What Is THC?

What is THC? Tetrahydrocannabinol. Also known as delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol. Of the over 80 chemical compounds (cannabinoids), THC is the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis that give you the high.

THC is produced in the leaves, flower and glandular trichomes. Male plants contain far less THC than females and should be harvested before they pollinate female plants. Once a female is pollinated she will start to develop seeds and her energies divert from producing trichomes filled with THC to developing seeds. Therefore, do not allow your females to be pollinated so they remain seedless (sinsemilla) and be sure to harvest your crop before the THC potency begins to deteriorate.


Trichomes are resin glands that develop on the surface of the plant. As the flowering stage progresses, these hairlike glands develop and store THC on the mushroom-like stem and bulb that emerge. The base of the bulb is where THC is most concentrated. Plant developing trichomes

The time to harvest is when trichomes turn creamy white. A good way to monitor resin gland development is to use a 25x or stronger pocket microscope, magnifying glass or jeweler loupe. When the majority of trichomes turn amber means the window for harvesting is closing and the effects of THC will be diminished.

THC Effects

THC is found in two species of cannabis genus: indica and sativa.

There is a third genus called ruderalis. Ruderalis has very low THC levels and not used for medicine. However, it is an extremely hardy plant able to withstand harsher climates than either indicas or sativas. Therefore, growers often cross breed with ruderalis to create a durable strain with high THC content.

What Is THC In Indica

Indica plants are relatively short, broad-leafed, and bushy in stature. Indicas flower in 8-10 weeks with dense bud.

The indica high is more of a "body" buzz. This is excellent for stress and pain relief. This is the type of high that melts you into the couch and gets you very introspective.

I recently pulled a muscle in my back exercising. I was was taking aspirin, ibuprofen and applying heat to relax the muscles for several days. I stopped smoking because I'm running in a marathon relay in a few weeks. Long story short, I smoked a nice indica-dominant strain and it relaxed me enough that I wasn't focusing on the continuous, sharp, stabbing pain in my lower back.

After two days the pain was gone.

Yeah, I'm starting to think exercising is overrated, too. Most of my injuries are sports-related. No one to my knowledge ever got hurt laying on the couch eating a bag of Cheetos. Close up of trichome covered leaf.

What Is THC In Sativa

I'm a sativa kind of gal. The THC in sativa plants give an uplifting and energetic high. I call this my "creative high." I come up with some of my best ideas from a nice sativa strain. I admit, most ideas don't hold up as the great bazillion dollar idea the next day. But some do. I need to remember to write them down.

A nice sativa will energize me. It also keeps me strangely focused on my task at hand. Which makes it great for cleaning the house. Or yoga.

Anyone who thinks pot smokers just lay around on the couch and eat Cheetos needs to enjoy a nice sativa and see how much they get done in a day.

Click here to exit What Is THC? and return Home