why is weed called kush

The History Of The Kush Cannabis Plant

Original Landraces

Like every other strain of cannabis seeds that is available nowadays, land races are responsible for the original genetics. Many countries host different types of marijuana landraces and in parts of the world where the weather is hot and mountainous regions can be found, fields upon fields of landrace cannabis plants grow naturally. Due to the productivity of the cannabis plant, you can find hundreds, if not thousands of years of natural backcrossing within these fields. The original Kush strain comes from one of these regions and has since paved the way for commercial medical marijuana.

The fact that Afghanistan is one of the biggest producers of cannabis and poppy worldwide is often forgotten until pictures like this pop up.

Some of the most common Kush varieties known today are Hindu Kush, Master Kush and Afghan Kush. These are all original landraces taken from these locations and back crossed to find the ultimate phenotype for cannabis cultivation. After its introduction in Amsterdam almost 30 years ago many seed banks now offer a wide selection of landraces and hybrids, many of the original landrace strains can also still be found.

Kush Cannabis Plant Characteristics

Due to years of breeding, we know the Kush cannabis plant very well here at Spliff Seeds. Kush has many pros and few cons in terms of growing difficulty and is a strain that is known by connoisseurs as high grade medical marijuana. Growers love Kush because the buds that grow on this cannabis plant are well known for being very dense and potent. Most Kush strains will grow to medium height with Christmas tree-like side branching. The fan leaves on an original land race will be thick, wide and almost counter productive in terms of how much light they block from the lowest parts of this indica variety cannabis plant.

Kush varieties are usually short, stocky plants with huge leaves like the one in this picture.

The Aroma, Taste And Effects

This is what gives Kush such unique selling points from a coffee shop’s perspective as well as a grower’s. The smell of this medical marijuana is unmistakable, it is often associated with jet fuel and can be described as pungent, dank and lemony. The Kush smell is often so potent that even the smallest dried bud can really stink out a room. The taste of a well grown Kush is similar to the aroma but with a jet fuel mouth wash after taste that can be tasted at every puff.

Afghani farmers are very familiar with the unique taste and effect Kush varieties have to offer, which is why they have been growing this cannabis plant variety for hundreds of years. Afghani hashish is traditionally smoked while eating melon, which is said to increase the high and decrease any negative effects.

Ocean Grown American Kush

Whilst the Dutch breeders were working hard on releasing back crossed Landraces to the public, American breeders were also working on elevating the Kush genetics to their liking. Several Kush hybrids taken from the seeds brought back from the Himalayas have circulated through America. The name ‘Ocean Grown’ was quickly given to an amazing phenotype that came from one of these projects, giving rise to the O.G. Kush cannabis plant that is so popular today. The exact origins are difficult to figure out even with lab research and the terpene profile is very different from its supposed landrace parents.

Kush has made quite the journey from its original home in Afghanistan. It is most likely that O.G. Kush was first bred in Florida and then found its way to California.

O.G. Kush is well known for its aroma and and potency but this is only part of the reason that the buds of this strain can be very expensive. Despite being a massively popular plant, the yields are small and the plants are finicky. Other popular relatives of O.G. Kush include a phenotype from the San Fernando Valley (SFVOG) and Girl Scout Cookies, which is a hybrid of the Florida O.G. Kush and Durban Poison F1.

The famous O.G. Kush strain is enormously popular, which becomes very clear if you check the amount of known crosses on sites like

Medical Marijuana And Kush

Many medical marijuana patients in the States and all over the world find that using Kush provides strong pain relief. When smoked or used in edibles, the effects of a Kush strain are considered very medicinal and almost narcotic. Insomnia, appetite loss and anxiety are easily treated with Kush. Patients suffering from pains associated with bone, nerve and muscle can also find relief when using Kush. Medicating with Kush and a number of other indica strains has proven to be invaluable to patients with M.S., Parkinson’s and numerous other illnesses. Cancer patients also enjoy the relief that Kush offers compared to pharmaceutical resources and can often eat, sleep and have normal bowel function when treating themselves with this cannabis plant.

Sativa strains are probably a better choice for patients who require increased energy levels and motivation, but many patients still find Kush ticks all the boxes when it comes to anti-inflammatory and pain relieving effects. For this reason many breeders, including Spliff Seeds, are now developing Kush crosses that attempt to retain its unique potency as medical marijuana while reducing its strong couch-locking effect. Spliff Blue Medi Kush was developed together with medical marijuana users for exactly this purpose.

Kush In Amsterdam

Kush is huge worldwide but especially in Amsterdam and California. You can expect to buy a gram of the strongest kushes in Amsterdam for around €15 and the buds will not be the biggest either, if you are used to large sativa buds. There was a time when haze was the main attraction in Amsterdam’s many coffeeshops. The flowering time of these haze varieties was so long that growers could ask for a higher price. With the rise in popularity of Kush, the same prices are being paid for a relatively fast-flowering strain. Growers can nearly grow two full crops of Kush in the same amount of time it takes to harvest a single Haze grow. This led to Kush being as popular amongst growers as it is amongst users.

Spliff Seeds Kush Strains

Since Spliff Seeds started in 1995 we have always been evolving and breeding new strains to meet the demands of the market. We have recently created 4 new Kush strains including a CBD rich Kush strain. These newly developed Kush strains are our Moon Walker Kush, Gold Bar Kush, Purple Berry Kush and CBD Medi Kush. The first three of these strains were developed to add onto the potency and unique flavour of O.G. Kush through crosses with some of our tastiest strains. CBD Medi Kush was specifically developed for medical marijuana and has a cannabinoid content of 8.5% THC / 8.5% CBD.

We are proud to say our feminised Kush strains contain the original O.G. Kush lineage that goes back to the old school Dutch Kush plants that have been floating around Amsterdam for the last 20 years. You can expect heavy sticky pungent buds which will meet every expectation you may have!

Moon Walker Kush: This hybrid is a cross of Blue Medi Kush x Skywalker O.G.. This cannabis plant stays short and bushy in the vegetative state but stretches quite a lot in flower. The Spliff team had fun making this strain as the buds are thick and chunky whilst the plants grow with a purple hue as this cannabis plant flowers. A lemony, dank Kush strain that can easily yield over 500 grams per square meter and finishes between 56-60 days. Growing this strain outdoors can also reward you with huge yields, this is best done in warmer climates due to its natural flowering time. Moon Walker Kush has excellent medicinal properties and a strong narcotic effect that can almost be overbearing to a novice smoker, this is definitely one of the favourites in the Spliff team.

Spliff Moon Walker Kush is a Blue Medi Kush cross with Skywalker O.G., which makes for great taste and a fast flowering time!

Purple Berry Kush: This hybrid of Spliff Strawberry x O.G. Kush is our highest yielding Kush strain. The lowest parts of this cannabis plant will be as productive as the top half, producing bud sets all over in thick clusters. Its strong side branching character and thick stems make this a great strain for anyone looking for a very reliable plant with sweet berry flavours and a Kush edge. You can expect this strain to finish flowering and be ready to harvest within 60 days, with large fruity fluffy crystal soaked buds. Growing Purple Berry Kush outdoors is also extremely productive in warmer climates. Purple Berry Kush combines the best effects from both parents and will have you energetic and very relaxed at the same time. We spent years looking for the best phenotypes and we’re very excited we’re finally able to offer this wonderful strain to our customers.

Purple Berry Kush combines the sweet taste and clear high from Spliff Strawberry with everything we love about O.G. Kush.

Gold Bar Kush: This strain was developed for the connoisseurs out there and produces pure gold in terms of the high, flavours and smell. If you love Tangie or Diesel then you will love this hybrid of Medical Kush x Orange Bud, as this strain has a very prominent sour apricot taste and produces smaller buds of the highest caliber. This strain is one of our lowest yielding Kushes and takes around 65 days to finish, but the unique flavour and balanced effect are well worth it. Gold Bar Kush was developed with a focus on quality and taste, making it ideal for real cannabis connoisseurs. Smoking this strain provides a mix of an intense high and medium stone that keeps you smoking this one all day long.

Gold Bar Kush has a unique sour apricot aroma and balanced high. Its unique terpene profile makes this Kush variety very popular in the extract community..

CBD Medi Kush: Spliff Seeds created our first ever CBD medical marijuana strain to keep up with the ever changing scene and the numerous medical benefits of CBD. We crossed our Blue Medi Kush x Amnesiac x CBD Afghan to create a wonderful strain of medical marijuana. The result is a Kush strain with a perfect 1:1 ratio of THC and CBD that is perfect for smokers who are seeking a relaxing stone but not so much THC. CBD Medi Kush provides all the medical benefits of marijuana without the racing thoughts or anxiety associated with high THC levels. With good yields of fruity, dense nugs that finish in 60-65 days, we like to think we’ve developed one of the best medicinal marijuana strains on the market!

CBD Medi Kush was developed to have equal amounts of THC and CBD, making it the perfect medicinal marijuana strain.

Enjoy Your Kush!

At Spliff Seeds, we like to know as much as possible about our strains and enjoy sharing the history of the cannabis plant with anyone that might be interested. We hope you enjoyed this backstory and that you have as much fun with the Kush cannabis plant as we do!

Like every other strain of cannabis seeds that is available nowadays, land races are responsible for the original genetics. Many countries host different

What is Kush cannabis and why is it so popular?

Kush, a cannabis genotype that originated in the Hindu Kush mountain range, is praised by medical and recreational users alike. Here’s all you need to know

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    You may have heard Kush being mentioned in many popular hip-hop songs. Time for an education on everything there is to know about the strain.

    Hindu Kush—historically grown only in the mountain range of the same name, which mostly runs along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan—is one of the most potent landrace strains available. The Himalayan slopes gave birth to the strain, which over time, brought about many other strains that inherited part of its name—Kush.

    What is Kush cannabis and why is it so popular? Back to video

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    What does the slang Kush mean?

    In the last decade or so, the word “Kush” has become synonymous with premium cannabis strains; high-quality street cannabis is often called Kush among users. Kush became the go-to term for high-quality cannabis in the U.S., quickly replacing its contemporaries.


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    What is Kush?

    Kush is primarily a cannabis indica strain, which has risen in popularity in the last decade, and played a pivotal role in creating dozens of modern-day hybrid strains. One will rarely see a Kush strain that is a purebred sativa, although this can occur with proper growing conditions, combined with relentless cross-breeding.

    Macro view of the Black Lotus Kush bud. Photo by iStock / Getty Images Plus

    When Kush is grown under specific conditions, its unique phenotypes come out in a different light. Kush plants are known to evolve and acclimate in order to survive. Nowadays, Kush is grown all around the world, but its tough Himalayan genetics endured and continue to follow the strain, giving it both durability and potency.

    It is most likely true that Kush is a lost strain and that its precise genetics are unknown. That said, the next best thing is available, namely OG Kush, also known as Ocean Grown Kush.

    The rise of OG Kush

    OG Kush first appeared in California during the 1990s, right around the time Dr. Dre dropped his The Chronic album, which took the cannabis community by storm.

    There are two stories that explain the strain’s mysterious genetics. The first is that a breeder claimed to have gotten the seed from a bag of Chemdawg 91 strain, in the Lake Tahoe area in 1996; the second goes that it was brought to California from Florida, by a grower who now operates a company known as Imperial Genetics. He reports the parents of this strain were a male cross of Lemon Thai and Old World Paki Kush, and a female Chemdawg plant.


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    Unfortunately, OG Kush is a clone-only strain and, at that time, one couldn’t simply plant a seed of this strain. Rather, a cutting from an existing plant is needed.

    There is a lot of confusion about the origin of the name, and what OG exactly stands for. Given that it was bred in California, many users thought it meant Original Gangster, or just Original Kush. However, the truth is the grower who first bred OG Kush in California was asked by a consumer if it was mountain-grown, complimenting the quality of his buds. The grower responded with a simple, “This Kush is ocean-grown, bro.” The rest is history.

    Quickly after that, cuttings of various OG Kush plants began making the rounds around Los Angeles and the rest of California. Those cuttings made way for new, closely-related strains.

    Hindu Kush—historically grown only in the mountain range of the same name, which mostly runs along the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan—is one of the most potent landrace strains available. Photo by iStock / Getty Images Plus

    The strains that came from these plants all gained popularity, and developed into Cannabis Cup winners themselves, including Bubba Kush, West Coast Dog, Larry OG, Tahoe OG Kush, Triple OG, Ghost OG, Diablo OG and so forth.

    What does the Kush high feel like?

    Kush strains are known to have the utmost relaxing effect, all while making the user giggly and joyous. These traits aren’t common among the different cannabis strains that came from Kush.

    Kush strains with strong ties to their indica roots are very hard to come by these days, as the cannabis community moved towards growing highly resistant hybrids. However, those who still grow Kush with a higher indica presence are known to produce flowers with potent cerebral effects that “tranquilize” the user, and these buds are frequently recommended as a way to battle insomnia.


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    Popular Kush strains

    There are 100-plus strains containing the word Kush in their names, and many more that came about by cross-breeding Kush strains with other strains. As previously mentioned, landrace Hindu Kush is known for its resilience and the ability to grow just about anywhere, a useful trait that made Hindu Kush one of the most sought-after strains by growers and breeders.

    As it now stands, there are overwhelmingly more hybrid and indica Kush strains than sativa Kush strains. Additionally, most of the Kush strains aren’t pure indicas and sativas, but rather hybrids whose one trait is more dominant than the other.

    With that in mind, here are picks of some of the best Kush strains by three separate categories. The most popular indica-dominant Kush strains include Kosher Kush, Bubba Kush, Critical Kush, Afghan Kush, Platinum Kush, Hindu Kush, Super Kush, Sin City Kush, Alien Kush, Purple Kush, Purple OG Kush and Master Kush; the most popular hybrid Kush strains include OG Kush, Pink Kush, Lemon OG Kush, Cali Kush, Royal Kush, Mango Kush, Pineapple Kush, Holy Grail Kush and Big Kush; and the most popular sativa-dominant Kush strains include Mickey Kush, Silver Kush, Quantum Kush and Heisenberg Kush.

    What is the best Kush strain?

    OG Kush is widely viewed as the best Kush strain because of its legacy. That said, it’s somewhat difficult to classify one strain as the absolute best, mostly because each crop varies in quality and cannabinoid and terpene levels. There are also many variations of a more or less same strain.


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    Given that OG Kush was originally a clone-only strain, growers named clones of different potency different names. This has produced confusion since, at one point, a person might have smoked the exact same weed from two different growers marketed under two different names.

    If the best strain is characterized as “the one with the highest level of THC,” then the Oscar goes to Ghost OG. This strain is, without a doubt, the strongest Kush variety, at least so indicates Washington State I-502 data.

    In that testing sample, Ghost OG, which is a cutting from the original OG Kush mother stock, consistently came in at a colossal 28.7 percent THC content. On the same test, OG Kush results came in significantly lower, averaging around 19.4 percent THC content.

    In a study conducted by scientists Nick Jikomes and Michael Zoorob, they found OG Kush isn’t topping its competitors, at least as far as THC levels go. In their study, Gorilla Glue #4—now usually known as Original Glue—came in first place with an average of 21 percent THC. The researchers concluded that there’s still a lot of test result manipulation going on and that retailers often display cannabinoid levels much higher than they actually are.

    With that in mind, THC levels should not determine which Kush strain is “best”, because the delicate balance of minor cannabinoids and terpenes also plays an important role in the effects of each particular strain. There is much more to a strain than just numbers on a piece of paper. is an educational website dedicated to shedding the light on many unexplored sides of medical and recreational cannabis. Aside from informing people of safe cannabis use, Greencamp also provides technology for finding optimal cannabis treatment. You can download their app from Itunes or the Google Play store.

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    Kush originated in the Hindu Kush mountain range, is praised by medical and recreational users alike. Here’s all you need to know.