At a Glance
What is White Widow?
White Widow is a popular hybrid strain with lots of THC, a little CBD, a rich history and an even richer aroma.
In the cannabis hall of fame, White Widow deserves its own wing. Originally bred in the ’90s in Amsterdam as a cross between a Brazilian and a South Indian strain, it’s now one of the most popular strains on OCS.ca.
White Widow’s rich history is what drew the team at Spinach (grown by Cronos) to the strain. “We grow White Widow because it is a highly sought-after and popular strain with consumers. It is a classic cultivar that the cannabis community knows and trusts,” says the team at Spinach. “We also wanted to honour a classic and beloved cultivar to stay true and honest as members of the cannabis community.”
At first glance, Green Widow seems like a better name for this plant. But take a closer look, and you’ll see that White Widow is covered in a thick, frosty coating of white trichomes that start showing themselves as the buds mature. Those trichomes also give this strain its very high THC potency, just like the potent Black Widow Spider (don’t worry, there’s no deadly spider venom in your bud).
With a roughly 40:60 split of sativa and indica traits, White Widow’s exact breakdown can vary by grower. For example, HEXO’s Nebula (which is actually a variety of White Widow) leans more toward the indica side. “This means it is a really nice strain to work with when pruning or defoliating, which results in pristine buds,” says the HEXO team.
White Widow is also known for its intense aroma, with heavy notes of cedar and pepper. All these potent characteristics make White Widow a proud parent to many other strains, such as White Russian, White Rhino and Blue VNM. The Canadian classic Jean Guy is also said to be derived from White Widow.
If you’re looking to grow White Widow, you should know it’s not for the faint of heart. According to the team at Spinach, “White Widow is one of the most difficult strains to grow because its features are nuanced. The nuances are what consumers are looking for, and it can be difficult to achieve the high THC levels, terpenes and aromatic profiles that are characteristic of the White Widow strain. With our sophisticated technology, we’re able to achieve product consistency in every harvested crop.”
If you’re brave enough to try growing it yourself, White Widow typically has a flowering period of eight weeks and, if grown outdoors, can be harvested in September. It thrives in mild, temperate areas like Southern Ontario.
What is a strain?
To help you understand what a cannabis strain is, you can think of it like a breed of dog. While all dogs share similar traits, there are definitely 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 (for example, a strong diesel scent) and cross (or breed) those plants together, creating an offspring with a stronger expression of those desirable traits. When breeding cannabis plants, growers are often focused on the unique aroma, and taste, and potential THC and CBD content of a strain. And just like no two Great Danes are the same, strains can vary from lot to lot and grower to grower.