Cannabis cultivators who want to optimize their harvest weight should consider growing high yield varieties. Although the common thought is that these strains are lacking in terms of flavor and potency, some of the most popular modern hybrids have been bred with yields in mind.
History of Mass Producing Cannabis Varieties
The largest cannabis plants in size are undoubtedly sativas. Cannabis sativa has evolved in a moderate climate that allows for it’s large stature and extended flowering time. As a result, tropical and sub-tropical sativa strains (Thai, Jamaican, Hawaiian, African, ect..) have the potential to grow up into gigantic beasts, often topping over 12 feet in height with giant bud-stack limbs.
My father tells the story of the illusive “Panama Red”. Back in 1969 hundreds of pounds were imported into San Francisco. These massive red-tinted plants were grown in the jungle and often produced over a kilo per plant.
Then there was the ‘Thai Stick’. Coming from South-East Asia, Thai Sticks are bundles of marijuana wrapped around a stick and tied together with a string. These potent buds are extremely high in THC and THCV, and are attributed to speedy, psychedelic effects.
Thai and Vietnamese strains of cannabis are predominantly pure sativa, and their flowering time is super long – sometimes even taking as long as 18 weeks of flowering for harvest. Huge yields are obtained only by cultivators who can properly manage the difficulties of growing them.
Modern High Yield Hybrids
Fast forward to the millennium when Blue Dream came out on the West Coast. This cross between a Blueberry and Haze plants has a elephantine growth pattern that can be played to create monster big Blue Dream plants that yield pounds upon pounds of sweet A grade marijuana.
Re-inventing the outdoor scene, pure sativa varieties were left behind for the new bud-loaded hybrids. Combining the height and vigor of sativas with the fat and hard bud density of ‘dank’ indica strains. Many of the best producing ‘cash crop’ cannabis hybrids are structured as 60:40 sativa/indica and 70:30 sativa/indica.
Nowadays there is a plethora of seeds available that claim to be high yield strains. Whether it’s clones or seeds, you can find them. Feminized seeds have taken over the cannabis scene by storm, and strains like Super Lemon Haze, Green Crack, Master Kush, and Sour Diesel are all within the cultivator’s grasp.
Growing Tips for BIG HARVESTS - Plenty of light
Make sure that cannabis plants are exposed to at least 6 hours of direct sunlight every day. Anything less than this and you can expect a sub-par harvest weight. Some outdoor growers who have trouble with this supplement additional light with HID or LED grow lights.
Having lots of quality water is the backbone of a weed grow operation. Preferred sources of water are spring and rainwater, although reverse osmosis is suitable as well. Avoid tap water, especially in the city where it can be loaded with all sorts of damaging toxins for soil microbiology.
Make sure to choose the right strain for growing. One that fits with your environment, whether it’s outdoors, indoors or in a greenhouse. Consider the flowering time, as well as any mildew or mold resistance you may want. Sativa strains are generally hardier for weather stresses, although indica strains flower quicker and form tighter buds. Hybrids offer a mix of qualities. Here’s a list of high yield strains for growers.
Keep plants clean up until harvest, and be sure to know the best drying and curing methods for cannabis buds. Smoke ‘em if you got em!