handedly revived the hemp movement with his tireless activism and seminal book, The Emperor Wears No Clothes. His eponymous plant is an Indica/Sativa hybrid of some of the most significant strains, including Northern Lights, Skunk #1, and Haze. Big Bang 2 lives up to that lineage with big yields (up to 2.6 oz/ft2 or 750 g/m2) and high THC values (up to 22.5%) under optimal conditions. That’s why Big Bang 2 has been Gorilla Seeds’ top-selling seed for the past eight years.
Big Bang 2 generates big yields indoor or outdoor as a multi-branched plant. She starts off dark green with fat, Indica-style leaves and tight nodes, and has good tolerance to heat, cold, and pests. In flowering, the stretch will lead to medium heights with weight-bearing branches. She forms a sturdy pine-tree shape with some purpling at the end, orange hairs, and dense resin, but goes bushier if topped. Follow FIM methods for best results. Flowering is 8-9 weeks after a slow start. With enough light and moderate pruning to a multi-branch, the colas will form nice nuggets — very little popcorn bud. Production is impressive, with often a nice swell at the end, so don’t get anxious and harvest before she’s ready. Big Bang is what you get for your buck with this strain.
The flavor is smooth, sweet, and fruity with a touch of skunk — slightly pungent, but not cloying. The smoke is also smooth, with a long-lasting, relaxing, quality high. A good all-around smoke for hanging out with friends, watching movies, or “just chilling,” it’s also great for nighttime because of its restful, sedative effect. With a THC level this high, it is not the best choice for a boost at work, although it can be just the thing for stimulating appe-tite, lifting mood, or managing pain.
3. Big Buddha Cheese x Cheese Reversed
The Big Buddha Cheese x Cheese is a remix of a classic strain. First available in 2004, it was reworked to Version 2 in 2014. The BBCxC mother is a coveted original UK Big Buddha cheese clone. The father is an original Big Buddha cheese reversed clone with a true reversed backcross of the U.K. The slender, elegant cheese leaves look a bit like a Sativa, but the Indica heritage is immediately evident in this strain’s vigor, super-fast growth, and solid branching that spreads to soak up the light. Its electric lime-green color complements the compact foxtail buds that chunk up and get rich with calyxes near harvest.
BBCxC is a versatile plant suitable for both indoor and outdoor growing in what-ever medium the gardener prefers. The Big Buddha Cheese x Cheese is a moderate to heavy feeder that loves all nutrients and boosters. This plant is a winner for all levels of expertise, but the odor of the plant is extremely strong and ramps up to super dank in the last 3 weeks, so stealth growers should have a plan for control-ling telltale odors from reaching the wrong noses.
BBCxC lights up the senses with an amazing, slightly funky taste of sweet berry hash candy. Offering a high-grade, energetic stone with virtually no ceiling, BBCxC takes users on a thoughtful, long-lasting journey. The high is awake and cheerful, sometimes giggly and introspective, and always encourages an appreciation of the world. Some medical users say this variety has been effective for their chronic pain conditions, offering continuous relief. As uplifting as it is, it can also aid sleep, though it may leave you a bit thirsty, so have a beverage on your night-stand to soothe cottonmouth.
4. Bubba OG
Bubba OG has a vaguely defined family tree, with a mother who likely hailed from the Hindu Kush and a ghost-cut OG Kush father. Bigger and heavier than either Bubba Kush or OG Kush, the Bubba OG has been selected and stabilized in a careful breeding program to create a strain with Bubba taste and OG potency. Canada’s Dr. Greenthumb was the first to offer genuine Bubba Kush and OG Kush in seed form, and they have carried both plants in a continuous line, unchanged, for over 13 years. This happy marriage of those old-school favorites is sure to appeal to the Kush enthusiast.
Bubba OG has medium branching, which Dr. Greenthumb advises growers not to prune. This plant forms a basic cone shape with hard stick buds that become bulbous and dense with resin as they ripen. They can turn purple in the coldest climates, but are generally dark green with thick leaves. Bubba OG prefers more arid regions, withstanding heat, drought, and cold weather well, but struggles if conditions are overly humid, damp, or foggy. This plant needs about 9 weeks of flowering time, finishing in October at 45 ° North. While Bubba OG is not too challenging for a beginner, a discreet grower will take measures to contain her heavy, strong aroma in the garden.
The Bubba OG is a people’s choice, with many fans who call it their favorite strain. Her smell is a divine mix of temple incense, flowers, and coffee that will entice even the occasional recreational user to take a nice long inhale. With its classic, fast-acting Indica effects and a long, powerful, yet happy stone, it goes well with sensual or satisfying chill activities and works well on pain.
5. Cheesy Dick
This nearly pure Indica with a touch of Sativa gets its cheeky name from a play on the popular British holiday treat, “spotted dick,” a rolled pastry sprinkled with raisins, dried fruit, and creamy custard that’s the UK version of fruitcake. When Big Buddha crossed a reversed father of his UK Cheese clone with a Spanish Moby Dick mother, the nasty name was irresistible — especially because the plant’s taste is savory-sweet like the dessert. The variety’s parentage includes some highly potent classics — Critical Mass, Big Bud, and White Widow — while Moby Dick has a reputation for rewarding growers with whale-sized yields foamy with resin. Mixed with what Big Buddha calls “Old Skool Classic,” the result is a huge-yielding plant with classic flavors for the more serious grower.
Cheesy Dick shows her Indica nature in large medium-dark leaves and high yields. She does well as a multi-branched plant, producing hefty buds on widely spaced internodes and massive main colas. The plants perform best when topped. Odor-control steps will be necessary, as this is as dank a variety as we’ve come to expect from the Cheese family. Indoors, flowering time is 8-10 weeks. Outdoors, expect finish at the end of September.
One whiff of Cheesy Dick and the spicy cream cheese scent comes through with a hint of blackberry and fruit. The extremely musky dank of its aroma sends a message about this plant’s extreme potency. A favorite of Indica connoisseurs, the flavor is equally strong, with the musky spice of Big Buddha Cheese dominating. The high resin content delivers a real knockout OG stone worthy of the heaviest Indicas.
In the opinion of veteran breeder Dr. Greenthumb, Chemdawg is one of the top-five all-star strains for its combination of effect, yield, taste, and ease of growth. He’s not the only one who nominates this legendary strain for a place among top connoisseur picks. A gypsy strain that goes back decades, many rumors surround her genesis. The original Chemdawg is said to have come from the Dog strain that travelled with the Grateful Dead tours back when Jerry was still alive. Although parentage cannot be verified, reputation and rumor point to Kush and Sour Diesel. Chemdawg is both a breeder’s strain, making up many successful crosses, and a “people’s choice,” getting excellent reviews for the happy, leisurely mood and medicinal value it delivers.
Chemdawg is a versatile indoor/outdoor strain with thick, upright branching, making it suitable to Sea of Green. Plants form a dense pine tree of serious, chunky, classically Indica buds. This strain is amenable to different gardening styles, and can work as well trained into multiple branches as it does in SOG gardens.
Some Chemdawg phenotypes may go more berry, while others may get dark and pungent with a diesel edge. The smell is strong and lingering. Her acrid taste carries a dark diesel edge, cinnamon hash and a hint of berry. The high is generally active and alert, calm, clear-headed, and cheerful, though the Indica body-high can be sedative and induce eyedroop. It can be a good bedtime strain for some but doesn’t work for everyone. After the wave of sleepiness, many find it rebounds to a more energetic, creative mental state while still being relaxed. This makes it a good stress-management strain, but a refreshing beverage and some eye-drops are recommended to combat the cottony effects.
7. Cherry Cookies
The Cherry Cookie strain is another winner from Northern California breeders, bringing out the best of the sweet Cherry Pie variety and a modern classic, Girl Scout Cookie. The Dark Heart Cherry Pie mother is a cross of Grand Daddy Purple from the U.S. and Durban Poison from South Africa, selected by Purple Caper as the best of three cuts. The father is a Girl Scout Cookie F2 backcross, consisting of Grand Daddy x Durban and OG Kush. The result is an Indica-dominant strain that Purple Caper calls a super-improved version of both parents.
Indoor cultivation is best for Cherry Cookies’ Indica growth characteristics. This plant forms a symmetrical bush that averages 3 feet tall and 2 feet white. She prefers hydro and performs well with a multi-branch grow style, producing lots of branches with purple golf ball-size flowers. Expect dark, dense buds edging to purple with orange hairs. Purple Caper recommends keeping the environment at 80 °F (26.5 °C) during the light cycle and 60 °F (15.5 °C) when dark.
The aroma of Cherry Cookies is reminiscent of her Cherry Pie mother, with a pungent sweet-and-sour cherry smell that carries an acrid fuel note. The smooth smoke has a distinct cherry flavor, particularly on the exhale. As with her parents, this strain’s intense effects are calming but heady, creating a deep physical relaxation that can tend to couchlock. Her appetite stimulation and nausea-fighting properties combined with her ability to fight pain and anxiety make this a popular choice for many medical users.
8. Cream Mandarine Auto® (SWS29)
Released in 2012, this feminised auto-flowering hybrid boasts big yields, citrus aromas, and sweet flavors. Cream Mandarine Auto® (SWS29) was bred from an SWS06 Ice Cool elite clone mother—a NYC Diesel and Nafarroa Diesel with a global lineage of Spain-Holland-USA. Her father is SWS22 Cream Caramel Auto from an unusual, high-yielding Spanish genetic line with just enough Ruderalis to make her auto-flowering. Taken together, this hybrid is 70% Indica, 27% Sativa, 3% Ruderalis, with pronounced sweet mandarin citrus aromas from both her mother and father.
Cream Mandarine Auto® (SWS29) has a bushy structure and huge main colas of sticky buds. Thick leaves emerge from the main stem and first nodes of the side branches, but she has only a few thin leaves around the flowers. That makes this an easy-to-trim plant, though pruning should be avoided. She grows vigorously in hydro or soil right from the start, then explodes 2 weeks after germination, with flowering starting at 22-28 days without forcing, and a final height between 20 and 43 inches (50- 110 cm). A good quality soil mix suffices until mid-flowering, when low doses of liquid fertilizer can be added once a week. She produces well when grown in close spacing. Outdoors, between spring and the beginning of autumn is best. Finish is about 9 weeks after germination, regardless of latitude, thanks to the autoflowering genetics. Cream Mandarine Auto® (SWS29) can withstand a bit of cold, heat, or drought, but environmental extremes can negatively affect the final size of the plants. The yield is high for an auto-flowering plant.
This strain’s smell is very discreet while growing and only slightly noticeable while flowering, though touching her flowers as she ripens releases the sweet mandarin orange smell the name suggests. The flavor is fresh, sweet, and slightly floral, with mature fruity tones, hints of earthiness, and an intense sweet mandarin background. The relaxing high is positive, optimistic, calming, mellow, and happy. Medical users report it helps with anxiety and sleeping disorders, as well as chronic pain.
9. Flowerbomb Kush
Named after a famous Dutch perfume, Strain Hunter’s Flowerbomb Kush has a Green Crack mother with Skunk #1 mixed in. The father is an unknown Indica from Ohio crossed with a California OG Kush from an Afghan Hindu Kush landrace. This mostly Indica strain was selected out of a hybrid F1 as the most resinous individual, rich with cannabinoids and terpenes. Her color is dark green to brownish — purple, if nights are cold — with thick, very dark green leaves that turn to dark purple and gray at harvest time.
Flowerbomb Kush is a multi-branch plant that exhibits fast branchy growth, medium-long internodes, and usually a main cola at finish. Her slightly stretchy pine tree structure has long branches competing with main stem splits at the third or fourth internode. She does best with a short powder-feeding regimen and a flush in the last 7-10 days. Flowering is 8 weeks with peak resin production at week 7. This strain is good for indoor cultivation or outdoors in temperate climates. She withstands cold well, though she’s not suitable for extreme outdoor conditions. Medium-hard to grow, Flowerbomb Kush is a vigorous variety in the right hands.
Flowerbomb Kush has a complex flavor profile that combines fruity-woodsy notes for a musky bubblegum candy taste. As with other Kush varieties, the high hits the body hard and fast with a sedative, couchlock effect, then creeps on the mind with giggly, long-lasting sedative qualities. This strain is good for relaxing, sleep, and pain control, but it is heady enough to create confusion, so it is best to avoid activities that require much focus.
GG#1, or Great Gardener #1, is a pure Afghani Indica. After many years of work-ing with the original Afghani #1 clones, Mat, the breeder at House of the Great Gardener, created this seed strain based on it in 2011. Since then, GG#1 has become a bestseller in the Canadian compassion clubs that House of the Great Gardener supplies and has been used in their breeding program to create almost all of their medicinal strains (The Haoma, Digweed and Barbara Bud).
A pleasure to grow, GG#1 shows a strong structure. Bred for indoor cultivation in any type of growing method, this strain has great vegetative growth with lots of branching to a classic evergreen shape. Leaves are Indica-style thick, and the plant is short and bushy in true Afghani fashion. Plants double in size during vegeta-ive growth but can be kept smaller by restricting container size. This strain pro-duces high yields of conical, dark-green buds that change to yellow as she ripens. Flowering lasts 8 weeks. These are resilient, hardy plants with good resistance to suboptimal conditions and pests.
The fragrance of GG#1 is deep hash, floral, and smoky with woodsy flavors. The prominence of the terpene caryophyllene gives it a rich, spicy, almost peppery odor. Those terpenes, research has shown, have application to treat anxiety and depression. The strain is also notable for a dreamy, top-notch high that starts strong and delivers a relaxing body feel that is a mellowing pain killer. For those without particular health complaints, GG#1 offers welcome relaxation that pairs well with watching TV or a movie and winding down before bed. The effects are stony enough that it can be difficult to work or read with this strain.
The M-42 strain from Treehouse Genetics is named for the Orion nebula, which shares the plant’s pink and purple coloration. This predominantly Indica variety was bred from a Maine clone-only Blueberry Indica combined with the mostly Indica Cosmos Kush. The end product is M42, an extremely pungent Blueberry Kush that grows large, dense, colorful flowers thickly coated with resin glands.
M-42 generates prolific side branching to achieve a bushy spruce-tree shape. Treehouse recommends topping twice during vegetative growth to make a wide bush. Expect pink calyx growth in the interior of the flowers, regardless of temperature change. M-42 benefits from cultivation in soil with organic fertilizers to bring out her pungent flavors, whether grown indoors or out. Flush with clean water for 2 solid weeks pre-harvest for best results. After 50-55 days of flowering, this high-yield strain ripens near the end of September at 44 ° North latitude. Finish heights of 4-7 feet (1.2-2.1 m), with an average of 6 feet (2 m). A strong, pest resistant plant that is good for beginners and commercial propagation alike, she tolerates abuse and cold fall nights, no problem. Beware her quite strong smell while growing.
M-42’s frosty, bulbous buds are light green in color, accented with pink and purple. The complex flavor of earthy sour blueberry carries floral-fuel undertones. The mellow high is very relaxing and a bit of a creeper but not a knockout. The relaxed, happy effect is peaceful, making it great for winding down after work. Medical users like M-42 for treating anxiety, stress, tension headaches, and body aches.
12. Peppermint Kush
Peppermint Kush lives up to its name with a spectacular minty aroma and taste, combined with the heavy-hitting high of a nearly pure Indica. Bred from crossing Stella Blue, a Sativa-dominant hybrid with a fragrant Blueberry background, and Nepali Kush, a cross of the classic Hindu Kush with a Nepalese landrace, this strongly Indica-dominant strain boasts THC levels upwards of 22% and registers more CBD than most strains this potent.
This strain can thrive indoors or out, though she prefers cool, temperate climes. Plants top out at under 3 feet (60-90 cm), making this a candidate for stealth gardening among the shrubs. Screen of Green (SCROG) is also an option, since she sprouts many side branches that fill out enough to need support in the final 2 weeks. Her large, dense colas can produce a beautiful array of colors, particularly with cooler temperatures as she finishes. This can be a very aromatic plant, so plan accordingly. Turnaround is quick and growth is strong, with flowering in as few as 50 days and yield up to a pound per square meter.
Peppermint Kush will blow your mind with an irresistible taste combination that starts with the peppery spice of a Stella Blue but leaves you with the minty after-taste of Nepali Kush. On the toke, expect even more, as this strain’s potency takes a back seat to none, but with a trippy Sativa-style edge that keeps your mind racing even if your body is locked to the couch.
13. Pliny Purple
The Pliny is a recessive GDP backcross, named for Pliny the Elder, the Roman who was the first to document the method of producing the deep purple color reserved for royalty. The idea was to backcross Granddaddy Purple parents, selecting to minimize the dominant grape-berry phenotype, until interesting genetic characteristics appeared. From germinating a large number of seeds, “the one” appeared that shared the dense bud structure of the GDP only with a musky aroma of Merlot wine. Since then, the breeders have further backcrossed those traits to stabilize them.
Pliny Purple responds to heavy feeding in hydro or soil and thrives indoors or out, as long as it’s a dry climate. Node spacing is tight in early growth then spaces out with maturity. Strong side branches can support themselves well into mid-flowering before needing supports. This plant does well with mid-branches left on, so only thin the lower branches. Unpruned, Pliny Purple is medium bushy and spherical in shape, ranging from 36-60 inches (1-1.5 m). In flowering, color goes from light to dark green to purple, with a drop in temperature to help bring out the purple. Avoid overwatering during flush. This variety produces moderate to high yields of flowers so dense that good airflow and lower humidity are required. The very compact, evenly sized pine-cone shaped buds are dark green and purple with hairs that can appear very orange against the purple hues. Good for beginners, she is fairly resistant to pests. Mold risk can be mitigated by using a dehumidifier when curing. The yield makes her suitable for commercial uses.
Pliny Purple was selected for her unique aroma — a pungent, musky scent of Merlot wine tinged with pine and fuel, courtesy of her damascenone and myrcene terpene profile. Flavors are acrid with notes of cinnamon, lavender, nuts, and whiskey. The creeper high is long-lasting and evenly balanced between mind and body, calming the mind and producing a deeply narcotic physical relaxation.
14. Purple Caper
The Indica-dominant strain Purple Caper was selected by the breeder as the winner from 50 crosses of some of the best Indicas in the western U.S. This fruity strain’s mother is Grand Diesel, a cross of Grand Daddy Purple and Diesel from California. The father is White Indica from Las Vegas, a White Widow x pure Indica of unknown origin.
Purple Caper is recommended for indoor gardens, but plants can be grown out-doors in temperate climates such as California’s San Francisco Bay Area or Central Valley. Plants show average branching for a mixed-parentage hybrid and will do well as a multi-branch plant in whatever medium you prefer. To bring out some purple color, adjust nighttime temperatures to dip under 60 °F (15 °C). Flowers on this plant get large, as do her crystals.
Both the flavor and aroma of Purple Caper hit notes on the sweet end of the fruity spectrum, reminiscent of tropical delights such as guava, mango, and papaya with a bit of grape. Have a smoke and the effect is active and blissful, with a creeper start and a dreamy, electric high end. This is a fine strain for playful pursuits, positive social scenes, or sensual fun.
15. Salmon River OG
The Salmon River OG strain is named after the Salmon River in Oregon and grew out of the breeder’s 2007 Huckleberry project through several backcross lines, as well as the Oregon Huckleberry IBL before its 2014 release. This Indica-dominant strain exhibits great stability and only three phenotype variations, all of which are “desirable keepers.” The mother plant is a pre-1998 OG Bubba Kush from the West Coast. The male is a Blue Heron #111, which is a special combo of Blue Magoo x Blue Magoo/Huckleberry. Salmon River OG’s Blue Heron father was selected from 120+ plants grown over two years, with Dynasty picking the plant that most resembled the original Blue Magoo. The recessive traits of the Blue Magoo mesh with the OG Bubba harmoniously, producing colorful, crystal-coated blossoms.
Salmon River OG is an easy strain to grow and requires very little maintenance for optimal results. The plant’s exceptional bud-to-leaf ratio, medium height, and pole-like structure makes her easy to trim. Branching can be encouraged by top-ping at the third or fourth node and is best for non-SOG. This plant requires mini-mal nutrients, and Dynasty recommends beginning to flush the plants around week 5, due to their tendency to hoard nitrogen. Organic methods are recom-mended to bring out the best results. Stretch is about a foot (30 cm) after start of flowering; bloom times are quite fast. Plants average 3-5 feet (1-1.5 m). Salmon River OG resists heat, drought, and cold and is good with pests but can be prone to powder mildew outdoors or in humid or poorly ventilated spaces. Garden odors are mild until harvest time.
Salmon River OG buds boast a dense trichome coating with intense purple violet hues so dark some look black. Aromas of blueberry, coffee, cocoa, fuel, and lemon zest permeate, and most translate to flavor, especially when grown organically. The intense Indica high has an instant onset of head rush that reaches your toes and lasts 4-6 hours. This sleepy, relaxing strain has shown effectiveness for reliev-ing nerve pain and anxiety as well as increasing appetite.
16. Strawberry Loud Cake
This Loud Seeds variety, originally Strawberry Loud Cake #46, is a cross of a female Headband and male Loud Cake (Girl Scout Cookies x Original Loud). This fast-finishing phenotype was selected (along with #12 that finishes even earlier) because it carries a rare recessive trait that results in pink pistils and a wonderful, unique aroma.
This strain works well as a multi-branch plant indoors or out, producing high yields of compact bulbous buds. A bright green plant with pink pistils that darken, Strawberry Loud Cake grows asymmetrically in a mostly upward shape — similar to sour diesel but without as much stretching. Prune while it is small. She responds well to any balanced fertilizer regime, but the nutrient regimen should drop at the end, and those new to gardening, this strain should watch the nutrient uptake. Finishes very early (end of September at 38° North), at heights between 9-13 feet (3-4.2m) outdoors. Indoors, plants that begin flowering at 2 feet end at 3.5 feet (1.1m). This variety will tolerate heat but not cold.
Aroma is the centerpiece of this variety, with the breeders at Loud Seeds selecting this uniquely fresh and minty phenotype from over 500 females. The flavor starts minty, too, followed by citrus and strawberries with a light musk note. The Strawberry Loud Cake high is airy and light, but also effective with an awake, Sativa-style vibe that creeps up. The psychoactive and medical effects can be enjoyed without getting heavy, allowing consumers to function through an air of dreaminess.
17. The True OG
The outstanding characteristics of True OG have been recognized repeatedly as one of the top hybrid strains available. It has won many regional and national competitions and earned magazine covers, with a plant grown in Jamaica from Elemental seeds ranking among “The Strongest Strains on Earth” in 2015. The genetics of True OG are a closely guarded secret of Elemental Wellness, which has used this strain for more than a dozen years as the cornerstone for the development of other award winners, such as Mango Tango.
True OG is an Indica-dominant hybrid that retains some growth patterns of Sativas. Plants stretch with long internodal length and a low leaf ratio but produce large, dense buds. That makes for an easy trim, and expert growers can expect a large yield. Elemental recommends a Sea of Green garden, with plants that never get above 3.5-4 feet (1m) tall. Hydroponics and CO2 supplementation in a sealed room will maximize yield. The maturation rate is 56-62 days.
The True OG aroma overflows with kerosene and lemony Pine-Sol with a hint of skunk in the background, all of which come through in the dank pine flavor. Testing by Steephill Lab shows that the True OG contains significant amounts of myrcene, humulene, and caryophyllene. The strain’s dominant terpene, myrcene, has its own analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties and may help get THC and CBD across the blood-brain barrier, contributing to True OG’s consistent, long-lasting effectiveness. With CBD levels that can exceed 2% and THC that can reach nearly 30%, the True OG makes powerful sedative and anti-inflammatory effects. This strain’s stone is quick-acting and heavy but buoyant, with strong couchlock effects and intense cerebral euphoria. A popular choice for concentrate makers, True OG has been used to produce award-winning live resin.
18. Wedding Cake
Wedding Cake is the 2011 offspring of a cherry phenotype mother of the AK-47 strain and an Indica-dominant LA Kush father. The dark-green fan leaves show its Indica leanings, and an inbred leaf curl/twist mutation marks this strain. The name mostly derives from the parents, Cherry AK47 and LA Kush, but the breeders felt it was no longer just a Los Angeles variety, so in naming it, sought to encompass the entire state.
Wedding Cake grows best in soil in a Sea of Green garden. She branches in a can-delabra shape and can get asymmetrically top heavy, so cleaning lower branches is required, and supports are a good idea. Plants reach 5 feet (1.5m) max, with an average height of 42-48 inches (107-126cm). Early flower development is quick, with low to moderate yields. She produces well for a boutique strain, but is not suited to heavy commercial production or sloppy gardening. Wedding Cake needs modest nutrients with lower nitrogen to avoid stunting when young, and she burns easily if overfed phosphorus. That finicky nature means standard protocols do not apply. This is a strain for experienced gardeners looking for something distinctive.
While growing, Wedding Cake smells of sage than stone fruit — the cherry notes come later. The herbaceous aroma is not immediately identifiable as cannabis, making it easy to mask. The flavor is peppery with a woodsy clean draw of sage that reveals cherry undertones on exhale. Notes include hash, cinnamon, lavender, pepper, musk, sage, and sandalwood. The high is clean and clear and comes on fast but stays very lucid and functional. The effect is calming but not sedating. Wedding Cake can help relieve depression and anxiety, but is not as effective for pain as other Indica dominant varieties.This strain’s high levels of the terpene beta-caryophyllene create a response similar to high-CBD strains because the terpene hits the same CB2 receptors.
The newly released Wubba strain is a cross of a pre-1998 Bubba Kush mother that boasts Hindu Kush landrace genetics with an Icarus father (William’s Wonder x Armagnac). This offering from Animas Seed Company — which gets its name from the Colorado river, Spanish explorers christened Rio de las Animas, or River of Souls — shares male parentage with their Sativa-dominant superstar, The Brotherhood, but takes its traits in the Indica direction.
Notable for her frosty floral structures, Wubba is a multi-branching plant bred for indoor cultivation in soil, but handles a wide range of climates just fine. The breeder recommends topping her once and feeding with a blend of synthetic and organic nutrients. Plants top out at 3 to 4.5 feet (1-1.5m) in height and typically starting flowering at a foot high and finishing at 3.5 feet. These dark beauties show heavy purples in the green, with tight, bulbous buds that look like frosty purple footballs. Even the dark green leaves can achieve a purple sheen. Wubba ripens in 8-9 weeks, though some phenotypes finish faster. This very hardy plant withstands climate changes well and bounces back from stress. A good choice for commercial propagation, Wubba does produce a strong smell in the garden that will need management if discretion is required.
Wubba has a nose full of grape, champagne, and sweet nectar. This fast-acting, long-lasting cerebral dome-rocker comes with a strong body stone that is relaxing to the point of being sleepy. Not surprisingly for a strain with a strong Indica Afghani background, Wubba has a powerful ability to combat anxiety, sleeplessness, and pain, as well as stimulate appetite. A great choice for decompressing on the couch after a long work day, this is not the best strain for mornings or mathematics.