Cross-breeding, lineage, genotypes, and phenotypes: to the uninitiated, one might think they’ve been duped into retaking high school biology. But we are initiated, aren’t we?
Cannabis is an ancient plant, and although it has been classified and stigmatized as a drug in the last century, it bears qualities that make it seem more human than herb. Unlike most garden plants which are monoecious (both male/female organs are on plant), cannabis is dioecious, requiring separate male plants to pollinate female plants. The result is that seedlings have parents, ancestors, and (hopefully) descendants that will make up the breed’s lineage.
The plant’s genetic makeup, or genotype, serves as the basis for the qualities it will possess once fully grown. The herb may reflect characteristics anywhere on the spectrum between its parents, depending on the environment and manner in which it is cultivated. Color, trichrome production, and smell are all determined by the quality of grow and care.
The expression of these genes, known as the phenotype, are unique to every plant. In this way, cannabis behaves as humans do; plants of a common lineage may possess similar effects, but appear vastly different. This is especially common during cross-breeding. For example, a popular strain such as Sour Diesel is classified as a sativa. This pungent powerhouse is quite the rebel however, as Sour Diesel’s parents Chemdawg 91 and Super Skunk are a hybrid and indica, respectively.
So, the next time you decide to hit up Five Zero Trees looking for your favorite strain, get on Leafly, do your homework and let our budtenders help educate you on your strains. Chances are you will find a “bud-dy” who will feel familiar to you.
Stay high my friends!