Cannabis legalization looms large in Canada, officially going into effect on Wednesday. In anticipation of the historic repeal of prohibition, we’ve put together a short list of some of Canada’s legendary and top strains.
Chemo or UBC Chemo
Urband legends claim UBC Chemo is named for the University of British Columbia, where David Suzuki allegedly bred this indica hybrid strain on campus in the 1970s.
It is also named for alleviating the side effects of chemotherapy in cancer patients including nausea, loss of appetite, pain, and insomnia. Chemo is a powerful strain with THC levels as high as 29 percent.
This rare but legendary strain was for a time carried by Emerald Health (formerly Thunderbird) on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. Urban legend rumors it to be a Jack Herer descendant bred with genetics brought into British Columbia by a draft dodger in the 1970s. According to Renee Gagnon, founder of Thunderbird, It was high CBD and smelled like honey if it was cured in a glass jar.
According to I Love Growing Marijuana, credit goes to Great White North Seed Company for breeding Manitoba Poison. Since its release, it has become popular in the region. MP is a 50/50 hybrid that contains approximately to 14-16 percent THC. It is a great strain for relaxation and alleviating stress, but will probably give you cotton mouth.
This strain was bred in Quebéc and quickly gained notoriety in the Montreal Compassion Clubs. It is a Sativa-dominant 60/40 hybrid, described by breeders House of Great Gardener as a “pungent euphoriant.” It is also described as an energizing and uplifting strain. However, those prone to anxiety or paranoia should probably skip it, because it is sharply cerebral. The THC content can be as high as 25 percent.
Named after longtime cannabis activist Renee Boje, the breeders at the House of Great Gardener created this strain by crossing Himalayan with Skunk #1. Rene has an 80 percent Sativa profile. Her namesake strain is stress-relieving and is also commonly used to treat inflammation and pain.
Rene’s moderate THC levels range between 15-18 percent. Rene is purportedly beneficial For people who suffer from seasonal depression, severe depressive disorder, or bipolar disorder. However, it is not recommended for PTSD or anxiety sufferers or those prone to paranoid thoughts.
This strain gets an honorable mention because even though it did not originate in Canada, it was produced heavily out of Montreal. Toronto-born Paul Glavine, president of the cannabis farm Livity Naturals Jamaica in Westmoreland, cites Jack Herer as the strain he grew up with that eventually inspired him to run a ganja farm.
Prince Edward Island’s Jewell family of generational farmers run Canada’s Island Garden. CIG proudly produces some decent strains, just in case you want to celebrate legalization day, Canadian style.