If you want to smoke the rainbow, which flower strains should you look out for? Also, why does certain weed look dark purple while other types are bright orange or pink?
For marijuana enthusiasts, the intoxicating effects of THC are only one aspect of the overall experience. Past the high, there’s the fragrance, flavor, bud structure, and, of course, color.
There is a wide variety of Cannabis strains in terms of colors and hues, from the rich green buds to colorful strains with bright red and orange hairs. So, what causes weed’s various visual tones, and which kinds should you look for if you want your cannabis to be purple? We’ve got you covered.
How Does Weed Get Its Color?
Cannabis, like many other plants, contains chlorophyll. Chlorophyll is a chemical compound that allows plants to convert sunlight into energy. So if you notice your Sour Diesel looking especially green, it’s because of the high chlorophyll content.
What about flowers that come out purple, red, pink, or even black in hue? We must go even further into plant science for those. Anthocyanins are a type of water-soluble pigment that gives fruits and vegetables such as berries, Brussels sprouts, and eggplants their color. Different cannabis strains produce anthocyanins at different rates; however, it also depends on the plant’s surroundings and nutrition.
As cannabis plants enter the final stages of flowering, they become less dependent on sunlight. This slowdown in chlorophyll production is due to an increase in anthocyanin as temperatures start to decline. For cultivators, this means that typically purple, red, and pink strains will only their true colors during harvest season. However, depending on individual grow temperatures and trim jobs, green buds are still a possibility.
What Role Does Temperature Play in Cannabis Color?
Just like maple and oak trees, cannabis produces more anthocyanins in colder months. If you take a second to think of your favorite fall foliage, you probably conjured up an image of majestic red, yellow, and orange leaves shaking in the wind against a bright blue sky.
In other words, if it’s a hot day in July, your buds will be red; if it’s a cold winter night in January, they’ll be blue. The color of your buds is determined at least somewhat by the weather conditions towards the conclusion of the growth season. It might imply lowering temperatures in grow rooms during flowering to add an extra spike of brilliant color for indoor growers.
What Do pH Levels Have to Do With Cannabis Colors?
Scientists have found that in addition to genetics and temperature, cannabis color could also be affected by the plant’s acidity levels. According to Leafly, research on non-cannabis plants and vegetables have shown that higher acidity often produces red and pink hues, while neutral plants tend to produce more purples. On the other hand, high pH brings out blues, and alkaline-rich plants turn yellow.
What Strains Are the Most Colorful?
With that information about how cannabis gets its color in mind, which strains should you look out for if you want to smoke the rainbow? Obviously, no one strain is guaranteed to produce a particular color of buds, but here are some of our favorite flower varieties with genetic tendencies towards bright colors.
Grandaddy Purple, also known as GDP, is a popular indica strain in California that originated at the beginning of the new millennium. It is a cross between Purple Urkle and Big Bud, and it is notorious for its dark purple color and berry flavor.
Grandaddy Purple is a purple strain that was first identified by growers Ken Estes in the San Francisco Bay Area and subsequently spread around the earth. It’s become the icon for purple strains across the world, with more name rhymes than we can keep track of in rap songs.
The name may sound unpleasant, but the sweet citrus taste of this purple-hued strain with light pink borders on magenta is hard to resist. Pink Panties, a cross of OG Kush strains created by Mr. Sherbinski and first offered by him, takes its natural hues from the name.
Pink Panties, on its own, has a couch-locked indica effect, but it’s also been used to cross some of the most popular pot in recent years: Sunset Sherbet, which gets its colorful name and appearance from combining GSC and Pink Panties.
The Black, a rich purple variety that dates back to the pre-millenium cannabis era and is also known as both The Black and Metal Kush, gets its name from its dark coloration and densely crimson buds, which are often mistaken for black.
Keep in mind that each new batch of flowers will have its own aroma, potency, and color. If you want to make a good impression on your smoking buddies every time, buy an eighth of The Black from your local dispensary.
Orange Crush is a sativa whose brilliant orange hairs hide the green of the bud so well, you would be forgiven for thinking it was entirely that color.
A new strain of cannabis, 4G is a mix of GSC, Gelato, and GG#4. This indica hybrid is exclusive and has a mixture of bright green and deep purple coloring with a fragrant scent.
4G was bred by Purple Caper Seeds, and it’s difficult to come by. However, if you can obtain it, consider framing the bud rather than smoking it – this flower is basically photo-perfect.
Again, if you can’t locate these distinct strains at your local dispensary, ask your budtender for his or her favorite purple, pink, or orange ones. After all, each individual cannabis flower is like a universe unto itself when it comes to the variety of colors it has.