The average cannabis consumer tends to use a product’s THC percentage as a benchmark for their purchase. But THC isn’t the end-all-be-all of what makes good weed. It can be low on the list when considering other factors like terpenes and cannabinoids that make the experience enjoyable and more nuanced.
Still, potency is king, so we’ve compiled seven cannabis strains with high THC levels.
What is a high THC strain?
What’s considered high in THC is subjective. Many strains you find today are bred solely for potency, so it’s common to see strains with over 25% THC on dispensary shelves. But the high is nominal when the percentages reach a certain point. For example, you’ll notice a difference in effects between a strain with 12% THC and one with 25% THC, but you probably won’t see a difference when comparing a 25% and a 30% strain.
The effects that high-THC cannabis products will have on you will depend on your individual makeup and your body’s endocannabinoid system. But there are benefits for high potency strains, especially for those who use cannabis as a therapeutic and medicinal product.
Are weed strains getting stronger?
As the market continues to grow and expand, demand for high-potency cannabis strains has skyrocketed. It’s clear to those who’ve worked in the industry since the beginning, that the focus of many grow operations is to produce the highest potency cannabis possible.
How we chose the highest THC strains
We chose this list of high-THC strains due, first and foremost, to their THC potency, followed by smokeability and lasting effects. Minimal hits of the strains below may knock you out depending on your tolerance, so start with one or two hits before smoking the whole joint.
The THC percentages listed below are averages pulled from online directories, packaging, and the Certificates of Analysis from brands in the California market. The exact numbers typically fluctuate from batch to batch.
This strain is some fire, especially if we’re talking potency — just a few hits can leave you slumped over, thinking, “Damn, I probably should’ve saved this for the end of the day.” GM-UHOH is named after its terpene profile, which screams funky gas and straight-up onions. For this reason, it’s also called Garlic Cookies.
If you want high potency and a unique taste, try this popular indica-dominant hybrid.
They grow some good weed over at Maven Genetics — the potent and terpy Umami Butter serves as evidence. It’s an indica-dominant cross of Gelatti and the brand’s in-house Black Diamond X strain that releases a savory and creamy aroma at 35% THC.
The flavorful smoke gives way to a soothing high that may leave feelings of sleepiness and relaxation, making it a choice strain for wrapping up your evening.
Main terpenes: caryophyllene, limonene, linalool
Wonderbrett is all about vibrant terpene profiles and tasty weed, and Beyond Blueberry is one of the brand’s latest releases that hit those marks. It’s also high potency, containing 34% THC.
A phenotype of Sundae Driver, which is a mix of FPOG and Grape Pie, its aroma and flavor kick out notes of ripe blueberries, sweet cream, and earthy lavender and mint. The psychoactive effects may leave you feeling relaxed with a long-lasting euphoria.
Runtz x Z x AC
The buds are green with purple accents that give off pungent and gassy undertones. From those who’ve tried it, you can expect this strain to hit you with long-lasting euphoria and uplifting effects, making it great for any time of day.
Main terpenes: linalool, myrcene, limonene
Xeno is high in potency for THC and high in quality for everything else. Alien Labs doesn’t miss, man — I haven’t tried a single strain from this brand that isn’t a hitter.
Xeno is a cross of Zkittlez with Kush Mints. It has a mix of fruity, gassy, and sweet flavors that give way to a potent and spacey type of high. Its top three reported effects are aroused, creative, and giggly.
Main terpenes: limonene, caryophyllene, linalool
Triple Lindy by Blueprint is the definition of potency. Boy, you’ll be smacked after consuming it. We don’t know its exact genetics since Blueprint keeps it under wraps, but we know it has intense flavors and effects.
It kicks out a mix of floral, fruity, and candy gas notes that will blow you away, and consumers report heavily euphoric and relaxing effects. Too many hits of Triple Lindy will lay down even the most experienced stoner, so clear out your schedule before loading a bowl.
Main terpenes: caryophyllene, limonene, and linalool
Blue Face from Fig Farms is some of California’s best weed. It’s a cross of Face Off OG and Animal Mints and is a phenotype of Animal Face. Named after the blue hues on its flowers, it packs a hell of a potency punch. Fig Farms describes its tasting notes as “freshly rubbed eraser, redwood bark, ginger, and window cleaner.” When I smoke it, I detect straight gas.
This sativa-dominant hybrid strain is super potent, flavorful, and smooth. For those reasons, it has killed at the Emerald Cup the past few years. In 2022, Blue Face won 3rd Place for Indoor Flower; in 2023, it won 1st Place for indoor flower and the prestigious Best In Show trophy, which, until now, has never been won by an indoor entry.
Main terpenes: myrcene, limonene, caryophyllene