Kerala is situated at the southern-western ghats of India near the Malabar coast, and sees little to no change in daytime light duration, as it is only about 9 degrees North from equator, with a mild tropical-wet climate and moderate temperature throughout the year.
First 5-7 weeks of flowering is spent in stretching and creating internodal space for flower bracts. The parigonal bracts swell towards the very end of flowering and give of a yellowish/golden tint, caused by the majority of amber trichome heads and ample coverage of unusually long dried stigmas wrapped around it. Although it is not a vast difference like many highland regions but with relatively cooler nights in the last 4-5 week of the flowering plants transpire a bit more than wetter monsoon months, adding much needed girth to the budding flowers.
Kerala Gold features 16- 20 weeks of flowering with moderate to high yields. The strain shows great resistance to mold/powdery mildew, and pests in general. Even when grown outside of its natural habitat (at latitudes as high as 43 degrees), Kerala Gold thrives and flowers properly within 16-20 weeks depending on the phenotypic selection.
Kerala Gold plants can be grown easily at any time of the year in its place of origin, but January is usually seen as the most popular choice for harvesting. The humidity and amount of precipitations increases by 10-15% from April, gradually peaking at monsoon July-August and with the passing of monsoon to northern part of India, the humidity levels starts to go down and hit the lowest in January and February.
Kerala Gold is an equatorial heirloom variety, characterized as a Narrow leaf drug producing cultivar. It is said to have branched out from Idukki Gold a pure equatorial landrace, now extinct.
In Kerala, Cannabis is typically planted from June to July, and harvests are from December to early February. Traditionally, farmers have favoured a later harvest.
This is a classic South Indian ganja domesticate from Idukki District, Kerala.
Genetics: Traditional Idukki Ganja Domesticate (“Landrace”)
Sourcing: The Real Seed Company, Idukki District, Kerala, 2015
Purpose: Ganja (seedless or lightly seeded buds)
Latitude: 9° N
Regional Harvest: December to early February
Height: 2 – 5 metres
Characteristics: Mint, pepper, and mango-carrot aromas; bamboo-like leaflets; intense, energising high; Sativa-type architecture
Classification: C. sativa subsp. indica var. indica
Grow Type: Greenhouse or outdoors
This Idukki strain is a true tropical Sativa-type domesticate, ranging between 2 and 5 metres tall, with characteristic bamboo-like leaflets. ‘Creeper’ and ‘Christmas-tree’ architecture can be exhibited. Buds are loose and resinous with minty, peppery, and fruity aromas, yielding a smooth, sweet smoke. Above all, it produces ganja characterized by the energising positivity of its high.
Standout individual plants from this accession exhibit high potency and will have the characteristic elevating Idukki effect. A recent test reported 17.63% THC (or 14.86% THC, depending on how the result is interpreted). Modest quantities of THCV were present. No CBD was present, as expected for a true South Indian cultivar. Mid- to high-teens THC is not unusual for this strain.
Keralan strains are renowned for their intensely positive and stimulating ‘Sativa’ high. They’ve played a crucial role in the creation of modern hybrids such as Haze and White Widow. The equatorial highland district of Idukki, where this accession was collected, is Kerala’s most renowned historic centre of ganja cultivation.
This 2015 accession has exhibited exceptionally early maturing variants that can be ready by early November. The morphology of the plants does not suggest hybrid contamination and neither does the aroma. The fast finish appears more likely to be the result of decades of pressure from eradication programs, which have caused farmers to keep seeds from early plants.