Throughout all the research on cannabis as a unique plant, scientists have isolated a huge number of components – up to several hundred – from the resin and leaves. And about 80 of them, cannabinoids, owe their scientific name – cannabis. But the main and most valuable component, which is produced only by cannabis, is the active ingredient THC – delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol. It is THC that has that very famous psychoactive properties and a wide range of effects on the human body, giving the plants psychoactive properties as well as the ability to provide a relaxing body effect, to relieve the pain syndrome, nausea and depression.
In fact, it is for its THC content that cannabis is valued, and it is because of THC that the plant is of great interest, and its cultivation and trafficking are prosecuted in many countries.
Tetrahydrocannabinol is common to all cannabis, but its levels are not uniform, varying wildly not only from species to species and from variety to variety, but can also be inconsistent even within a single variety.
Recreational strains with a potent and long-lasting psychoactive effect due to the high THC content of the resin are considered the most popular. Today, we know varieties with THC levels as high as 30%. On average, a high-potency cannabis is considered powerful even if the THC content is between 16 and 18%. But when you have chosen a strong strain, you are sometimes disappointed when you receive after a few months exactly opposite the “certificate” you were supposed to get.
Factors which influence THC levels
Scientific studies and findings, as well as years of grower and breeder practice, have enabled us to identify and justify several major factors which influence THC levels in marijuana:
This determines the inherent ability of a particular strain to produce a certain level of psychotropic substance. However, the values given by the seed banks in the seed data seem to be a “ceiling”.
Plant health and care
It is hardly worth counting on the fact that a weak and sickly plant will please you with an abundance of lush strong resinous cones. In turn:
The effects of insect parasites,
under and over watering,
Failure to observe the optimal pH of the soil and irrigation water,
insufficient light, or sunburn,
insufficiently long growing season, rapid blooming,
large temperature fluctuations,
Failure to maintain a strict day and night regime,
and so on, seem to be severe stress factors for the plants.
Timing of harvests
It is very important to choose the right time to harvest the cannabis – not too early and not too late. At the start of flowering, the trichomes start to secrete resin, the THC content of which increases gradually. As long as the resinous substance is clear and resembles tiny dewdrops, it is not yet time to harvest. Once this has turned milky in color, it is the high season for Harvest, which can last anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks, depending on the variety. After this period, the resin takes on an amber or even reddish coloration. This is when the THC concentration starts to drop because of the gradual breakdown of THC.
Ways to Increase the THC Level of Marijuana Cones
If you initially want to grow a potent variety with a high THC level, it is a good idea to choose a variety with a few percent higher “passport” THC, especially if you have little experience with grooming such marijuana. Also, you have a better chance of getting what you want if you don’t skimp and give a preference to quality seeds from a reputable seed bank and a trusted store.
It is worth to take into account all the requirements of the producer and also to read about the variety on forums, to ask questions to the managers of the store regarding the germination and care. So, in particular, it is important not to overfeed the plant, not to flood it, not to acidify and not to alkalize the soil, not to overcool and not to overheat the plant.
Manipulations with the light spectrum also yield results. So white light, which has a lot of blue spectrum rays and enough red, stimulates the vega and strengthens the root system. Just what you need to form a strong bushy girl. But at the beginning of the flowering period, hemp needs ultraviolet light, which stimulates an increase in THC in the crop.
Also, many growers note that if you extend the vega of photoperiodic plants by a couple of weeks (to get more than 8 weeks), the buds will be more powerful. There is a reasonable grain in this, because the plant will be stronger and the cones will be more powerful.
Keeping it dark for a day or even three before harvests will stimulate the cannabis to produce more of its rich resin. In doing so, the cutting of the plant should be scheduled for early morning, keeping the light from irradiating the resin. It is better to do the logging manipulation in the dark at all.
It is worth remembering the importance of proper drying and curing of the cones. This is an indirect, non-primary moment, but nevertheless of great importance for maintaining a high THC content in the product.
A selection of potent strains
This selection contains some of the most potent strains we have in our catalog. Try challenging their potency and you will see that you have overestimated your tolerance.
Original Sensible Seeds Gorilla Glue #4 fem is the “Gorilla” that conquered the world with its unprecedented resinousness. Its buds synthesize so much resin that it runs down the stems and blunts even the sharpest manicure scissors. The THC in the finished product is as high as 28%, providing a powerful uncompromising high that fills the body with energy and enlightens the mind. The plant also has a fast flowering period of 8 weeks and a yield of 700 g/shrub.
Bruce Banner #3 fem from Original Sensible Seeds is another killer hybrid with a THC content of 28% for a full-blown knockout effect. A bright, euphoric high comes first and a gentle, relaxing stone kicks in. This plant doesn’t need a lot of attention during its growth. It blooms in 60 to 65 days, yielding about 1 kg of buds per plant, which emit a pleasant aroma of spice and lemon.
Medical Seeds’ Y Griega fem was one of the first cannabis strains on the market with a THC content of 27.12%. Its buds have a classic Hayes aroma with notes of sweetness and a clean uplifting high that instantly lifts your spirits, boosts your energy and takes the pain and stress out of your body. The yield per bush reaches 500-600 g and the flowering period lasts 12 weeks.
Humboldt Seeds Amherst Sour Diesel fem is a superb performer in the Diesel family with a high THC level of 27% and a big yield of 2-3kg of buds per plant. Another obvious advantage is the fast flowering period of 65-70 days. These buds have a pleasant fruity taste and can turn a user’s mind upside down. They give a bright uplifting high, invigorating the body and making the mind crystal clear.
Royal Gorilla fem by RQS is another variation of the famous Gorilla which can surprise even the THC-tolerant user. Its buds bring a powerful multi-faceted effect that combines a mind-enlightening high and a mild relaxing stone. This plant takes 9-10 weeks to bloom, yields 600g of buds per plant, has a pleasant floral aroma and contains 27% THC. A sea of positive emotions with it is assured.