In Ancient Greek myth, the oracles were religious figures who were thought to provide people with direct counsel and prophecy from the gods. Too bad there are no oracles around today to give us the real story behind the mysterious strain Oracle.
As far back as 2009, word began circulating in digital cannabis forums about a super-potent strain called Oracle. Oracle reportedly carried unprecedented levels of THC and its plants flowered in record time. Because of these prized qualities, the strain’s value was set sky-high: seeds retailed for $200 each, while each clone sold for an eye-popping $1000.
If you think that plain old bud with 45% THC seems too good to be true -- congratulations, your skepticism is well-founded. In 2013, cannabis testing laboratory The Werc Shop discovered that the terpenes (the chemical compounds that determine each strain’s smell, taste, and possibly high) in Oracle were identical to those in the well-known strain ACDC. It seemed that some sellers, thriving in the still-unregulated and largely illegal cannabis of the last few decades, re-packaged ACDC with fantastical claims and a mystical new name.
Here’s the good news, though: while “Oracle” may not be the hyper-psychoactive flower that was promised, it does come with a big dose of CBD, the cannabinoid that relieves physical pain and inflammation. ACDC/Oracle is a cross between Resin Seeds’ Cannatonic and an unnamed, low-THC variety of cannabis ruderalis. Although it contains less than 1% THC, testing lab Analytical 360 has detected CBD levels between 8% and 14% (for reference, most strains contain less than 1% CBD).
ACDC/Oracle is marked by small to medium-sized buds. The flowers are tight and densely-packed but the texture of the leaves is surprisingly fluffy. Leaves appear spring green and are threaded through with orange hairs (which are actually pistils, intended to catch pollen from flowering male plants). Fans of stickier strains may be disappointed by this flower’s lack of resin -- few if any trichomes dot the surfaces and interiors of the buds, accounting for their low THC levels. ACDC/Oracle smells simultaneously funky and sweet -- users may detect notes of berry and citrus alongside a pungent skunkiness. When combusted in a joint or a pipe, this strain burns smoothly and has a faint taste lemon on the exhale.
Recreational users may want to give this strain a pass; with negligible amounts of THC, ACDC/Oracle is unlikely to bring about any psychoactive effects at all. Instead, it is of great value to medical cannabis patients -- especially those (like children) who want to avoid getting high. CBD is thought to work on the endocannabinoid system mitigate or stop seizures, making this strain a possible treatment for those with conditions like epilepsy and Dravet’s Syndrome. It can also provide relief from aches and pains, whether short-term or chronic, as in cases of lupus and fibromyalgia. Anti-inflammatory properties also make this flower good for mild to severe headaches, nausea, and digestive conditions. Because its use is primarily medical, ACDC/Oracle is frequently available in preparations like pills or tinctures.
Some companies sell seeds of what they purport to be pure Oracle, carrying 45% THC, flowering within 4 weeks, and yielding as much as 4 ounces of flower per square foot. However, the aforementioned genetic testing by Werc Shop puts those claims very much in doubt. Growers with more realistic expectations should obtain seeds or clones of ACDC from reputable dealers or growers. ACDC/Oracle can be cultivated indoors or out, but growing outdoor requires as warm and semi-humid, Mediterranean-like climate. It can be a temperamental grow, requiring regular tending and mineral supplements, and it is not recommended for novice growers. ACDC flowers within 9 to 10 weeks, although it may take longer if grown outdoors in colder environments. As it flowers, growers may want to give this strain’s branches some extra support to prevent them from drooping under the weight of the new buds -- wooden dowels work well in this regard. Growers can expect an average yield from Oracle/ACDC.
Although it’s not a miraculous, high-flying, high-yielding cure-all, Oracle/ACDC is undoubtedly valuable to many medical cannabis users. With a memorable smell and taste to boot, this strain provides relaxation and pain relief for those who don’t want to get high.