Candy Cane is a mostly indica hybrid with a complicated genetic background and a robust flavor profile to match. Created by the Vancouver-based Crop King Seeds, it is a cross between landrace-derived AK-47, fruity Mango, and the notoriously resinous White Widow. With a balanced high that can lean in whichever direction the user prefers, Candy Cane scores points for its potent and long-lasting effects. This strain carries between 15% and 20% THC.
Candy Cane boasts large flowers that range in shape from spherical clusters to tapered spades. The flowers have somewhat fluffy, wispy leaves that can be tugged off of their central stems. The leaves themselves are forest green and are threaded through with a preponderance of orange hairs (which are actually pistils, intended to catch pollen from male plants). Certain phenotypes of this strain are also distinguished by shades of purple; these vibrant colors are caused by a high genetic concentration of anthocyanins — pigments like chlorophyll that turn plants different hues of blue and purple when stimulated by cold temperatures. Parent strain White Widow appears to have passed on its predisposition for resin production, as Candy Cane’s colorful flowers are covered in sticky white trichomes. Candy Cane’s aroma is where its appeal really becomes evident. The cured flowers have a sweet and herbal scent, strikingly similar to the peppermint smell of candy canes. When buds are ground up or combusted, they yield a more spicy scent, similar to the earthy incense bouquet of grandparent strain Afghani. Notably, Candy Cane is lacking in any grape-like smell or taste — this is because the same pigments that turn its leaves purple do not have a corresponding effect on its taste.
Candy Cane takes hold quickly, manifesting first as a change in pulse around the eyes and temples. Users may have an initial feeling of “mindrace,” with thoughts jumping from one to the next. This feeling may make sensory perception feel sharper or more intense. As the high progresses, this cerebral activity slows down into a mellow elevation in mood and thinking. These mental effects are accompanied by a pervasive sense of physical relaxation that melts away any lingering stress. The union of mental and physical properties makes this a great strain for socializing in familiar surroundings or simply staying in with a book or some music.
This strain’s versatility also makes it useful for medical cannabis patients. Candy Cane’s upbeat nature can be a great temporary treatment for symptoms of stress and depression. Because it allows users to maintain focus, it can also be helpful for those with attention deficit disorders. Calming physical effects may soothe aches and pains — both nerve-based pain and stomach problems like nausea. The same relaxation of pressure that users may feel around the eyes also makes this strain an effective treatment for glaucoma. Many report Candy Cane to be a powerful appetite stimulant. Because it has some considerable cerebral effects, Candy Cane may lead to recursive thinking and paranoia in larger doses — as such, those prone to anxiety should consume this strain with caution.
Seeds of Candy Cane are available for purchase online from producer Crop King. The strain’s sturdy landrace genetics — it has roots in Colombia, Mexico, Thailand, and Afghanistan, among others — make it a good choice for novice growers. It van be grown indoors or out, although outdoor cultivation requires consistently warm and humid climates. Indoor growing may be more convenient, as plants rarely exceed 3 feet in height. The bushy plants also have a high leaf-to-bud ratio, meaning that growers should regularly trim any broad leaves that might be blocking light and air from reaching low-growing flowering nodes. Those looking to bring out Candy Cane’s purple hues should also artificially “shock” the plants by exposing them to colder than average temperatures at night. This strain flowers within a short 7 weeks when grown indoors and offers a moderate yield. Plants are known to have a skunky pungency throughout their lifespan; any growers trying to keep their efforts discreet should look into odor control measures, like exhaust fans for their grow space.
Candy Cane is appropriate for consumption in the daytime or early evening — because it can stimulate thoughtfulness, it might not be the best choice right before bedtime. Its minty-sweet flavor and well-rounded, agreeable high make it a particularly good strain for parties or other get-togethers.