At a Glance
What Is Mandarin Cookies?
To answer this question and more, we turned to the experts at BOAZ and Weed Me.
This popular sativa-leaning cross packs a punch when it comes to potency and aroma. Expect high THC and strong whiffs of tangy citrus, diesel and earth.
Mandarin Cookies is a sativa-dominant hybrid strain created by Ethos Genetics, a Colorado-based cannabis genetics developer. It’s a cross between Mandarin Sunset, a potent indica strain, and Forum Cut Cookies, a sativa-dominant phenotype of GSC.
Did you know?
Phenotype is the physical expression of traits found in a plant’s genetic code
What you get with this strain will depend on the particular phenotype, with some phenotypes taking on more of the Mandarin Sunset indica characteristics, and others expressing more of the Forum Cut Cookies sativa traits.
BOAZ says its Mandarin Cookies phenotype delivers a strong citrus aroma. “It smells like what you would imagine it would smell like if you ran some sweet-dank flower with orange juice through a blender,” says Bill Vasilakakos, master grower.
Over at Weed Me, founder and CEO Terry Kulaga likens the flavour and aroma of the company’s Mandarin Cookie to that of a nutty biscuit. “[It has] a sharp tangy citrus flavour with hints of rich nutty herbs upon exhale, almost like an almond cookie. The aroma is very earthy and kushy with a sour tangerine overtone that turns slightly pungent as the flowers are burned.”
As for the visuals, the flowers are defined by light and dark green hues, yellow-orange pistils and, on some plants, hints of purple. “The most impressive visual feature encountered while growing this genetic, in my humble opinion, is the level of trichome production,” says Vasilakakos. “To say it is frosty barely does it justice.”
Timing is everything, especially with a strain like Mandarin Cookies. It tends to have a longer flowering cycle (anywhere between seven and 10 weeks), which means extra plant care is required. “The longer time makes for more work, but a great product can take time,” says Kulaga.
Growing a strain successfully means learning its particular needs. To avoid over-stretching in its Mandarin Cookies plants, BOAZ uses “preemptive pruning methods prior to blooming.” The company grows in an indoor vertical setting, using an organic coco coir growing material enriched with beneficial microbials. The company’s strain is an OCS-designated craft cannabis product; plants are hand-watered, hang-dried, hand-trimmed and hand-packaged.
In Weed Me’s indoor growing environment, its Mandarin Cookie plants grow tall, reaching between 80 and 90 cm in height and 30 to 40 cm in width, with “elongated pepper-shaped olive-green flower.”
For both companies, choosing to grow Mandarin Cookies was a no-brainer. “This sample came on a bright sunny day and immediately after trying it, we knew we had winner sativa on our hands,” Kulaga says.
BOAZ was impressed by the strain’s reputation, potency, aroma and yield, but it came down to how well Mandarin Cookies grew at BOAZ. “Often, you’ve got to hunt for that one particular phenotype that will perform well in your grow room,” Vasilakakos says. “Luckily, we had early success with Mandarin Cookies.”
What Is a Strain?
To understand what a cannabis strain is, think of it like a breed of dog. While all dogs share similar traits, there are distinct differences among breeds (you wouldn’t confuse a Great Dane with a dachshund, for example). When it comes to different cannabis strains, this means one may have a sweet, lemony aroma, while another may boast a pungent, sour, diesel-like scent.
These differences have been fine-tuned by cannabis growers over many generations. Growers will choose two plants with desirable traits and then cross (or breed) those plants together, creating an offspring with a stronger expression of those desirable characteristics. When breeding cannabis plants, growers are often focused on the unique aroma and taste, and the potential THC and CBD content. Just like no two Great Danes are identical, strains can vary from lot to lot and grower to grower.