As Central and South American countries share similar climates, this author has chosen to group the landrace strains of these regions into one group called “Latin America.” Truly, these plants not only share similar climates, but similar growing traits (morphology) and highs as well. Did Latin American cannabis originate in Mexico, and then travel South, or was it the other way around? We’ll probably never know!
With a goal to educate cannabis and sustainability activists on the importance of preserving indigenous cannabis genetics, this series will focus first on cannabis landrace strains and then, finally, on the F1 hybrids that made landrace strains famous. Don’t forget to check out this complete history of cannabis , as well.
This Sativa landrace cannabis strain is named in part for its fiery red pistils, the “hairs”, that cover its dark green buds. Providing a mellow, yet energetic high, Panama Red became popular in the late 1960s during the hippy psychedelic era. This strain was popular for several decades, but eventually fell out of favor because of its long flowering time (at from 11 to 12 weeks) and its relatively low THC levels (at from 10% to 16% THC). With a pungent and earthy base aroma, Panama Red contains terpenes such as Caryophyllene (Pepper), Humulene (Hops), Pinene (Pine), Terpinolene (Wood).
Further, while many consider Jamaican cannabis strains to be landrace rather than heirloom, based on research this author is fairly certain that Jamaican strains are in fact strains brought to the island and harvested there for generations, such that unique strains were developed with morphology ideal for the climate. Therefore, by definition, Jamaican strains are heirloom, not landrace, and will be included in the next blog post in this series.
What we do know is that cannabis indigenous to these regions have common traits that in general include:
As mentioned above, some landrace cannabis strains of Latin America include Chiapan, Guerreran, Nayarit, Michoacan, Oaxacan, and Sinoalan, Colombian Gold, Cali Hills, Punto Rojo, Santa Marta Gold, and Panama Red. Let’s check out some strains famous during the 60’s and 70’s, including Acapulco Gold, Colombian Gold, and Panama Red … all classic, old school strains.
Are Latin American cannabis plants true landrace strains, or are they actually heirloom strains originating from African Sativa varieties, such as Angola Red? While it’s possible that African cannabis genetics lead to Latin American strains due to trade, travel, and the spread of civilization, no one is certain. It seems equally likely that these cannabis strains developed on their own for hundreds of years before humans began selectively breeding plants such as Colombian Gold and Panama Red.
There are four major geographic areas credited in the cannabis origin story. These include Asia, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. Most researchers agree that cannabis began in central and south Asia, with the five oldest cannabis strains known recognized as Afghani, Aceh, Hindu Kush, Nepalese and Thai. Today we’re considering the landrace cannabis strains of Latin America.
Originating in the Guerrero Mountains of Southwest Mexico, this landrace cannabis strain was named for its nearest city, Acapulco. At from 20% to 24% THC, this potent Sativa has a distinctive brownish gold color and was one of the most sought-after cannabis strains of the 60s, with smuggling via the Tijuana border worth considering for some, despite the risks. Terpenes found in Acapulco Gold include Caryophyllene (Pepper), Limonene (Lemon), Myrcene (Musk, mango), Pinene (Pine), and Terpinolene (Wood).
Landrace Cannabis Strains Of Latin America With a goal to educate cannabis and sustainability activists on the importance of preserving indigenous cannabis genetics, this series will focus first