American genetics are the current trend in marijuana cultivation, thanks to a careful combination of potency, flavors and yields that have made these strains the favorites of today's consumers, with names like OG Kush, Girl Scout Cookies and Gorilla Glue flooding crops around the world.
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European seed banks such as Seedstockers have also been able to capture the essence of the cannabis market in the USA, drawing on the knowledge of American breeders and importing their genetics to bring their carefully bred genetics to European latitudes, managing to evolve this gene pool to adapt it to the public of the Old Continent.
Below we tell you the history of these varieties and present them in detail.
Why is it important to know the origin of USA cannabis genetics?
Cannabis cultivation in the United States has a long history, the sum of which has prompted many states to legalize and regulate the plant after more than eighty years of total prohibition. Thanks to the social, economic and geographical boost that legal cultivation has received in the United States, American breeders are always looking for the next great strain with which to conquer the market.
Over the past 60 years, these breeders have been taking advantage more than ever of the diversity of cannabis, crossing strains from all over the world. Today, the countless flavors and multitude of effects combine to create endless possibilities. And as cannabis laws become more tolerant in North America, breeding is becoming easier than ever, which is reflected in the number of genetics available through seed banks.
Understanding the history of North American hybrids has value beyond reflecting on the cannabis tradition in this country. And certainly, familiarity with these lineages can help guide you in purchasing marijuana seeds.
Also, users benefit from diverse collections of strains that appeal to customers with diverse needs, so knowing how to select from a broad spectrum of flavors and effects is a necessary skill.
Growers must also understand the environmental requirements for their strains and what cultural practices might work best for each. And these factors are heavily influenced by the lineage of a genetic.
Girl Scout Cookies Auto
What are USA genetics?
The key building blocks of the most sought-after genetics are come from relatively few breeding projects and very important landrace strains, which you need to know to understand the genesis of the modern varieties that are taking the market by storm.
A short history of the USA Hybrids
Despite the fact that in the 60s prohibition was applied with an iron fist, cannabis consumption among young Americans soared in this decade and is linked to the hippie culture, in which the consumption of marijuana (and other psychedelic substances) was a fundamental pillar of the movement, not only to spread its message, but also as a form of rebellion against the system.
In those years marijuana came mainly from Mexico and later from Colombia, so despite the efforts of the DEA, land race varieties (such as Acapulco Gold or Santa Marta Gold), became very popular. The term 'land race' is used to describe any genetically distinct strain that is indigenous to a specific geographic region, where it has adapted, over a long period of time and isolation, to the area's climate and traditional cultivation techniques. During those years many growers were lucky enough to experiment with the great potential of these pure genetics in terms of aroma, taste and potency.
However, seedless buds had not yet reached the market, so some consumers began to cultivate the marijuana seeds of those sativas arriving from neighboring countries, which offered a creative and vigorous effect, perfect for unleashing artistic production and spirituality.
California, cradle of the hippie movement, also became the chosen place to grow cannabis, especially in those areas where the climate was warmer and the summer was longer. And this first generation of marijuana growers fled the cities in search of a quieter, more peaceful existence in nature.
On makeshift farms, they grew scattered plots of cannabis for their own consumption or to exchange and share with neighbors. They also began to crossbreed different strains in order to combine the qualities they most appreciated.
The first hybrids
The first marijuana hybrids were born from the hand of incipient breeders who saw the rich possibilities of this plant. The strains from the north of Mexico or Jamaica finished flowering faster, but had a moderate potency. Breeders crossed these strains with more potent, longer flowering Panamanian and Colombian varieties, and then selectively crossed the hybrids to create the famous outdoor sativas of the 1970s.
However, Californian growers ran into a problem. No matter how much sun shone on the West Coast in the summer months, those sativas accustomed to the heat of tropical climates took too long to mature, and most were not ready until November or December - too late for the California climate.
Fortunately for these growers, the strong migration of the hippie movement throughout the world, starting in the seventies, caused genetics from different latitudes to reach areas far from their place of origin.
This migratory flow was called 'hippie trail' or 'hashish trail' and started in Europe, from where it continued through Afghanistan and Pakistan, until it reached India, Nepal and Thailand. Those who returned from these and other trips brought with them seeds of exotic varieties that they had collected in these places.
Thus came the Afghan and Pakistani varieties; short flowering indicas that completely changed the rules of the game.
Gelato #41 Fem
The birth of the Skunk Saga
Many different cannabis growers, mainly in Northern California, realized that most of the indica varieties - especially the Afghani varieties - performed very well thanks to their robust structure and small size. Their main advantage was their fast flowering, which allowed early harvesting and freedom from the heavy rains and low temperatures of autumn.
The only drawback was the sedative and narcotic effect typical of indicas - far from the creative and vigorous effect they were looking for. They understood, however, the possibilities of these new strains and began to cross them with the sativas they already knew. Their objective was to obtain new varieties with the maturation period of the indicas but the vigorous and creative effect of the sativas.
At that time the first hybrids began to appear, like the mythical Skunk#1 (cross of Acapulco Gold x Colombian Gold x Afghani Indica) created by the famous Sam 'The Skunkman'. Numerous exchanges of seeds and clones took place, and thus were born varieties of marijuana as Green Crack, Sweet Skunk or California Orange Skunk.
Skunk is a historical hybrid which was a revolution because it united the best of both worlds and above all because it was stable. Its controlled stature, its potency and the fact that it matured early was a combination of characteristics that won over cannabis cultivators. It is a powerful strain that has since been used to create many of the hybrids we find on the market today.
Other old school California hybrids
Although the arrival of indicas was a revolution for many, there were also those who remained faithful to the sativas of Mexico and Colombia, growing them in greenhouses and selecting those that matured earlier.
This was the case of the mysterious Haze Brothers, friends of Sam and creators of their first hybrid by crossing a Mexican and a Colombian land race sativa. This in turn was crossed with a strain from southern India and finally with a land race male from Thailand. Its most famous hybrid is surely Purple Haze or perhaps Original Haze, a lineage that has been the origin of legendary genetics such as Super Silver Haze and Jack Herer.
Neither can we forget Northern Lights, created in California but perfected in the Netherlands, where breeder Neville Schoenmaker imported it from the other side of the Atlantic, bringing fruity flavor notes and a dizzying cerebral high to the party.
Northern Lights also changed the rules of the game mainly by being a strain that was incredibly easy to grow indoors or outdoors in a wide variety of climates. That encouraged countless amateur growers to try their luck with it.
Purple Punch Fem
The boom of the 90’s: The second generation hybrids
We finally entered the era of second generation strains, when cannabis breeders began to cross hybrids with other hybrids in the hope that a magical strain would emerge that would be greater than the sum of its parts.
Thus arose the Diesel line, derived from the elite clone 91 Chemdog (or Chemdawg) originating in Massachusetts and created by the famous breeder Chemdog. From this same lineage were born New York City Diesel and Original Diesel (also known as Underdawg or Diesel#1). Subsequently, we also witnessed the appearance of Sour Diesel or East Coast Sour Diesel, or Lemon Diesel in California. We could enumerate a long list of hybrids that have seen the light of day with this genetic base.
This lineage is directly related to the creation of the most popular Californian hybrid in the world: OG Kush. No strain had had such a significant impact on the cannabis world as Skunk, Haze or Northern Lights, until the arrival of OG Kush.
There are different hypotheses about its origin, but the most solid clue seems to be the crossing of the Chemdog clone with a hybrid of Lemon Thaï x Old World Paki Kush. It seems that it was developed in Northern California, which could explain the name "OG" (Ocean Grown and not Original Gangster as some claim) because it was grown for a long time near the ocean. And, on the other hand, "Kush" because many indicas do very well in California due to the fact that they are on the same parallel as Afghanistan and, more specifically, the Hindu Kush mountains.
Today, there are a great variety of Californian hybrids with this genetic base, among which Sapphire OG, Tahoe OG Kush, Larry OG or San Fernando Valley OG Kush. We can also find other famous hybrids, which are actually variants, such as Pre 98 Bubba Kush, Purple Kush and Raspberry Kush.
OG Kush hybrids are now almost as ubiquitous in seed catalogs as the famous strains of the past. For example, a very successful OG Kush hybrid is Girl Scout Cookies, which has great impact and flavor and ushered in the new era in which we find ourselves.
Do Si Dos Fem
Evolution in the 21st century
Nowadays, after the legalization of medical marijuana and more recently of the recreational market in sixteen states of the United States (California and Colorado being the pioneer states in its approval) the free exchange of genetics between the different North American breeders has been greatly facilitated.
The final consequence has been the appearance of an almost infinite number of hybrids, which we at Seedstockers have selected and grouped in our 'USA Genetics' section. Of all of them, the most recent and well-known are, Girl Scout Cookies, Do-Si-Dos, Cookies, Sherbet, Gelato, Wedding Cake or Runtz, although we could mention many more.
Knowledge of the history of cannabis is fundamental to predict the future of this plant. Understanding the origins of modern hybrids can also help growers use their resources as effectively as possible, guiding them in developing a diverse menu of strains and choosing specific cultural cultivation practices.
The best genetics from American Cannabis
Here are seven of the best USA strains available in the Seedstockers catalog, genetics of proven quality that we make available to growers of all levels, so they can see how this new generation of hybrids are driving the current marijuana market.
Girl Scout Cookies
This indica-dominant cross of OG Kush and Durban Poison has become famous for its spicy, dessert-like aroma and flavor profile, with bold notes of mint, sweet cherry and lemon. Created in San Francisco by the 'Cookie Fam' collective, it was cannabis mogul and rapper Berner who launched Cookies into the mainstream when he put his product in the hands of none other than Wiz Khalifa. Since then it has become a staple strain in the USA that has achieved legendary status, so you can find many variations of this coveted genetic grouped under the Seedstockers 'Cookies' heading.
From this original Girl Scout Cookies we have developed our Cookies & Cream, a hybrid with Starfighter with the intention of getting more creamy nuances reminiscent of chocolate cookies with hints of caramel as well as achieving the maximum THC possible, producing an extra powerful plant which at the same time is very productive. It has great medicinal power as it provides lasting relief to patients who treat symptoms during the day, but in high doses can induce sleep early. Definitely a complete strain that won't leave you too despondent or too paranoid to function and an excellent choice for any time of day.
Girl Scout Cookies also have other versions that would make the rest of the Cookie Fam proud, such as Sherbet, which comes from the union of GSC and the outrageously named Pink Panties, itself derived from Blackberry Kush. Sherbet offers the best of both genetic worlds: an energizing sativa high combined with full-body indica relaxation. And with a complex flavor profile that is a hit in social settings. In certain phenotypes, the flowers show flashes of deep purple and sticky trichomes dot the already colorful flowers, giving them an irresistible silvery sheen.
Another North American variety that is already in its own right one of the cult seeds of recent times. Also known as "Dosi", it is a cross between OG Kush Breath (a potent phenotype of GSC) and Face Off OG. Do-Si-Dos is known as what you do when you swing your partner around in a dance, a corruption of the French term dos-à-dos meaning "back to back". Therefore, your brain will be swaying with its enormous THC level, a delicious potency that hits you hard for a long time. With glistening trichomes, shiny pistils and lime green and lavender leaves, this strain is a pleasure for the eyes. Its aroma is spicy, sweet and earthy with a slight floral touch. It also has an incredible biscuity flavor.
Another wonder born from the union between a GSC (Girl Scout Cookies) and a selection of spicy Cherry Pie. Sometimes known as Pink Cookies or Birthday Cake, it relies on these popular genetics to produce a dynamic flavor with a balanced but very strong effect, thanks to its high concentration of trichomes that gives it an incredibly sticky texture. And with buds that are as striking as they are visually impressive, distinguished by their very large and colorful flowers. Although its flavor can vary by phenotype, Wedding Cake doesn't exactly taste like a traditional wedding cake; instead, its profile is mostly sour and spicy with just a hint of creaminess. Because underneath is a Skunk halo that betrays the influence of her OG Kush grandparents.
Animal Cookies is another direct descendant of Girl Scout Cookies and another best seller in the U.S. In this case it is the dominant line in its union with Fruity Pebbles OG to obtain a predominantly sweet Cookies genetics, but with an extraordinary productivity and a high level of THC, which makes its effect start with a very happy cerebral activity and ends up fully relaxing your body while your mind escapes to other dimensions. It is also a very easy to grow variety, which will delight both growers looking for high yielding extracts and newcomers to the world of self-cultivation.
The Gelato family comes from two super tasty varieties that are all the rage in the United States: Sherbet and the phenotype Thin Mint from Girl Scout Cookies, considered by many the best GSC phenotype. This cross was also developed by the 'Cookie Fam' Genetics, the group of breeders from the San Francisco Bay Area, including Mario Guzman, also known as Sherbinski. In this case the Gelato #41 phenotype, with a slightly higher THC potency, is considered to be one of the best genetic lines currently available, offering a daytime smoke that is perfect for a daytime smoke.
Not all variants of Gelato descend from this #41 phenotype. Some are hybrids derived from other Gelato strains or have been crossed with completely different varieties. Nowadays, Runtz is one of the biggest hitters in the US, as she combines the astoundingly strong genetics of Gelato #33 with the multiple award winner Zkittlez. Bred for the first time by Los Angeles growers based on hip-hop legends like Yung LB, Runtz has a star-studded history. This is owed to her aromatic profile, her sweet and sugary taste, and the bag appeal of her buds (a vibrant palette of colours, ranging from blue and purple to dark green and bright orange), all of which has contributed to Runtz becoming a cult strain among cannabis fans.
This is another top ‘Made in USA’ strain that can also turn purple or reddish when the temperature drops slightly. This beauty originates from the union of Grandaddy Purple, famous for her high THC levels, and Larry OG, a variety that helps increase yielding capacity and adds an intense flavour. Crossing both parents was a smart idea, as this indica-dominant hybrid produces the best of both. Users who crave equally strong effects on the mind and body should try this variety, described by some as ‘a punch in the face’, which is counterbalanced by its delicious flavours, including fruit juice, vanilla, and fresh herbs. We should definitely thank the Californian breeders for bringing Purple Punch into our lives!
This is another of the most beloved American strains, famous for her high trichome count, which gives her a very sticky look that lives up to her name. Gorilla Glue has quickly become a favourite for users looking for a super powerful and sedative high, mixing a strong sense of cerebral psychedelia with intense physical and mental relaxation. This is a Gorilla Glue selection, specifically pheno #4, born from the 3-way cross between Sour Dubb x Chem Sister x Chocolate Diesel. She gets many of her attributes from the latter, a strain that provides a smell and flavour reminiscent of coffee and mocha. Don’t let that deliciousness fool you, though, as she also has a bitter touch with Diesel flavour that lingers in your mouth long after you’re done.
As you can see, the choice of US strains on sale covers a wide range of flavours and properties capable of captivating any grower with their balance and complexity.
Remember that, in addition to their feminised versions, you can also find their autoflowering equivalents in the Seedstockers’ catalogue, so we invite you to get to know them in more detail by clicking on their seed description.