The best new cannabis strains to grow in 2020
Legalization’s onward march into the mainstream means that more gardeners than ever can grow some cannabis. Michigan and Illinois added medical marijuana cultivation rights this year. Oklahoma is in the midst of a legal medical genetics boom. The list goes on and on. Adult-use cannabis is legal in 11 states and more than 30 states have medical marijuana laws. Check your state’s cultivation rules here.
‘The more people working with this plant, the more we are going to be able to do with it.’
Jason Matthys, founder, Equilibrium Genetics
As winter’s end nears and spring approaches, it’s time to get cracking on seed and clone plans for 2020. You can walk into a licensed store in California, Oregon, and several other adult-use state, show a valid ID, and pay about $50-100 per pack of ten seeds, or about $30 for a small starter plant called a clone. Online, seed sales are less regulated—for full details, read how to buy seeds legally.
Here are the best new cultivars and clones to grow in 2020—selected based on interviews with the world’s most influential breeders, what’s available legally in stores and online, and data trends in popular strains. Let’s grow a pound!
Update your OG
Take a modern mainstay—OG Kush—and give it a twist or refine it in your garden this year. Lots of breeders in many states offer OG Kush genetics of some form or another.
One classy, easy win is Watermelon OG, from Mendocino County’s Dying Breed Seeds. Undisputed champs of The Emerald Cup, Dying Breed Seeds’ founder Brandon Parker said to look for Watermelon OG seeds in the licensed California store Compassionate Heart, Ukiah. Online, Neptune Seedbank sells authentic Watermelon OG seeds.
Further refine your OG library with Dying Breed’s Sour Eddy Bx1 ($500 a pack of 10 unsexed seeds). Why priced so high? These seeds tap into a genetic pipeline that has been pumping out gas terpenes nationwide since the ‘90s. Dying Breed’s “Very Special” line is an OG Eddy #21 (Sour Pheno) crossed to OG Eddy.
For more OGs, see also: Compound Genetics’ Supreme Diesel (Jet Fuel Gelato X Diesel); Humboldt Seed Co.’s Collie Man Kush; Chem Fuego from Lucky Dog Seed Co.; GaitorBait from CSI Humboldt; Rebel Grown’s Triangle Double OG Sour or Double OG Sour; Bodhi Seeds’ Black Triangle; Massive Seeds’ Playboi OG; Seed Cannabis Co.’s Humboldt OG in Oklahoma.
Simplify with autoflowers
Over in Washington, DC, cannabis activist Adam Eidinger recommends any autoflowers to medical growers—as well as adult-use growers living under decriminalization. Autoflowers are user-friendly; fast-finishing seeds and clones for in or outdoor growing.
Autoflower Magic Melon
Found on the West Coast as well as in Oklahoma, Oregon, and Maine, Humboldt Seed Co.’s Autoflower Magic Melon is a no-brainer. Funky fuel and raspberry reek from ripe Magic Melon buds. The cultivar came from a selection of 10,000-plus plants over multiple generations by elite growers.
Magic Melon chunks out automagically. (Courtesy of Humboldt Seed Co.)
This autoflower version puts some of Humboldt’s finest cannabis genes into the hands of novices to play around with and get stoked. “It’s a lot of work so it’s great to see it out there,” said Nat Pennington, co-founder of Humboldt Seed Co.
Level-up your hash stash
Cannabis culture has broadened past the crude, dried, cured buds. We appreciate rosin, dry ice hash, and flan. But to get to that next level, you got to grow something frosty.
For 2020, our money is on Dying Breed Seeds’ 2020 GAK crosses. Dying Breed keeps winning hash awards at the Emerald Cup, and their secret is great source material.
Award-winning hash comes from terpy, icy-looking buds; the more unique-smelling, the better. That’s what you’re dialing up when you run GAK. Its lineage is not public, but there’s GAK Nana (GAK x Banana Pudding), GAK Smooovie (G.A.K. x 4 Locoz), and GAK Gas (GAK X OG Eddy), for when you’re ready to get out of the Prius and into a Maserati.
Dying Breed’s Parker said GAK grows well indoors, outdoors, and in a greenhouse. “She’s a very large-producing, fast-finishing hash plant. The flowers look like a glistening disco ball of resin and its main flavors are pineapple, watermelon, and strawberry puree. We’re calling it #thenewfruit. We have a jar right here in the car, so I can open it up and smell those terpenes and put them in the air. It smells that good, and it’s what I pride myself on.”
See also: Rose Gold from Archive Seed Bank and Hermetic Genetics’ Oregon Hash Plant.
CBD it up
Not everyone is a cannabis macro-doser. Go super-light and approachable in your garden with some of 2020’s CBD strains to max out your CBD supplies for the year. CBD seeds can vary from equal parts THC to CBD, to near-zero THC varieties.
It’s a golden era for terpy, CBD-rich strains in 2020. Scoop up Dying Breed’s CBD seeds line; Talking Trees Seeds’ Pineapple Tsunami CBD; Dutch Passion’s CBD Auto White Widow, CBD Auto Charlotte’s Angel, or CBD Kush; and Delicious Seeds’ Blue Ace CBD Auto.
Stay trendy with a Gelato, Runtz, or Cookies cultivar
Always a crowd-pleaser, Cookies descendant Gelato—and its offshoot Runtz—is number one because it delivers. It’s darkly colorful, dense, icy-looking, and loud.
The number of new Gelato crosses is overwhelming, but our money is on a clone of The Bling, from Dark Heart Nursery in California, available statewide.
Go to a store that sells clones, plop down $30, take that cutting home, put it in some rich soil, add bright light and pure water, and Boom! Now you’re growing Gelato crossed to OG Kush and Humboldt Frost, selected from 3,000 plants via Humboldt Seed Co. and Happy Dreams Genetics’ Mr. D.
The Bling gives off 12 abundant terpenes, including gobs of myrcene, pinene, and limonene, and rarities like nerolidol and camphene.
See also: Cannarado’s Biscotti Dough, Crockett’s Lemon Banana Sherbert, Purple City Genetics’ Gelato #33 x Melonade, and Elev8 Seeds’ Runtz.
Get terp-tastic with Squirt
Since weed is legal, breeders can be more open about the work that goes into a new strain. Thanks to nationally available legal brand Humboldt Seed Co.’s 10,000-plant “pheno hunt,” anyone can stand on the shoulders of cannabis genius and grow something legendary.
New strain Squirt is intriguing because it comes from Blueberry Muffin—a blockbuster mega-pheno-hunt strain. Specifically, it’s Blueberry Muffin backcrossed three times with Tangie #118.
Squirt makes it rain terpenes. (Courtesy of Humboldt Seed Co.)
“It’s probably one of the most strong terpene strains we’ve ever had,” said Humboldt’s Pennington.
Squirt pairs gobs of sophisticated terps with an average of 20% THC, which makes it mild enough for even novices to enjoy. Humboldt Seed Co. also sells feminized Squirt seeds so you never have to worry about male pollen ruining all the fun.
Update your OG Kush, Gelato, or Zkittlez. Simplify with autoflowers. Or grow for hash with Leafly's definitive 2020 marijuana seeds guide.
New Weed Strains to Try in 2020 | Most Mind-Blowing Strains of all Time
Strains like Northern Lights and OG Kush have been around for decades — and for good reason.
Some of the oldest strains remain popular in cannabis culture because they provide a comfortable and familiar high that users crave.
However, a new year should bring new experiences, and for stoners, that means choosing different strains that you’ve never sampled before.
If you are looking for the best weed strains of the year, look no further than the following:
Indica Cannabis Strains
A sublime mixture of two strong indica strains, Wedding Cake and Purple Punch, Wedding Crasher gives you an intensely heady, all-consuming high dominated by a sense of peace and tranquility.
This near-perfect indica is likely to leave you optimistic and clear-headed; it has numerous medical effects, including reducing muscle cramps and spasms, inflammation, and fatigue.
Best of all, Wedding Crasher has the delectable vanilla flavor of Wedding Cake with a subtle grape-berry finish.
A descendent of the prolific landrace strain Hindu Kush — which is also responsible for beloved strains like OG Kush, Sour Diesel, Haze, and others — Rare Hindu is a sweet and earthy strain that offers a serene, mellow high.
If you are a fan of most Kush strains, you are likely to find enjoyment in Rare Hindu.
Palm Tree CBD
Palm trees should make you think of relaxing on a tropical beach without a care in the world — and that’s what the strain Palm Tree CBD should do, too.
Produced by Snoop Dogg’s cannabis company, Palm Tree CBD has only 4 to 13 percent THC and between 6 and 12 percent CBD, ensuring the effect of the strain is a feeling of the utmost serenity.
This strain also tastes and smells like a tropical paradise, with powerful citrus flavors and aromas, so you will be utterly transported from your first encounter.
Sativa Marijuana Strains
To complete the marriage trifecta, Wedding Flowers is another reworking of the respected Wedding Cake strain, this time with a more floral line that gives the bud a delightfully perfumy aroma and flavor.
This strain boasts THC in the high-20 percent, meaning it is going to zap your body into action and keep you energized.
Tropicana Cookies is a new strain with a long, prestigious family tree. On one side, this strain descends from the infamous GSC line, which imparts a sweet, fresh-baked cookies flavor as well as a wealth of medicinal applications — especially depression, but also stress, nausea, cramps, and eye pressure.
On the other side, Tropicana Cookies comes from a Dutch Sativa called Tangie, which isn’t shy about its dominant flavors of orange and tangerine.
This new strain is all about creating an uplifting feeling, with plenty of happiness and giggliness.
Crossing cannabis plants from South Africa with the genetics derived from South India, South Plant is a cutting-edge Sativa strain that packs a punchy, cerebral high.
In fact, its breeders do not recommend South Plant for beginners; it is exceedingly potent and best enjoyed in small doses.
Even so, South Plant is endorsed for its ability to focus attention and improve concentration while imbuing a strong happy sensation. All this, and it offers a mild earthy-sweet flavor, to boot.
Hybrid Weed Strains for 2020
Sour Berry Blue
Sour Strawberry is a strong Indica, and Alpha Blue is an award-winning Sativa — and when breeders combined these strains to produce Sour Berry Blue, they worked some kind of magic.
Sour Berry Blue tastes like a fruit cocktail and hits you with a powerful body-numbing high.
Though half of its genetics come from an Indica hybrid, Sour Berry Blue boasts THC levels between 20 and 26.5 percent, so you will feel a strong elevating euphoria swiftly after your first toke.
Mint Chocolate Chip
Two relatively unknown, opposing strains combine to make the incredibly stable strain Mint Chocolate Chip, which has the entire industry in a tizzy.
An earthy, diesel starter followed by a minty, creamy finish makes this hybrid strain gustatorily confusing — but the impact of the strain cannot be matched.
Mint Chocolate Chip is best consumed in small doses, to ensure it induces happiness and relaxation. However, if you don’t mind sinking into your couch for the next full day, you can experiment with higher doses.
Chapita de Michoacan
As you might expect, this strain comes straight from one of the most productive marijuana regions in Mexico: the Sierras of Michoacan and Sinaloa.
Carefully cultivated over the past decade, Chapita de Michoacan is discreet, producing a minimal odor when grown or lit, and offering a mild, dry flavor.
Though slightly sativa-dominant, this hybrid is ideal for a newbie who wants to try something different.
The Future of Weed Breeding and Classification
In most dispensaries, you will visit, and throughout this and other articles around our website, you are likely to see strains described in terms of their indica and Sativa genetics — but the truth is that these designations are less than scientific.
Back when marijuana was a relatively new discovery for the West, philosophers strove to identify different species of the plant-based on its physical and psychoactive characteristics.
After partaking of the good green herb, Swedish botanist Carl Linnaeus named cannabis Sativa; later, French biologist Jean-Baptiste Lamarck toked up and claimed that cannabis Indica offered a calmer vibe — plus it looked different.
Thus, generations of growers and buyers established the pattern of classifying bud based on the shape of the plant and its perceived effects. Even later, a Russian botanist named Dmitrij Janischewsky identified a third species, cannabis ruderalis, believing this variety to be an especially small and not particularly potent type of weed.
More recently, scientists have started putting these long-held classifications to the test, and they have been found wanting. Actually, how a plant looks — whether its leaves are thick or thin, whether it is tall or short, when it flowers in its growth cycle, etc. — has almost nothing to do with what physical and psychological effects it imparts when smoked, ingested, applied and used in other ways.
Instead, a cannabis plant’s effects are determined by chemotypes, which are unique chemical compounds within a plant. Chemotypes develop as a result of minor genetic or epigenetic changes to the plant — in other words, small alterations in breeding practices might cause significant changes to the cannabis plant’s chemical composition, resulting in new and noteworthy effects. It is incredibly likely that in the near future, dispensaries will do away with all-but-meaningless “Sativa” and “Indica” nomenclature and instead employ chemotyping as a way to clearly and succinctly explain what individual strains are like.
Unfortunately, science has only identified a small handful of chemotypes in marijuana. More research is necessary to make chemotyping a widespread, functional tool. Until then, you will need lists like these to explain the latest and greatest strains of the year.
It doesn’t matter whether you require marijuana to help you sleep, to manage a disease or disorder, or simply to let you relax and have fun — breeders are working hard to deliver more potent strains to satisfy your needs. This year, try a brand-new strain, or maybe just a strain that is new to you, to experience what the growing world of marijuana has to offer.
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Want a new stoner experience? Growers are offering some of the most mind-blowing, body-melting strains of all time. New weed Strains to try!