If you’ve into growing cannabis, you have heard and probably grown Critical or one if it’s derived crosses like our Critical Jack and Critical Jack Auto. In this Suzy’s Cannabis World blog we take a closer look at what Critical is: where it comes from, how it has influenced other crosses, the production of hash in Morocco and why you should consider growing it.
Origin story of Critical
When we’re talking about Critical, what we really are talking about is Kritikal Bilbo. Those who paid attention in geography lessons, might remember Bilbao being the capital of Basque country in the north of Spain. Part of Spain, but remaining autonomous, it has always been a place where a lot of activism takes place fueled by their desire to be truly independent. To this day their language is different from Spanish and has famously not been influenced by other (European) languages.
It is this area together with Catalonia (which has its own struggles of wanting to be independent) that were crucial in founding the Cannabis Social Club movement. The model that was originally designed by cannabis activists in the Spanish regions of Catalonia and the Basque Country in the mid-nineties, Cannabis Social Clubs have been sprouting in all of Spain. Right now, you are able to find more Cannabis Social Clubs than you can find coffeeshops in the Netherlands.
The original idea behind the Cannabis Social Clubs is that the members of the club grow for the club, which is then shared between their members. Then there’s the fact of strong privacy laws in place after Spain became a democracy following their dictator Franco’s death. As you can imagine, this combination led to a surge in growing cannabis and competition between the various members and other clubs.
Creation of Critical and further development
This competition led to the development and crossing by a group of Basque cannabis growers of the original Skunk #1 and Afghani (make sure to also check out our Afghan Skunk and Afghan Skunk Auto). They continued with this until they stumbled upon a phenotype that initially had problems performing, but when they took care of it they quickly noticed her smell was more pungent and she was a good yielder much like it’s Dutch cousin Power Plant. Cuts and seeds were made to preserve the genetics and to this day it’s hard to imagine a world without Critical.
Critical is at the base of many strains, as it is believed one of the easiest varieties to create seeds with. Seeds are stable and can be easily made as feminized varieties.
Furthermore, Critical leans more to indica than sativa. This Indica feeling will be most notable in the body and it’s pain reducing characteristics.
If you are a hash lover from Europe, it’s likely you’ve also ran into Critical hash. Because it’s easy to grow and high yielding it has also been found to be very useful in Morocco, which has similarities in climate.
It might be too good even. If you’ve watched the video above, you will have learned over that not Beldiya, but Critical is now the most grown cannabis variety in Morocco. While it’s more potent and higher yielding than the landraces, it also causes problems like heavy irrigation which is needed to feed it’s thirst. It grows so well in Morocco the landraces are on the verge of extinction. On the other hand, Critical has stimulated the economy of the hash production, of which many Moroccan families depend on. While before hash was coming from countries like Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, Morocco is now the most dominant producer of hash in the world.
Growing Critical yourself
Knowing this, you have plenty of reasons to start growing your own. And why not try our Critical Jack or Critical Jack Auto? For this, Critical was crossed with another famous strain named after the legend himself: Jack Herer. We also have the Jack Herer Auto too if you prefer to dabble with other Jack Herer genetics.
Critical Jack is an easy strain to recommend when you’re growing for yield and potency. Indoors and outdoors it will perform well. Outdoors you’ll be happy to see it starts flowering quickly, earlier than most other feminized varieties, and will be done before bad weather can ruin your plants with mold. If it does get rainy, Critical is very resistant to mold, plagues and diseases because Basque country gets a lot more rain than the south of Spain. It’s in the genes after all. Aside from all that, it is also easy to grow for beginners. We recommend to keep distance between your plants as you will find out she will yield more when giving her the space.
After an excellent harvest, it is a good idea to save your trim to get more from your harvest. Whether you make cannabis oil, turn it into hash through sieving or iceolator, or both, you’ll find Critical genetics will serve you well.