Though its exact lineage and historical background isn't known, most cannabis enthusiasts believe Northern Lights to be a descendant of two landrace strains, Thai and Afghani. Originating and Washington and perfected in Holland in the 1970s, this strain has been flying off the shelves ever since.
Northern Lights, also known as NL, is among the most famous cannabis strains of all time. This glowing indica is beloved by all, from growers to medical patients and recreational consumers. After its commercialization in 1985, Northern Lights #5—likely the most famous NL phenotype of all time—won the Cannabis Cup in 1989, 1990, and 1992.
Northern Lights Strain Effects
Northern Lights is what is known as a “two-hit and quit” strain because of the heavy blow it packs. The strain slams the body into a delightfully lazy and numbing mode. After taking a couple hits of this majestic strain, there will be nothing else in your mind other than laying on the couch and figuring out what’s to eat.
Along with this wonderfully potent body high, you’ll feel a sense of happiness and the worries and stresses of everyday life melting away and leaving your body. Some users also report increased creativity and focus, but Northern Lights is one of the purest indica strains in existence at 95% indica and only 5% sativa, so it’s mainly used at nighttime for better sleep due to its highly sedating effects. All in all, Northern Lights offers the perfect mix between upbeat, pure euphoria and deep and heavy relaxation—or in other words, Northern Lights is the perfect strain for chilling at home and watching the world and its worries float right by.
Users of Northern Lights commonly report feeling:
That said, it’s unfortunately not all clear skies and gorgeous glows when it comes to Northern Lights. Like every other cannabis strain in the world, NL may come with some undesirable effects such as dry mouth, red eyes, and dizziness, as well as paranoia, and anxiety in higher doses.
Fortunately, the most common side effects associated with this strain can be quickly relieved with some eye drops and a little water, but users need to be careful when using Northern Lights because it has strong effects. Paranoia and anxiety usually only manifest when the strain is used in higher doses, so those prone to cannabis-induced paranoia or anxiety should be weary with this strain. Remember, you can always take more, but once the strain lights up your insides a little too bright, there’s no going back!
Northern Lights Strain Benefits
Because of the strain’s deeply sedative, body-numbing, and relaxing effects, Northern Lights is highly regarded and beloved in the medical cannabis community. Thousands use the strain to ward off symptoms of anxiety and depression, as well as general stress disorders. Additionally, the strain’s numbing and sleep-inducing effects have proven effective at weakening chronic pain issues and relieving insomnia. Others, such as those suffering from eating disorders like anorexia, use its munchies-causing effects to relieve a lack of appetite.
Those who feel focused and creative when using Northern Lights could also benefit from the strain if they suffer from attention deficit disorders like ADD or ADHD, but since these effects don’t manifest in all users, they’ll have to try the strain and see how it affects them.
So, in summary, the potential medical uses of Northern Lights include relieving conditions and symptoms such as:
Lack of appetite
Northern Lights Strain Flavor – The Genetics & Terpenes
The Northern Lights strain grows in dense, cone-shaped nugs that are commonly medium to dark green with hints of purple in color and are covered with lots of vibrant, crystally trichomes. Upon opening a bag of Northern Lights, the whole room will be filled with the smell of pine trees and wood resin—a result of a high terpene concentration in the strain.
Once the nugs are crushed, a pungent woody and piney aroma reminiscent of classic ganja will enter your nostrils and have you feeling like you’re sitting in a Nordic forest seeing the gorgeous phenomenon this strain is named after with your own two eyes. When sparked, the smoke will taste of earth and pine and upon the exhale, you will be able to detect a sweet aftertaste.
Some of the most notable tastes when smoking this strain include:
But why do strains taste and smell like they do? This is due to the strain’s individual terpene profile. Terpenes aren’t only present in cannabis plants. In fact, they occur in all plants—think of the soothing smell of lavender or the citrusy taste of oranges, for example. They’re what gives each plant its own unique flavors and aromas.
Terpenes do the same thing for cannabis: they make each strain taste and smell different than one another. But they also have another purpose. Terpenes also have their own sets of effects on the body outside of smell and taste. Pinene, for example, helps with inflammation, while myrcene has sedative effects.
Additionally, terpenes make the entourage effect, a process through which different compounds in the cannabis plant interact with cannabinoids to enhance their benefits and properties, possible. When interacting with cannabinoids like delta 8, delta 9, CBD, or any of the others, terpenes are able to enhance the already-existing effects of these compounds, as well as unite forces with their own in order to create the ultimate high.
Northern Lights terpene profile includes:
Northern Lights also has certain cannabinoid contents that make it a relatively strong strain psychoactively. Its THC content can reach anywhere between 18.8-21.4%, while its CBD contents are much lower than that at around 0.24-0.5%. Other mention-worthy cannabinoids present in the strain include:
Similar Strains Available
Northern Lights certainly outshines most strains in terms of popularity, but there are many strains out there that come close to NL’s legendary effects and mouthwatering flavors. If you can’t get your hands on Northern Lights, here are a few other strains to check out that offer similar effects!
A more well-balanced hybrid, Gelato is made up of 55% indica and 45% sativa. That said, its barely dominant indica properties will still get you feeling relaxed and euphoric, but its sativa attributes will make you much more social and talkative than Northern Lights. This is the perfect strain to use during a chill night in with friends, whether it be movie or game night. Its taste is sweeter and more citrussy than Northern Lights, but many NL users also report enjoying Gelato’s effects.
Granddaddy Purp, like Northern Lights, is an indica through and through. Its sedative and relaxing effects are perfect for combatting pain, stress, and insomnia, while the munchies it induces could cure any low appetite within a mile. As its name may suggest, Granddaddy Purp tastes like grape and berry, a different flavor from Northern Lights but causing undeniably similar effects.
Information Regarding Growing Strawberry Cough
Northern Lights seeds can be found in online stores or in person, but in the United States, the strain is most popular in Colorado and the West Coast, so you may have more luck finding seeds of this strain in those areas if you’re unable to find them online. A majority of growers plant this strain in grow rooms and usually report no complications with the growing process.
Due to its extreme resistance to mold and miters, growers don’t need to be worried about Northern Lights crops being affected by moisture or eaten by creepy crawlers like spiders. The Screen of Green (SCROG) method is recommended to maximize yields when growing this strain. SCROG consist of stretching cannabis plant branches over a screen, creating an even canopy that results in better light exposure, air flow, and more structural support.
The fast-flowering time for Northern Lights is another one of its many perks. Plants of this strain are commonly ready to be harvested after 50 days of 12/12 lighting period (12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness) indoors. Outdoors, the process may take a little longer, but harvesting will never go beyond mid-September.
All in all, the strain’s sturdy and resistant genetics make Northern Lights easy to grow. Whether you do so indoors or outdoors, the most important part of growing this strain is giving it enough light and soil so it grows as much as possible. Happy harvesting!
Northern Lights is a legendary strain beloved by everyone in the cannabis community, from recreational and medical users to growers. An award-winning strain, NL is a descendant of Thai and Afghani strains. Its sedative, relaxing, and euphoric effects make it the perfect strain to enjoy at night when all you want is to sit on the couch, watch TV, and eat more than you should. Northern Lights can brighten up your lives in more ways than one, but the calm and happy buzz it’ll give you remains our favorite of its effects.