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Is your marijuana bad? 5 ways to tell if you’re smoking terrible weed

While many Americans can now buy and grow marijuana legally — choosing from an endlessly varied selection of premium bud — some still have to take it wherever they can find it. Even U.S. government researchers are forced to work with terrible weed.

You don’t want to get ripped off and smoke an inferior product, of course. So how can you tell if your flower isn’t up to snuff (or puff)? Believe it or not, you don’t need a doctorate in botany or chromatography instruments to tell whether your stash is shit. Read on, dear stoner, and learn some simple warning signs.В

1. It’s full of stems and seeds В В

A good rule of thumb in buying weed is that you want weed you can actually, uh, smoke. The stems of cannabis plants — though they may count toward the weight of your gram or eighth — are pretty much useless in that regard, so the less there are, the better. Seeds are even worse; they’ll literally explode when set on fire, potentially blowing out an entire bowl or ruining your joint. Even sellers of low-grade ganja usually won’t sell you stuff with seeds in it, but if you’re continually finding a few in each bag, it’s time to find a new source.

2. Its color, scent, texture and flavor seem off

In this sense, marijuanaВ is like any produce you might buy at the grocery store: You can just tellВ when it’s healthy and ripe for consumption. Good weed has more vibrant color, like a thriving plant. It has a heady, pungent aroma and taste. It’s somewhat springy, dense and coated with sticky, frosty, crystalline trichomes — tiny glands packed with THC, the psychoactive cannabinoid that gets you high. Bad weed, by comparison, looks like some junk you yanked out from underneath your lawnmower. It’s paler or duller in color, sometimes brown or yellowish. It’s often dry or more crumbly, and it lacks a distinctive smell (although sometimesВ it smells like hay orВ grass). It’s also sure to taste terrible. In certain cases, this kind of marijuanaВ may have been “blasted,” or entirely stripped of its cannabinoids to make butane hash oil. Either way, avoid it. В В

3. It doesn’t get you high — or makes you feel ill

Arguably the worst thing about bad pot is that it’s not very potent — which means you have to smoke a ton of it to feel anything like the high you’re after. In that case, you’re liable to get a headache before you’re even halfway stoned. Some users have encountered weed so crummy that it doesn’t seem to work at all. If you wind up with bud that only produces noxious smoke and induces a general nausea or cranial pain, what’s the point? Ditch that garbage and find out where the dank nugs are at — because you deserve better. В В В

4. It’s moldy, rotting or poorly cultivated

As with the food in your pantry or refrigerator, you’ve got to keep an eye out for mold and rot. These can afflict even decent marijuana, and they look like the mold and rot you’re used to finding on bread or cheese — furry discolorations on the surface. Packing this crap in your bong can make you seriously sick,В don’t risk it. Another visual red flag would be larger marijuanaВ leaves attached to your nugs, which indicates a sloppy “trim” when the buds were separated from the plant. Cannabis that gets trimmed by machines (as opposed to carefully trimmed by hand) may have diminished potency, as the trichomes are disturbed, and the leaves themselves don’t offer muchВ of the cannabinoid compounds that people prize in marijuana. В В В

5. It’s not actually marijuana

Almost every stoner of experience you’ll meet has a story about the time they bought weed that turned out to be anything but. It could be anything from crushed oregano to sage to basil to a wad of old, dried-out lettuce balled up in some cling wrap. Catnip is another popular pot substitute. If it doesn’t look like marijuanaВ buds, well, it’s probably not, so keep your wits about you. The best way to avoid this scam is to get your weed from someone you trust — and never, ever that friend who runs a YouTube prank channel. If he really insists it’s the good stuff, then he should have no trouble taking the first hit, right? В В В В

While many Americans can now buy and grow marijuana legally — choosing from an endlessly varied selection of premium bud — some still have to take it wherever they can find it. Even U.S. government researchers are forced to work with terrible…

THE COLOR OF WEED – WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

Cannabis – What does the cover tell you about the book?

Can you tell what’s in your weed just by looking at it? The answer is a firm yes and no.

Sure, sometimes you can tell what the variety is, say Sativa or Indica, but it is not always straightforward figuring out the potency from the color of the bud. Certainly some smart growers have mislabeled Hybrid strains from time to time, due to a misinterpretation of visual appearance in combination with inaccurate “starting” information, urban myth about parentage.

“The most solid visual for potency of bud is an abundance of crystals. Very dark bud is quite often very potent as well. Other visual indicators, colors are more challenging to figure.” – Budsman#3

It’s somewhat like judging a book by its cover; appearance may mean something,then again, it may mean nothing. In the case of marijuana there are some things you can take away from the appearance, if it sparkles, then that surely means it is either doped with glass (this happen can happen with street weed) or it contains crystals packed with cannabinoids. In other words, crystals = potent, more crystals more potent. Mega bright colors usually mean something good is going on . Moldy weed, which should never be smoked, looks and smells moldy.

Before the advent of commercial cannabinoid testing (1990’s), people had to rely mostly on their senses. How did it smell and taste? Nice bud trims and aromas are attractive, but it is the wild colors that really create a lusty impression and blows people away.

THE SCIENCE OF BUD COLOR

Is there any difference between Red Green, Purple- Purple, Red & Green.

Often strains, change color as they flower due to the action of enzymes that produce new molecules. White light is composed of every color in the rainbow. Different molecules absorb certain colors and reflect others. It is the reflected color that the eye sees. Most purified cannabinoids do not have any color at all, but some of the other things in the bud go hand in hand with THC, CBD and other cannabinoids.

Blueberries, grapes and cannabis can contain Anthocyanins, a group of more than 400, water-soluble blue-purple pigmented molecules. Flavonoids are yellow and have an extremely bitter taste. These ingredients are very desirable in nutritional edibles and beverages.

Cannabis THC and CBD rich flowers don’t change color until they are in the fall of their life cycle Think of the tree leaves in fall. Like leaves on a tree ( cannabis is actually a giant herb), colors change from green to red,through orange to yellow. Once the green fades, the enzymes kick in and the buds blossom colorfully ..

MARIJUANA WITH A SKUNKY SMELL – IS IT GOOD?

There are three popular marijuana species in common use for recreational and medical purposes. Other varieties are used for agricultural and industrial purposes. Sativa is tall and thin, while Indical is short and fat, and the mystical ruderalis is rather scrawny. As accurate DNA test information comes in, we are learning a lot more about the genetics.

HOW CANNABIS AFFECTS EVERYONE DIFFERENTLY

MARIJUANA GENETICS – SECRETS OF ANCESTRY REVEALED

Marijuana Scientists now have the ability to look at the genetics of cannabis strains and determine with incredible precision, ancestral information. DNA is used to code proteins which form and build cells and ultimately the entire organism.

Chromosomes are a long chaning of DNA containing many genes (sections of DNA) which code specific proteins that instruct the organism to grow. In humans, there are 23 pairs of chromosomes while the Sativa species has 9 pairs. Each chromosome contains thousands of genes. Genes themselves can contain a million base pairs. A gene test is far superior to what comes out of the grape vine.

For example, before DNA testing was possible in humans, it was thought the Ainu people of Northern Japan of Samurai fame were a lost tribe of Caucasians, due to their robust frames, hairy and white skin features. However, these visual features are only skin deep, and only account for a fraction of the thousands of traits found in humans (blood type, immune cells, etc.). When the geneticists looked under the hood, and inspected Ainu DNA in detail, it was concluded that Ainu are of neither Japanese nor “Caucasian” origin.

AINU of Japan – Some of their genetic features are closer to natives of Tibet and Negroid tribes in the Andaman Islands in the Indian Ocean. Similarly, in marijuana, the genes turning on and off code the production of proteins and enzymes that instruct the plant to make various portions of terpenes, cannabinoids, flavonoids, etc.

How do you tell if your bud is INDICA or SATIVA?

“Sativa bud is generally more leafy/fluffy, light green while Indica tends to be dense/solid dark green, Sill it can be hard to tell with some varieties. You have to smoke it and feel what kind of high you’re experiencing. If your body is relaxed and you’re zoned out, it’s most likely an indica, or an indica dominant strain. If you have a head rush and you’re completely mindfucked, it’s a sativa.” – Street Expert:

CLIMATE – TEMPERATURE A MAJOR FACTOR IN COLOR

Lack of light will produce a sickly looking plant and bud.

Chlorophyll is a plant pigment that sustains life pretty much for the entire food chain for plants and animals. Strangely, the color green is toxic to plants and interferes with photosynthesis, the making of sugar from thin and water. Plants absorb every color and reflect green, which obviously accounts for its color. At the end of its life, as the plant prepares to bear seeds, toxic green light is allowed to penetrate the plant, at which time the genes switch on to code enzymes to produce chemicals that turns the foliage to yellow.

“Trials done with lettuce showed that light with 5% green wavelengths had little impact on total mass, but that when green light levels were increased, it was not only a waste of energy, but it significantly hindered plant growth.” (Kim et al., 2004).

Green light, however can be very useful to stimulate plants to grow denser and hardier in the early stages of growth. Later in the cycle, green light can be used to accelerate maturation. If you want to try this, we suggest you research further into this very interesting field. Lower temperature inhibits chlorophyll production. Temperature and lessening the light tells plants that a change of season is coming, summer to fall. The plant detects these changes and tells itself to get busy maturing buds and making babies (seeds) before it’s too late.

Most medical pot growers find that soil pH should be a little on the acidic side, around 6.0 plus or minus 0.5 pH units. Adjusting the pH also signals the plants enzyme system to produce more or less anthocyanins, flavonoids and cannabinoids? This is an exciting area for researchers in their quest to produce strains rich in certain cannabinoids like CBG, CBC. THCV and others.

Certain strains have so much that you don’t even need to drop temperatures to see the change, as the plant naturally starts to lose chlorophyll at the end of its life. Purple Orangutan has some of the strongest blue and purple hues in the world. Purple hues come to the fore in more neutral pH environments. Blues also enjoy higher pH levels than most cannabis strains.

THE COLOR OF BUD – WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

RED AND PINK

Red hairs are common, but red buds are rare actually. Pink Flower Shaman, a potent energising strain carries dominant red tones. Predator Pink on the other hand is pink in appearance and is smooth and relaxing. Starving plants of phosphorus can cause leaves and bud to redden too. It would be interesting to know if phosphorus can be used to manipulate cannabinoid content.

“Red hairs indicate that a plant has not been pollinated. Therefore, the plant has more potential for psychoactivity. No seeds= larger, more potent buds, as the plant’s energy is directed to THC/flower production and not seed production. HOWEVER- Red hairs don’t always mean that a particular bud is potent. It seems that years ago, Dutch seed companies picked their breeding stock by appearance,ie plants that had large amounts of hairs. This has let to a widespread dilution of the gene pool, as nearly every stain now has some dutch genetics. This poor decision has set back breeding programs.The proof is always in the puff! ” More

YELLOW AND ORANGE

Natural pigments Carotenoids give plants, vegetables and cannabis their distinctive hues of yellow, gold, and orange. Growing in alkaline conditions 5.0 or less will increase the concentration of carotenoids. Near the end of the growth cycle, these molecules dominate as chlorophyll disintegrates.

Orange Bud Varieties include: Olive Oyl, Kandy Skunk, Alien OG. Yellow Wicked OG, Grapefruit, and Lemon Kush.

BLACK / DARK

An abundance of anthocyanins (same pigment found in blueberries).accounts in part for the dark color of the bud. Very dark usually means very potent. Super dark red, green, and purple hues are said to come from Vietnamese landraces such as Vietnamese Black. Black Willy (high CBD) and Black Tuna (super high THC) share the ebony signature.. UV light from the sun or LED lighting is known to increase the production of anthocyanins.

RED / GREEN / PURPLE MIXTURES

While dark varieties are usually potent, bold colors don’t necessarily correlate. However, bright colors mean the plant is rich in pigments, like anthocyanins and carotenoids which have antioxidant, analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and neuroprotective properties.

Research indicates that some anthocyanins have an affinity for CB1 or CB2 receptors, as do the Cannabinoids THC and CBD; and contribute to the entourage effect. This means that the color of the bud could play a role in selection when a patient finds that a certain color relates to a preferred medicinal effect.

Purple, Red & Green Weed: – A Guide To Bud Colors

HIGH POTENCY MEDICAL (GREEN) vs DODGY STREET WEED (SCHWAG)

There are a million types of schwag, which is slang for low quality street weed obtained from strains that might be better used for making rope. Then again, some schwag could be OK. It’s like a cross between a harsh cigarette, with a little pot and if you’re unlucky, it’s cut with the cheapest street drugs and sprayed with god knows what. If you grew the schwag yourself, and did not use chemicals on it and it works for you, it might actually be beneficial. You would want to confirm your beliefs in the medicinal quality through lab testing; parameters include cannabinoid profile, d8, d9 THC, CBD.

“Going from a smooth, chronic (THC medical grade) high to a thick, rough schwag high has been known to cause shock and stress disorders in visitors from the north who were unaware that cannabis also came in the flavor nasty! Having just returned from Vancouver, British Columbia, where I smoked the best buds of my life, I couldn’t help but close my eyes and try to feel the difference in the hits. The schwag is harsh and thick, similar to smoking a Marlboro Red, with the smoke settling in the back of the throat. Reggie smokers agree that the harshness grows on you, and after smoking southern “regs”, you can smoke just about anything.” – Kat McCloud, Cannabis Culture

MMJDOCTORONLINE Notes: Grower’s Permits, 420 Evaluations, Doctor’s Recommendations, and Cannabis ID Cards application take a few minutes online here. Approval is usually same day, with documents emailed and snail mailed (in non-marijuana marked envelopes). Patients don’t pay unless they are approved by our California licensed doctor.

This 100% online process complies with the guidelines for Telemedicine set by the California Board of Medicine. Documents are valid in both California and Nevada for one year at dispensaries, cannabis clubs, cooperatives, delivery services, MMJ clinics and online suppliers. Cannabis ID cards are especially useful to prove that you’re legal to smoke at events, and to possess and transport marijuana legally.

FURTHER READING

pH affects plant growth and nutrient availability. pH can affect the availability of nutrients. pH can affect the absorption of nutrients by plant roots pH values above 7.5 cause iron, manganese, copper, zinc and boron ions to be less available to plants. pH values below 6 causes the solubility of phosphoric acid, calcium and magnesium to drop. pH values between 3 and 5 and temperatures above 26 degrees Celsius encourage the development of fungal diseases.

Every indoor gardener knows the important role blue and red light both play in plant development and growth. But how about green light? Chris Bond investigates whether green light may be helpful in some situations.

What Colors mean What? User Discussion Group Highlights

Okay, I’ve smoked a fair share of different strains and the ones of particular quality always seem to have a unique color. I always thought that red hairs and white crystals serve as the storage for the THC, and yet there are certain weed variants that are famed for being dark, or purplish (purple haze, black widow, etc.), and then you’ve got some strains of Kush.

As far as I know, different colors of the weed are due to different levels of photoreactive pigments in the plant pigments are not psycho-active–as only the D-9-THC is the psychoactive compound in the weed. I too have seen exotically pigmented buds in magazine such as High Times and in real-life—and wondered if the exotic colors conferred any “special” potency. To date, I have concluded that the exotic colorations are only superficialities that lend a fancy appearance of the bud/leaf.

Plant pigments are just by-products of the particular strain—think of the analogy like a red rose, yellow rose, pink rose—they all smell like rose–if you were blindfolded– but have a different color. Plant pigments in and of himself do NOT confer any psychoactive effect.

What does the color of your weed mean? What is the most medicinal or potent ? Are bright colors or dark colors better, how about shiny particles ]]>