Politics, sports and religion are three topics that can make tempers flare, but our state has a fourth in cannabis: the Church. This ironically named strain combination comes with a conflicting past and a complicated present. As a result, as with most churches, it helps to know what you’re getting into when you sign up.
The Church and Church are the same strain, but Church OG is not. The Church is a hybrid of Northern Lights, Super Skunk and Swiss Sativa Skunk, while indica-leaning Church OG is either an OG Kush phenotype or a cross of God’s Gift and OG, depending on whom you ask. However (and this is where things get confusing), I’ve seen dispensary buds and basement clones labeled “Church” that have God’s Gift and OG genetics, which throws a wrench into everything. The casual smoker probably won’t care about this distinction, but growers and connoisseurs will.
The Church (sans OG) is a desirable and unique strain for all parties in the cannabis cycle. Its hefty resin production and smooth high are favored among consumers, and growers enjoy the durability and heavy yields. All of that resin gives the Church a tough defense against mold and mildew, so novice growers struggling with humidity and climate control, take note: The Church is here to lift your spirits.
Expect a frosty coat of trichomes on otherwise generic-looking nugs, but above-average density and one helluva stank. My favorite varieties of the Church pump out heavy smells of sour berries and spicy wood, tied together with floral and lavender notes. Its high is just balanced, easing sore ankles and minds simultaneously without bringing you to your knees — where most churches want you.
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Botanico, Oasis Cannabis, Diego Pellicer, Good Chemistry, Local Product of Colorado and Universal Herbs all currently sell or have recently sold the Church, though it’s worth noting that Botanico and Good Chemistry’s cuts are bred from God’s Gift and OG.
Looks: The Church comes packaged in thick, medium-sized buds with a mild, light-green color made brighter by a sparkling coat of trichomes and orange and peach pistils.
Smell: Tart, sweet berries (raspberries, blackberries, cranberries) with earthy, spicy scents of wood are followed by a small shot of citrus, similar to an aged sour beer — an intense but balanced smell.
Flavor: Not as powerful as the smell would suggest, the Church’s flavor still maintains its diversity and balance. Berry and earthy notes create more of a skunky flavor than anticipated, while a zesty, Haze-like spice piggybacks off a sweet citrus overtone.
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Effects: The Church attacks the body and mind quickly, great for mid-day or after-work stress if done in small doses. Easing stress and sore muscles and joints without bringing users down, the high lasts for a few hours before the indica comedown, but you can expect sedation at the end. The Church can help treat stress, chronic pain, MS, Crohn’s disease and nausea.
Home grower’s take: “The buds really swell up in week six or seven, and it’s not fool’s gold or water weight that’s left after harvest — they stay full. That’s always nice to know when you’re trying to figure out your crop. Don’t be so bashful with nutrients, either. Better flavors definitely come from the organic-driven grows, though. But it’s important to note that just because it’s tough against mold on the outside doesn’t mean that it’s safe inside: Those buds can get big and full, so there’s not much room to breathe. I’ve found mold when breaking up the bigger nugs.”
Commercial grower’s take: “This is usually sold as a helpful strain for beginners or outdoor growers because of its mold-fighting power, but I don’t think that’s a huge deal in dry-as-fuck Colorado and our vented basement grows — that’s more for outdoor grows in the South or Midwest. It does yield pretty high, though, and the THC levels can get near 20 percent if you know what you’re doing.”
Is there a strain you’d like to see profiled? E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.