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Potency

Photo rendering THC molecule from marijuanaThe most potent marijuana medicine is usually the most sought-after. Requiring less cannabis bud to achieve full effect is one high point of potent weed. Another aspect is that the very potent medical grade “top-shelf” marijuana possesses the potential to bring the patient levels of relief that cannot be replicated by lower potency medicinal-grade products available usually alongside. By selecting the most potent types of weed available to him the patient has the freedom to apply dosages appropriate to achieve the desired effect, be that heavy or light, based upon his needs and requirements. High-potency medical marijuana simply offers the patient more options for relief that the less potent products.

While we now understand why high-potency medical is preferred, it helps to also understand what actually makes a particular type of weed potent. It is a commonly held misconception that the different strains of cannabis are either “good” or not, and that a good kind is always good. While there is some truth in this assumption, it is not entirely accurate. The particular type of weed that is being grown will provide a “framework” to work within as far as how potent it can become, along with which traits it can express and to what extent.

The individual plant’s unique genetics also play part in these very same attributes that have to do with the general overall potency of the flowers that it produces and their ability to provide the desired effects to the patient. Therefore simply having good genetics in the parent plants does not guarantee the potency that is associated with the particular strain(s) that are providing the genetic material. Often times, though, a good marijuana strain does have strong genetics especially in the aspects that it has been bred for and therefore is sought for. This is what makes for a famous type of weed and one that can be selectively sought for its match of effects with a patient’s ailments.

The grower’s technique also has a profound impact on the quality of the final medicine in the production of medical marijuana. There are many aspects of the growing of medicinal-grade cannabis

that can be tweaked, or done in a completely different way, to achieve maximum potency. For instance, a grower may choose to grow plants indoors or outdoors, a decision that will produce quite different medicines from the very same plant. And this is just one of the many things that can be done a number of ways, just depending on which the grower chooses. The array of ways to successfully grow medical-grade marijuana can become quite complicated and overwhelming at first, but with some education and then educated decision-making you can choose the options that will work best for your location, conditions, and most importantly to achieve the full medicinal effect in the final medicine product. Let’s take a look at some things that the grower can do to effect potency.

The lighting will have a lot to do with the potency. A plant uses chlorophyll to turn sunlight into food energy, and the more light it receives the better this job gets done. A well-fed plant produces better buds, but this doesn’t mean feeding more nutrients (which we’ll talk about a bit later), it means that the plant has light, air, water, and nutrients in the right proportions to allow it to produce the highest possible amount of sugars inside the plant. These sugars are the fuel for the other processes like resin production and creation of cannabinoids like THC, so the more the better, and the plant produces them itself. All the grower does is keep the environment in optimal condition, and the plant uses the nutrients, CO2 (carbon dioxide), H2O (water) and light to make all the magic happen. But without sufficient light the potency of the marijuana will suffer. As it turns out, marijuana plants can take as much light as we can reasonably provide indoors, before heat becomes a killer… they just can’t get too much light.

The nutrients have an effect on the plant’s growth and the size, fullness and resin production of the buds, along with the fullness of the vegetation leaves and stems. These nutrients are given to the plant in a method suitable to the growing medium, yet another big decision for the grower, and one that effects potency. In a standard soil growing situation the nutrients can be mixed into the soil, just like fertilizer is used in an outdoor vegetable or flower garden. This method is simple and requires that the grower not over-water or the result will that the nutrients are leached from the soil and the plant will produce poor, impotent marijuana medicine. Growing marijuana in soil without fertilizer allows the grower to use liquid nutrients to be added at watering times. This method requires over-watering from time-to-time, in the form of the flushing of excess nutrient buildup by using a volume of water to run through all the soil. Any method that uses liquid nutrients has one advantage in that they can be applied to the plants selectively during different phases of the growing cycle. For instance, then the plant is growing vegetatively the grower can provide nutrients specifically formulated to provide the plant what it needs to create leaves and stems. Then in the flowering phase the nutrient mix can again be altered, this time to specifically support the production of blooms and resins. In this way the potency is maximized and the plant is grown to maximum desired size, matured and harvested in the minimum amount of time.

The potency of marijuana is more than just a function of its genetics and particular strain strain. The individual plant will have its own unique strengths and weaknesses in comparison to other specimens of the same breed, however the traits of an individual plant including its potential potency generally fall within a range based upon the strain’s genetics. And then the grower technique will have a huge impact on the potency of any type of weed grown, with maximum potency coming as a result of giving the plants “as much as they eat” of sun, nutrients and CO2 and then harvesting properly at th correct time.