By Bretton Love
NYC Diesel has emerged as a big favorite among the hundreds of known weed varieties. It’s easy to see why. This Sativa hybrid strain is known for its strong citrusy character; specifically, the terpenes found in NYC Diesel lend unique lime and grapefruit aromas and flavors. Its high is a powerful one (it typically has around 20 percent THC) that leaves most users feeling happy, energized, euphoric, but also relaxed.
In light of these effects, lots of consumers turn to NYC Diesel when they want to enhance their powers of concentration and/or take the edge off their anxiety. It’s no surprise at all that NYC Diesel continues to grow in popularity—nor that it has won a total of nine awards at the High Times Cannabis Cup.
We’re going to take a look at the origins of the NYC Diesel strain. But first a word about terpenes.
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What the hell are terpenes, anyway? Well, in brief, terpenes are organic hydrocarbons responsible for the aroma and flavor of plants and flowers. And while they exist in especially high concentrations in cannabis, terpenes play a role in virtually all plant life. In addition to producing smells and tastes, terpenes give rise to many of nature’s therapeutic properties. For example, terpenes are the primary constituent of essential oils like eucalyptus, lavender, peppermint, tea tree, etc.
As you may or may not know, eucalyptus is frequently used to treat coughs and congestion. Lavender is known to relieve stress as well as treat fungal infections and hair loss. Peppermint can help with irritable bowel syndrome, nausea, and headaches. And tea tree oil, owing to its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial aspects, is an effective treatment for various skin conditions.
Of course, as nearly everyone has come to understand, marijuana has plenty of medicinal benefits too. Different strains have different therapeutic effects, depending on which terpenes are most prominent.
Terpenes in NYC Diesel
More than 200 terpenes have been identified in cannabis. The main types in NYC Diesel are myrcene, limonene, and caryophyllene.
Myrcene makes up about half of all cannabis terpenes. It’s also found in mangoes, hops, lemongrass, and basil. Traditionally, myrcene has been employed to help treat hypertension, diabetes, and dysentery. It can also be used to relieve chronic pain and inflammation.
Limonene, as you probably surmised, is what lends NYC Diesel its citrusy smell and taste. Found in the peels of citrus fruits, limonene has the potential to facilitate weight loss and treat bronchitis. It is also frequently included in cancer treatments as there is evidence that it can help slow down the progression of the disease.
Caryophyllene is one of the more abundant terpenes in nature, famous for its spicy scent and flavor. Studies have suggested that it might be effective in treating alcoholism, as well as pain and inflammation.
But enough about terpenes; let’s turn to the evolution of NYC Diesel.
How did NYC Diesel come to be?
Like many cannabis strains, NYC Diesel has an ambiguous history. Anecdotal evidence indicates that it began as a variation of Chemdog, aka Chemdawg. As Alchimia reports, Chemdog was first developed in the early ‘90s by a breeder named, yes, Chemdog, from the seeds he found in a bag of weed he purchased at a Grateful Dead show.
Over the following year he worked to germinate these seeds, producing Chemdog (aka ‘91 Chemdog), Chemdog A (aka Chemdog’s Sister), and Chemdog B. He also wound up breeding a number of hybrid strains that include Giesel, Super Snowdawg, Chemhaze, and Bubble Chem.
Somewhere along the way, a breeder in New York got his hands on a Chemdog strain—’91 Chemdog—and began calling it New York City Diesel. This was several years before the emergence of Original Diesel in 1995, which was followed shortly after by Sour Diesel.
Also in the mix here is the OG Kush strain, which perhaps began as a self-pollination of ‘91 Chemdog, or as a sister of Sour Diesel, or as a composite of a Chemdog clone and a Lemon Thai/Old World Paki Kush cross. At any rate, OG Kush shares a common ancestor with NYC Diesel, hence all the hybrids grown from these strains.
Weed in New York
Speaking of New York and weed, it was reported in January that marijuana will be made legal in the state by the end of the year. Announcing his support for the measure, Governor Andrew Cuomo cited two reasons why he thinks weed ought to be legalized. First, he pointed out that enforcement of marijuana laws has “disproportionately affected” ethnic minorities, leading to the arrest and incarceration of countless African Americans and other people of color.
Cuomo also touted the economic benefits of legalization, stating that it could ultimately generate $300 million per year in tax revenue for the state, which has struggled with a budget deficit in recent years.
“Let’s legalize adult use of marijuana,” he said.
We trust you will mark the occasion with some NYC Diesel. We know we will.