If you’re new to the world of cannabis, you’ve probably been more than a little confused at all the different descriptions for cannabis strains. Even seasoned cannabis industry pros can get a little caught up in these naming conventions. However, once you get through the jargon, cannabis descriptions actually make sense.

This is your guide to understanding the complicated world of cannabis strain descriptions.

The Basics of Cannabis Strains

There are a lot of misconceptions around cannabis like can you smoke weed on antibiotics and how cannabis strain descriptions work.

There are two sets of descriptions used for cannabis plants. The first is for consumers. These descriptions cover the flavor, effects, and often include a named cultivar like “kush.” This information is great for people looking for a particular cannabis experience, but it’s not so good for people who are looking to grow.

Strain descriptions are for growers whether your operation is commercial or at home. These don’t talk about the taste of the strain, but about its genetics and growing conditions. This lets growers get a good sense of what they are buying so that it fits in their operation.

Cannabis Strain Descriptions

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These descriptions contain the information that growers need. You’ll find information on the growing techniques, nutritional requirements, and other info about the genetics of the strain here.

There is also usually a brief note about taste and aroma, but this is just a general description not something meant for consumers further down the market.


Did you know there are actually rules for how cannabis plants are named? It goes like this:

The first name in the cannabis strain is the name of the female plant that was the pollen recipient during the crossbreeding. The second name is the male plant that donated pollen during the crossbreeding. The second name could be another female plant if this hybrid was made using reverted feminized seeds.

This covers just the basic name of the plant, but gives you a good sense of its genetic history. Crossbreeds often have very similar characteristics of their parents which helps growers set up their operations.


Information like how weed and antibiotics react with each other isn’t usually covered here, but the details about the seeds are! These seeds come in three varieties:

  • Feminized Seeds – Produced by two female plants
  • Regular Seeds- Produced by a male and a female plant
  • Autoflowering seeds – Seeds that do not require a pollen donor

Indoor or Outdoor Yields

Cannabis plants are also classed into indoor and outdoor yields. These are two different ways of measuring how much product a plant can produce.

Indoor yields measure in the maximum weight of dried flower while outdoor yields measure in grams per plant. These descriptions also cover nutritional and harvesting requirements.

Indoor Flowering or Outdoor Harvest

There’s a lot of interesting things about cannabis like how amoxicillin and weed interact and the different ways cannabis can be cultivated.

This is important information for growers. You have to cultivate different strains using different techniques. Cannabis strain descriptions include information on what you’ll need to do to cultivate different types of cannabis plants.

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Indoor plants require balanced trichromes of light in order to get the most yield. Outdoor plants need specific growing conditions for the best results. A good description should tell you the essentials for getting a good harvest with this strain.


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Cannabinoid content didn’t used to be included in this information, but due to changes in the market, it’s not a common site when you’re buying seeds.

This information covers the maximum expected content of cannabinoids in your flower. These numbers tend to be lower than what they appear. This is because growing conditions, drying techniques, and other factors often lower the maximum possible concentration of cannabinoids.

This isn’t a bad thing. That number is telling you the most of what you should expect, not the actual numbers you will get. If you follow the growing and harvesting recommendations closely, you’ll get the numbers as stated in the description.

You’ll also find specifics about the cannabinoids in a given strain. Of course you’ll get info on the THC and CBD concentrations, but also on CBG, CNG, and others.

Now that you know the basics of reading strain descriptions, what’s the next move for your growing operation?