If you’ve been to one of the District’s seven licensed medical cannabis dispensaries, you’ve probably wondered where weed strains like Orangutang and Mumbo Sauce got their bizarre names.
Cultivators have been giving strains weird monikers since the early sixties and seventies, and the practice continues to be an important part of weed culture today. Some classic strains like Super Lemon Haze or Mimosa are so accurately named that their scents smack you right in the face. Meanwhile, strain names like Green Crack or Hulk OG feel more arbitrary. (No, smoking Hulk OG will not turn you into a raging green monster.)
When it comes to cannabinoid content, strain names don’t necessarily mean much. The THC and CBD content of a specific strain can vary wildly from one cultivator to the next. That being said, strain names can tell you a lot about lineage while giving a fun nod to local lore.
D.C.’s medical cannabis industry may be small, but it’s produced some memorable weed strains since launching less than 10 years ago. Here’s a rundown of some of the District’s most unique strains grown right here on D.C. soil:
Gelato Cake – District Cannabis
Perhaps D.C.’s most famous strain, Gelato Cake by District Cannabis was birthed by crossing two classic weed varieties: Wedding Cake and Gelato 33. When you cut into a (good) cake, you see layers of icing, moist cake and maybe even some gooey fudge. Gelato Cake has a dense and dark structure that mimics a nice slice of cake, leaving you with sticky fingers and a satisfying taste.
The feel: Gelato Cake smokers report an early rush of energy and alertness, with a nice sedative effect to follow. District Cannabis calls it a “one size fits all” hybrid strain for newbies and seasoned smokers alike.
You’ll find Gelato Cake at most medical dispensaries around D.C. and Maryland.
Mumbo Sauce – District Growers
Named after D.C.’s most controversial condiment, Mumbo Sauce is a Sativa hybrid that is said to provide an immediate flush of euphoric relief accompanied by anxiety-killing relaxation for a perfect bell curve of a high. Mumbo Sauce smells sweet, but tastes rather spicy, and with its hefty 24% THC level, you can expect it to linger for a while.
The feel: Users report reduced chronic pain, less stress and alleviated depression after using Mumbo Sauce. This claim makes sense when you look at the parental lineage. A product of two sativa-dominant strains, Lemonade and Lemon OG #2, Mumbo Sauce takes after its parents in being a bright and uplifting sativa.
Mumbo Sauce is usually available at most medical dispensaries around the District.
Royal Medic – Alternative Solutions
Royal Medic’s name has nothing to do with the lineage of the strain, which comes from two more obscure weed varieties called Critical and Juanita La Lagrimosa or “Juanita the Tearful.” Weighing in at 19% THC and 14% CBD, Royal Medic is a balanced smoke with a fruity aroma that’s perfect for an early-afternoon teatime.
The feel: Strains with equal parts THC and CBD — also known as 1:1 strains — aim to provide medical relief without the “I’m too high” feeling. Royal Medic does just that. I’ve tried this strain both in its raw flower form and as a concentrate, and even the concentrated version had me feeling alert and able to tackle the day without feeling foggy.
Alternative Solutions doesn’t distribute outside of D.C., so you’ll need to drop by one of the District’s medical dispensaries to pick up Royal Medic. Oh, and don’t forget to bring your card.
Orangutang Series – Center City Cultivation
Yes, it is spelled incorrectly and that’s because this D.C. strain was born from Gorilla Glue #4 and Tangie. Semantically speaking, the name feels like a little bit of a stretch, but, hey, I’m no grower.
Center City went to work on this strain, creating four different versions of it. The first Orangutang tested at a whopping 31.7% THC, with #3 (23.9%) and #4 (22.4%) not quite as heavy, but still packing a punch. Orangutang #2 is actually sold out in D.C. at this point.
The feel: As could be expected from a potent indica, users report a sleepy, relaxed effect from this strain. Aroma-wise, you can expect a citrusy sting from its Tangie heritage and more earthy tones from the Gorilla Glue side of the family.
Takoma Wellness Center and National Holistic Healing Center both carry this strain.
Enhanced + Series – Abatin Wellness
Some cultivators like to perfect a strain by re-breeding it with another strain, or just changing its growing conditions from harvest to harvest. Enhanced and Enhanced #2 are two nearly identical strains from Abatin Wellness.
The feel: You’ve heard me go on about balancing THC and CBD for a chiller high. This 2:1 strain takes a special seat in the balanced category. Both versions don’t exceed 14% THC or 7% CBD, which is low for any kind of weed, so if you’re looking for a reliably mild strain, the Enhanced series could be the way to go.
At the moment, Takoma Wellness in Northwest D.C. is the only dispensary that carries the Enhanced + series.
Ask A Stoner is a weekly column that answers our readers’ most burning questions on the ever-shifting, oft-misunderstood world of cannabis in the D.C. region. You can submit your questions using this Google Form, or by messaging Jason, our stoner-in-residence, on Twitter.