California Cannon is like the favorite child — the one who bears the best traits of both parents’ families and, as a result, is beloved by all. The strain combines two of the strongest and most sought-after genetic lines in existence: OG Kush and Chemdawg, both of which have received worldwide acclaim for their potent flavors and desirable effects.
Although OG Kush and Chemdawg are similar in many respects, they are not identical. Combining the powers of the two lines, California Cannon offers the dense, frosty buds of the Tahoe OG and the superior vigor and yield of the Stardawg. California Cannon’s unique aroma, flavor, and intense euphoric high and the ease with which it can be grown have made it a favorite among both users and growers.
Origin of California Cannon
Tahoe OG, the mother of California Cannon, traces its heritage to the original OG Kush, perhaps the most popular strain of all time. The story of OG Kush started in 1992, when Alec Anderson, a grower in southern Florida, bought an ounce of a particularly potent variety, which was labeled “Krippy.” Alec immediately fell in love with the strain and its potent high, dense and frosty nugs, and its gassy, earthy flavor.
Alec found some seeds in the ounce of the Krippy and decided to sprout them. One of the phenotypes that he grew was truly special, and he chose to keep clones of it. Later that year, Alec shared a clone of this phenotype with his friend, Matt “Bubba” Berger, and Matt’s group of growers in the Gainesville, Florida, area. One of Matt’s friends remarked that the flowers looked like “kushberries,” and the name “Kush” stuck.
Throughout the early 1990s, this group of growers held the Kush tightly, and few people were lucky enough to try it. In 1996, Josh D, a grower in Los Angeles, California, persuaded Matt to bring a clone of Kush to California and get involved in the medical cannabis industry. Matt took a clone of Kush and a phenotype of Northern Lights, referred to as “Bubba,” and headed west.
Josh and Matt built a small grow room in Silverlake, California, and started growing the Kush. Demand was both immediate and strong, so the growers expanded their operation to include several grows throughout Los Angeles and the San Fernando area.
Eventually, Josh gave clones of the Kush to two of his friends, and they began spreading it throughout California. Soon, many people were claiming to have a cut of the Kush. To distinguish theirs as the original phenotype, Josh and Matt began referring to their cut as “OG Kush,” or “Ogers.”
California Cannon Lineage: OG Kush x Chemdawg
The lineage of OG Kush is unclear. Some believe it is an S1 of Chemdawg because it shares some of the Dawg’s gassy, earthy qualities. Others believe that the strain may be a hybrid of Lemon Thai and Pakistani Kush, which would account for its lemon flavor and Kush-like growth structure. The parentage of Tahoe OG is also unclear. Matt Berger has said that it probably is an original cutting of OG Kush, but it bears some clear differences from the original phenotype. As a result, many believe it to be an S1 of OG Kush, or perhaps an OG/Afghani hybrid.
Stardawg, the father of California Cannon, was released in 2011 courtesy of JJ NYC from Top Dawg Seeds. JJ produced this inbred variety to stabilize many of the prized traits of Chemdawg. To create the strain, JJ crossed an Afghan #1 male from Sensi Seeds with a Chem D cut that he had obtained earlier. He then backcrossed the Chem D two times, locking down its traits. Finally, he crossed this strain with the Chem 4, increasing both its vigor and yield. The resulting cultivar was dubbed “Stardawg,” perhaps for its copious amount of star-like trichomes.
California Cannon is an F1 hybrid of Tahoe OG and Stardawg. The term “F1” means “first filial generation.” An F1 hybrid arises through the crossing of two distinct strains. Growers prize F1 hybrid seeds because they typically offer more stability than F2, or second-generation, strains and they tend to be more vigorous than highly inbred varieties.
Because California Cannon is an F1 hybrid, most of its phenotypes will display a combination of traits from both parental lines. The genetic makeup is roughly 50 percent Tahoe OG, 25 percent Chem 4, 22 percent Chem D, and 3 percent Afghan. Growers find that some phenotypes tend to be more Tahoe-dominant, and some are more Chem-dominant. However, most phenotypes will produce high yields of top-shelf flowers.
Qualities of California Cannon
Aroma and Flavor
OG cultivars universally carry flavors that evoke pine wood, lemon-based cleaning products, burning rubber, and gasoline. Depending on the pheno, each of these scents will be emphasized or downplayed. The Tahoe OG is no exception, and its flavor emphasizes the lemon and gasoline notes, downplaying the pine and burning rubber.
The Stardawg male, a descendant of the Chemdawg family, offers an extraordinarily complex and wonderfully dank aroma. This variety is known for its skunky, grungy, raw oiliness, with notes of bitter lemon and chemical cleaner.
California Cannon is as pungent as its parents and leans heavily toward bleach, lemon-scented chemical cleaning products, petrol products, and industrial scents. This is definitely not for those who want a lighter, fruity-flavored strain. Some OG-dominant phenotypes will primarily display a bouquet of gasoline and lemon, and some Chem-dominant phenotypes will lean toward halitosis, pine, and skunk notes. All phenotypes offer aromas that will please the most discerning of connoisseurs.
Most OG Kush Phenotypes are tall and stretchy, with thin stems and dense, golf ball-shaped flowers. Tahoe OG is more Indica-dominant than are other OG Kush phenotypes and is slightly stockier. Tahoe OG typically produces modest yields of extremely dense buds that cake themselves in resin.
Stardawg possesses an ideal structure for indoor and outdoor growers, with perfect internodal spacing and sturdy branches. The variety does not stretch as much as OG Kush during the flowering period and typically grows to a medium height. Stardawg produces massive, frosty colas that offer high yield and premium-quality flowers.
The structure of California Cannon reflects the best traits of its ancestors. It combines the dense, frosty buds of Tahoe OG with the high yield of Stardawg. Growers may find that Tahoe-dominant phenotypes tend to be taller, with more internodal spacing and broader leaflets. In contrast, Stardawg-dominant phenotypes tend to be shorter and branchier, with thinner leaflets. Both Tahoe-dominant and Stardawg-dominant phenotypes have robust branches and thick, dark green leaves.
Most OG Kush phenotypes offer a balanced high that users feel in both the mind and body. Tahoe OG is a particularly potent phenotype that is more narcotic than other OG Kush varieties. Tahoe OG regularly tests above 20 percent THC, an incredibly high figure compared to most other cannabis cultivars. Users report that this variety is highly sedative and is effective at relieving pain and stress. Because of its sleep-inducing stone, Tahoe OG is best-suited for nighttime use.
Stardawg is more Sativa-dominant than Tahoe OG, and it offers an intense, uplifting high. This variety is excellent for daytime use, as it may help boost both mental energy and focus. Some users state that Stardawg can elevate the mood while also providing relief from pain and fatigue. These reported benefits have made Stardawg a popular choice among medical as well as recreational cannabis users.
California Cannon combines the narcotic Tahoe OG with the uplifting Stardawg to create a well-balanced hybrid. This variety delivers an intense, euphoric high that slowly melts into a potent, bodying-numbing stone. California Cannon users probably will end the day early if they use this strain for a wake ‘n bake.
Growing California Cannon
OG Kush phenotypes are infamously tricky to grow and are sensitive to changes in light, nutrients, and pH. Stardawg, in contrast, is an extremely beginner-friendly variety and is resilient to most environmental stresses. By combining these two strains, California Cannon produces healthy, vigorous plants that are easy to grow while offering many of the prized traits of OG Kush.
California Cannon is a hearty and adaptable strain that grows well in many environments, both indoors and outdoors. Moreover, this variety will produce high yields of top-shelf buds in both hydroponic and soil setups. The flexibility of the strain makes California Cannon a great choice for closet growers and cash croppers alike.
Because California Cannon is an F1 hybrid, it thrives during the vegetative period, quickly branching out with robust stems and large, healthy leaves. Although this strain produces thick stems, its heavy colas may require support. Staking or trellising the plants early in flowering may boost the yield. Some OG-dominant phenotypes will stretch significantly in flowering, so topping or super cropping during the vegetative growth phase is advisable. These plants respond well to many high-stress and low-stress training methods, including fimming, lollipopping, or scrogging.
Pest and Disease Control
California Cannon is resilient to mold and many types of pests, making it an attractive variety for outdoor growers. But the strain is susceptible to powdery mildew. Indoor growers can avoid powdery mildew infestations by keeping the humidity level low, raising the temperature to 75 degrees Fahrenheit, pruning excess leaves, and using fans to increase air circulation. Some foliar sprays such as water and sodium bicarbonate solutions may also help fight powdery mildew.
Some OG-dominant phenotypes may also be prone to bud rot due to the flowers’ extreme density and frost. Like powdery mildew, growers can stop bud rot by pruning the plants, reducing humidity, and using fans to increase air circulation.
Both OG Kush and Chemdawg love calcium and magnesium. Some Chem D-dominant phenotypes may display leaf variegation due to pH fluctuations or calcium and magnesium deficiencies. Incorporating a cal-mag supplement or Epsom salt and dolomite lime into the regular nutrient regime is advisable. Feeding with a stable pH is also essential.
Harvesting and Curing
California Cannon flowers quickly, and most plants will be ready to harvest in 60 to 70 days. Some Stardawg-dominant phenotypes may take up to 77 days to reach maturity.
Approximately one to two weeks before harvest, growers should stop using nutrients and flush the plants with distilled water. This process helps remove unwanted fertilizer in the buds and increases the quality of the final product.
Growers can determine the plants’ maturity by inspecting the trichomes with a microscope or jeweler’s loupe. If the majority of the trichomes are transparent, the plants are not fully mature. Growers will know their plants are ripe when the trichomes are milky white, with some turning amber. Another way to determine ripeness is to observe the pistils of the flowers. When roughly 70 percent to 80 percent of the pistils have turned from white to red or orange, the plants are likely mature enough to harvest. However, this method is not as accurate as observing the trichomes and is, therefore, a less popular option.
Once the trichomes begin to turn amber and growers flush the plants with distilled water, they are ready to harvest. Growers should cut down the plants and remove the large fan leaves. If the environment is humid, it is generally recommended that the grower manicure the buds before drying them to prevent mold. Conversely, in arid climates, the buds may dry out too quickly if manicured at this stage. Next, growers should hang the buds or place them on a drying rack for three to six days. Notably, this stage may take longer for California Cannon, given the flowers’ extreme density and frost. The buds are fully dried when the stems snap rather than bend.
After the buds are dried, growers should transfer them to sealable jars for curing. Growers should store the jars in a cool, dark place and “burp” them, or open them, twice a day for the first few days. Growers should burp jars once a day for the next two weeks. Following a proper cute, growers can enjoy the fruits of their labors.