What is THC?
A cannabis plant produces molecules called cannabinoids. There are two cannabinoids that you would have heard of, one is CBD, the other is THC. CBD is seen as more of a medicine, whilst THC is often thought to be used for recreation. But this is not true. THC can have medicinal benefits as well as the ability to make you high. THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol. It is secreted by the female cannabis plant during flower. Some strains will produce a high amount of THC, and some will produce high amounts of CBD. Some strains will even have a mix of both. It is still not clear why a cannabis plant produces high THC. But some suggest it is part of the plants immune system, and it is there to fend off bugs, parasites and even some fungi and bacteria. The THC and resin produced by a cannabis plant could also be there to prevent damage from the sun's UV rays. Cannabis plants grown in high altitudes have been shown to produce more resins than plants at sea level. This could be a way for the plant to prevent the harmful UV rays damaging its DNA.
High THC Cannabis Strains
High THC cannabis strains can have up to 25% THC. Strains like Bruce Banner, Girl Scout Cookies and White Widow, all have a high THC content. To get a cannabis plant to produce a high level of THC is not just down to genetics though, it is also down to how the plant has been grown, and when it has been harvested. Lighting, nutrients, airflow, and temperatures can all make a difference in the final THC content of a plant. High THC cannabis takes time, patience, and experience to grow, but having good genetics is always a great start too! If you want to grow good cannabis with high THC, then you should buy good quality cannabis seeds in the first place, and grow them to the best of your ability. There are some techniques growers may use to increase the amount of THC their plants produce. Some of them work, and some do not.
Ways to Increase THC in Cannabis
Towards the end of the flowering period, a cannabis plant will have produced a lot of “crystals” all over the buds and tip leaves. Some growers believe that by stressing the plant out at this stage, it will increase its cannabinoids production. It is thought that the stress on the plant will make it think it is under threat, so it produces more resins as a defence. Some of the techniques are just growers’ myths though, and may cause more harm to your plant than good. A naturally grown cannabis plant, that has had a healthy life, will produce high THC and good buds! But if you feel the need to, you can experiment to see if your plant produces more after it has been shocked.
Late Flower Drought
One of the most popular methods believed to produce more resin on a cannabis plant is drought. During the last couple of weeks of flowering, some growers will stop watering their plants until their pots have dried out completely. There is plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest that this is true! But of course, it brings the risk of stressing your plant too much. If you stress the plant, she will stop growing whilst she recovers. You do not want to do that when the flowers are still growing.
Nail Through the Main Stem
Around 1 week before harvest, some growers will use a nail, and put it through the main stem of the plant. This again, is said to cause stress on the plant which triggers a defense mechanism. There isn't much evidence to say that this is true though, and the practise is rare. Breaking a cannabis plant's stem, and breaking its “skins” can allow pathogens to get into the plant's tissues. Mould can start to grow, viruses can get into the plant, and it will find it hard to support itself too. It is strongly advised that you do not try this one!
Using UV for High THC Cannabis
The Effects of High THC Cannabis
Dangers of High THC Cannabis
Does High THC Cannabis Cause Schizophrenia?
Be a Responsible Stoner!