Coffee shop vs homegrown weed quality: Power Plant case study (part 1)

Coffee shop vs homegrown weed quality: Power Plant case study (part 1)

Even in countries such as The Netherlands, where cannabis is widely available to buy in coffee shops, many connoisseurs prefer to grow their own. These growers feel that they can grow better quality cannabis than that sold in the coffeeshops.

Home growers have full control over the grow conditions, e.g. using high quality LED grow lights, with organic conditions to ensure their weed isn't contaminated in any way.

Many home growers claim that they can grow with greater care/attention and with higher quality harvests. But who is correct? Is coffee shop weed better than home grown and is there any data to prove this. Or does home grown cannabis offer the best quality?

Coffeeshop Power Plant samples lab test results
The High Flyer's Power Plant blind smoke report
Coffeeshop Power Plant review and ratings
Coffee shops vs home grown Power Plant first impressions

Power Plant Dutch coffee shop samples lab test results

Dutch Passion visited 3 coffeeshops selling buds labelled as Power Plant. We bought the buds and sent them for independent cannabinoid/terpene analysis as well as making a blind smoke test on them. It’s worth saying that not everything labelled as Power Plant in a coffeeshop is necessarily grown from genuine Power Plant seeds. Some of the commercial growers that supply the Dutch coffeeshops have been known to use the ‘Power Plant’ name simply to increase the attractiveness to tourists.

Each of the three charts shows a terpene profile and cannabinoid analysis for each sample. This shows the individual cannabinoid compounds (e.g. THC, THCV, CBG, CBC, CBD, CBN etc) which are present in each sample, as well as the quantity.

The cannabinoids in combination with your own endo cannabinoid system determine the type of high you may experience. The terpenes are also listed, alongside the relevant concentrations found in the buds. As well as shaping the taste and aroma, terpenes are also thought to modulate (or ‘steer’) the type of high. Note that the final terpene/cannabinoid content is determined by several factors, including the quality of the grow environment and grower experience.

Terpene content can also be affected by the quality of the harvest, dry and cure.

Typical THC levels for coffeeshop weed

The three coffeeshop Power Plant samples, numbered 1-3, produced THC levels of 14%, 16% and 17%. Those may seem like low numbers, but they are quite typical THC levels for most of the weed sold in coffeeshops. According to the annual Dutch Government coffeeshop survey, average THC levels in the most popular coffeeshop strains is around 16%. For comparison, the highest priced coffeeshop weed strains had THC levels averaging 18%. This isn't much of a THC increase, despite the price premium.

What is high amount of THC for cannabis

Some less scrupulous coffee shop owners will sometimes buy the cheapest weed available and give it another name in order to tempt tourists and increase prices. Not everything you see on a coffeeshop menu is as described, nor is it necessarily grown under optimised conditions. That’s why many Dutch cannabis connoisseurs strongly prefer to grow they own weed, feeling that they can grow better quality buds than those available in coffee shops.

Other cannabinoids revealed in Power Plant

The lab results show that THC is the dominant cannabinoid, with levels around the coffee shop average of 16%. But other cannabinoids are also present. CBG (Cannabigerol) and CBC (cannabichromene) are the next most dominant cannabinoids, though levels are below 0.5%. CBN, a decomposition product of THC, is also present in each sample. Trace levels of CBD and THCV are also present.

The presence of a well rounded cannabinoid profile helps with the cannabis entourage effect. This is a proposed mechanism where cannabinoids can act in a synergistic way, amplifying their individual effects.

Those interested in the cannabinoids CBG and THCV may want to look at the Dutch Passion Special Cannabinoid seed collectionCBG-Force and Auto CBG-Force are CBG seeds which produce 10-15% CBG in the dried buds, with THC levels below 0.15%. THC Victory is a feminised strain which produces buds with around 6-8% THC and a similar level of THCV.

The High Flyer's Power Plant blind smoke report

The three Power Plant samples (labelled #1, #2 & #3) were given a blind smoke test. You can see the video report below. A ‘blind’ smoke test is the preferred way of ensuring that no sub-conscious bias creeps into the review. The buds were rated for visual appearance and aroma. A joint was rolled from each and a taste evaluation was made on the unlit joint, as well as the lit joint.

The sample which was preferred overall was #3. Interesting, this was the one with the higher levels of THC (16.8%) as well as the slightly higher levels of CBD, CBG and CBC. Note that blind smoke tests can produce different opinions when a team of smoke testers is used. That’s because there are simply so many different opinions about what constitutes a good aroma and a good quality high.

With each of us having a unique endo cannabinoid system it is thought that we all experience slightly different effects, even from the same cannabis strain. That’s another reason why so many people prefer to carefully research and grow their own cannabis seeds.

Having full control over the precise genetics which they buy as well as the way they are grown/harvested are some of the most common reasons people give for growing their own cannabis seeds. Other popular reasons include the fact that home growing is cheaper than buying cannabis and is less likely to contain impurities (chemicals, insecticides, mold etc).

Coffeeshop Power Plant smoke review and ratings

Below are the overall ratings of The High Flyer's blind smoke session. The three Power Plant coffeeshop samples were rated from 0-to-10 for the buds appearance, smell, taste and burn.

Power Plant buds appearance

Appearance ratings from samples #1, #2 and #3 were scored at 5/10 (#1), 6/10 (#2) and 7.5/10 (#3) respectively. Often the frostier looking buds are the most potent, but it is notoriously difficult to assess potency from appearance.

Power Plant smell

Smell ratings from samples #1, #2 and #3 were scored at 6/10 (#1), 6.5/10 (#2) and 7.5/10 (#3) respectively. Aroma is formed by the various terpenes present, it is a subjective feature. Some people have preferences for different smell profiles. For some a fruity aroma is preferred, for others a rich hashy aroma is best. Others prefer a skunky aroma.

Power Plant is a member of the Dutch Passion Classic Seed collection. Other cannabis seed families include the Skunk Seed Family, Orange FamilyBlue Family etc. Each has their own delicious flavour profile. If you struggle to decide between the various cannabis seed options then the following article may be useful reading.

How to choose the best cannabis seeds for you

Interestingly, of the three samples, #2 was actually slightly higher than #3 in the dominant terpenes (beta-myrcene, beta caryphyllene and alpha humulene). This suggests that it’s the blend of terpenes, rather than the absolute levels, which make for an appealing smell.

Power Plant taste

Taste ratings from samples #1, #2 and #3 were scored at 6/10 (#1), 6.5/10 (#2) and 7.5/10 (#3) respectively. Taste was assessed with a ‘dry toke’, a suck of the joint before it was lit.

Taste is another highly subjective matter which often depends on the personal opinions of the individual. Some growers prefer to grow cannabis seeds which will produce fruity tasting buds, if that sounds like you the following article is essential reading.

Top 5 cannabis strains with a fruity flavour

Power Plant burn

For some growers, a vaporiser is the best way to taste the array of flavours in your buds. Without the complexities of combustion, a vape allows the full taste profile to emerge. Some old school smokers disagree, feeling that the richest taste only emerges when cannabis is burned in a bong or joint.

Burn ratings from samples #1, #2 and #3 were scored at 6/10 ( #1), 6/10 (#2) and 7.5/10 (#3) respectively. This is despite the fact that sample #2 had the slightly richer terpene profile. All in all, sample #3 was given the highest overall rating. It was the cannabis sample with the highest cannabinoid profile.

Power Plant feminised cannabis seeds

Flowering Type Feminised
Genetics Original South African Power Plant
Variety Type Sativa
THC level High
Flowering time Indoor
Flowering time 8 weeks
Yield XXL

Buy Power Plant seeds

Coffee shops vs home grown Power Plant first impressions

Power Plant seeds are some of the highest rated sativa seeds in the Dutch Passion collection. They are popular for a variety of reasons, but the speed of bloom (around 9 weeks) for such a heavy yielding strain means that Power Plant has many more repeat buyers than most strains.

Some refuse to grow anything else! Power Plant is a popular strain for anyone looking to grow with the SCROG method or the SOG method. One of the most common customer feedbacks about Power Plant is that she is simply such an easy, uncomplicated strain to grow. Note the feedback, below, from some of the members from the Grow Diaries grow forum. One common theme is that high yields come with little effort with Power Plant. If you’re looking for a reliable, fast, heavy yielding sativa strain with decades of highly satisfied growers, Power Plant seeds come with our highest recommendations.

Browse all Growdiaries Power Plant harvest reports.

There will be many Power Plant fans that prefer to grow their own rather than take the gamble of buying a coffee shop version. With a coffee shop version of Power Plant, you never really know how the plant was grown, or even if it is genuine Power Plant.

Many home growers find that growing the best cannabis seeds themselves, in the best conditions, with LED grow lights allows them to achieve THC levels around (and above) 20%. This is slightly higher than the typical THC levels seen in street weed and coffee shop cannabis. Growing your own cannabis seeds gives you full control over the grow and timing of the harvest, for some people that is crucial.

Optimising your grow room conditions

Stay tuned to the Dutch Passion blog for a follow-up article where you will see analysis and a blind smoke test on Power Plant buds grown from genuine Power Plant seeds.

If you are planning to grow some Power Plant seeds the following grow reviews may be useful reading. And note that Power Plant and Auto Power Plant are currently on sale with a ‘Buy one get one free’ special offer!

Power Plant seeds grown in soil/coco mix under HPS grow lights
Power Plant seeds grown under 12/12 light from germination to harvest
All about Power Plant - heavy yielding, THC-rich best selling cannabis seeds
Coffee shop vs homegrown weed quality: Power Plant case study (part 1)
October 30th 2020
Categories : Cannabis Strains

Leave a comment