How long will a weed high last?

Editor’s note: Are you too high right now? Go here to calm yourself or a friend.

One of the eternal questions in cannabis culture has finally been answered by science: After consuming marijuana, how long will you stay high?

In a 2021 study published in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, researchers led by Danielle McCartney of the University of Sydney identified a “window of impairment” that lasts anywhere from three to ten hours, depending on the THC dose, the mode of ingestion, and the consumer’s previous cannabis experience.

After taking 20mg of THC, most consumers shed the high within four to five hours.

Those are a lot of factors, but the TL;DR is: generally, four hours.

The intoxicating high from a lighter inhaled dose will generally last for three hours, while a deep dabbing session or heavy edible may keep on hitting for six to ten hours.

Gathering data from 80 studies

McCartney and her colleagues undertook a comprehensive analysis of 80 scientific studies on cannabis dosage and intoxication.

Because the focus of their study was on the effect of cannabis intoxication on driving skill and awareness, much of the work skewed toward answering those questions.

The researchers found that cannabis consumers recovered most of their driving-related skills within five hours of inhaling 20mg of THC. Consumers who consumed the same amount of THC via an edible took longer to recover their driving skills. Most cannabis edibles in legal markets are dosed at 10mg per serving, and 100mg total THC per package.

“Overall, our results confirm that Δ9-THC impairs aspects of driving performance,” the researchers wrote. “There appears to be no universal answer to the question of How long to wait before driving? following cannabis use: Consideration of multiple factors is therefore required to determine appropriate delays between Δ9-THC use and the performance of safety-sensitive tasks.”

 

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Edible highs hit later and last longer

The differences between inhaled THC and ingested THC (via edibles) were significant. It’s widely known that the effects of THC and other cannabinoids will be felt within minutes by consumers who smoke or vape cannabis products, while an edible or beverage can take up to an hour or more to hit.

In their review of the scientific literature, McCartney and colleagues found that the intoxicating effects of edibles and beverages usually last much longer than inhaled products.

Those researchers found that smoking or vaping 20mg of THC diminished a driver’s reaction time for roughly four hours. But ingesting 20mg of THC via an edible or beverage diminished reaction time for eight hours, twice as long. The study’s data indicated a THC-impaired driver’s reaction time was diminished at a significant but not dramatic level.

 

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Heavy edible? Could be a 10-hour ride

“Our analysis indicates that impairment may last up to 10 hours if high doses of THC are consumed orally,” said McCartney, who works with the Australian university’s Lambert Initiative for Cannabinoid Therapeutics. “A more typical duration of impairment, however, is four hours, when lower doses of THC are consumed via smoking or vaporization and simpler tasks are undertaken.”

That impairment—which cannabis consumers may experience as feeling high, or stoned, or deeply relaxed, or sleepy, or mirthful, or creative—“may extend up to six or seven hours if higher doses of THC are inhaled and complex tasks, such as driving, are assessed,” McCartney added.

For the purposes of this study, McCartney and associates considered 10mg of THC to be a moderate dose. But a moderate dose for a regular consumer, they added, could be a high dose for an occasional one.

 

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Regular consumers show less impairment

As many cannabis consumers know, regular use can result in the body and mind building up a tolerance for cannabinoids ingested from sources outside the body, such as weed. This was also confirmed by the University of Sydney researchers.

Co-author Dr. Thomas Arkell, also from the Lambert Initiative, said: “We found that impairment is much more predictable in occasional cannabis users than regular cannabis users. Heavy users show significant tolerance to the effects of cannabis on driving and cognitive function, while typically displaying some impairment.”

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I tried delta-8 THC: Here’s what it feels like

Delta-8 THC is one of the hottest topics in cannabis right now. It’s a minor cannabinoid that can get you high like traditional THC, but much less so. It’s found in small amounts in the cannabis plant and is often converted from other compounds like CBD. If you haven’t heard of it yet, you surely will soon enough.

Reason #1 that interest in delta-8 is surging is its existence in a legal grey area: Delta-8 can be made from hemp and thanks to the 2018 farm bill, cannabis with less than 0.3% THC is considered hemp, and anything that naturally derives from hemp is federally legal.

That means if you convert hemp CBD into delta-8, you end up with a federally legal cannabis product that gets people high, although less high than traditional THC. Some states have begun to regulate delta-8, some not. Read more on what delta-8 is and its legality in this article.

Reason #2 people are so curious about delta-8 is because it’s supposed to be a much less intense, much more approachable experience than the high you feel from consuming traditional cannabis with THC.

So does it get you high? We put delta-8 to the test, for the people.

 

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Is delta-8 less intense than THC?

delta-8 gummies
Smokiez delta-8 gummies. (Smokiez)

To test out delta-8 THC, I slid to a dispensary in Portland, Oregon to grab up the 250mg pack (ten 25mg servings) of Smokiez Sour Blue Raspberry Gummiez. I chose Smokiez because their traditional gummies are some of my favorites, giving me a great comparative reference. Plus, when trying new products, it’s important to find reputable brands that you can trust to put out the good on a consistent basis.

With delta-8 expected to have less intense effects than traditional THC, I decided to try them in separate doses of 50mg and 100mg, or two and four gummies, respectively. Activation time on the package said 45 minutes.

I took each dose on an empty stomach for the fastest onset time possible, and then allowed a period of four hours to pass, since edibles are expected to peak within 3-4 hours. I did not consume any other cannabis that day, so I started from a completely sober state.

Here’s my experience.

NOTE: The following experience is a single human trial, not a true scientific experiment. Experience with cannabis, frequency of use, and your body chemistry all come into play when deciding how high one will get. Consumption results may vary.

50mg dose

I ate the first dose at 10:30am, and after about 30 minutes, I started to feel the familiar head and body buzz that let me know there’s some weed in my system. Or excuse me, hemp.

The first thing to know before discussing the delta-8 experience is my tolerance. I chain smoke joints all day, every day, with dabs tossed in the mix here and there. It would take a lot of weed to floor me at this rate.

However, with traditional edibles, it tends to be the opposite. They always creep up on me because I forgot I ate them and then BAM—it’s Couchlock City, USA. That’s why I usually stay away from them.

That said, normally, a 50mg dose of edibles would absolutely rock me to sleep within a couple of hours, but the delta-8 gummies produced a stimulating, sort of energetic experience that comes from a good morning wake ‘n’ bake mixed with a nice cup of coffee.

 

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It was almost like smoking a joint of CBD-dominant flower, where you feel alert, clear-headed, and ready for any obstacles the day may throw your way. Within less than an hour of eating those gummies, I was locked into Google Docs knocking out days worth of writing work.

Truthfully, I expected to feel absolutely nothing when I ate those two gummies. I was ready to hate. But the Smokiez delta-8 gummies experience had me blasting music, dancing around my Airbnb, and punching out sentences that writer’s block had been stifling for over a month.

Sometimes, my head can get pretty foggy from the weight of the world’s news and personal anxieties around them. It leads me to a state where it’s hard to even approach daily life, let alone daily work. Cannabis is one of my remedies for this, and delta-8 proved to have the same benefits that I get by smoking a joint and telling myself that everything is going to be all right. All without the sleepy comedown.

It was a really pleasant surprise, honestly. Something tells me delta-8 might actually be as advertised. It might really be the weaker version of THC that makes cannabis more approachable for people with lower tolerances.

By 12pm, the delta-8 high had started to subside, and at 2pm the only lingering effects of the high were dry mouth and dehydration.

 

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All in all, if I were to describe the high in one word, I’d say: energizing.

Never once did I feel a groggy comedown. Never once did I feel my body succumb to the THC. Instead, I felt productive, motivated, and happy. It was the same type of high I get from consuming strains like Apple Fritter, Super Silver Haze, and Chocolope.

This is opposed to traditional edibles, where it’s only a matter of time before I’m horizontal on the couch with the Roku remote in-hand ready to waste hours of life watching Joe Budden Podcast episodes on YouTube. With delta-8, I popped a few of those bad boys and locked into Google Docs for four straight hours. Ernest Hemingway could never.

So yes, based on personal experience alone, I’d say that delta-8 gummies do get you high, and that the high is less intense than smoking joints of traditional flower or eating traditional edibles.

100mg dose

I ate the 100mg dose of delta-8 gummies at 4pm. If I’m keeping it real, the experience felt exactly the same as the 50mg dose. I wasn’t higher or anything, it was just right back to a quick head and body buzz that never once tailed off into a sleepy comedown, even as I moved well into the evening.

I was low-key disappointed with that—I thought boys were about to take off for the moon. In the end, it showed me that I could probably pop delta-8 gummies all day long without feeling like I need a 48-hour nap to clear out the oh-my-god-I’m-so-high cobwebs I sometimes get from traditional THC.

 

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Does delta-8 THC get you high?

Yes, delta-8 definitely gets you high, but it was a lighter high than I’m accustomed to from smoking joints, taking dabs, and eating regular edibles.

These gummies were definitely less intense than the normal Smokiez fruit chews, and in the end, this home-cooked experiment left me feeling like delta-8 could be great for people who want an energizing experience from cannabis but don’t want to smoke joints or take dabs for it.

Or if you simply get way too high from joints and dabs and you’ve been running from cannabis and its many benefits, delta-8 could be the training wheels you’ve needed all along.

Most of the time, people expect edibles to hit hard and have you stuck to the couch in slump mode. Perhaps delta-8 is the solution to avoid that.

Or perhaps it’ll be outlawed before we get the chance to see.

Read More

How aging changed my cannabis routine – and might change yours, too

How one woman is adjusting, getting older, and getting wiser about weed


When I first started consuming cannabis, I was a 21-year-old college student. My cannabis routine consisted primarily of shared bowls, bongs, and blunts packed with THC-dominant cannabis flower, and I typically only consumed on nights and weekends.

Just as it does now, cannabis helped me relieve stress, anxiety, pain, and depressive symptoms back then. It helped me fall asleep faster and sleep better as well. But in the near-decade that’s passed since my first toke, aging has changed my cannabis routine in so many ways. Everything from my preferred method of cannabis consumption to my dosing preferences to my THC tolerance is completely different now.

 

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The topic of cannabis and aging has been on my mind since I entered my 30s in 2020. So, I asked two cannabis-informed physicians — Jordan Tishler, MD, and Dr. Laszlo Mechtler, Medical Advisor at Jushi Holdings, Inc. and Medical Director of Dent Neurologic Institute — to weigh in on the primary ways aging has changed my cannabis routine, and how it might change yours as well.

How aging has changed my preferred method of cannabis consumption

cannabis leaf on pink background

Until my late 20s, smoking and vaping were my favorite ways to consume cannabis. As someone who has always used the plant to relieve stress, pain, and anxiety — and later in my cannabis journey, PTSD symptoms as well — I appreciated the instant relief inhalation provides.

As I age, however, I prefer sticking with edibles and tinctures, partially due to health issues that weren’t present in my life until 2019, but also because I’m more health-conscious in general now and I want to protect my lungs.

When asked about it, Tishler said he doesn’t think preference is the right way to look at one’s consumption methods.

“As a cannabis specialist, I think preference isn’t really the right way to look at it. Different routes of administration cause different outcomes, so the approach is best tailored to the symptoms,” he explains.

Mechtler says something similar: “In general, the best method for cannabis consumption depends on what is the person using the cannabis product for. Are they simply using it to ‘catch a buzz,’ or are they trying to treat an underlying health condition?”

 

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Mechtler recommends tinctures and capsules because they typically yield six to eight hours of relief for patients while inhaled products only yield two to three hours of relief.

Additionally, both Tishler and Mechtler discourage smoking and vaporizing cannabis since those methods put our health at risk. “I would not recommend smoking because it’s not good for us, which is something that becomes of greater concern to people who are older,” Tishler says.

 

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As an oncologist, Mechtler says he has a very hard time recommending a smoked or vaporized cannabis product to his patients. “This is something that is even more important now with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. One should really be doing everything they can to protect their cardiopulmonary system,” he says.

How aging has changed my dosing preferences and my THC tolerance

Stylish Woman Smoking a Joint at home while reading.

I moved from California to Missouri in 2019. I still can’t afford my Missouri medical marijuana card — but that’s only partially why my cannabis routine consists primarily of full-spectrum, hemp-sourced CBD products and has for nearly two years. Simply put: when it comes to THC, I feel like less is more.

When I was younger, smoking an entire bowl, taking multiple bong hits, or eating a 20 milligram edible in one sitting felt great.

For years, high doses of THC-dominant cannabis products and strains effectively squashed my anxiety and PTSD symptoms with little or no negative side effects.

But shortly after I turned 29, large doses of THC started making me feel worse. I’m not alone in this experience, either. Anecdotal evidence suggests age can play a role in how a person experiences THC. Additionally, the results of a 2007 study support a connection between age and THC sensitivity.

Marijuana Joints and Hand Trimmed Flower

Over the course of the study, two age groups of rats were given THC and then put through tasks designed to test their stress and anxiety levels. The study results led researchers to conclude that the older rats were more likely to suffer from higher levels of stress and anxiety after consuming THC than the younger ones.

Whereas I used to smoke and vape almost exclusively, often several times a day, these days I prefer taking 15 to 30 milligrams of high-quality CBD two or three times a day. I feel like my current routine works beautifully to ease anxiety and promote sleep. And I love that there’s little risk for impairment or paranoia with CBD. Even when I do manage to get my Missouri medical marijuana card, I’ll probably keep consuming hemp-sourced CBD oils daily and consume low-dose THC edibles only.

Aging won’t necessarily affect your ideal dose or your THC tolerance in the same way it’s been affecting mine, though. Tishler says dose doesn’t seem to correlate well with age. “Some of my highest dose patients are the older ones, even if they started from completely cannabis naive,” he says.

 

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Regarding anxiety and PTSD, Tishler says THC dose can have a very fine line, and crossing it exacerbates those conditions. “I also suspect that the mindset of the patient is very important to where that line lies, and as you age concerns about both existential issues as well as your cannabis use may contribute to shifting that line lower,” Tishler says. Indeed, a number of factors can affect a person’s cannabis high.

Why consistency is crucial for any cannabis routine

Ultimately, aging looks different for everyone, and no two bodies are exactly the same. There are multiple ways to have a healthy cannabis routine, and it’s entirely possible mine will change — possibly many times — as I continue to age.

But one thing is for certain: consistency is essential for any cannabis consumer.

“Sticking to a routine is key,” Tishler says. “Working with your cannabis specialist to find the right route and dose and then taking it consistently (like a medicine) leads to best benefit.”

Whatever your preferences regarding consumption methods and THC content, you can’t go wrong with this standard cannabis advice: start low and go slow.

And with the COVID-19 pandemic still raging, cannabis consumers of all ages should be extra careful to protect themselves and their lungs.

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Citrus dynasty: A Tangie family genealogy

Leafly honors the 50th anniversary of “4:20” (aka “420” or 4/20) this April with a celebration of legendary strain families. We’ve already covered famous Hazes, but now it’s time to get to know the legendary Tangie.


Some people wake up with a cup of orange juice while others turn to a bowl of marijuana strain Tangie, but both have become indispensable to humanity at this point.

Cannabis beginners all the way to serious hash heads have cemented Tangie’s place on the Mt. Olympus of modern strain families.

Since the ‘90s in California, Tangie’s unmistakable, deep, orange funk aroma—and its friendly energetic effects—have minted millions of marijuana fans.

Tangie’s rise offers a true American story of multi-generational family farming strapped to the rocket of medical marijuana legalization, the rise of butane hash oil, and the contemporary rosin movement.

Tangie’s breeders refined an aroma and effect that have become fundamental to any cannabis shop menu in 2021, said Oni Seed Co. founder and breeder of Tropicanna Cookies, Nick.

“It has its place in the pantheon as one of the best, most influential strains of all time. Whether people want to admit it or not, its hybrids are undeniable and they continue to this day,” Nick said.

Let’s take a sweet, tangy journey through time and space exploring the citrus dynasty of Tangie.

tangie poster
Tap or click the image to open up and save this poster of Tangies. (Leafly)

Crockett Family Farms conjures the DNA of Tangie

The Tangie family genealogy begins with a real family, The Crocketts of the Sierra Nevada in California.

Four generations of Crocketts have worked cannabis fields out near Yosemite during the depths of prohibition to today’s legal market.

In the sunny, hot, remote foothills, the Crocketts collected popular strains of the ‘70s and ‘80s—like California Orange (Cali-O)—and worked them through the ‘90s until today, always breeding seeds for the next year.

The main breeder who goes by “Crockett” grew up the son of a pot grower, and his great uncle also grew. Today, his son’s a grower, too.

Three generations of Crocketts pose in a sunny cannabis field. (Courtesy Crockett Family Farms)
Three generations of Crocketts pose in a sunny cannabis field. (Courtesy Crockett Family Farms)

Pot prohibition peaked in the late 20th century, and Crockett’s use of his last name only (or a made-up name) came from having to hide during prohibition.

Back then, making seeds wasn’t a hobby but rather a mandate, Crockett told Leafly. Federal and state narcotics officers raided grows regularly in the ’80s and ’90s, so the Crocketts didn’t keep “mother plants” in an indoor farm, from which to take cuttings or clones.

“It was very risky back then to have an indoor setup. You could go to jail or get in big trouble for a long time,” said Crockett.

Younger Crockett and the family seed patch

Crockett got his start growing and breeding as a youngster in the family, tending smaller patches of cannabis grown for the next season’s seeds, far away from the main crops.

“That’s what got me involved in making seeds and creating strains—through those genetics handed down from the family,” Crockett told Leafly.

The Crocketts, and the mountain they grew on, became famous for their orange-flavored family heirloom Cali-O, he said.

“People would come every year to get that specific terpene profile,” he recalled. “It was a way to differentiate our farm and our product from a lot of other people’s product. And we really liked it, and I liked it.”

Crossing everything to Cali-O

Each season, Crockett crossed Cali-O to dozens of different strains. One year, Crockett bred their Cali-O with a mix of Skunk and a family secret and found an instant hit, Tangie.

Amid the OGs, Sours, and Purples of the early 2000s, “Tangie was this unique strain. It was definitely a hit right off the bat,” said Crockett.

As medical marijuana took off in California in 2006-2008, the Crocketts were pumping out Tangie on their farm. Word spread of this intensely orange-smelling weed with gobs of flavor and an approachable daytime effect.

Tangie is just going to dominate the room with smell …

Nick, founder, Oni Seed Co.

“If you put a lot of strains on a table that were equally well-grown, Tangie is just going to dominate the room with smell,” said the breeder “Nick,” founder of Oni Seed Co., maker of Tropicanna Cookies F2.

“When you smoke it, it’s unmistakable,” said breeder Vince, co-founder of Symbiotic Genetics, maker of Mimosa.

A friendly sativa

Crockett also said Tangies offered something different than the typical old school sativas, which got you so high you felt uncomfortable.

“In my mind sativas were like psychedelic, sweating paranoia,” he said.

Testing at 18-22% THC, Tangie never felt that way.

“The high isn’t as intense as a lot of these other sativas, and it doesn’t knock you down like an indica. It’s this in-between, enjoyable high—so you get high, it tastes good, and if you don’t get high enough, smoke another bowl.”

“It’s good for beginners and anyone who tires of the same old,” Crockett added.

DNA Genetics brings Tangie to other continents

Tangie won its first Cannabis Cup in 2011 and caught the attention of the globe’s leading seed distributors, DNA Genetics, based out of Amsterdam, where drug law loopholes nurtured a massive weed seed scene.

Crockett met up with Don Morris and Aaron Yarkoni of DNA Genetics, who added the seeds to their legendary sales catalog.

“We all hit it off real well, and they kinda helped me get into the seed game as far as what the seed game is now. That’s where Crockett Family Farms really kind of took off, and that’s where the genetics became available for the public to buy,” he explained.

While Crockett was making Tangie crosses with DNA Genetics, he approved of others doing the same. Unlike other breeders who hoard their genetics, Crockett correctly intuited that the pathway to the pot pantheon involves others walking that path with you.

“You can’t just be producing it for a small community. You have to make it available for the world to buy.”

Crockett, Crockett Family Farms

“If you want to make a strain that’s recognized around the world, you can’t just be producing it for a small community. You have to make it available for the world to buy,” he said.

The Crocketts did not hoard their intellectual property.

“If you bought the seeds then they’re your seeds, and you can do anything you want with them,” Crockett said. “It’s better for me and my company because Crockett strains formed the base and foundation for others’ big hits.”

Tangie shatters expectations for BHO

Even though Tangie offers beginner friendly effects, the invisible hand of high-tolerance hash lovers really drove its adoption as well.

Tangie’s riotous aroma survives the intense, liquid-butane extraction process to make butane hash oil, aka BHO. In the late 2000s, influential connoisseurs sought out shatter—a type of solid, glass-like solvent-made hash.

“Back then, ‘if it didn’t shatter, it didn’t matter,’ the saying went,” said Crockett.

Whereas most shatters tasted the same, Tangie shatter tasted like Tangie.

Shatter type extracts made with Tangie smelled amazing. (rgbspace/iStock)
Shatter-type extracts made with Tangie smelled amazing. (rgbspace/iStock)

“There was flavor there,” he said. “When there’s no flavor at all, and you get something that has a flavor—it’s a winner.”

“It came out at that moment that everybody was looking for flavor and terps, and even just discovering terpenes. It was a new time.”

Two more attributes gave Tangie the juice to go the distance:

  1. “Everybody loves to breed with it,” said Crockett.
  2. And Tangie crosses led to explosively flavorful “rosin”—a connoisseur-grade non-solvent hash that’s red-hot today.

Tropicana Cookies adds power and color

One of those many breeding hits? Tropicanna Cookies, first bred as an “F1” by the breeder Harry Palms, then refined as Tropicanna Cookies F2 by Oni Seed Co. in Colorado.

Harry Palms crossed a Tangie male to the Cookies strain and gave out the crosses, and the so-called “Mountain (MTN) Trop” became a staple of Colorado through the dispensary the 14er in Boulder, CO., the first to stock Tropicanna Cookies consistently.

Soon after, Tangie hype peaked and fell back. Cannabis aficionados had smoked so much Tangie flowers and hash, they grew bored. Harry Palms moved on to breeding the Papaya strain. But Nick at Oni Seed Co saw more in Tropicanna Cookies.

“I said, ‘I’m going to bring Tropicanna back,’ and Harry said, ‘Don’t do it. It’s played out Tangie trash.’”

“Every time I’m in a room of different hashes to smoke, it’s there: Tangie, Tangie, Tangie.”

Nick, Oni Seed Co.

“I said, ‘No sir, she’s a star. I’m going to do it, anyway.’”

Breeding Tangie to the primal “Forum Cut Cookies” gave it added potency and new colors. Tangie became strong enough for the elite.

“I am a longtime smoker of many decades—if it gets me super high after just the same strain all day long, it’s going to wreck people.”

Oni Seed Co.’s Tropicanna Cookies F2 came out in 2017 and “sold out instantly,” said Nick. It went on to win many flower and hash contests. “I pulled that girl out of the trash and made her a star,” Nick reminisced.

Leafly's favorite flower, leafly faves, Tropicana cookies, cannabis flower, marijuana
Tropicanna Cookies. (Courtesy of Kendal Meins)

Oni Seed Co., as well as Harry Palms’ Bloom Seed Co., keep pushing the limits of tropical cannabis flavors, especially for use in making hash. Nick said tons of Tangie crosses masquerade as other names, but the hash aroma cannot hide.

“Every time I’m in a room of different hashes to smoke, it’s there: Tangie, Tangie, Tangie,” said Nick.

That love of great hash-making strains also led to another essential Tangie cross: Mimosa.

Mimosa takes ova’

Cycles of Tangie interest wax and wane, while waves of hype for Tangie crosses have become even more extreme. The Clementine and Purple Punch cross “Mimosa” hit new heights of popularity for a Tangie. And it all started over a love of hash.

Over in Sacramento in the 2010s, a hash maker introduced the indoor grower Michael at The Village to an outdoor grower/breeder that went by “Budologist” and whose name is Vince from San Jose, CA. Together they formed Symbiotic Genetics, intending to combine their genetic library for high-end hash and flower production.

One of the many strains the newfound duo started with the Tangie descendent Clementine, specifically because it grew huge outside and yields a lot of hash.

“It washes, it yields, it’s extremely citrusy. We just loved everything about it. We’re all about the flavor. We love something that just coats your mouth in flavor like zkittlez would or a citrus strain,” Vince told Leafly.

Mimosa (David Downs/Leafly)
Mimosa (David Downs/Leafly)

Selected by the Jungle Boys

Under just two grow lights in the back of a dispensary, Michael and Vince crossed Clementine to a special Purple Punch male. They sent the resulting unnamed seeds off for test growing by a friend in 2016. But not just any friend—Michael from Symbiotic had a personal friendship with Ivan from the Jungle Boys, Los Angeles’ indoor growing titans.

The Jungle Boys grew out Symbiotic’s tester seeds, selected the most pungent, potent, and pretty, and in 2017 sold the bud in stores and documented their progress on Instagram.

Michael at Symbiotic named the strain Mimosa, explaining, “We were smoking a joint of it, and it was very orangey and citrusy and we were trying to come up with a cool orangey, citrusy name. And Michael just looked at me and said, ‘How about Mimosa?’ And we said, ‘Yeah that sounds great,’ and we called it Mimosa.”

“It just kind of freely happened, and I feel some of the best things in life, that’s how it happens.”

Breeder/grower ‘Budologist’ Vince, Symbiotic Genetics

Some of the greatest artistic achievements come easily to those who’ve put in the homework, he said. Think of Fleetwood Mac’s Stevie Nicks writing the smash hit song “Dreams” in about 10 minutes.

“It was something that wasn’t forced. It just kind of freely happened, and I feel some of the best things in life, that’s how it happens,” said Vince.

Breaking sales records, sweeping contests, crashing websites

When Symbiotic released Mimosa seeds (along with four other hybrids), they did it at two dispensaries—TLC Collective in Los Angeles, and South Sacramento Care Center (SSCC)—“there were literally lines around the corner on 4/20, and it blew our minds,” said Vince. “People lined up for hours, and then it broke the records at SSCC for sales in a single day. It was just this crazy buzz.”

In 2017, Mimosa swept the influential Chalice Cup in San Bernardino, CA, winning 1st Place Sativa, 1st Place in Concentrates, and Best Overall Flower.

“The win was huge,” said Vince. “It was a dream come true, honestly. Me and Michael are connoisseurs and we’re really into the whole cannabis industry; we live it. We’ve watched all these other people become successful, so to see something we created reach that height—it meant everything to us.”

Chalice

Since then, Mimosa has took home one cannabis award or another every year to this day. Netflix’s Cooked with Cannabis features Mimosa heavily in its first episode. Seed sales for the “Mimosa V6” crosses this March crashed the website of the seller, Horror Seeds.

When Vince thinks back to their beginnings in the back of a Sacramento dispensary, he recalled, “It’s crazy to see that some small, 2-light room that we started in has caused this type of vibration through the whole entire industry.”

Tangie love and haterade today

To this day, some smokers will poo-poo Tangie, saying it doesn’t get them high, or the grapefruit smell gets so intense that it borders on rank.

But reports of Tangie’s demise are greatly exaggerated. Colorado stores might not stock straight Tangie, but Montana’s newly legal smokers are blown away, said Nick at Oni Seeds.

“You got to understand, some places are light years behind Colorado,” he explained.

Tangie’s children took home three trophies in 2021’s Oregon Cannabis Cup, voted on by Oregon smokers. Mimosa grown by PDX Organics took First Place in sativas. Tropicanna Cookies grown by Deschutes Growery took Third Place in sativas.

And remember those hash heads? Tropicanna Cookies Solventless Rosin Vape by Happy Cabbage Farms x Evans Creek Farms took First in vape pens.

 

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Crockett said Tangie “is more popular now than people like to admit. I’ve been getting hit up for it all the time.”

He said commercial growers want the terp profile and sativa hybrid effects in a plant that flowers faster than other sativas.

And taste remains subjective. “People who don’t like super strong-tasting Grapefruit flavor don’t like Tangie,” said Nick at Oni Seed.

“It’s something that’ll always be on menus somewhere. It’s been time-tested already and something that people want.”

Vince, Symbiotic Genetics

But for every upturned nose, Tangie creates two new acolytes.

“I think the terpene profile is never going to go away,” said Vince at Symbiotic. “It’s something that’ll always be on menus somewhere. It’s been time-tested already and something that people want.”

Not sure? Put some Humboldt Seed Co. Squirt seeds in your garden this spring, or look out for Oni Seeds’ first seeds and flowers in licensed California stores later in 2021.


a tangie strain family timeline
  • 1980s: The multi-generational Crockett Family farms cultivate cannabis near Yosemite, CA
  • 2000s: Crockett crosses everything to their Cali-O (California Orange) strain, including a Skunk crossed to a family secret. The result? An instant hit: Tangie.
  • 2006-2008: Crockett pumps out Tangie in California, earning regional acclaim; a DNA Genetics partnership brings Tangie to breeders worldwide
  • 2009-2011: Medical marijuana era California dispensaries introduce Tangie to the masses
  • 2011: Tangie’s first Cannabis Cup win
  • 2012-2015: The rise of butane hash oil (BHO)—especially so-called “shatter”—benefits Tangie, which remains uniquely aromatic in solid extract form
  • 2016: Symbiotic Genetics in Sacramento, CA crosses the Tangie child Clementine to Purple Punch to make Mimosa. Symbiotic Genetics gives seeds of the then-unnamed cross to Jungle Boys to test.
  • 2017: Mimosa wins three Chalice Cups in California, cementing its arrival; Oni Seed Co. debuts Tropicanna Cookies F2 in Colorado
  • 2018-Present: Mimosa wins or places in cannabis contests every year
  • 2020: Humboldt Seed Co. introduces Squirt, a highly refined cross of Blueberry Muffin and Tangie
  • 2021: Two Tangie hybrids (Tropicanna Cookies, and Mimosa) win The Cannabis Cup Oregon: People’s Choice

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Does white ash equal quality cannabis? Leafly asked the experts

We’re probably all familiar with the belief that cannabis flower burning to “white ash” indicates it was grown right or is otherwise good bud. Similarly, we likely all know the old-school belief that holding in a hit gets you higher (“if you cough you don’t get off”), which was disproved by research over 30 years ago.

So if the long-held belief that holding in hits gets you higher is not true, yet persists, what about white ash?

Is there something about bud that burns to white that makes it better than bud that burns to black?

Leafly reached out to a team of cannabis experts, researchers, growers, and patients to try and ascertain what truth is behind the beliefs around white ash.

Common white ash theories

Before turning to the experts, Leafly wanted to see what folks were saying on social media about the white vs. black ash debate.

We saw three main responses:

  • People who felt a growing step called “flushing” was the cause of white ash and a sign of good bud;
  • people who felt it was a measure of moisture in the bud (too moist bud = black ash);
  • and people critical of the entire premise.

“A properly grown bud flushed of nutrients with water for the last 10 days of growth will give you a white ash when the bowl is cashed,” said Jake Sassaman.

I used to think that was the case, but I have come to learn that it may not be indicative, actually, of residual salts, completed cure, or otherwise,” said Demetrius Daniels.

My layperson’s understanding is that this is a rough measure of remaining water content,” said Jay Reynolds.

For us old hippies, white ash is not a factor. Smoke to the last hit—as long as we can get high it’s good,” said Janet Benaquisto.

Some unflushed Supreme Diesel sungrown from 2020 burns to white ash and is super-tasty. (David Downs/Leafly)
Some unflushed Supreme Diesel sungrown from 2020 burns to white ash and is super tasty. How do you even flush sungrown? (David Downs/Leafly)

The Dank Diplomat and the star of Netflix’s Cooking on High, Ngaio Bealum, said, “I have noticed that white ash tends to indicate a better bud.”

Tappié Dufresne, a longtime cannabis patient and consultant who formerly worked at the historic early collective C.H.A.M.P., added, “White burning ash (from anything burning) indicates a clean combustion. You can think of campfires you might have watched. If the wood is green, it leaves a chunky charcoal.”

The ‘flushing’ controversy swirls

While there is some divide over what white ash signifies, there is pretty wide consensus around the importance of a weed grower’s common practice called “flushing.”

Hydroponic indoor growers “flush” the plant for the last 10 days before harvest by only feeding it water, instead of a nutrient mix.

Dufresne compared flushing cannabis with water to fasting for people, “It forces any stored nutrients to be used up by the plant and triggers a push to ripen.”

While Dufresne supports flushing, she also noted, “Even well-flushed flowers that are rushed through the drying and curing process will not burn perfectly.”

But what does the research on flushing say?

Flushing science is thin

Dr. Robert Flannery (Dr. Robb), an expert in cannabis biology, said, “There isn’t much research that supports this concept,” and pointed to a Master’s Thesis which found flushing “to be ineffective in removing any significant amount of nutrient from the bud.”

Dr. Robb is co-authoring The Cannabis Grower’s Handbook with Ed Rosenthal and Angela Bacca, which will be released this September and delves deep into flushing, how it is done, and if it actually does anything.

It specifically points to a lack of “double-blind studies that have been performed to test the efficacy of flushing,” but notes that despite that absence of research, “the overwhelming majority of cannabis growers flush.”

Josh Wurzer, the president and co-founder of SC Labs in California, said he personally “can taste a poor flush when smoking flowers.”

Why wet weed won’t burn white

While the majority of cannabis growers flush and it is a concern for some consumers, others wonder if black ash may be the result of too much water, rather than not enough.

Despite being able to taste the difference in flushed vs. not flushed flowers, Wurzer at SC Labs was clear that “black ash is a sign of incomplete combustion,” adding, “I’m not aware of a plausible explanation that a cause of poor combustion would be a poor flush.”

Wurzer listed the potential reasons for incomplete combustion, such as:

  • too much moisture in the flower (as is the case with a poor dry and cure);
  • a poorly rolled joint;
  • or a really resinous flower.

Wurzer said taste, not ash color, is “probably a better indicator” of good bud.

Of bowls and black ash

White ash may not have as much to do with the bud itself, but how it is smoked, specifically, in a joint or a blunt.

SC Labs’ Wurzer explained the science behind joints burning more:

“Joints/blunts also heat the material that is about to be burned, vaporizing both the resin and moisture in that part of the bud, which means that two of the major contributors to an inefficient combustion—and therefore black ash—are removed from the equation, or at least reduced before that part of the joint even combusts.”

 

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Additionally, Wurzer noted that “the airflow is much more optimized for an efficient combustion in a joint vs. a bong or bowl.”

That is why pipes tend to burn black while joints burn white.

It really comes down to if you like the smell, taste, and the high—not the ash, it seems.

White ash on its own is an insufficient proxy for quality; there’s too many other factors at play. (I mean, cigarettes burn pure white, and no one’s Instagramming their Camel Lights.)

So if it burns white and you like it—great! If it doesn’t—that can be OK, too.

What are your thoughts on the white vs. black ash debate? Leave us a comment and join the conversation.

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