To find that perfect strain is often a trial-and-error process. Doing your research ahead of time can speed up this process of finding the right cannabis experience for you. Today, we’ll discuss one particular strain known throughout the globe: the White Widow strain.

The History of the White Widow Strain

The White Widow was first grown in 1994, and consumers haven’t gotten bored of smoking this strain since. The cannabis community loves this strain, as do cannabis plant breeders and growers. The fantastic genetic foundation behind the White Widow strain makes it useful for cross-breeding new hybrids. You can detect these White Widow offspring by having either “white” or “widow in the strain name. 

Consumers also adore this potent hybrid strain, with THC levels at around 20% or more. For those seeking CBD, this is not the strain for you, as it contains little to no CBD content. For those looking for a mood-boosting daytime high that still allows you to be functional, this strain is perfect. 

Only one year after being created, the White Widow strain won the 8th annual Cannabis Cup in 1995, hosted by the High Times. This title was the first of many accolades for this fan-favourite strain. Shantibaba, the co-founder of Green House Seeds, bred this strain in 1994 in the Netherlands. He has since founded Mr. Nice Seed Bank, where he now grows this strain under the name Black Widow. White Widow has been a constant find at Dutch Coffeeshops ever since, with tourists helping to spread stories of this strain worldwide. 

Breeding The White Widow 

white widow genetics

As cannabis plants come in male and female forms, breeding various parents is how we have created so many new strains. The White Widow strain’s parents came from two land-races from different sides of the globe. Shantibaba bred two heirloom strains, a Brazillian sativa and South Indian indica, to create this hybrid strain. 

In the growing stages, this plant looks more like it’s indica parent, but the buds are more indicative of the sativa lineage. We learned that breeders love the genetics behind the White Widow. Beyond robust growing qualities, strong genetics help increase trichomes levels and the overall THC potency. 

The White Widow can be grown indoors or outside, flowering in around 56-63 days. It prefers a Mediterranean climate and ends up being under 6-feet tall. Nonetheless, it is a bushy and wide plant that produces plenty of buds. 

The White Widow Buds 

white widow strain review

As you might expect, the White Widow strain has a whitish-gray appearance. This color comes from the dense crystallized trichomes. These buds are often sticky from all the resin that these trichomes produce, filled with valuable compounds like THC and terpenes. Described as looking more like sativa dried flower, the buds are fluffy but also dense. You will not see many pistils, those orange or brown hairs commonly seen on buds. 

The White Widow Smell

Consumers describe the White Widow as having a musky, peppery, herbal, and earthy pine scent. You may even notice hints of citrus, spice, skunk, and even ammonia-like aroma. This strain often has a mild scent, without much of a fruity flavor. Don’t let that mild smell fool you, though, as the smell can linger on those who consume it. Be considerate of your situation when smoking the White Widow as the smoke is considerably pungent! 

How Does it Smoke?

Generally, the smoking experience is smooth, with some kick and just a little stinging effect. Usually more earthy and neutral, others call it clean and pine-fresh. Even with a rather mild smoke, this strain packs a punch. We turn to these effects next, as we continue to explore this high-potency strain. 

The Effects of the White Widow

This potent hybrid strain produces a high, more commonly seen in sativa varieties. The White Widow produces more of a head high than the body high one would see after consuming an indica strain. These effects are described as refreshing and energizing, without substantial sedative effects. 

For those looking for euphoria and happiness along with relaxation, this strain is a perfect candidate. It is excellent for stimulating conversations with friends or creative activities of all kinds. The White Widow is great for time spent socializing while high.

Without strong sedative effects, the White Widow makes for a great daytime high. It can provide the boost you need to get that cleaning, cooking, or other chore finished. It can help reduce appetite, and physical activity may enhance this effect. The head-high from the White Widow is great for productive time spent alone. Get that to-do list finished while enjoying the pleasant cerebral high and focus that the White Widow provides. 

Depending on experience and dosage, the effects last around 1-2 hours. With remarkable growing experiences and consumer highs, this strain is considered almost perfect. It is not for everyone, however. If you want a bedtime smoke, you may prefer a more heavy indica variety. 


With high potency, the White Widow comes with all the typical risks found with THC consumption. Dose, set, and setting are factors to consider before you smoke. Are you rested, healthy, and in a comfortable place? How much will you be smoking? These factors influence your physical and mental state, along with the potential of side-effects.

Red-eyes and dry-mouth are common symptoms of smoking the White Widow, so keep water nearby and eye-drops on hand if required. Along with the lasting scent, its effects are far from subtle. Over-consumption can lead to paranoia, dizziness, and anxiety, as with any high-THC strain. 

To balance benefits and side-effects, pay careful attention to dosage. The White Widow can be an excellent strain for recreational cannabis consumption when responsibly used. Keep these side-effects in mind, and pay more attention to the benefits. 

You may find you need to smoke less of this potent strain than you realize. For those consuming medically, careful monitoring and following medical advice are even more prudent. 

Potential Medical Benefits

white widow side effects

Since the early days in the Netherlands, The White Widow strain has been used as medicine. Based on patient reports, benefits include improvements in pain, anxiety, depression, sleep, and stress symptoms. Researchers did find that White Widow was in the top 15 out of 42 preferred strains for those using medical cannabis for arthritis, headaches, and chronic pain

The White Widow is not the ideal strain for everyone. For those who want an intense body-high, with couchlock and immediate sleep-inducing effects may want to look elsewhere. If that sounds like you, explore strains with more indica-dominant genetics. 

The White Widow strain is good for those who need daytime doses of cannabis while still staying functional. With minimal fatigue, the White Widow effects are great for getting off the couch and being as active as you can be. 

Concluding Thoughts

The White Widow strain is here to stay, having grown in popularity since 1994. Many consider it a must-try for those who love cannabis. The Cannabis Cup judges saw this potential when they awarded the White Widow with the 1995 champion title. 

If you’re looking for a head-high producing sativa that allows you to get energized for those chores or social events, look for the White Widow. Remember that this is a potent strain when deciding how much to smoke. Stick with a low dose for that daytime high while expanding your creativity and insights. 

Happy trails!