Why Does Weed Turn Purple?

Many people attribute this purple coloring to plants being indicas, but that is not true.

Purple marijuana plant Source: iStock

Cannabis flowers can be all kinds of colors. You’ve seen buds like Sour Diesel that are light green with orange pistils; you’ve seen buds like White Widow that are near-white due to being flushed with trichomes. Of all the potential colors your buds can be, perhaps the most aesthetically stimulating is purple.

What is Purple Cannabis?

Purple cannabis, sometimes called purple buds, or simply purp, refers to a variety of cannabis strains whose flowers grow dark in color, resembling purple-tinted buds. Sometimes these buds grow so dark in color that they appear black.
Because of their dark coloring, many people attribute sedative and sleepy effects on the color being purple. This is due to the connection many cannabis consumers make between purple and indica cannabis strains.

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Are All Purple Buds Indicas?

Many people attribute this purple coloring to plants being indicas, but that is not true. Indica describes a plant’s morphology i.e. how it grows. 

Sativa cannabis plants tend to grow tall and slender with fluffy and looser buds. Indicas grow shorter and bushier, producing denser and tighter buds. Both of these types of plants can produce purple buds, so if you ask: Are all purple buds indicas? The answer is no. Instead, much like effects, the reason those buds turn purple come down to what’s inside a plant.

Why Does Cannabis Turn Purple?

Cannabis flowers turn purple because of certain plant molecules called anthocyanins. 

Anthocyanins are water-soluble pigments in many types of plants, fruits, and vegetables that may appear red, blue, purple, or even black in some cases. The color of blueberries? Anthocyanins. Cherries? Anthocyanins. Granddaddy Purple? Anthocyanins.

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The colors of these pigments are dependent upon the plant’s pH levels, but can be influenced by factors like temperature and light, though to become purple a strain must already be predisposed to becoming purple.

Which Cannabis Strains Turn Purple?

Some cannabis strains are more likely to become purple than others. This is because certain strains will have more naturally occurring anthocyanins than others, and will start to produce purple pigments more and more as they begin to flower. 

Granddaddy Purple, Blackberry Kush, and Purple Punch are three great examples of cannabis strains that are predisposed to grow purple-hinged buds. 

Granddaddy Purple is the legendary cross of Purple Urkle and Big Bud that’s lit up west coast cannabis culture for years. It quite possibly is the most well-known purple cannabis in all of the land.

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The dense buds that grow from this indica come green and flushed with dark purple anthocyanins. They’re also covered in bright orange hairs and frosty trichomes. Most consumers feel pretty relaxed, and sometimes even sleepy after smoking GDP.

None of us know exactly where Blackberry Kush came from. Some think it’s Afghani and Blackberry crossed, some think it’s a DJ Short Blueberry cross, and some think it was a Blackberry and Bubba Kush hybrid.

Regardless of genetics, one thing is absolutely confirmed: Blackberry Kush is some fire purp and the dark green and purple, sometimes even near-black, nugs prove it. From those buds comes an extremely sedative high fit for only the most advanced consumers.

Purple Punch is one of the prettiest flowers out there. It’s absolutely flushed with trichomes that wrap its green, orange, and purple buds in a coat of white, making it a standout amongst many jars on the line.

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It’s a cross of Larry OG and Granddaddy Purple, proving that genetics can indeed influence the anthocyanins in a cannabis flower. The high from Purple Punch will sit you down for the next couple of hours.

Will Purple Cannabis Put Me To Sleep?

Cannabis culture has always had a very assumptive relationship with the color purple. Maybe because of Granddaddy Purple, consumers assume all purple strains are “sleepy” cannabis strains.

Another reason is that purple has always been used to label indica strains. Regardless of why we think what we think about purple cannabis, the fact is the color of your plant has absolutely no effect on how that plant will make you feel. And neither does indica or sativa.

Sure, Granddaddy Purple, Blackberry Kush, and Purple Punch are super potent and relaxing strains that will put you to sleep if consumed in higher doses. But that’s not because of color. Know how you know?

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Because there are strains like Tropicana Cookies and Sherbert that are absolutely flushed with purple colors, but leave you feeling happy, uplifted, and euphoric. 

Instead of color and plant type, the high you feel when you smoke weed comes from a plant’s genetics, cannabinoids, and terpenes. Again, like most things in life, it’s the inside that counts.

 

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