Cannabis has been cultivated on the African mainland since the 14th century. From the era of Dutch colonization, it had extended south. The Khoikhoi, San, and Bantu parties indigenous to South Africa had specified cultivation and cultural acceptance of the drug, which they called ‘dagga.’
In the late 1970s, American grower Ed Rosenthal selectively bred various plants from a bag of South African seeds that he carried back to the U.S. Rosenthal then handed some prime specimens on to fellow grower Mel Frank, who fine-tuned the genetics to optimize resin content and flowering duration. Frank’s measures resulted in “A” and “B” lines of the original seed stock; the B line was given to Amsterdam grower Sam the Skunkman, who decreased the strain’s flowering period.
Appearance & Aroma
Flowers of Durban Poison are medium to large. Even though they have a dense, compact form typical of Indica types, their long and tapered shape is more of a feature of Sativas. The mossy green leaves are offset by bright orange pistils, which catch pollen from male fertilizing plants. A layer of milky-white trichomes shows the cured flowers a light sheen and an incredibly sticky texture. The flowers are aromatic and skunky when broken open or burnt, giving off thick, lung-expanding smoke. Durban Poison has a classically dank aroma punctuated by hints of sweet licorice. The licorice scent is apparent on the exhale, along with the flavour of sweet, almost cloying pine sap.
Effects & Benefits
Durban Poison provides a clear, focused high that hits users quickly. The amplification of sights and sounds might be originally disorienting, but in the right surroundings can slide into an active and buzzy head high. Almost entirely cerebral with no hints of debilitating heaviness or couchlock, this Sativa can be beneficial for creative endeavours — it’s a great way to contemplate the nuances of an intense film or a piece of music. Durban Poison can also be a solid social lubricant, allowing smokers to feel chatty and more at ease.
Any medical uses are more mental than physical — this strain can confer a feeling of mindfulness that is reported to help those constantly distracted by depression, anxiety, and PTSD. Consumers note that it can help those with attention deficit disorders maintain a deep, intense focus. Because it’s so powerful and cerebral, Durban Poison can also have unwanted side effects. It might put users into overdrive, making them feel on edge or jittery. It can also lead to a rapid association with the “mind race,” making smokers feel paranoid or out of control. This pure Sativa is a quintessential wake and bake option more suited to daytime than sleepy nighttime use. Its effects typically last between 2 and 3 hours.