15 Popular High CBD Strains
Cannabis strains with a high CBD percentage are popular amongst growers and users wanting to keep a clear head but reap the rewards of its many therapeutic benefits. If you happen to live in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), you are one of the lucky few Australians who are able to grow their own cannabis (within reason of course!)
. Choosing the right cannabis strain to grow will depend on your personal preferences and any medical conditions you are wanting to alleviate.
If you don't live in the ACT, you might still be able to get your hands on some high CBD strain cannabis flowers through a prescription from a doctor. However, your choices might be limited due to the lack of suppliers in the Australian market.
If you want the benefits of CBD without the hassle of sourcing cannabis flower, CBD oil might be another alternative - check out our Complete guide to CBD oil in Australia to learn more. We also have an in-depth guide on how to access CBD & medical marijuana in Australia if you want to learn more on the doctor and patient approval process.
In this article, we provide a list of the best medicinal CBD strains on the market, along with some background and characteristics for each strain.
But first - let’s run through some basics of CBD.
What is CBD
One of the many well-known effects of marijuana is the "high" experienced by users after consumption. This "high" is mainly caused by a compound found in the cannabis plants called Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Cannabidiol, or CBD, is another one of the many compounds found in the cannabis plant. CBD differs from THC because it's non-psychoactive and does not induce euphoria or the so-called "high".
Along with CBD and THC, there are over a hundred reported compounds called cannabinoids produced by the cannabis plant. CBD is usually the second most abundant cannabinoid in most cannabis strains, after THC.
Why high CBD strains?
CBD has recently risen to fame due to a wealth of reported health and medicinal benefits. There have been numerous studies suggesting the benefits for CBD assisting conditions such as epilepsy, nausea, pain, stress, anxiety, depression, and more. CBD is also popular with patients due to its non-intoxicating nature. In other words, users won't feel the psychoactive effects generally associated with cannabis when medicating with CBD products.
Due to the reasons above, medicinal cannabis cultivators tend to produce higher CBD strains.
Keeping in mind though, THC also has its own medicinal applications. Some studies even suggest the therapeutic effects are amplified when CBD is used in conjunction with THC, known as the “entourage effect”
Most of the strains outlined below will contain a high CBD to THC ratio, except for a select few which may be preferred by users that still enjoy a bit of “zing” with their dose of CBD.
Without further ado, we will run through some of the most popular high CBD cannabis strains.
CBD: 10% THC: 8%
Cannatonic was created by crossing the popular G-13 Haze strain with a female MK Ultra, thus creating one of the first cannabis strains to record a CBD:THC ratio of 1:1 or higher. It is a 50% Sativa and 50% Indica hybrid with roughly 10% CBD and 8% THC.
Being a strain with a slightly higher THC content than the rest of the strains mentioned here, novice users may still experience a mild high. However, the high CBD content makes Cannatonic a popular choice amongst users needing relief for epilepsy, muscle spasms, migraines and headaches.
Cannatonic users often report an earthy fragrance with a woody pine and citrusy aftertaste. It provides mellow relaxing effects with an uplifting cerebral high.
CBD: 15-20% THC: 1%
ACDC is a 50% Sativa and 50% Indica hybrid strain with roughly 15-20% CBD and 1% THC. Due to its high CBD to THC ratio, it generally has little to no psychoactive effects. This strain is also known to assist in treating epilepsy, pain, multiple sclerosis, nausea, anxiety and chemo-related symptoms. For smokers, it has a mixture of sweet, skunky and earthy flavour.
The strain “ACDC” was cultivated by Dr. William Courtney using a packet of high CBD strain Cannatonic feminized seeds he sourced from Spain. When he realised one of the offsprings produced an incredible CBD:THC ratio of 22:1, he started propagating the plant and gave it the name “AC/DC” - which stands for “Alternative Cannabinoid / Dietary Cannabis”.
CBD: 15-20% THC: <1%
As one of the most famous medicinal cannabis strains, it’s no surprise the CBD content hovers around 15% - 20%. Being derived from Hemp which contains little to no THC, this strain is non-intoxicating and contains less than 1% THC.
Charlotte’s Web is an Indica dominant strain, developed by the Stanley Brothers in Colorado, USA. The strain was created for Charlotte Figi, a girl who suffered a rare form of epilepsy from a young age. Her father reached out to the Stanley brothers to formulate the high CBD strain, which had incredible success with helping her symptoms.
The strain is known for assisting epilepsy, seizure, pain and muscle spasms. Users often report a strong floral and pine aroma, with an earthy aftertaste.
CBD: 15-18% THC: < 1%
Due to the high CBD to THC ratio, it’s a favourite amongst patients wanting to treat conditions such as pain, inflammation, seizures, muscle spasms, anxiety and tremors. As with other high CBD and minimal THC strains, users should experience little to no psychoactive effects.
The bud gives off a floral piney scent when inhaled, with a hint of citrus on the way out. In terms of remedial effects - the strain is generally described to provide a feeling of mild relaxation and relief throughout the body.
CBD: 10-12% THC: 6-10%
Sour Tsunami is another high CBD strain with a near 1:1 CBD to THC ratio. The strain was produced by Lawrence Ringo of the Southern Humboldt Seed Collective by crossing NYC Diesel, Sour Diesel and a lesser-known strain “Ferrari”. Lawrence specifically bred Sour Tsunami to treat his own back pain without the “clogged head” side-effect of lower ratio CBD strains.
The resulting strain is commonly used to alleviate pain with a relaxed and very mild cerebral effect. The synergy between even amounts of CBD and THC usually results in an uplifted and focused head high.
Due to its lineage, the buds give off a musky and diesel aroma with sour and citrus undertones when exhaled.
CBD: 8-15% THC: 4-7%
Harlequin is a sativa-dominant strain created by Mr. Green of the House of David Collective. The strain was bred using a combination of 4 landrace strains, 3 sativas - Thai, a Swiss native landrace and a male Colombian Gold mixed with a Nepali indica “Mustang State”.
As a high CBD and sativa-dominant strain, you can expect a clean and clear-headed and energetic high from Harlequin. These characteristics also makes it an effective strain for assisting users with pain and anxiety.
The bud gives off an earthy aroma with a hint of mango fruit, with the smoke giving a rich and creamy aftertaste.
CBD: 10-15% THC: 10-15%
Clocking in at roughly 10-15% CBD and even amounts of THC, this is another indica-dominant strain favoured by medical patients.
Pennywise is known for supporting conditions such as epilepsy, PTSD, seizures, arthritis and cancer related symptoms.
The flowers have a pungent and earthy smell, with varying coffee, citrus and bubblegum flavours when smoked.
CBD: 18-20% THC: 1%
Recorded at close to 20:1 CBD to THC ratio, the Wife is a 50/50 hybrid strain with around 18-20% CBD content. If you are lucky enough to get your hands on this strain, it’s said to induce a mild cerebral euphoria with a sense of complete clam. The flavour profile suggests a faint fruity and cherry taste, with some earthy undertones.
The wife is also known to alleviate a variety of symptoms like headaches, inflammation, muscle pain, nausea and more.
CBD: 15-20% THC: < 1%
Cherry Wine is a 50/50 sativa / indica hybrid strain, a cross between The Wife and Charlotte’s Cherries. The CBD content has been recorded to average between 15-20%, and THC levels below 1%. Similar to other strains with such a high CBD to THC ratio, Cherry Wine has less psychoactive effects but rather a more relaxed high that also keeps you focused throughout the day. The strain offers a sweet cherry flavour with a touch of pepper and cheese when smoked.
Many users have had success with using Cherry Wine strain to treat mental health related conditions, pain, inflammation, nausea, and muscle spasms.
CBD: 25% THC: 1%
Yet another strain with an incredibly high CBD to THC ratio, Valentine X is named after St Valentine, the patron saint of epilepsy sufferers. Valentine X is well suited for reducing the effects of seizures along with a myriad of other conditions such as pain, inflammation, migraines and muscle spasms.
The strain was created as a variation of the popular ACDC strain. It provides users with a sweet honey and apple flavour profile, followed by an earthy pine aftertaste.
CBD: 20-25% THC: 1%
This CBD potent strain records levels north of 20% thanks to its renowned parents Harlequin and Sour Tsunami. This indica-dominant strain was developed by a cannabis activist and CBD enthusiast named Lawrence Ringo. It was especially bred for the low levels of THC and high CBD content, targeted at medicinal usage.
As with other strains in this list, it is best known for its ability to relieve body pains and aches, inflammation, anxiety, stress, ADD/ADHD and more. For smokers, Harle-Tsu is smooth on the way down and emits a sweet and earthy pine flavour, with undertones of citrus.
CBD: 13-20% THC: 1%
This balanced hybrid strain was named after the same Lawrence Ringo mentioned earlier in this article, who developed the Harle-Tsu strain along with many others. Ringo’s Gift was bred as a cross between Harle-Tsu and ACDC, clocking CBD levels up to 20% with just 1% THC. If you are planning to get your hands on this strain, take note that there are several phenotypes available, so ratios may vary.
Ringo’s gift is known to give users a sociable high with a feeling of physical relaxation. Pain, inflammation and anxiety are the most common conditions supported by this strain.
The bud carries an earthy aroma with a minty and hashy aftertaste.
CBD: 10-13% THC: 8-11%
Canna-Tsu is another creation from two CBD-famous parents - Cannatonic and Sour Tsunami. This hybrid strain boasts CBD levels of around 10-13% and around 8-11% THC. Based on these characteristics, it delivers a well balanced high for its users - a full body relaxation with just enough kick to keep you afloat in social environments.
Medical patients tend to use Canna-Tsu for treating arthritis, headaches, epilepsy, headaches and inflammation, just to name a few.
Taste wise - the strain has a fresh citrus flavour which is also creamy and earthy when inhaled. On the way out, it can sometimes leave a slight tingle on the nostrils due to its sweet and little sour tang.
CBD: 15-25% THC: < 1%
Suzy Q is another CBD powerhouse created by Burning Bush Nurseries. The strain registers at 15-25% CBD and THC levels well under 1%, with some batches testing at 59:1 CBD:THC ratio. It’s not surprising that the genetic profile has been kept under wraps considering its incredible stats.
As one might guess from Suzy Q’s near non-existent THC composition, the strain is rid of any intoxicating effects. It does however induce a deep relaxing sensation, making its way through the mind and body while easing any anxiety, aches, pain, spasms and tension as it proceeds.
When smoked, Suzy Q offers a thick rich smoke with a tad of pine and spice on the palate.
CBD: 6-12% THC: 4-8%
Last but not least, is a 50% indica / 50% sativa hybrid with enough THC to give users a bit of a happy buzz. The CBD levels can range anywhere from 6-12% - with THC levels just a bit lower, sitting around 4-8%.
Users often report a feeling of happiness and mild euphoria, sometimes even bringing on a case of the giggles. Physically, it relaxes the muscles and is known for helping with chronic pain, inflammation, PTSD, ADD/ADHD, anxiety and arthritis.
As the name suggests, Hawaiian Dream buds have a sweet tropical scent, with floral citrus notes when smoked.
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