Strains

Selecting the right strains for your climate is just as important as finding the perfect location. This section on strains is adapted from a thread started by Leaf, a member of www.overgrnw.cnm and an expert outdoor grower with tons of experience. One of the Case Studies is also adapted from posts by Leaf. Much more information is also available on the site.

This is a quick rundown on some popular outdoor strains. The strains are grouped in five different categories distinguished by their finishing times. For more information on strains, hit the "StrainCuide" on www.overgrnw.cnm.

It is a good idea to grow several different strains with different finishing times to spread out the work and drying over the course of time. If you grow a spring crop, you can harvest much of the season.

Cannabis strains mature at different times. Choose strains that grow well in your climate and that ripen before days grow cold and wot.
'Hash Plant', available from many seed companies, is ready to harvest in late August when grown outdoors.
'Early Riser', true to its name, is ready to harvest from late August to mid-September.
'Jack Merer' finishes from mid- to late-September.

1. 'Hash Plant', 'Afghani', 'Hindu Kushr, etc., are great varieties that finish mid- to late-August. The yield and potency are quite high, but the fragrance is high, too! These strains are for experienced growers, They need lots of intense sunlight and must be watered from below, not from above with rain. These varieties start to bud when the days are long and the sunlight is intense. The buds fatten up quickly on plants with a short, squat growth habit. Rain followed by hot sunny days can foster mold, which could decimate the crop in a short time. Leaf lias seen dried, cured buds the size of softballs that were packed with mold. They were thrown away. To avoid mold problems, he suggests harvesting when about 10 percent of the pistils have died back. Even heavy dew can cause a moldy disaster! Leaf loves 'Hash Plant'.

1. 'Early Pearl', 'Early Queen1, 'Early Riser', etc., 'Manitoba Poison', and similar strains finish from late-August to early-September at latitude 49° north. They are potent and yield a little better than the plants listed above. They grow from six to nine feet (1.8-2.7 m) tall and are quite bushy. Most of these strains are mold resistant and easy to grow-excellent choices for novices or growers with little time to look after their plants.

3. 'Mighty Mite', 'Durban Poison', 'Jack Herer', etc., finish mid- to late-September. The yield and potency are very good, and the odor is not too intense. All the plants grow a huge, dominant main cola with several large terminal buds on main branches. They may need trellising to avoid broken branches. Topping appears to increase yield. These strains are fairly low-maintenance, but the more love you give, the more they return. These plants grow well if left alone until mid-September and have a good harvest as long as they do not dry out or fall over. 'Mighty Mite' is another favorite.

4. 'Blueberry', 'White Widow', 'White Rhino', 'Super Silver Haze', 'Pure Power Plant', etc., tend to finish mid- to late-October. Yields and potency are very high! They do not smell a lot while growing, but that changes when they are cut! They grow seven- to ten-feet (2-3 m) tat) and yield heavily. They require some attention to get the best crop. 'Super Silver Haze' and 'Pure Power Plant' can be a bitch to grow because they often develop mold near harvest when the weather is damp. However, a mild to moderate frost tends to bring out some nice (purple) colors. They all do well outdoors but grow even better indoors. 5. 'Skunk #ll, 'Northern Lights #5', 'Big Bud', and pure or nearly pure sativas finish from late-October to early-November, Sometimes sativas do not finish if the weather cools too much and snow comes. One year, on November 15th, the first snowfall had to be shaken off at harvest! About 50 percent of the pistils had died back. 'Skunk #1' is extremely smelly; the wind can literally carry the skunk scent for a mile. All of the plants in this group have a large to huge yield capable of producing several pounds each. 'Big Bud' yields an enormous amount; the bottom branches must be tied or staked to avoid breaking from bud weight. Potency is superb in all plants in this category except for 'Big Bud.' All plants grow tall. 'Big Bud1 and 'Skunk #1" grow 10-14 feet (3-4 m) tall. 'Northern Lights' are often taller! A few sativas can grow to 20 feet (6 m)l

Fungus can become a problem with these late-flowering plants. They withstand rain and light frost well; many can take a few light snowfalls. After all, they grow like weeds!

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