Cannabis ruderalis is one of the three species of cannabis plants.

These are sativas, indicas and ruderalis. It originates from Asia and Central/Eastern Europe. But studies indicate that ruderalis was first discovered by Russian botanist D.E. Janischevsky in 1924, in southern Siberia. But it also grows wildly in other areas of Russia.

Janischevsky was studying wild cannabis in the Volga River system when he realized he came upon a third species of cannabis. It is widely disputed if ruderalis is a subspecies of cannabis sativa because of its similar average THC and CBD levels. However, other scientists accept that ruderalis it its own species due to its specific traits and phenotypes.

Similar ruderalis species can be found in areas where hemp production was prevalent, such as North America and Canada. Larger groups of wild ruderalis are also found in central and eastern Europe and in certain adjacent countries. Without human intervention, several wild ruderalis plants adjusted to their own environments. Ruderalis was brought to Amsterdam in the 1980’s to enhance the cannabis strains that belonged to the Seed Bank company.

Ruderalis is the tiniest plant of them all.

There are several reasons that ruderalis is considered an inferior type of weed. Cannabis ruderalis is a tiny plant that produces little in the way of flowers. Ruderalis grows between 1 ft to 2.5 ft tall which makes it too small to produce good hemp.

Its leaves are relatively wide and light green. The buds are small but chunky and are supported by a rather thick stem. However, ruderalis is an unpopular version of weed to smoke for recreational use because of its low THC levels. Ruderalis was used in Russian and Mongolian folk medicine to treat depression.

The name ruderalis is derived from the Latin term rudera, which means rubbish or debris. It is known as ditch weed because it can grow in poor quality environments like on the side of a road. However, this doesn’t mean that ruderalis plant is completely useless.

Ruderalis is used by growers because of its other qualifying properties.

Ruderalis is referred for its short grow times, auto-flowering seeds and use in the creation of high CBD concentrates. Ruderalis grows in just 5-7 weeks and modern hybrids can mature in less than 30 days. It also auto-flowers regardless of light cycles. Growers like to mix ruderalis with new strains to help control the size and growing time of their herb.

Ruderalis can be mixed with sativas, indicas and hybrids to help encourage better indoor growth and encourage faster yields. Sativa/ruderalis mixes are popular because sativas tend to grow very tall, and ruderalis helps keep sativa height at a manageable level.

When ruderalis is mixed with other phenotypes, it helps boost the CBD count in that strain. Also, “The short and sturdy stature of ruderalis makes it ideal for growing outdoors. And because it has been wild for so long, it is highly resistant to pests and disease”. These advantages make a huge difference in the profitability and medical effectiveness of cannabis.

Ruderalis has found its way into almost all the other strains.

Jack Herer is usually a sativa dominant strain that creates feelings of happiness, energy and euphoria. Jack Herer grows up to 2 meters tall, provides medium yields, and flowers in 60-70 days when grown indoors. Because of the large height and long flowering time, breeders selectively bred in ruderalis genetics and created a new strain. 

Royal Jack Automatic by Royal Queen Seeds is an example of a strain mixed with ruderalis. Royal Jack Automatic is different than Jack Herer. Royal Jack Automatic auto-flowers in 6-7 weeks, provides high yields when grown indoors and provides feelings of creativity and inspiration.

Alaskan Thunder Fuck is a strain that is partly ruderalis. It is a Northern California strain crossed with a Russian ruderalis. This sativa has large beautiful frosty buds that gives off a lemon-pine skunk scent. Alaskan Thunder Fuck is a creeper weed that leaves many users with the intense feelings of happiness and euphoria.

White Widow shows how much of a difference Ruderalis makes.

Usually, White Widow is a balanced hybrid. Its yields are low and it grows up to 2 meters tall. It smells pungent of earthy, piney and woody tones. Consumers feel happy, relaxed and euphoric after taking a few puffs of White Widow. The biggest drawbacks to White Widow include its massive size and the low yields.

Auto White Widow by Dutch Passion is not a pure White Widow. It fuses the genetics of White Widow with those of ruderalis, giving rise to a new type of plant. Auto White Widow flowers quickly, in 10 weeks and produces XL yields using hydro growing methods. The high is extremely relaxing and it provides powerful cerebral impacts. It grows up to 1 meter tall and is ready to harvest within 75 days after germination.

At SensiSeeds, you can find ruderalis mixed strains such as Mexican Sativa, Guerrilla’s Gusto and Sensi Skunk Automatic. Sensi Skunk Automatic is an auto-flowering skunk plant that prefers to grow in temperate to Mediterranean climates. It auto flowers in about 5 weeks regardless of light cycles.

Sensi Skunk Automatic grows as a robust female plant that is short and sturdy and produces a lot of buds. “Virtually all the hard work is taken out of the cultivation process.” The scent is mouth-watering with bursts of citrus in the air.

It is easy to see that Ruderalis is an important part of modern cannabis genetics.

Cannabis ruderalis may be the newest kid on the block but it is making waves. Like cranberries in the world of juice, ruderalis is making its way into the most popular mixtures. In the process it is helping produce higher CBD strains than previously possible, improve resistances to disease and make growing easier.

There are still many elements to cannabis that we are discovering.

Have you tried a ruderalis mixed strain? Do you have one in your garden? What did you think of it? Please let us know in the comments section down below. And as always, thanks for reading.

Adam Rhodes

An adventure seeking nerd, nothing too serious but people seem to like him, Adam is also the creator and writer for The Strain Domain

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