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Why is My Weed Purple?

Purple cannabis is highly coveted for a reason. Known for its royal hue and high potency, strains that produce purple flower are thought to be superior to regular, everyday weed — thanks to an abundance of flavor and therapeutic benefits.

What is Purple Cannabis?

Purple cannabis (often called purp) is exactly what it sounds like: it’s cannabis that’s purple. Generally speaking, purple cannabis is indica-dominant. However, that’s not always the case. Sativa-dominant hybrids can display characteristics of this type of cannabis on occasion, too.

The color purple is created by Anthocyanins, a class of water-soluble flavonoids. We regularly consume these compounds when eatings foods like berries, grapes, and apples. Scientists consider them to function as neuroprotectants, anti-inflammatories, and antioxidants. According to the National Institutes of Health, “Anthocyanins protect leaves from the stress of photoinhibitory light fluxes by absorbing the excess photons that would otherwise be intercepted by chlorophyll b.”

The Science Behind The Purple

There are three things that cause purple cannabis — genetics, temperature, and the plant’s natural immune system. Cannabis plants from mountainous regions with colder temperatures typically display more purple than their non-mountain counterparts. For example, cannabis strains such as Hindu Kush, and Afghani, from the mountainous regions of Afghanistan and Pakistan are notorious for having beautiful cues of purple.

Thankfully, you don’t need to grow in the mountains to get a beautiful purple hue in your cannabis plants. By prolonging outdoor growing and introducing cannabis plants to colder temperatures, growers can get purple tones in their harvest.

On a final note, cannabis plants will also turn purple when fighting certain types of diseases, such as HLVD, according to researchers from Medicinal Genomics. More on this later.

Benefits of Purple Cannabis

Besides almost always having great taste and potent effects, purple cannabis might have an attribute that could be the most important in the cannabis family. This type of cannabis might be what saves cannabis as we know it. A viroid called HLVd (hop-latent viroid) could destroy cannabis for all of us. Professor of Plant Biology Zamir K. Punja told the media that HLVd is a “major threat” to cannabis. HLVd has devastated cannabis crops since it first surfaced in California back in 2019.

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According to a recent article, Massachusetts-based Medicinal Genomics “announced they had accidentally discovered that one of their cannabis plants appears to be partially resistant to HLVd. The scientists also noticed that the plant turned purple as it was fighting the disease.”

Chief Science Officer Kevin McKernan of Massachusetts-based Medicinal Genomics told media, “We don’t know why [this is happening]. This could be an immune response, but we’re not seeing this [purple coloring] as heavily increased in the control that’s not infected.”

When it comes to the benefits of this type of cannabis, the biggest one is that it might save cannabis as we know it. Like with terpenes and some specific strains, when it comes to purple cannabis, most people either love it or hate it.

Are Purple Strains Stronger?

Is that purp really fire, or are people just hyping it up? Purple cannabis, like any other cannabis, can have a wide spectrum of quality.

That being said, most cannabis of this color lives up to its name. There is just something about purple cannabis. It’s kind of like food. If it tastes good, that’s a big plus and already helps things. If the plate appearance is on point, it makes it taste that much better. In the case of purple bud, the beautiful purple color is the plate appearance. It’s eye candy and helps enhance the flavor and effect of the cannabis.

Purple Cannabis Strains

Want to get your hands on some purp?

  • Granddaddy Purple
  • Purple Urkel
  • Lavender Jones
  • Purple Haze
  • Blue Knight
  • Purple skunk
  • SFV Kush
  • Grape Ape
  • Purple Haze
  • Obama Kush
  • Purple Punch
  • Mendocino Purp

Already tried it? What were your thoughts? What’s your favorite or least favorite purple cannabis strain? Let us know in the comments below!

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