If history lessons and long-winded descriptions aren’t your thing, you can use these key points to see if Jack Herer is for you.
Lineage: Haze X (Northern Lights #5 X Shiva Skunk) by Sensi Seeds
Classification: Sativa-dominant hybrid
Potency: 17-22% THC
Top Terps: Terpinolene, b-Caryophyllene, Pinene
Scent/flavor: Earthy, Sweet and Sour, Citrus
Effects: Uplifted, Focused, Chatty
Uses: Depression, fatigue, minor aches and pains
Side effects: Cottonmouth, dry eyes, paranoia
Overall rating: 5/5, with bonus points for the history lesson
But, like most things, there’s a lot of stuff going on behind the scenes that helps you paint that full picture. Jack was a weed advocate. He started pretty against weed, but after he returned from the Korean War and ended up in California, the dude got really into the green stuff.
Like, really into it.
He started working with the California Marijuana Initiative, where he met a guy named Ed, and they became besties. Together, they authored GRASS: Great Revolutionary American Standard System— which was basically a comic book about quality weed that put Jack on the map. From there, he went on to open two hemp dispensaries in California. Meanwhile, the guy’s inventing smoking paraphernalia, studying weed, and getting super political with it.
Herer started a few grassroots campaigns for cannabis legalization. After over a decade, he gave us The Emporer Wears No Clothes. The title is a play on the famous Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, “The Emperor’s New Clothes.”
In Andersen’s story, the emperor is tricked by swindlers into believing that he’s given a magnificent suit of clothes that are invisible to those who are incompetent or foolish. In reality, the guy is naked and everyone is too afraid of being percieved a fool to say anything. But he’s parading around in his “invisible” clothes, until a kid in the crowd points out his undies and states the obvious truth that the emperor is actually naked. The story is a commentary on the fear of speaking out against what is obviously false.
Likewise, Jack Herer used the title “The Emperor Wears No Clothes” to suggest that governments and the public had been deceived and were pretending that hemp and cannabis were harmful and dangerous substances when, in his view, they were not. The guy was intense and posed a challenge on the back cover of the book, offering a hundred grand to anyone who could disprove the claims he’d made.
The book is still one of the most important books discussing the subject. Jack went on to become a folk legend, which led Sensi Seeds to develop the strain by the same name— which brings me to the real point of this article: the Jack Herer strain review.
TLDR: Jack was an influential cannabis advocate and an all-around smart, interesting guy who always persisted relentlessly to bridge the gap between weed and mankind. The strain itself pays homage to the man and the legend.
It’s a cool story— very cultural. Tell it the next time you’re passing around a Jack Herer joint for some points. While you do that, you can throw in some facts about the strain itself using my review below.
Jack Herer has been around since the 90s, so it’s a common strain in the world of weed. Sensi Seeds first bred it to honor the man himself, and was an Amsterdam staple for the years following until it made its way to the US. While the official recipe is under lock and key, Jack Herer is believed to be a cross between Haze and (Northern Lights #5 X Shiva Skunk).
The 55% Sativa-dominant hybrid has taken home several cannabis cup awards. It’s balanced in the genetic sense but one of the most energizing strains out there regarding sativa-leaning effects. That’s mostly because the Terpinolene, b-caryophyllene, and Pinene terps make it a highly cerebral strain.
My bag checks in on the higher side of potency at 23%, but it usually hangs out at around 17-22% THC. It’s got a lot of those terps, though, so it feels a lot more potent than it actually is. That said, go easy on it at first if you’re sensitive to mental effects. She packs a strong mental lift that can feel like a bad mushroom trip if you’re already caffeinated, hungry, or bored.
Fun fact: Jack Herer was bred to dump trichomes. Sensi was looking for a good mix between heady effects and trichome production since most sativa-leaning strains out there at the time couldn’t compete with indica-leaners, which dump hash on a genetic level. Even today, you’re more likely to find indica-leaning strains in concentrate form compared to sativa-leaners, since they don’t have that same level of trichomes to concentrate into hash.
Jack Herer isn’t the stickiest by any stretch of the imagination, but those balanced genetics give her a good look. My buds are oddly pepper-shaped, like most JH buds, but they also have a nice coat of those frosty trichomes. These buds are a vibrant light green color with golden yellow undertones, which make it look almost as uplifting as it feels.
I always enjoy sativa-leaners when I have something to do since I’m a huge overthinker and prone to THC-induced paranoia. Some people can handle those mental lifts and not freak out, but I’m the type of person who immediately starts thinking that all my friends hate me and that the sound of my neighbor pressure-washing his driveway outside is definitely the beginning of World War 3.
But even when I don’t have something to do, Jack Herer is one of the most pleasant rides you can ask for. The mental lift I got from this bag was sublime and in no way overwhelming. It gets me up and moving since the effects kick in immediately, but it leaves me feeling clear-headed and high. The clear-headedness is excellent for finding the motivation to find something to do without worrying about it. It’s also creative and focused. Seriously, I could scrub the grout in the bathroom tiles for hours with a smile on my face when Jack’s in the mix.
It also makes me chatty. Sometimes, I talk myself into solving the mysteries in the universe, and other times, I talk to my dog about what snack I’m going to make and whether or not I’ll give him a bite. It makes me thirsty and dries out my eyes, but its balanced effects leave me feeling like I have a foot on the ground. It may make some people feel paranoid in higher doses, but it is one of the most relaxing cerebral strains out there.
I’ve also used it for stress, feeling down in the dumps, fatigue, headaches, and social anxiety— so if you want some practical uses, there you go.