With cannabis commercializing, there will come a time when marketing analytics take over. We’re not there yet, but analysists will be counting sales and predicting trends in seeds, strains, edibles, and more.
Right now, we depend on word-of-mouth and exchanges at trade shows to identify the most popular strains. There’s no standardized counting mechanism, no count that overrides regional availability and preferences, and no fully realized seed-to-sale metrics.
When you think of it, reaching that stage of homogeneity may also push strains off the table. For instance, when things become popular and universal online, those popular local strains may just disappear.
So, a list of the most popular strains should include the classic market leaders: Blue Dreams, Jack Herer, Northern Lights, Sour Diesel, and more. But, I’ve tried to pick some “off-brand” items to perhaps introduce something new to your attention.
For convenience, I have divided the list into Indica-dominant and Sativa-dominant strains.
5 most popular Indica strains of 2018
1. Barbara Bud is a 70% Indica testing 17-19% THC named after a Canadian cannabis advocate. Barbara Bud produces different greens covered in frosty crystals. Its potent high hits fast and lasts long. It produces an uplifting, creative and social effect.
It grows easily indoors over seven weeks. It doubles in size and resists heat, cold, pests, and mold. It’s full-flavored with citrus-berry and limonene. Medical providers see value in fighting acid reflux, anxiety, depression, and inflammation. Some research indicates the properties reduce pain, inhibit tumor growth, and stimulate immune systems.
2. Big Bang 2 shares qualities of its parents, Jack Herer and Northern Lights, as a 70% Indica with 20% THC and 1.5% CBD. This beautiful plant is rich in Mardi-Gras colors and prolific over eight weeks of flowering. With a THC level this high and significant CBD, it is sedating and good for improving mood, managing pain, and stimulating appetite.
The ancestors show up in a smooth, sweet, and fruity. It has a hint of skunk for a smooth and long-lasting relaxing high recommended for the evening with friends or just before bed.
3. G-13 is surrounded by rumors, but it is believed to be the only strain to be bred by the U.S. government’s cannabis-research facility at the University of Mississippi. It’s an Afghani 70% Indica with 22-24% THC, 1% CBD, and 1% CBN.
This is not the strain to use for energy and creativity. It’s orange aroma and flavor makes G-13 popular with patients seeking its couch-lock body high and total relief from pain and muscle spasms.
4. Big Buddha Cheese x Cheese reworks an earlier strain. Brilliant greens and bright oranges highlight this fast-flowering plant.
There’s a taste of sweet berries under the strong dank aroma. A high THC content offers a potent and long-lasting high. You’ll be bright, giddy, but somewhat introspective. People use it for the high and for the continuous pain relief.
5. Cheesy Dick is a 95 % Indica with a hefty 16% THC. Another beautiful collection of colored nodes sits upon a nest of gorgeous purple leaves. It produces a huge harvest in 8-10 weeks with a big smell you’ll want to message when growing indoors.
Cheesy Dick is meant for veteran users who can handle the dank aroma and musky taste. The high starts with a hazy head spreading into a helplessly stony couch-locked body for treating appetite loss, chronic pain, insomnia, inflammation, and muscle spasms.
5 most popular Sativa strains for 2018
1. Amnesia Haze is multiple award-winning sativa from a richly green and red plant. At 80% dominant and testing 22-24% THC, it promises a near-psychedelic experience.
Amnesia Haze has a fruit and citrus bite with earthy undertones with an uplifting and euphoric finish. It’s not for first-timers, but it is a fast-acting distraction from stress and depression. Patients use it to relieve ADHA symptoms, anxiety, fatigue, migraines, mood swings, and chronic pain.
2. Strawberry Cough brings you sweet fresh strawberry flavors and aromas. Some 80% sativa with a huge 22-26% THC, it comes in small dense buds covered with dewy trichomes that power the results.
Besides the guaranteed cough, this strain will hit your head with a euphoric high and giggles on your lips. Medicinal uses address depression and social anxieties. And, this is one strain you might use throughout the day because it does not sedate.
3. Jamaican Pearl, 85% Sativa is a gnarly, fast-producing hybrid with a possible 22% THC content. The Pearl has a strong fruit and spice aroma with creative and happy results. It’s a cerebral high that leaves you energized.
That makes it a great therapy for ADHD symptoms, anxiety, depression, mood disorders, and stress. It does risk nausea, dizziness, and paranoia in first-time users.
4. Lemon Zkittle is an award winner with 60% Sativa, 20% THC, and high yields over 9-10 weeks. If you like lemon, you’ll appreciate the heavy sour lemon aroma. Ideal for daytime or evening usage.
The high hits early and tapers off to an ambient buzz—happy, relaxed, and sleepy. The THC can rock a new smoker, but medical patients use it for chronic pain, depression, fatigue, headaches, insomnia, OCD, PTSD, bipolar disorder, and more.
5. Sexbud presents as a 70% Sativa with 18-22% THC. The markedly fruity aroma seduces with strains or grapefruit and pineapple. The small size and fast flowering make this great for indoor growers.
It’s rumored to improve your sex life, hence the name. But, the strong high is energetic and creative. Sex life or not, it should help with treating chronic pain, headaches, inflammation, insomnia, migraines, and muscle spasms.
10 most popular cannabis strains of 2018
There are no data to support my claim for the popularity of the strains listed here. The Indicas favor body relaxing experiences, and the Sativas trigger energetic and psychoactive events. While there is rarely a perfect split between the reactions, the more you know the more you’ll enjoy and the better prepared you are to make your choice popular.