A single plant will continue to produce new flowers until it is harvested, rather than all of its flowers maturing before harvest, so its full potential is never realized. Ruderalis hybrids will likely prove of great value only to outdoor growers at near polar latitudes where little else will grow. Big Bud North American breeders also used other exotic imports to impart particular flavors to the smoke or to enhance the potency of hybrids. Landrace varieties from Brazil, India, Indonesia, Kashmir, Korea, Nepal, Africa, and other far-flung locations were occasionally used for these purposes. Since commercial shipments of marijuana did not often originate from these regions, usually the seeds were collected in small numbers and were relatively rare compared to seeds from the major marijuana-producing regions such as Colombia, Mexico, Jamaica, and Thailand.
Presently, it is nearly impossible to import seeds from new, potent, imported varieties. They rarely can be collected as there are very few locations remaining where indigenous farmers maintain traditional high-potency landraces. Basically, we are stuck with what we have in circulation, like it or not, and breeders must make the best of what they have. A few strong branches of the North American marijuana family tree were transplanted to the Netherlands, and the remaining scions continued to flourish and evolve, leading to the tremendous diversity of marijuana varieties grown in North America and Europe today. Resulting from the openness of marijuana seed sales in the Netherlands, Dutch seed companies provide an easily documented model of the sinsemilla breeding that has continued simultaneously in North America. The Dutch seed companies described much of the heritage behind their varieties in their early catalogs. The following information comes directly from published seed catalogs and is supplemented with personal comments from breeders and seed company owners. During the early 1980s, several marijuana seed companies appeared in the Netherlands, where cultivation of Cannabis for seed production and the sale of seeds were tolerated.
Political pressure on marijuana growers in North America forced the thrust of progress in sinsemilla breeding to the Netherlands, where the political climate was much less threatening. For North American and European growers, this meant continued availability of exotic high-quality marijuana seeds. Almost all of the Dutch varieties contain germ plasm from one or more of the founding genetic building blocks brought from North America. Cultivars such as Original Haze, Hindu Kush, Afghani No. 1 were established in California before their seeds were taken to the Netherlands in the early 1980s. As these cultivars were relatively stable seed varieties, breeders had a greater chance of selecting a favorable male plant as a pollen source for breeding. Cultivars such as Northern Lights, Big Bud, Hash Plant, and G-13 went to the Netherlands from the Pacific Northwest as rooted female cuttings. There were never males of these varieties, and, therefore, commercial seeds were all made by crosses with a male of a different variety such as Skunk No. 1, or more rarely by masculinizing a female cutting to produce pollen for self-pollinating. Durban Poison When connoisseurs of North American sinsemilla comment that ?All the Dutch varieties seem the same,? this should come as no surprise, since Dutch varieties share so much of their heritage. Of the nearly 150 varieties offered for sale by Dutch seed companies in 2000, 80 percent of them contain germ plasm that first came to the Netherlands prior to 1985. Most of the seed companies have continued to reshuffle the heavily stacked deck of original North American germ plasm, and since the 1980s few companies have introduced anything new. The perpetuation of monotony has been punctuated, only infrequently, by new introductions from North America or traditional marijuana- producing nations. Most seed companies have simply recombined founding cultivars from which breeders selected star clones to represent their seed companies in competitions. But where would we be today without the common building blocks of our common varieties? Many varieties have been tried throughout the years, and the persistence of the original founding germ plasm to this day is testimony to its desirability. If more potent, better tasting, and more productive varieties had been introduced, growers would certainly favor them today. In fact, seed companies generally introduce a new variety by simply crossing a new introduction with an established Dutch variety, itself built upon the initial founding varieties, and give the resulting plant a new name. As only a handful of North American varieties were used to make ?Dutch? sinsemilla varieties, they are usually potent and commercially lucrative, but often boring! The founding blocks of germ plasm used in most Dutch sinsemilla cultivars are described below by seed company, cultivar name, date of introduction, origin, and genetic heritage. Among the earliest Dutch varieties were Holland?s Hope and Amstel Gold, which were introduced in the early 1980s and are still available today.
Although these predominantly indica cultivars are not very potent, they mature much earlier than most varieties, as they were bred to grow outdoors in the Netherlands. Both were bred from selections of imported Afghan hashish landraces. The following eight cultivars were brought to the Netherlands from California as named seed varieties and were released by Cultivator?s Choice seed company bet ween 1980 and 1983. They were relatively consistent when inbred or crossed and now make up part of more than two-thirds of the varieties offered by Dutch seed companies. Many of the Cultivator?s Choice varieties have been faithfully maintained since their introductions and are presently offered by the Flying Dutchman seed company. 1 kick started the high-quality Dutch homegrown scene.
Even today, nearly half of the varieties sold by Dutch seed companies have Skunk No. 1 was first introduced in the Netherlands in the late 1970s, and immediately revolutionized Dutch marijuana growing. The Dutch, basically a hashish-smoking culture, attempted to grow marijuana both outdoors and in greenhouses throughout the 1970s.