Pot Talk: Sour Tsunami

This edition of Pot Talk features Sour Tsunami flowers provided by Lost Coast Botanicals, a Southern Humboldt-based cannabis cooperative focusing on developing and producing cannabis medicines with high levels of non-psychoactive CBD for members.

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According to Lost Coast Botanical’s Managing Director of Productions, Ginger Anderson, most of their members are chronically ill patients with either some sort of cancer, epilepsy, arthritis or chronic pain from an injury. Some members are producers (growers), who grow the flowers the cooperative uses to make their medicines, including tinctures, CO2-derived oils, chocolates and topicals.


The Lost Coast Botanical Cooperative grower members strive to produce clean, sustainable cannabis. They grow CBD-rich strains with genetics provided by the Southern Humboldt Seed Collective. “It’s all totally organic,” Anderson says. “We don’t allow them to use any harsh chemicals or pesticides.”


CBD or Cannabidiol is what’s called a “cannabinoid,” a class of substances found in cannabis plants. There are many different cannabinoids, THC being the most famous because it is the main psychoactive component in cannabis — it gets you high. CBD, on the other hand, is non-psychoactive — it doesn’t get you high. It is a non-psychotropic component of cannabis that affects your body more than it affects your mind.


CBD-rich cannabis is effective in the treatment of chronic pain, anxiety, seizures and inflammation. THC is medicinal as well, but getting high isn’t desirable for every medicinal cannabis patient out there. Still, THC has proven effective in the treatment of pain, insomnia and nausea, among other things.


The modern practice of testing cannabis material in laboratories, such as SC Labs in Santa Cruz or Pure Analytics in Santa Rosa, enables cannabis growers and breeders to analyze their products for cannabinoid content and potency level. Growers and scientists can elucidate the medicinal benefits of each cannabinoid through testing. In addition the labs can detect molds, pesticides and fungus.  


Now, growers selectively breed for CBD-rich strains or for particular ratios of CBD to THC in order to treat specific ailments. For example, non-psychoactive CBD-rich strains are sought out for the treatment of children with dire health conditions, such as pediatric epilepsy. A more balanced ratio of CBD to THC may be desirable for treatment of cancer.


Sour Tsunami is a CBD-rich strain that was developed by the legendary and recently passed Southern Humboldt-based cannabis breeder, Laurence Ringo (1956-2014). A CBD pioneer, Ringo founded the Southern Humboldt Seed Collective in 2010. According to the collective, Sour Tsu was the first CBD-rich strain Ringo developed. Some of his other well-known CBD-rich strains include Harle-Tsu, Canna-Tsu and ACDC. Ringo’s family carries on his legacy and continues operating the Southern Humboldt Seed Collective.


The Sour Tsunami sample from Lost Coast Botanicals is gorgeous. The flowers are emerald green, and look wet with trichomes. The cannabis has an unremarkable aroma — citrusy, reminiscent of Pine-Sol with a hint of vanilla. The flowers are not visually stunning on the level of some hardcore indoor, regardless, this is beautiful, organic cannabis. It’s just probably not what a conventional buyer or cannabis user seeks.


Anderson tells me that the Sour Tsu is 20:1 CBD. In other words, there is 20 times as much CBD in the flower as THC. “The Sour Tsu is one of those ‘unicorn’ strains that’s just really high CBD,” she says. “It’s a very beautiful plant that grows vigorously…” This particular sample came from a recently harvested light deprivation crop of Sour Tsu clones.


The flowers are nicely formed, large and not too dense. The smoke off a Sour Tsu joint is smooth as silk. The citrusy aroma carries over to a nice flavor. And here’s the kicker: It doesn’t get me high. The Sour Tsu effect is more of a warm and fuzzy feeling, with no paranoia or excessive tiredness or powerful, mind-altering effect.


Overall, I find the Sour Tsu to be relaxing with a tilt toward feeling alert. This is not “couch-lock” cannabis, it’s the polar opposite of a one-hit-rock-your-world strain. It is the best daytime/productive cannabis I’ve ever experienced. I smoked a joint of Sour Tsu, and I smoked some more. It’s a strain I can smoke and smoke deeply, anytime.


On a personal level, I find this cannabis effective in the treatment of anxiety. I love to smoke, but smoking much of the popular and potent THC-rich Emerald Triangle cannabis is not practical for me on a day-to-day basis. The Sour Tsunami, however, is a cannabis strain that makes me more present, more calm. This is some fantastic cannabis that I can enjoy to my heart’s content.


Thank you to Lost Coast Botanical Cooperative and Ginger Anderson for the Sour Tsunami and the fascinating information about the medicinal aspects of cannabinoids. Lost Coast Botanical Cooperative can be contacted through their website: lostcoastbotanical.com.

Emerald contributor since March 2012


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