WATCH: If you haven’t used cannabis before or in a while, there are things you need to know. Tess van Straaten has the details in our cannabis countdown.
Pink kush, congo, cherry bomb, white rhino, gorilla glue — they’re just some of what is a plethora of pot options.
“Today, we’re probably going to have a lot more than what you’re used to,” explains Trees Cannabis customer service representative Tanner Gresiuk.
If you haven’t tried marijuana in a long time — or ever — one thing is clear: this isn’t your parent’s pot.
“We do have very potent strains people should be cautious with,” warns Alex Robb of Trees Cannabis.
Cannabis contains hundreds of chemical compounds. The most famous are THC and CBD.
The potency of THC in marijuana’s increased from an average of 3 per cent in the 80s to around 15 per cent today, with some strains up to 30 per cent.
Unlike THC, CBD isn’t psychoactive and doesn’t cause a high and it’s been used to treat anxiety, pain, inflammation and certain diseases.
“A lot of people don’t realize a high CBD content actually counteracts the psychoactive effects of a high THC content,” says Robb.
Then there are the two main species of cannabis.
“Sativa is more psychoactive, it’s going to cause more of a thinking, racing high and then the indicas are usually considered to be more sedative and lead to some relaxation,” explains Robb.
Hybrids are a mix of the two but all the varieties can vary greatly in strength. It all depends on the type of high you’re after.
“Charlotte’s web is a sativa, it’s very uplifting, it’s got more of a spicy smell to it, a spicy taste,” says Gresiuk. “If you jump to the other side, the super viola on the Indicas, that’s my favourite. It’s like a big bouquet of flowers when you open it, very aromatic.”
If it sounds like Gresiuk’s describing wine, he says it can be just as nuanced.
“Very much so and it’s become quite a connoisseur thing like that where people are chasing down the flavours, the smells,” he says.
The are also capsules, concentrates and oils which can have a potency as high as 80 or 90 per cent.
“Anybody who hasn’t used cannabis in a long time, especially the capsules and the tinctures, needs to start low and go slow,” cautions Robb. “Sometimes these products don’t affect you for an hour or two hours.”
If you’re curious about cannabis, be sure to tell staff you’re inexperienced. Robb recommends asking for something with a low THC content and higher in CBD and he says you shouldn’t use alone.
“It’s called a joint for a reason and then you can look out for one another as well and if you smoke a whole joint your first time, that’s going to be too much,” Robb says.