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Cannabis Through the Ages: 1990’s – White Widow

This week’s instalment of the Seedsman Top Five brings us to another iconic strain in our series of “strains throughout the decades”. Acapulco Gold took the title for the 60’s, Panama Red for the 70’s, and Chocolate Skunk won the 80’s. Now we’re dabbling in the 1990’s. Hip-hop was on the rise. The idea of a Dutch Coffeeshop became less taboo and more of a socially accepted “tourist hotspot”. The idea of smoking a spliff over a cup of coffee went from unmentionable to “when in Rome” and we saw companies like Dutch Passion spring up in ’87 and gain notoriety in the nineties.

If you really have an interest in the canna-boom that happened in the 1990’s – check out Arjan Roskam. He’s a heavyweight strain-hunter in the cannabis industry and his forty-something awards in the Cannabis Cup throughout the years show it. He’s an original pioneer of “how do we make it better” in the cannabis industry.

White Widow is the strain of the 90’s. It had Cannabis Cup title wins in the 90’s and it’s genetic predecessors and offspring like Haze, and Snow also had some victories under their belt. This classic Dutch masterpiece is the end result of years of relentless selective breeding indoors.

A frosted and white appearance, looking like a kush strain was rolled in sugar – White Widow is a strain that you’ll point at and gesture that you want to see it when you’re butchering the Dutch language in one of their local coffee shops. This strain is a pinnacle of growing and genetic efforts.

Leafly describes this famous bud as a hefty cross between a “Brazilian landrace Sativa” and a resin-crusted “South Indian Indica”. In my opinion, this strain was designed from outside the grow to be a potent cocktail of cannabinoids before people even had phenotypes to breed. They wanted the knockdown and sleepiness from the Indian Indica. The heavy and walloping body high that just makes you feel like you’re ready for bed. Then, they crossed that with the most fast-paced and racy high they could find. These growers are the originators of strain hunting, and you can bet your next bowl that they scoured South America for the best of the best roughly twenty years ago.

White Widow is an all-time favorite for me. I think if you put your very best examples of strains throughout the ages, you’d see the biggest “jump” in appearances between 1980 and 1990. The difference between Acapulco Gold and Panama Red was minimal. Chocolate Skunk laid the groundwork for “we can selectively breed for specific characteristics” and, well White Widow showed the cannabis community “here’s the strongest stuff we can make using every bit of knowledge we have.” Between the ability to pull and breed from genetics on a global scale, and a massive almost overnight change in the ability to grow in an indoor tent with lights, the 1990’s was, and remains one of the biggest leaps forward in the history of cannabis.

This frosty and almost albino variant of hybrid, is, and always will be, a champion of Dutch genetics – you need it.

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