As laws lift and the US slowly turns green, interest in cannabis is ever-growing. As a result, the variety of strains available is also on the rise. From candy-flavored to dark and dank, there’s something to suit everyone nowadays. However, one of the most Instagram-worthy is the pink weed plant.
But is pink weed real? If so, which cultivar turns this shade? Also, can you make your homegrown crop change color? So many questions are up in the air about the visually stunning phenomenon—we’re here to answer them all.
Keep reading to learn all you’ll ever need to know about pink cannabis. We’ll even share some pink weed strain names so you can try your hand at cultivating a colorful harvest.
Is pink weed real?
To begin our unraveling of color-changing marijuana, we first must stop the debate surrounding the genuineness of the pink weed plant. While we’re typically used to the sight of marijuana, many shades of green, pink weed strains are out there. Under the right conditions, you may also be able to change the color of your crop.
It’s not just the plant’s foliage that changes color, either. That’s right, those pink weed flower pictures that you thought were photoshopped are very much real.
Since the normalization of cannabis and the increase in its commercial demand, breeders have been busy bringing out the next biggest thing. Novelties like pink bud are captivating, and color greatly impacts our decision-making when it comes to purchasing goods. Pink weed flowers, therefore, can fetch a larger profit than normal, some would say now ‘less exciting,’ green nugs.
Why does weed have different colors?
Take a closer look at your weed plant’s leaves, stems, and nugs, and you’ll notice green isn’t the only color on the palette. Some strains have red, yellow, purple, pink, blue, and even black hues. The final color of pink marijuana is directly related to two primary factors—genetics and the growing conditions the plant matures in.
As a plant develops, it releases flavonoids, in particular anthocyanins which are responsible for dark pigmentations. Eggplants and blueberries, for instance, are rich in this class of compound. However, cannabis pH also has an effect on marijuana’s anthocyanins. Different levels lead to them presenting on the surface as a rainbow of colors.
For instance, Lemon Kush has experienced a high alkaline environment to get its lemon-like look. On the other hand, a boost of acidity triggers carotenoids, which are pigmentation molecules responsible for red, orange, and yellow coloration in plants. They’re most recognizable in carrots, pumpkins, and autumn leaves.
Temperature also plays a role in cannabis changing color. Marijuana grown in hot climates has more opportunity to produce chlorophyll, responsible for plants’ green pigmentation. In comparison, cultivars like Purple Trainwreck, Black Tuna Kush, and pink cannabis strains have an excess of pigmentation from being grown in colder conditions turning them dark in color.
Parts of weed that can be pink
When you think about a pink weed plant, what comes to mind? The entire plant veering away from the norm, just the leaves, or cotton-candy-like pink bud? Wherever your imagination takes you, you won’t be far wrong.
Aside from the precious nugs, other plant parts can also hang up the green for something a little more exotic. Even parts as small as the trichomes and pistils can delight us with a rainbow show creating fuzzy-looking weed with pink hairs.
Pink bud strains are both jaw-dropping and mouth-watering to look at. As the cannabis flower is the primary product we consume, its color dramatically impacts our decision to part with money.
The buds made up of hundreds of calyxes protect a number of the plant’s most vital parts, such as the reproductive organs, resin glands, stigmas, and pistils. The concentration of activity creates vibrant colors, and the more calyxes there are, the more intense the colas.
The hairs you see protruding from the calyx are the female sex organs known as pistils. In some cases, purple, amber, or pink pistils emerge, and the rest of the bud remains green, making your weed look particularly cheerful. After harvesting and curing, strains with pink pistils often retain some of their vibrancy.
Pink weed leaves
Pink weed leaves are an unusual sight, and when they appear without matching buds, it’s because of environmental conditions rather than genetics.
The coloration occurs most often when your cannabis experiences cold snaps at night. However, foliage in direct sunlight can also turn a pinky, plum color. Once you trim and dispose of the leaves after harvest or readying your plants for re-vegging, sadly, the cultivator is the only one who can enjoy this aesthetically pleasing color change.
Your mature cannabis glistens with trichomes, aka cannabinoid factories, and they’re an invaluable source of information. Starting crystal clear before becoming milky white when THC levels have hit their ceiling, cultivators use them as an indicator of when to harvest. Leave them too long, and they’ll turn a yellowish-brown, a clear sign that your nugs potency is in decline.
Pink bud strains can often retain the same coloration across resin glands, making it tricky to determine optimal harvest time. When this beautiful vision emerges in your grow room, rely on the pistils to guide you. If you’re lucky, the pink-hued resin will stain your flowers after curing, leaving behind a unique mixture of tones.
Why leaves and buds turn pink
With a little know-how and the right cultivar, you can grow pink flowering weed. Below we take a closer look at the factors that play a role in encouraging color change in cannabis. However, it’s also vital you recognize and rule out phosphorus deficiency in purple or pink weed plants, as this is a clear sign your weed is in distress.
- Genetics – The flavonoid anthocyanin is the key ingredient to color change in cannabis. Some cultivars are rich in the compound and guaranteed to showcase impressive displays of vibrancy under the correct environmental conditions.
- Extreme Light Conditions – Anthocyanin works as a barrier to protect your weed’s photosynthetic tissue. It shields the plant’s flora from the sun’s harmful UV-B rays or the stress of extreme light intensities by differentiating the amount of chlorophyll available, thus creating untypical colored foliage.
- Lower Temperatures – Temperature can have a dramatic effect on your marijuana’s color. Colder climates in your grow room, especially at night, halt chlorophyll production and break down the green pigmentation. These conditions are the same as plants experience in fall when flora turns red, orange, and yellow.
- pH Levels – The all-important compounds anthocyanin and carotenoids react to pH. At the root level, depending on if your weed matures in acidic or alkaline, bias media influences its final coloration. It’s thought that plants grown in acidic environments turn red, purple, and pink. Be careful not to ignore signs of illness that present as color change.
Advantage of non-green cannabis
There are many alleged benefits to consuming colored weed. However, beyond a pink strain’s unique appearance, its flowers aren’t superior to those that grow green. These wellness boosts are most likely results of the particular strain of cannabis over the shade of its nugs.
Studies into how anthocyanin influences health have found no hard evidence that the compound affects human biology or illnesses via marijuana. However, the subject is still under scientific scrutiny.
In food like berries, it’s a proven anti-oxidant and possesses anti-inflammatory properties. Theoretically speaking, this means you’re more likely to relieve a health kick by eating a pink weed flower than smoking it.
We don’t know yet if pink strains hold anti-inflammatory effects thanks to their anthocyanin richness alone. Instead, we’ll just have to enjoy their extraordinary appearance.
How to make a pink weed plant
There are numerous reasons why you might want to embark on the journey of cultivating pink flower weed—for fun, the potential price markup, or just for the challenge. Whatever your reasons, growing your crop of rainbow weed is highly achievable.
To do so successfully, you’ll first need to choose the correct strain to grow and the right knowledge on how to draw out its specific genetic traits.
It’s vital you recognize that not all strains of cannabis will offer you a color show by simply altering growing conditions in your grow room. The genetic makeup of your chosen cultivar is the primary factor in your marijuana’s ability to change its appearance.
No matter how hard you try, some strains will never churn out unusually colored buds due to their genotype. Stick to variants proven to exhibit pink hues naturally.
Pick a cultivar that shoots out pink pistils and develops colorful calyxes for maximum vibrancy since these parts retain their final coloring the most. If you’re up for a real cultivators challenge, go for something which turns the trichomes bright pink for added effect.
Color-changing cannabis may only reveal itself when exposed to certain environmental conditions. During the later flowering stage, cool night temperatures are an effective way to turn your buds from green to pink. Some strains may make this change without your influence but require a helping hand to reach full vibrancy.
Veterans in the pink weed plant game recommend keeping your grow room cozy during the day with temperatures of around 75-80°F. When night falls, drop the temperature to between 65-70°F to draw out the colors of genetically inclined cultivars.
Be sure to check the needs of your cannabis. In some cases, a hotter climate throughout the final phase of flowering forces color change to happen more rapidly.
Subjecting your marijuana to bright, intense lighting is also a proven technique in encouraging pink weed flowers and leaves. As anthocyanin works as a sunscreen for your weed, your plants will exhibit different shades depending on their genetics.
pH Levels at the Roots
The pH of the growing media your pot matures is also responsible for triggering color change. It’s a much rarer phenomenon as it’s more difficult to control without causing illness than tampering with light or heat.
A great example of this working involves the cultivar Fucking Incredible (FI). Growers report FI produces red or pink pistils when pH sits around 6.8. However, drop the levels closer to 6, and pistils appear white.
3 amazing pink weed strains
More and more pink strains of weed are emerging on the modern market and taking the spotlight. These captivating multi-colored plants are ticking the novelty box for canna enthusiasts and racking in the profit for cultivators.
Why not see what everyone’s raving about and grow a pinky strain at home? Below we’ve compiled some of the most popular pink strains of weed that are sure to make you and your friends go ‘wow.’
The strain is deliciously mouth-watering with lemon scents and sweet whiffs of vanilla. It’s both a vigorous grower and high-yielding. A mature Panama plant showcases long colas glistening with thick trichomes surrounded by pinky, red pistils.
The closer it gets to harvest, the deeper and more vibrant the coloration becomes. Unique to most sativa strains, this flora can withstand chilly climates, making it a perfect choice for cultivators worldwide.
Three times Cannabis Cup winner, this hybrid cultivar is an all-around exceptional tropical sensation. Sweet Tooth genetics is a mixing bowl of landrace strains. As a result, the strain boasts an abundance of positive attributes, including a hard-hitting cerebral high.
Although it’s a cultivar suited for novice growers, you’ll need some skill in controlling your parameters to draw out the pink. Once the color change begins to happen, you’ll be taken back by vibrant, almost neon leaves.
Born of legendary heritage, the pink strain showcases an abundance of mind and body effects similar to most high THC hybrids. It’s beloved among cannabis connoisseurs for its sweet yet dank diesel aroma and taste.
If you want to keep your grow room full of this strain under wraps, you must set up carbon filters and an efficient ventilation system. Left unchecked, Candy Glue‘s heavy scent will penetrate every nook and cranny.
Taste the rainbow
Although current research dictates that pink marijuana strains aren’t any different from their green counterparts in terms of potency or effects, their popularity isn’t wavering. As a result, we’re sure to see more emerge as breeders busy themselves trying to release the next big thing.
Further studies into colored cannabis, including pink weed strains, may one day find additional benefits. However, for now, they set themselves apart from the crowd with their unusual appearance. The good news is growing a pink weed plant is relatively easy now we understand the science behind drawing out genetics.
Even novice cultivators can turn their hands to the challenge and produce wonderful rainbow harvests. Want to learn more ways to have fun with your cannabis? Check out our blog, where you can find all things marijuana.
About the author: Parker Curtis
Parker Curtis has around a decade of cannabis-growing experience, specialising in soil-less and hydro grows. He’s mastering outdoor, greenhouse, and indoor grows.