There are over 700 strains of cannabis. A "strain" of cannabis is either pure or a hybrid variety of the plant genus Cannabis. Strains have a maximum potential for potency, dependent upon its lineage or parent varieties that make up that particular strain. Once the cannabis meets that highest THC percent ceiling (THC stands for delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol, which is the primary psychoactive ingredient in cannabis), that is the maximum that the genetics of that specific strain will achieve. The potency is in the resin and oil produced by the trichome. Trichomes are the "frosty looking" resin glands on cannabis plants. Generally speaking, most cannabis growers want to increase the potency of THC.
Why increase the potency of THC?
Increasing the THC improves the psychoactive effect. The higher the THC in the harvested cannabis plant, the more it enhances the psychoactive experience in smaller dosages. A small dose of high THC cannabis would be equal to approximately five amounts of a low THC strain of cannabis. Harvests of high THC cannabis will provide more of the desired effect for the user and typically produce a higher market value.
High THC cannabis can more effectively treat various ailments, such as multiple sclerosis, arthritis, muscle spasms, nausea, and more.
Producing cannabis with high THC allows growers to plant in the same footprint but harvest more. Due to the higher THC, less cannabis is required per dose. Thus, increasing the overall yield.
Choosing a Cannabis Strain for Maximum THC Potency
Check each cannabis strain for the THC tested potency numbers and choose ones that are most genetically potent. The popular GSC (Girl Scout Cookie) strain has a maximum THC of 28%. The Toad's THC maximum is nearly 37%. Many factors can affect cannabis and how it develops and produces THC. Obtaining maximum THC percent is only possible through optimum growing conditions at all times. Growers must monitor and test cannabis growing conditions regularly to ensure that optimum growing conditions are present. Below is a list of 15 cannabis strains tested with a THC of 23% or higher (obtained through optimum controlled growing conditions).
Fifteen Strains of Cannabis that have tested with THC Potency Levels of 23% or higher
Amnesia Haze – THC 20%-25%
Apple Fritter – THC 25%
Cereal Milk - THC 24%
Chemdog, often labeled "Chemdawg" or Chem '91 - 32% THC.
GG4, initially known as Gorilla Glue (a trademark name; can no longer be used), Original glue, and Gorilla Glue #4. GG4 – THC 27%-30%
GMO Cookies, also known as Garlic Cookies or GMO Garlic Cookies - THC 26%
Godfather OG - THC 28% -34%
GSC, known initially as Girl Scout Cookies (a trademark name; can no longer be used), is one of the most popular strains in the world - THC 28%.
Irish Cream - THC 27%
Kush Mints - THC 27%
Motorbreath – THC 25%
Strawberry Banana - THC 31.6%
The Toad - nearly THC 37%
White Fire OG, commonly known as WiFi – THC 25%
White Tahoe Cookies - THC 27%
Deciding what cannabis seeds (or cuttings) to cultivate will begin the life cycle of a cannabis plant (Seed Stage, Germination Stage, Seedling Stage, Vegetative Stage, Flowering Stage, and Harvesting Stage).
For more information on the stages of cannabis growth and lighting, please click on the links below:
Grow Lights Applied Prescriptively for Optimal Cannabinoid Harvest
Stages of Cannabis Plant Growth
Lighting for the Flowering Stage to increase THC
Now that the cannabis plants have grown and thrived through the seedling and vegetative stages (see links above) and are in the Flowering Stage of growth, the LED grow lighting is essential to increasing the THC. With the controllable LED grow lights, they can be programmed to tell your plants how to grow, flower, and how much resin to produce. LED grow lights allow for a controllable light spectrum. Tests have proven to increase the THC in cannabis, increase the blue, white, and UVB lights (ultra-violet type B) up to 100%, and reduce the red lights to 50% (it is best to get to these percentages of the light spectrum gradually). This spectrum of lighting mimics the sun's UVB rays and causes the cannabis plant to produce more trichomes to protect it against the harmful UVB rays. The more trichomes produced, the higher the THC. The higher the THC, the better chance you will have to attain the highest THC percent levels.