Celebrating HMH Grown High CBD Cannabis Strains
By Zachariah Finning
In this month’s blog, we’ll be ushering in the New Year by discussing some of our best CBD strains offered here at High Mountain Health. In this respect, some of the articles will be more of an Op-Ed than a source-based blog. We will discuss each plant and strain in detail; addressing the genetics of each plant, their growing behaviors, and their specific ratios of CBD to THC, as well as any quirky details about the plants. We will also briefly discuss what each plant may be medicinally good for and some common ways that you can use them to benefit your medicinal experience. We will also use some anecdotal evidence from patient success stories and employee rapport alike to bring you a more personalized understanding of these amazing flowers. One of them being award-winning but the other two are just as esteemed. These flowers are our Critical Mass CBD, Harlequin, and ACDC.
In this ever-expanding medicinal market, CBD strains are either directly sought out or blatantly ignored depending on the type of medicinal needs a patient may have. However, one thing I have come to understand after years working in a dispensary is that most patients overlook CBD-heavy strains as they believe that these strains hold no medicinal significance, or value, to them. It is an easily understood concept with CBD mainly being geared and branded more towards wellness along with less intoxicating effects. However, when you start to explore ratios, the medicinal benefits of CBD within cannabis can be amplified and this is where the magic lies. Ratio means the amount of CBD to THC, or vice versa, that is within a flower or other product created using that specific strain. It also is directly linked to the “entourage effect” within cannabis. If you are unfamiliar with the entourage effect you can get a deeper understanding of this by referencing my previous Herbivore blog: Cannabis 101. A simple explanation of this effect is that when you utilize multiple cannabinoids within cannabis, instead of just one like THC or CBD by itself, it actually increases the effects felt within the body and mind. Typically strains with THC outweighing the CBD can produce heightened mental effects like sedation or the “high” feeling a lot of patients seek. This is good for dealing with depression, stress, fatigue, mild body pain, etc. On the other spectrum strains with CBD outweighing the THC can produce heightened body effects. These strains would be good for those looking to quell extreme body pains, neuropathies, muscle spasms, they can even help to calm the “high” if one is overmedicated. These strains can also be great for those suffering from extreme anxiety. I believe the reason most CBD-heavy strains are ignored or overlooked is primarily due to limited exposure to these strains, as a majority of the medicinal crowd seeks THC heavy cannabis.
The first HMH strain to be celebrated in this blog will be our ACDC. This strain is a sativa-based CBD-heavy strain. The genetics of this specific plant is a cross between Cannatonic and Ruderalis. “Cannatonic is a mostly CBD marijuana strain made by crossing MK Ultra and G13 Haze (S1). It is said to produce a relatively mellow and short-lasting high that can be very relaxing but at the same time uplifting to the mind (S1). Cannabis Ruderalis “many believe to be a descendent of indica genetics that adjusted to the harsh climates and shorter growing seasons of the northern regions where it originates” (S2). Many botanists use the term Ruderalis to signify breeds of the hemp plants that have escaped from human cultivation and adjusted to their extreme environments (S2). In the days before the medicinal market explosion, Ruderalis was considered a “wild breed of cannabis.” In recent years it has been used with indoor cultivations to influence new hybrid varieties (S2). ACDC has a slightly funky earthy odor with light sweet citrus flavors making it a perfect daytime strain. Our ACDC typically has anywhere between 0.6-1.1% THC with anywhere from 14-16% CBD. This is one of the highest CBD to THC ratios that can be found in a flower. From collected patient and employee rapport, this strain is great for antiemetic (anti-nausea) properties as well as mild body pains, calming muscle spasms, and helping to relieve migraines. A long-time patient claims it is great for after, or even before, they go on their daily bike rides. Our ACDC is generally available in flower form and we currently have an Errl Cup-winning health oil, similar to the famed Rick’s Simpson Oil, from our KAYA brand.
The next strain to be put under the spotlight will be our Harlequin strain. Harlequin is another sativa-based CBD strain. Harlequin’s genetics are comprised of Columbian Gold, Thai, and Swiss Landrace. Columbian Gold is “a classic landrace sativa that originated in the Santa Marta Mountains of Columbia” (S3). It is famed for having uplifting and focused effects without inducing anxiety or paranoia (S3). Thai “refers to a cannabis variety that grows natively in Thailand and was brought to the U.S. in the ’70s and ’80s (S4). Another pure sativa landrace it gets its name mainly due to the way its buds are traditionally dried and tied into long sticks, or Thai Sticks. The strain induces powerful but comfortable elevating effects (S4). Swiss landrace is an indica strain that grows natively in the region of Switzerland and the varieties can exhibit different properties depending on the climate and latitude at which the specific landrace grew (S5). Harlequin has a sweet yet musky aroma to it, naturally blended from its two sativa and one indica-based parent. Another great day time CBD strain, the THC to CBD ratio is a little more balanced than our previous contestant. Harlequin can be anywhere from 5-6% THC and 11-12% CBD. The nearly 1:2 ratio within this strain means that mind and body effects will both be amplified and felt. Again, anecdotal evidence collected from the patient and employee rapport leads us to know that the strain can help with chronic pain, fatigue, muscle spasms, and anxiety. An employee here at High Mountain Health uses the Harlequin strain almost every time before he creates his artwork. He says it “increases creativity and helps with steadying the hand”. Harlequin is a staple of the HMH flower menu.
The last strain to be showcased in this blog is my personal favorite, Critical Mass CBD. Our Critical Mass is an Indica-based heavy CBD strain. This strain took home the 2019 and 2020 Arizona Errl Cup 1st Place designation for Best CBD Flower. The genetics of this amazing flower is a cross between Afghani and the Skunk #1 strain. Afghani is an overpowering indica strain that brings a deep state of euphoria and relaxation to the body and mind. It is named after its geographic location where the earliest varieties of cannabis are thought to have grown (S6). Skunk #1 is a hybrid strain that was originally seen in the late 1970s. It was originally bred “using diverse genetics from around the world: Afghani, Acapulco-Gold, and Colombian Gold varieties converged through an intricate selective breeding process that spanned several generations” until this cornerstone of countless hybrids was birthed (S7). The combination of a pure indica strain along with the heavy hybrid impacts of Skunk #1 creates a flower with an amazing aroma and appearance, as well as a full entourage effect in body and mind. Our Critical Mass CBD ranges anywhere from 6-9%THC with 12-18% CBD. This makes it around a 1:2 Ratio just like Harlequin except the effects are far from the same due to the lineage and genetics. I personally use this strain for insomnia, chronic pain due to nerve damage, and anxiety-related issues. Other patient rapport suggests to us that the stain is great for antiemetic purposes along with relief from muscle spasms and muscle pains. Critical Mass CBD is typically always available in flower form and is utilized in KAYA Indica Sol Stix.
Whatever your medicinal needs are, here at High Mountain Health we are sure to have a high CBD strain that can get the job done. Whether you are looking for motivation, creativity, and mild body relief during the day or deep relaxation, de-stress, and chronic pain relief during the night. With our Critical Mass CBD being a two-time award winner, it’s hard to downplay the medicinal value of CBD strains! Each of the three strains showcased in this blog holds its own specific properties and benefits. However, all three are reliable for relief to patients in a multitude of ways. Mixing these strains to create a great CBD hybrid can be another option for patients who may need an entourage of symptoms relieved. I have personally mixed the Harlequin with the Critical Mass CBD to create a great balanced body effect that doesn’t leave me too sleepy. In the medicinal marijuana field, we are used to trial and error as each patient must learn what specific form of medication, along with dosage, and timing works best for them in conjunction with budtenders’ advice. In this respect, we’re hoping this blog will shed some light on the benefits and purposes of our great CBD strains. As well as open some doors for those patients that have yet to give them a try!