what is kush weed

What Does “Kush” Really Mean

With a name like Kush21, we feel it’s appropriate to dive into the terminology behind our brand. Some people mistakenly think the term “kush” refers to weed in general, but this is not true. Kush is a specific term for plants originating from the Hindu Kush mountains.


The Hindu Kush mountains are a range that spans 500 miles from central Afghanistan to northern Pakistan. When you hear the word “kush”, you can be sure that it originated from this area.

Over time, strains native to specific areas can adapt and evolve to survive in a variety of rough conditions, from diseases and insects to a lack of water. These strains are never bred with others, making them an original plant. They’re referred to landrace strains. Hindu Kush is a landrace strain and a purebred Indica. It’s known for its sweet scent and sedative effects and is now used to make a number of different hybrid strains. Since plants sourced from original environments have strong genetics, they are hardy and resilient, making for a strong parent strain that can adapt to many conditions. Cultivators like to use Hindu Kush because it can help stabilize plants that otherwise wouldn’t survive.

On its own, Hindu Kush can be hard to find. You’re more likely to find hybrids with a Hindu Kush parent if you’re shopping around. Some strains tied to Hindu Kush include:Via Leafly


OG Kush is a very popular strain for its relaxing effects as an indica-dominant hybrid. It tends to have high THC levels and can be grown in both indoor and outdoor settings thanks to the resiliency of its Hindu Kush genetics.


This variety comes from the pairing of OG Kush and Afghani. It’s a strong relaxant with some pleasant cerebral effects. This strain also grows well both inside and outside due to its strong genetics.

Basically, if you see kush in the name, it’s safe to say Hindu Kush played a part in the genetics somewhere down the line.


There are many kush-derived strains out there so the effects will not be the same across the board. However, there are some features of kush strains that are exhibited throughout most varieties.


One thing is true of most kush strains: they’ll knock you out if you’re not careful. Heavy sedative effects are one of the most commonly reported experiences with kush. These strains are typically best for evening use, though they can be cerebral enough to spark creativity or motivate some. Others may find themselves kush-ed out on the couch.


Kush strains are typically covered in frosty trichomes, letting users know they’re in for a potent treat. They’re also usually dark green or purple, with orange-colored pistils. If you see kush strains in their growth stages, you’ll notice the plants are stocky and shorter than other varieties.


Kush varieties tend to have a very sweet and natural, earthy scent. Some compare the smell to pine. When smoked, it smells earthy with hints of sweetness.


There you have it. Kush is not just a term referring to weed. It is a landrace strain from the Hindu Kush mountains that has made its way into our lives mostly through hybrid strains, including kush genetics.

We’ve got plenty of kush varieties at Kush 21, so come check it out.

With a name like Kush 21, we feel it’s appropriate to dive into the terminology behind our brand.

What is ‘Kush’ cannabis?

Cannabis can be classified in many different ways. Typically, this resinous flower is categorized as sativa, hybrid, or indica, based on the morphology of the plant. But cannabis can be further categorized through a vernacular defined by the popular culture, such as Kush, Haze, and Purple. These terms refer to types of cannabis characterized by distinct smells, flavors, effects, and/or geographic regions.

What characterizes ‘Kush’ cannabis?

Kush is a particular variety of cannabis that descends from the Hindu Kush mountains. This mountain range spans the Afghanistan-Pakistan border and is one of the few geographic regions where the cannabis plant grows natively.

Having strong Kush genetics usually means a strain will have a few of the following attributes:

  • Appearance: Your strain may exhibit deep green colas and leaves with hints of purple. Pistils (hairs) can look orange, bronze, or rust colored. Buds are dense, chunky, and knotted, coming from squat, thick plants.
  • Smell: Aroma can vary between earthy, floral, pungent, pine, incense, sweet fruit, hash spice, pepper, citrus, gas, and herbs.
  • Flavor: Smoke or vapor should be smooth and herbaceous, tasting of flowers, grape, diesel, citrus, and earth.
  • Effects: The effects are typically heavy and sedative. OG Kush crosses are usually coupled with a bright euphoria that puts a smile on the couch-locked consumer. Introspection or internal reflection is a common effect of Kush as well. These cerebral effects make a strong case for Kush as a meditative variety of cannabis.

Keep in mind that these attributes can vary from Kush strain to Kush strain. How a strain is grown and its unique genetic expression (referred to as a “phenotype”) naturally affect a strain’s attributes.

Among strain breeders, Kush varieties are popular candidates for backcrossing and in turn, stabilizing hybrid genetics. As with many landrace strains, Kush genetics present natural resistance to certain elements native to their land of origin. This includes hardy stocks and vegetation that can survive colder, harsher climates and moderate water consumption, allowing the plant to endure somewhat parched terrain. In addition to their natural resilience, many growers choose to grow Kush strains for their heavy yields and manageable height.

What are the most popular Kush cannabis strains?

A simple search of “Kush” will yield hundreds of strains with an Afghani ancestor, but let’s start with the five most popular:

1. OG Kush

The most famous of all Kush varieties, OG Kush hits the sweet spot on the indica-dominant hybrid scale. This strain’s comfortable yet potent sedation coupled with an uplifting euphoria make it the perfect strain to just feel good with.

2. Bubba Kush

Bubba Kush is stoney and sedative, weighing the consumer to couch as though they were wearing cement boots with a matching cement tracksuit and stately cement trench coat. Bubba Kush may also ignite your appetite; just try not to fall asleep in front of the fridge while spooning a box of Eggo waffles.

3. Purple Kush

Purple Kush has purple foliage and will generally have an earthy, grape flavor, as well as sleepy effects.

4. Master Kush

Master Kush is another Kush classic that inherits attributes directly from Hindu Kush. With a mixture of sleepy, happy, and relaxing effects, Master Kush earns its title. This strain is an excellent alternative to Bubba Kush.

Which Kush varieties are your favorite? Share them in the comments section below!

Learn what "Kush" cannabis means, the attributes that characterize a plant with strong Kush genetics, and find the most popular Kush strains. ]]>