What Is Skunk Weed & What Are The Most Popular Skunk Strains?

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Skunk weed
Author avatar By Derek LaRose
October 14, 2021
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Let’s be real — skunk weed doesn’t sound that tempting. Who wants to smoke buds whose name evokes images of the stinky American mammal? 

Many stoners do, despite the unfortunate name choice. Skunk cannabis is an independent, top-quality strain that delivers a top-shelf physical and cerebral high, bountiful harvests, and whopping THC contents.

Modern breeding blessed us with endless types of skunk marijuana to taste and enjoy, but most share characteristics with the landrace variety that started it all. Let’s explore everything this cannabis variety brings to the table.

Afghan Kush X Super Skunk
Afghan Kush X Super Skunk

What is skunk weed?

Skunk weed is a superstar among stoners, but it’s received negative attention from mainstream media. The publicity is mostly over-the-top, bordering on inaccurate from time to time. 

For instance, some outlets call the family ’super-weed.’ The potency is impressive, but this title is a bit much. Even worse are those implying that skunk cannabis is a completely new drug and fearmonger over it. Let’s cut through the misconceptions.

What is skunk weed? Skunk weed is simply a cannabis variety developed with indoor cultivation in mind. 

These hybrid weed plants are straightforward, develop flowers early, and emanate the trademark pungent aroma. Skunk marijuana is famous for producing powerful buds to knock down a veteran, too. Take a look at our highest THC percentage flower report, and you’ll find many skunky strains on the list.

The next time somebody asks what skunk is, here’s a quick list of features for you to name: 

  • Consistently high THC levels 
  • Skunky and earthy fragrance notes
  • More flowers than leaves
  • Quick flowering
  • Manageable branching
  • Reliably fruitful harvests

Particulars differ from one strain to another, but most of these general traits persist. Thanks to ingenious breeders, you can have a purple skunk pot variety instead of a green one and a strong lemony scent with only hints of earthiness underneath.

What is the skunk strain’s history?

The ‘skunk’ descriptor is ideal for the cannabis strain that emerged in the US in the 1970s, exuding an aroma that old-school marijuana connoisseurs would call ‘stinky.’

The skunk marijuana gene pool is impressive. A truly stable hybrid to grow and consume, modern cannabis seed banks often cross it with new sativas and indicas to produce a range of phenotypes carrying all the best qualities of its stellar parentage. 

Let’s discuss the basics of the skunk strain history and uncover how this wonder of breeding came to be.

Where did skunk come from?

All members of the skunk cannabis family descended from Skunk #1, stabilized in the ‘70s, and still among the most consistent varieties around

This heritage strain is a hybrid of two sativa landraces and one sturdy indica

Its exotic sativa parents are Acapulco Gold from Mexico and Colombian Gold from Santa Maria mountains in Colombia. The indica side comes from Afghanistan under the simple name of Afghan.

The crossing of these phenotypes happened in the San Francisco Bay Area. It led to a gorgeous new cultivar with a short flowering time, heavy yields, and citrus flavors underpinning the trademark skunkiness. By the 1980s, Skunk #1 cannabis seeds were available for purchase.

The new and exciting cannabis plant reached Europe around that time, too, when David Watson (better known as Sam the Skunkman) arrived in Amsterdam. 

Dutch stoners quickly fell in love with Skunk #1, a legend in its own right. Breeders greeted the new genetics with open arms, enjoying the consistent quality it offered. 

Numerous selections, hybrids, and crosses saw the light of day within a year or two, while the original seeds became a growers’ go-to. Many of the most potent strains available in Northern America and Europe today have skunk weed in their parentage.

Skunk strain
Skunk strain

Why do some people use ‘skunk’ as a synonym for cannabis?

The term ‘skunk weed’ no longer refers to a specific cannabis family only in some English-speaking countries. People use it more generally to talk about high-quality marijuana and cultivars of unknown genetic origin.

This generalization remains in the public consciousness, especially since the youngest generations of stoners weren’t around when the original skunk cannabis plants first entered the market and changed the game forever. 

It particularly holds when discussing potent pot from the ’70s with strong indica origins and a terpene profile that makes cannabis ‘stinky.’ 

The mixup is semantic, and it doesn’t mean much for people simply discussing the last batch they received. It only gets problematic when dispensaries start using the two meanings interchangeably. 

Tip: If you’re on the market for skunk cannabis seeds, check the heritage and make sure that you see Skunk #1 somewhere down the line

Let’s see how the word is used today depending on the localization to help you avoid confusion on your next visit to the shop.

Skunk in the USA

Americans have a clear association between skunk the animal and skunk the weed. Growers wanted a name that made the aroma and quality beneath it instantly recognizable, and it stuck. 

Few people refer to all marijuana as ‘skunk cannabis’ in the US, but if it’s a smelly strain, don’t be surprised to hear the name used in that general sense.

Skunk in the UK 

Stoners in the UK often use ‘skunk’ to describe the family of skunk pot and potent, seedless, non-pollinated cannabis flower grown for smoking.

You’ll have to ask for clarification, but whether it’s used for the distinct family of weed varieties or generally, you can infer top quality from the name.

Hawaii x Purple Skunk
Hawaii x Purple Skunk

The skunk weed plant family is rich and potent. Breeders took advantage of the stable genetics, making sure that you can get anything from the smelliest, sleepiest strain to a citrus-smelling wake ‘n’ bake with Skunk #1.

There’s a world of options to explore. Here are a few of our favorites in this category:

  • Skunk #1. A backbone of the cannabis industry, this balanced hybrid brings a profound calm to the body and a sense of pure joy to the mind.
  • Super Skunk. This marijuana herb combines Skunk #1 with Afghani for a more indica-style high and an even stinkier flavor profile, taking the qualities of the original one step further.
  • Skunk Diesel. This super-pungent indica combines two legendary, sour cannabis strains into one jaw-dropping herb. A mild head buzz and an intense full-body stone are a guarantee.
  • Orange Skunk. This Californian sativa cultivar burns into a zesty, citrusy smoke that translates into an incredibly balanced, clear-headed high.
  • Hawaii x Purple Skunk. This strain delivers high-grade skunk weed qualities with its Purple x Skunk parentage, while the uplifting Hawaiian adds a fruity twist to the mix.
  • Northern Lights x Skunk. Euphoric and energetic, this one blends the best of two much-loved cannabis plants into an overwhelmingly skunky, spicy cross that yields like crazy.

This list is just the tip of the iceberg. Visit the Homegrown library for endless varieties with Skunk #1 in their parentage.

How to grow your own skunk cannabis plants

Are you itching for potent, gorgeous plants with skunk cannabis parentage? Pick a strain from the list and order your weed seeds from our shop. 

You’ll start on a solid foundation with the best genetics money can buy and enjoy a top-notch experience from germination to smoking. Once your seed pack arrives, here’s how to cultivate an impressive stinky garden at home.

If you choose an outdoor setup, there’s not much to worry about when it comes to the conditions. The Afghani parentage of these weed plants makes them resistant to a wide range of environmental conditions

It thrives in warm, Mediterranean climates, but you won’t face issues in most environments. Be sure to harvest before the frosts, and you’re good to go. Choose high-quality, organic soil, and these green beauties will award you with hefty yields. 

Skunk weed plants flourish indoors as long as you leave enough headroom for a maximum height of around 60 inches. 

It flowers after nine to ten weeks and doesn’t require much apart from standard gardening practices. Get a quality ventilation system, too. Pungent smells will permeate your grow room as soon as your crops reach flowering. 

Skunk Diesel
Skunk Diesel

FAQs

Let’s finish by answering some skunk weed questions we often hear in the community.

Is skunk weed good?

Not only good—it’s fantastic. Skunk weed is a pleasure to grow, smoke, and even smell once you get used to it. 

A strain’s value depends on the breeder and the dispensary selling the weed seeds, but this family stands on top of the marijuana quality hierarchy.

For one, it’s super potent, never failing to deliver the high to your mind and body. It’s also a joy for growers, with a high flower-to-leaf ratio and generous harvests in most environmental conditions. 

Which weed strain smells like skunk?

More than you’d expect, especially those high in myrcene and low in other fragrant terpenes. 

You’ll uncover the deepest earthy, skunky fragrances with the weed strains we shared today. A Skunk #1 parentage truly takes that smell of weed to the next level. 

How does skunk weed make you feel?

Any way you want to feel. The skunk weed effects depend on the strain and the crossing behind the scenes. 

If you’re talking about Skunk #1, this crowd-pleaser delivers a clear-headed high that erases stress and heightens the mood. It also treats physical pain and boosts appetite, giving the majestic high many medical benefits. 

Is skunk weed poisonous?

Not at all. The first whiff might leave you a bit worried about the quality of your cannabis, but you’ll learn to appreciate the stinkiness with time.

The question might be—is skunk weed dangerous? The answer is still no, at least if you smoke in moderation. These cultivars are often THC powerhouses, and pacing yourself is the way to go.

Why does weed smell like skunk?

Skunk cannabis has a distinct smell, and that’s putting it lightly. Its chemical makeup is to blame, especially the terpene component called myrcene. 
Myrcene is earthy, peppery, spicy, and the dominant terpene in many cannabis plants. Skunk strains only exhibit it more strongly than others.

Orange Skunk feminized
Orange Skunk feminized

Key takeaways

Skunk marijuana is a must-try for stoners old and new. Its potency, quality, and low cultivation requirements are arguably some of the best features seen in the modern weed industry.

We hope this comprehensive guide got you excited to test your green thumb and THC tolerance against some stinky skunk weed

All you have to do now is pick a strain that sounds the most appealing, buy weed seeds, and get growing. Stay tuned to the Homegrown Forum for more handy guides and keep yourself up-to-date with all things weed.


About the author: Derek LaRose

Also known as Kronic from The Cannabis Kronicles, Derek LaRose is a young ambitious cultivator and a staple educator for indoor cultivation.