History of Marijuana
Cannabis has accompanied mankind since time immemorial; according to archaeological excavations, cannabis has been cultivated in the East since the 6th millennium B.C. The first item on the cannabis menu of our ancestors was marijuana, a dried cannabis herb crushed into powder and meant to be smoked. Marijuana is made from cultivated varieties of cannabis, derived from two subspecies of the plant, sativa and indica.
Table of contents
- What is Marijuana?
- How did marijuana come to be?
- How to Make Marijuana?
- The effects of marijuana depend largely on the strain
What is Marijuana?
The media often refers to the cannabis plant itself as marijuana, but this is fundamentally incorrect. Marijuana is the smokable end product, namely a dry mixture made from various parts of the cannabis plant. Ideally, dried female inflorescences are the best way to make good ganja, but in principle, all parts of the plant can be used. In short supply, stems, leaves and seeds are all welcome; although the THC content of the vegetative organs of the plant is an order of magnitude lower than what the cone can offer, it is still better than nothing.
How did marijuana come to be?
According to archaeological excavations, cannabis has been cultivated in Central Asia and southern Siberia since the 6th millennium BC, and our forefathers learned to use marijuana for medical and ritual purposes before they were able to weave clothing from hemp fiber. Thanks to the efforts of nomadic tribes, actively trading with the leading powers of the Middle East, the Mediterranean, and North Africa, cannabis became the property of all the great civilizations of the ancient world.
The first written mention of the medicinal use of cannabis dates to 2737 BC: an ancient Chinese papyrus from the time of Emperor Shen Nun recommended using cannabis inflorescences to treat coughs and diarrhea. Subsequently, marijuana tincture became one of the most sought-after remedies in traditional Chinese medicine. In 200 BC, Chinese medicine men used cannabis flower extracts for anesthesia, and a hundred years later Chinese medical treatises had more than a hundred recommendations for the use of MJ extracts. Beginning in the 15th century, the use of canna products for gout, rheumatism, arthritis, and nervous disorders was widely practiced.
In medieval Japan, the medical use of cannabis was not widespread, but the Japanese knew a great deal about the recreational use of the gifts of Ja. During weddings, newlyweds were fumed with the smoke of cannabis inflorescences, believing that the incense drove away evil spirits and attracted marital happiness.
From China and southern Siberia, cannabis was brought to India, where it was soon recognized as one of the five sacred plants of Rigveda. The worshippers of the formidable god Shiva are still avid users of the local equivalent of marijuana, a dried mix of crushed cannabis leaves, buds, and stems known as bhang. In India, the use of bhang in temples and during religious festivals is not prosecuted, while ganja and hashish are still illegal.
Indian merchants brought cannabis to Africa and Spain. Stocks of dried buds have been found time and again as a burial offering in Egyptian tombs from the fourth or third millennium B.C.; one such “tab” was found in the sarcophagus of Ramses II. In the Ebers Papyrus and other chronicles, Egyptian marijuana was called “murmur murmur tu” and was considered a good antiseptic.
Two thousand years later, Napoleon’s soldiers rediscovered this miracle drug and introduced beautiful France, and later all of Europe, to marijuana and hashish. In the mid-19th century, the “Hashish Club” was a huge success in Paris, where the properties of various cannabis products were actively studied. At one time, Honoré de Balzac and Alexandre Dumas the Father were visitors. Another frequent guest of the club, Charles Baudelaire composed inspired odes in honor of cannabis, which was the beginning of modern literature. Who knows what modern poetry would have been if the leader of French decadence had not been led by a secret vice?
A Spanish variety of marijuana known as “Mota” was later introduced to the New World. It is possible, however, that there were independent areas of cultivation of psychoactive cannabis on the Black Continent and in the Americas. For example, in South Africa, a type of marijuana derived from local varieties of sativa known as dagga is still in use, while people in Chile and Peru are convinced that pot was smoked there during the reign of the Inca – some ritual drinks resemble THC in their effects.
If we believe “the father of history” Herodotus, the ancient Greeks and Romans were also not averse to blowing – most likely, they learned from their neighbors, the Scythians and Thracians, who burned dried cannabis flowers as a gift to their gods. Ancient Greek military physician Dioscorides, who left behind several works on botany and pharmacology, recommended using the smoke of cannabis inflorescences as an analgesic and anti-inflammatory.
From ancient Rome, cannabis penetrated the Germanic lands and was much loved by the harsh barbarians. Cannabis extracts along with other psychotropic drugs accompanied warriors in campaigns and shamans during kamala, until the Christian church shut down the shop and anathematized the stupefying potion. In modern times, the wheel of history took another turn and Germany made up for the lost time by becoming one of the first European countries to legalize medical cannabis.
How to Make Marijuana?
It takes a lot of work before the green material turns into a smoking mixture. In simplified terms, there are three steps to making marijuana:
- The leaves are carefully cut off with manicure scissors at the base of the buds. Here each grower acts at their discretion: some cut everything to zero, and some remove the parts of the leaves that protrude beyond the inflorescence, to let the raw material mature. The main thing is to choose the right time: it is generally assumed that the harvest can be taken when the milky-white color of the trichomes changes to golden amber.
- Fertilizer is no longer applied 1-2 weeks before harvesting, and the bushes are only given clean water, with the last watering done 2-3 days before pruning.
- To increase the cannabinoid content of the bushes, the bushes are kept in the dark for about two days before pruning.
- The cuttings are dried in a dark, well-ventilated room at a temperature of 18-22 C and 45-55% humidity. The easiest way to dry the cannabis is in a grow box or cardboard box with holes cut for air, without letting any moisture get inside.
- The plants lose up to 75% of their weight during the drying process, which takes 7-10 days.
- In fresh buds, most of the cannabinoids are present in inactive forms. In particular, the precursor of THC is a derivative, tetrahydrocannabinol acid (THCA).
- The conversion of THCA into the active delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol is accomplished by decarboxylation, the release of carbon dioxide and water by soaking in a dark, cool place, the slang term for which is curing.
- Before curing, the caps are removed from the stem, after which the buds are placed in jars, filling the container by two-thirds. The jar is left in the refrigerator for 2-4 weeks, with the condensate removed daily. In the process of curing, the plant stock is reduced in volume by another quarter.
With strict adherence to the procedure, THC concentrations average 15-30%. More than enough for relaxation and rich leisure time!
The intensity of the effects of cannabis products is a product of the concentration. The higher the content of psychedelic substances, the stronger and longer the effects will last. The qualitative composition of cannabinoids is just as important as the THC content.
The effects of marijuana depend largely on the strain:
Sativa-based strains, which are predominantly THC based, have a mainly disinhibitory effect
- Small doses of marijuana can make you feel good, relaxed, elated and euphoric, with an increased sense of colors, smells and sounds.
- The negative effects of THC on cognitive functions are only noticeable with systematic abuse.
- Memory and ability to concentrate worsens, speech becomes incoherent, and apathy and lethargy occur.
- In rare cases, a single high dose of THC can provoke paranoia, or even a panic attack.
Indica-based varieties with a high CBD content have a sedative and soothing effects, induce peacefulness and relaxation, stimulate sensuality and help you feel better about your body
- When consumed in high doses, it can have a soporific effect.
Balanced levels of CBD and THC counterbalance the tonic and relaxing effects of marijuana, allowing you to maintain a positive attitude without losing your intellectual productivity
- CBD and THC-balanced strains also act as adaptogens, increasing the body’s stamina and stress tolerance.