Strains & Products
OG Kush: What Does “OG” Mean in the World of Cannabis
These days, going into a dispensary to pick up a new bag of weed, pack of edibles, or gram of concentrate can be an overwhelming experience. Not only are there countless product categories to pick from, but once you’ve decided on flower or vape cartridges, the next step is finding the perfect strain. With so many varieties with silly, serious, and outlandish names, it can be hard to know what any of the colorful names actually mean.
As the legal cannabis industry continues to grow, new strain names are popping up like weeds. There are tried-and-true classics like Grandaddy Purple, Chem Dawg and OG Kush, fruity labels like Blueberry and Strawberry Banana, and pastry-themed strains such as Wedding Cake and Girl Scout Cookies. More recently, plenty of newly popularized candy names have been created like Zkittles and Runtz. Having said this, nothing compares to the “OG” strains that have been around since the beginning.
OG Kush – The Famous Strain
When it comes to strong indica strains, few varieties have been more consistently popular than OG Kush. But what is OG weed? A long-running staple of the California and global cannabis scene, O.G. Kush is a heavy-handed hit of THC with a pungent smell of gasoline, pine, and skunk. Although O.G. Kush has been ubiquitous throughout the world of weed for more than two decades, the strain name’s origin is still highly contested with multiple urban legends laying claim to the “OG” moniker.
So what does O.G. stand for? Honestly, no one is quite sure what the real story is, but these are the most prevalent stories surrounding the OG weed meaning:
What Does OG Mean For Weed?
Like most cannabis stories, the first rumor about OG cannabis takes us to Northern California. The story goes back to the early 1990s when a legacy weed grower had been cultivating a particularly pungent strain of Kush originally bred in Southern California’s San Fernando Valley. One day, the farmer had a chance encounter with a local man bragging about some really good bud. After the grower saw – and smelled – his new friend’s weed, he immediately recognized it as the very same strain he was growing. When the stranger boasted that the cannabis was so good because it was “mountain grown,” the knowledgeable cultivator politely corrected him, saying that it was actually “ocean grown,” thanks to the strain’s birthplace on the Pacific Coast.
As legend has it, that meeting (and the subsequent smoke session) led the mountain grower to rename his Kush after the coincidental correction. And as the bud grew more popular, the story suggests that the name had so much sticking power that it not only moved around the Emerald Triangle and Northern California, back to the strain’s SoCal birthplace in the San Fernando Valley, then eventually, across the globe.
What Does OG Mean In OG Kush?
The term O.G. is typically used as a term of endearment and respect to reference an Original Gangster or old-school gang member. The slang term was popularized in the Los Angeles gang culture of the 80s and 90s. Popular West Coast rappers like Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg, and Tupac began to use the OG abbreviation in their songs, bringing the acronym to a nationwide mainstream audience.
So what is OG in OG kush? According to a story from legendary Amsterdam cannabis cultivators DNA Genetics, the O.G. name was given to the San Fernando Valley-bred kush strain by weed-obsessed rappers Cypress Hill, specifically because the strong, skunky strain was the “original gangsta” of kushes.
“The O.G. got tagged onto the LA Kush back in the 90’s by the Cypress Hill Crew and it stands for ‘original gangsta,'” a representative for DNA Genetics told theSan Diego City Beatin 2011. “There are also stories of the O.G. standing for ‘Ocean Grown,’ but being from LA we believe and feel that the O.G. comes from the Cypress family.”
So what does it mean when someone calls you an OG? It means you have so much respect that they don’t want to mess with you. And what does OG mean in weed? Well, if you believe the folks at DNA Genetics, it means your bud has so much respect that everyone wants to smoke it.
What Is The OG In OG Kush?
In our last trip to the rumor mill, we went over America’s northern border to Canada, where a now-defunct early-2000s cannabis website named OverGrown.com is sometimes credited as the real naming inspiration for the OG in OG Kush.
Considering the other two most popular legends about the OG weed meaning date as far back as the early 90s, we find it hard to believe that the strain was actually named after a website. Although the dictionary of cannabis strain names has expanded greatly in the internet age, the O.G. strain selections have been around long before the days of dial-up.
What Are OG Strains?
No matter which story you believe about the origin and meaning behind the O.G. in OG Kush, there’s no denying its legacy as a staple strain in Southern California’s cannabis industry. Regardless of its true origin, the THC-soaked indica has become a favorite strain for smokers across the globe.
In fact, OG Kush is so popular these days that breeders in every corner of the cannabis industry have used the “Ocean Grown” or “Original gangsta” strain to create some of the most popular hybrids on dispensary shelves. Ranging from SFV OG and Larry OG to Girl Scout Cookies and Runtz OG, there is a laundry list of sought-after O.G. crosses.
At the end of the day, marijuana’s historic outlaw nature and lack of concrete record-keeping mean there is no way to truly know what the OG in OG Kush stands for. Whether you’re on team “Ocean Grown” or team “Original Gangsta,” one thing is for sure: OG Kush is one of the best strains to smoke and it will be around for a long time to come.
Have you tried OG Kush? What do you think it’s named after? Tell us what you think in the comments below!
These days, going into a dispensary to pick up a new bag of weed, pack of edibles, or gram of concentrate can be an overwhelming experience. Not only are there countless product categories to pick from, but once you’ve decided on flower or vape cartridges, the next step is finding the perfect strain. With so many varieties with silly, serious, and
What does og stand for in weed
With 5,000 years of history that’s spread around the globe, cannabis culture has developed a rich, multilingual lexicon to describe the cannabis plant and the wealth of human experience surrounding it. But with such a varied expanse of lore to draw upon, the origins of many words and expressions in the dank dictionary are matters of contention, subject to ongoing debate.
A prime example of this phenomenon can be found with the term OG — you know, as in OG Kush. But what does OG mean? Although the initials “OG” are commonplace in marijuana subcultures, what they stand for is largely a matter of who you ask. Most often you’ll hear one of two popular theories, but there are several more. Outside of pot culture, there are even more possible definitions for OG.
So, what does OG truly stand for? We’ll leave that decision to you, curious reader. But here’s a breakdown of its different definitions and the lore that fuels its contextual popularity.
“Ocean Grown” Hails From Northern California
One theory about the origin of the term OG in weed-lore is that it stands for “Ocean Grown.” As the legend goes, a Northern California coastal grower who mastered the art of cultivating Afghani kush (more on this strain later) met a fellow pot smoker one day and the two got to talking. Before long, the grower’s new friend pulled out a bag of weed and offered to pack a bowl. As soon as the bag was opened and the cultivator — who hadn’t revealed his occupation — smelled the herb and saw the buds, he knew that it was the weed he’d just grown.
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Commenting on his stash, the owner of the weed said he could tell from the aroma that the bud was mountain grown. Not ready to accept an uninformed review of his harvest from a stranger, the grower replied, “Nah, man, that’s that ocean grown weed,” or ya know, something to that effect. But the term “ocean grown” stuck, and it’s remained a popular descriptor for weed among coastal California growers and tokers.
But Doesn’t OG Stand for Original Gangster?
Another popular origin story for the term OG, or Original Gangster (sometimes old-school gangster) in this context, has its roots in the Los Angeles hip-hop scene of the late ‘80s and early ‘90s. With a number of MCs (such as Dr. Dre and Ice Cube of NWA) coming from neighborhoods rife with gangs, guns, and drugs, OG implied status and stability in a chaotic world, particularly among the Crips, one of LA’s most notorious gangs.
After being made popular by Ice-T with his album Original Gangster in 1991, it wasn’t long before the expression permeated Southern California’s rap culture and the broader American zeitgeist.
The term was then tagged onto the kush being grown to distinction by cultivators in San Fernando Valley, by Cypress Hill’s crew according to some versions of the story. The assertion is supported by Amsterdam-based cannabis seed bank DNA Genetics, which developed seeds for the strain that had previously only been available as a clone.
“The OG got tagged onto the LA Kush back in the ’90s by the Cypress Hill Crew and it stands for ‘original gangsta,’” DNA told the San Diego City Beat in a 2011 email. “There are also stories of the OG standing for ‘Ocean Grown,’ but being from LA we believe and feel that the OG comes from the Cypress family. Hope that clears the hazy air.”
Before long, OG Kush was the preferred bud for any self-respecting West Coast gangsta’s blunt.
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Or Was it All a Plot to “Overgrow” the Government?
Although the Ocean Grown and Original Gangsters explanations of the term OG get the most traction in the cannabis world, they’re not the only theories. Another possible origin for OG holds that the initials refer to OverGrow.com, a website that hosted cultivation advice and a seed-swapping platform while advocating for an “overgrow” of the government. It was one of the earliest online forums for pot growers, launching in 1999. It was shut down by Canadian police in 2006, however, and they seized the platform’s servers and arrested several of its operators.
Another theory about the origin of the term OG in reference to pot was recently popularized by the 2018 Netflix documentary series Murder Mountain. In this version of the story, one of the old school Humboldt County growers said the term was coined after an early cultivator in the area flew to Afghanistan to smuggle back seeds with prime kush genetics. The resulting harvests, with terpene-rich buds nourished by the Emerald Triangle’s unique terroir, were dubbed OG Kush to indicate they had been cultivated by the strain’s original growers.
Cannabis Strains with the OG Moniker
Generally, when it comes to cannabis, OG refers to OG Kush. Just like the initials that make up the name of the strain, the lineage of this cultivar is a point of contention between two schools of thought, depending on what part of California you find yourself in. The Northern California contingent supports the theory that OG Kush is descended from Afghani kush seeds smuggled into the US and grown in the Lost Coast. Once in its new environment, the strain expressed distinctly potent and flavorful traits in the Emerald Triangle’s favorable climate.
SoCal boosters favor the idea that OG Kush is a hybrid of Chemdawg, Lemon Thai, and Pakistani kush landrace strains that was developed and popularized by San Fernando Valley indoor growers.
But even these two origin stories for OG Kush aren’t unchallenged. Another version of the lineage holds that the strain was bred in Florida, crossing a Northern California strain with a Dutch Hindu Kush.
Whatever the strain’s family tree may be, after nearly three decades on the market, OG Kush has spawned literally dozens of offspring varieties as breeders blend its superior traits with other genetic lines. Many of these strains with OG Kush parentage carry the OG sobriquet, including Sex OG, Comatose OG, Zombie Killer OG, and more.
OG Kush also supplied the genetics for popular strains including Headband and Girl Scout Cookies (oops, I mean GSC!). Other growers have hunted and pulled distinct phenotypes of OG Kush, isolating SFV OG and Tahoe OG, among others.
But That’s Not All.
There are even more meanings for the initials OG outside the cannabis world, too. Probably one of the most commonly used definitions of OG is simply: “original.” Similar to that connotation, OG means original gangster, indicating a veteran or the first in one’s field — someone who’s been doing something for a long time.
One delightfully British definition for what OG means maintains that the initials stand for “old git,” meaning an annoying, unpleasant, incompetent, silly, or senile person. An example of this use of the term in a sentence might be: “I can’t believe what the OG in the White House is up to this time!”
With such a variety of uses and potential derivations of the term, the initial meaning of OG, in reference to cannabis or otherwise, is difficult to pin down and is still up for debate.
"OG" is a term every pothead knows. But who coined the acronym, and what does it mean, exactly?