Skunk is a name with a familiar ring in the world of cannabis. Gourmets and connoisseurs love to obtain some when available, but not many people know what it is and where skunk cannabis got its name. In this blog, we take you deeper into the story behind this celebrated marijuana strain, and we show you some of the famous Amsterdam Genetics seeds it sired.
The Birth Of Skunk
Skunk was first created in California, USA, back in the nineteen sixties and seventies. In those days, most of the marijuana smoked in the States was imported either from South America, the Middle East, or India. Some of the pioneers in the field decided to start experimenting with growing ‘bag seeds’: cannabis seeds left over when buds are picked and ground for consumption.
This is how the US grower scene started to, well, grow. One could argue, therefore, that first American home growers were very close to the roots of our Skunk cannabis. The strain name is still connected to some pretty legendary characters.
‘Mendocino’ Joe, Sam ‘the Skunkman’, and ‘Maple Leaf’ Wilson were three of these pot founding fathers. They decided to team up an crossbreed indica genetics from the Middle East with South American sativas. This gave birth to the legendary Skunk #1 strain, mother of all the Skunk strains that were to follow. To be precise, Skunk is 65% Indica and 35% Sativa genetics. And in case you were still wondering: yes, the strain owes its name to the famously stinky animal due to its rich and intense bouquet.
The operation soon turned out to be a huge success. Skunk seeds were sold across the nation by the Sacred Seeds collective run by Joe, Sam, ad Wilson. In line with War On Drugs of those days, the enterprise was closely watched by the police. As a result, Sam was briefly incarcerated in 1982.
When he was released, The Skunkman noticed that the authorities kept watching him. So, he decided to watch them closely in turn. He soon discovered that his confiscated seeds were not very well guarded. He decided to get them back. He broke in to the holding facility and took thousands of seeds, dozens of clones, and five legendary strains including Skunk #1. Sam decided to cross the Atlantic and find a safe haven in Amsterdam, where the seeds turned out to be an instant smash hit, too.
Skunk Cannabis In The Netherlands
The Skunkman’s escape to Amsterdam was good news for the fast-expanding Dutch grower community. There was one problem, however. The original Skunk mother strain produced such as strong cannabis smell that many growers got caught. You could literally smell the Skunk from across the street, so all the police had to do was simply to follow their nose. That called for some innovative thinking, and soon enough, some of Skunk’s most wonderful offspring saw the light.
Joined by Dutch growers Neville Schoenmaker and Shantibaba, Sam developed new cannabis strains including Blueberry Skunk, Lemon Skunk, and Shiva Skunk. That solved the scent issue, but even today, some sources claim that none of these strains were a match for the original Skunk #1. Rumour has it that a few lucky individuals still possess and grow the original Sacred Seeds Skunk genetics in deep secrecy. We cannot confirm whether his is true, but you’ll have to admit that this nice piece of weed history only gets better if we add a mythical twist to the tale.
Skunk became a legendary cannabis strain in the US and the Netherlands, but in other countries, it remained much more obscure. The United Kingdom, for instance, traditionally has a smaller grower community due to strict cannabis legislation. Unfortunately, that has done little for the general national awareness of the variety and diverse effects of different marijuana strains. That explains how Skunk became a UK synonym for Spice or K2, a dangerous type of ‘alternative weed’ consisting mostly of dried herbs with added synthetic cannabinoids. This synthetic ‘cannabis’ is illegal across the world, and causes huge health damage on a global scale.
This general confusion and lack of knowledge led to some quite serious journalistic mistakes. In this article by The Sun, for instance, Skunk is depicted as cannabis with four times as much THC as ‘regular weed’. The actual average THC percentage across the UK is about 15%, whereas Skunk #1 clocks in at about 22%. That means that even though Skunk is a pretty potent THC strain, there is nothing to justify the ‘four times as strong’ claim. In fact, no single strain of genuine, non-synthetic cannabis contains so much THC.
The rest of the article is based on a study that links smoking Skunk to changes in the corpus callosum, an important part of the brain. Studies such as these, however, can never establish causality; at best, they can claim that some link appears to exist. In addition, there is no evidence that any of the alleged changes are in fact harmful. For all we know, these could be positive adaptations associated with soothing or analgesic effects, for instance.
Sadly, this type of sloppy journalism has created serious misconceptions about Skunk cannabis in the United Kingdom. Nonetheless, this strain is not linked in any way to synthetic marijuana; nor is it some kind of ‘super weed’ that is far more potent than any other strains.
Growing Skunk Cannabis
In addition to its effects, modern Skunk cannabis is greatly appreciated by their general ease of growing. This collection of strains is best suited for indoor cultivation, although it can thrive outdoors too in the right temperature and humidity conditions. Of course, grow characteristics vary between individual strains. Super Silver Haze, for instance, is a typical indoor plant, while its relatives Lemon Haze and Critical Mass are less fussy as long as they get plenty of sunshine.
We won’t go into the specifics of growing skunk cannabis here; these are detailed in the respective strain descriptions of our seeds catalogue. If you’re looking for further information on expert grow techniques, our selection of Grow Blogs will get you up to speed. Suffice to say for now that Skunk cannabis plants are very well suited for beginner growers, while their time-proven quality and considerable bud quantity continue to please seasoned cannabis cultivators happy, too.
The Effects Of Skunk Cannabis
The original Skunk #1 has calming properties and is known to spark creative thought. Although this legendary strain is hard to come by these days, we have lots of excellent daughter strains to enjoy. Each of these skunky ladies has an individual character, but as these things go, certain traits just keep running in the family.
Amsterdam Genetics Skunk Strain #1: Super Silver Haze
Take Super Silver Haze, for instance; a crossbreed between Skunk #1, Northern Lights (another strain that Sam brought to Amsterdam) and Haze. Here, the creative impulses inherited from Skunk #1 got boosted to a whole new level. This strain is also known for the happy vibes she brings, wiping away stress and depressed vibes while bringing a positive sense of calm instead.
Amsterdam genetics Skunk Strain #2: Lemon Haze
The aforementioned Lemon Skunk, one of Skunk #1’s first daughters, was crossed with Silver Haze (Northern Lights x Haze) in turn. This happy encounter led to the birth of Lemon Haze; and even if you’ve lost track of the lineage here, rest assured that Lemon Haze has a prime Skunk pedigree. With her tendency towards mental sativa effects, complemented by a characteristic indica body high, Lemon Haze is a strain for connoisseurs with great credentials for romantic settings.
Amsterdam Genetics Skunk Strain #3: Critical Mass
Last but not least, there is Critical Mass, the indica counterpart to Lemon Haze. Critical Mass is well-suited for late-night consumption; and this time we do mean for sleepy time purposes. What’s more, a 1.2% CBD content makes this strain a known favourite for medicinal use. She is known for her pain relief and stress busting capacity, making her a great Skunk cannabis descendant for treating conditions like muscle and back aches, for instance. As an added benefit, ordering Critical Mass seeds gets you regular, non-feminized seeds that give breeders every opportunity to crossbreed their own strains.
The Future Smells Skunky…
We’ll admit that we’re hopelessly in love with the wonderful history and great sativa x indica traits of our Skunk cannabis genetics. We’re happy to see growers from Amsterdam and far beyond agree time and time again. Judging by her widely appreciated Skunk effects and the ease of crossbreeding that marks her offspring, this Grand Lady of cannabis has a great future ahead of her. As far as we’re concerned, the story of Skunk has only just begun!
Anyone aching to get their hands on the fascinating legacy of Sam the Skunkman can get cracking by placing their Critical Mass Regular, Lemon Haze Feminized, or Super Silver Haze cannabis seeds order straight away!
Disclaimer: Local laws and legislation on cannabis cultivation and germination of seeds vary between countries and states. Amsterdam Genetics products and information are exclusively intended for use in areas where such use is fully legal. Check your local rules; do not act in conflict with the law!