At the AmsterdamSeedCenter we always get questions about what kind of strains customers should grow in their country, as each place has specific climate-related requirements.
The further away you live from the equator, the shorter the growing season will be. This makes sense because we all know that the further you go from the equator the shorter the summer and the longer the winter.
Determining the most suitable cultivar/variety for the habitat (local climate) where you live depends on several factors. The sun (hours of light), temperature and humidity levels play very important roles and these basic variables make your habitat suitable or not-suitable to grow cannabis cultivars outdoor.
Altitude should be taken into account, because in higher altitudes the air pressure and colder temperatures can make it less suitable to grow some specific strains like Hazes or OG’s for example.
Most cannabis cultivars thrive in a climate that is not too wet… but also not too dry. A climate that is too moist results in mold-problems, but on the other hand, when it is too dry you also have a problem because cannabis needs enough water to properly grow and flower.
To help, I have found a very useful map from a 2009 UNODC report.
It shows climatologically suitable areas for outdoor cannabis cultivation and gives some interesting information. As you can see, desert-areas in Africa (even if they are close to the equator) are too hot/dry for cultivation but also mountain areas are not always suitable depending on the altitude and temperature. This illustrates that extreme climates are not favorable for cannabis.
So, where does cannabis grow? The Mediterranean in Europe, Africa south of the equator, India and its mountain-areas, Thailand and the east-coast of China, the north- and east-coast of Australia, almost the whole continent of South-America and let’s not forget a big part of the USA.
If you hold a Google Earth map next to this, you can see that the UNDOC map almost completely corresponds to areas with vegetation.
But the main question is: Which Cultivars/Genetics can be grown where in these suitable areas?
To answer this I have made a map with all the suitable growing areas and a selection of strains/genetics that can be grown in these areas. The important thing is to match the right strain with the right climate. The geographical position of these areas (latitudes) in relation to the Equator plays an important role in climate differences and influences genetic suitability.
I wanted to make the information easy accessible for you, so instead of talking about Sativas, Indicas and Hybrids, I have simply made a ‘Top-3’ of strains for each suitable area/climate.
The Mediterranean (Spain, Portugal, Greece, Italy, Morocco, Turkey, etc.) is one of the best areas to grow almost all varieties outdoor because of its temperate/subtropical climate; Cannabis thrives best in a temperate climate.
The USA Pacific Coast (West Coast) is also ideal, which is why all the outdoor ‘Cali-weed’ is so super fire!
Northern Europe (Holland ‘Dutch Outdoor’, Germany, Belgium, UK, Ireland, etc.) is also considered a temperate climate, but the temperatures are lower here, the humidity is higher, the summer ends earlier and (as we at ASC know!), Dutch weather is just not as pleasant as the weather in Spain (for plants as well as humans).
I have also made a Top-3 of normal strains and a Top-3 of autoflowers for the Colder European countries, so you can choose between a whole-season-strain (photoperiod) or a variety that just takes 60-70 days to finish from the start of the germination (autoflower).
Top-3 Northern/Eastern European Countries (whole season strain)
Many growers in colder/wetter European countries like to grow autoflowers. Because they have a short finish time (60 - 70 days), you can finish them off while the sun and warmth is still strong.
Other regions of the world. Here are some Top 3 recommendations for strains that offer high performance in other parts of the globe.
Top-3 India, Nepal, Thailand, Asian Coast Area
Top-3 Africa South of the Equator
Top-3 South America
I hope there is a strain between the ones I selected for you that fits the environment where you are living, but more important a strain that fits your personal needs! One Love, Bless!