Interview that made the Tropical Seeds Company in the journal Cannabis Magazine October-2013.
INTERVIEW Tropical Seeds Co. by Albert a.k.a Garru.
Hi everyone, we continue with the third interview, this time to know a little more than Tropical Seeds Company, which usually work with pure genetic lines from the African continent and also used the famous Pakistan Chitral Kush, delicatessen where they exist. They’ve been in the market a few years old, but the big banks and advertising budget have made not knows. Interviewed Aeritos visible head of this great little seedbank.
Garru : Hi ! Happy to have the chance to make this interview.
It’s a pleasure to talk with the creators of Smooth Smoke. You’ve always done different maintaining and preserving works with genetics such as Chitral ( Pakistan ), Ciskei ( South African ) or Congo.
High Garru, our pleasure. Big thanks for giving us this chance to talk a bit. It’s true we’ve maintained very interesting and not common genetics from all around the Globe. It was after some big efforts and years that we started creating and giving form to new strains. We can’t deny Smooth Smoke is one of Tropical’s well known offer, we also love this sweet girl.
Garru : We’d like to hear about your starting, your first steps in the canna growing scene. How did you started to collect and preserve landraces ?
Truth being told, I did start a bit too soon. I had my first experience growing when I was 15. It was curiosity first but then I knew I had found something I felt passionate for, a new hobby and activity I’d never stop enjoying. I do remember having grown weed before starting to even smoking the flowers, just by the pleasure of admiring them while they grew trough their entire cycle. Sodium lights weren’t that popular then and fluorescent bulbs were used at first. Outdoor growing was also very fun.
Talking about landraces and base stock, HdB started collecting them around the year ’98. It was a huge inspiration for me, those were some exciting and incredibly new and exotic genetics. I hardly knew they existed but then.. it was love at first sight ! I also understood they were perfect tools as to create new hybrids and different results in contrast to the wide spread strains offered through the main and numerous Dutch seed banks.
So, I joined HdB’s Project in ’06, didn’t thought about it twice. Wanted to be of good use and was amazed and very thankful with the first jewels I got to try, test, and continue working. That’s how all this adventure began.
Garru: How was your starting as a seed bank ? Do you breed and offer F1, different hybrids, reproductions from other Seed Banks…?
Work and facilities were based in the Canary Islands…giving an excellent use to big greenhouses incredibly filled in with exuberant plants showing their full potential.
The hardest task was to breed every line separately, trying to get to know them better, eliminating non desired traits ( hermafroditism, extremely high and lanky females which potency didn’t reached the demand, etc ). These first lines were brought from different areas from the world, containing interesting psychoactive properties and rare-different terpen profiles in their flowers.
Locals had done, in many cases, a long attempt during time in the search and reproduction of the more potent and more resistant plants to be grown in their zone. We were lucky to swap seeds with them and some other batches came from collaborators and friends of us. We can’t forget to mention some genetics we’ve also worked that came from some reputable seed Banks such as Pakistan Chitral Kush from CannaBioGen or Zambia from the extint African Seeds.
After some first inbreeding steps on a good number of lines we decided to shorten the number of genetics to be worked in depth in the future. We focused on the ones that could be grown both indoors and outdoors in many regions and climates, giving some excellent results and brining new blood and expressions to the scene.
One after another, each strain offered in our catalogue acquires its sense and form due to the work done with it until it is shown. We know them so well because we’ve treated the plants in detail, being always close, observing and taking notes of what we found. Therefor, there are several ways in which our strains have being worked and finally presented to the growers :
Cognition, King Congo, Bisho Purple…are part of the F1 offers here at Tropical Seeds. Excellent form to explore, understand and get amazed by the hybrid vigour you’ll encounter.
We’ve maintained by inbreeding some pure strains which are not easy to find in these days. We’re proud then to include some of these in our catalogue. Some stable and unique plants will be found when growing Ciskei or Zambia ( this last African is less known but it’s and incredible electric and spicy potent sativa ).
Finally, there are some strains offered in the backcross step. This way we succeeded in making more easily repeated, found and visible some traits we thought are the ones smokers will enjoy the most. By backcrossing to our selection of PCK we’ve created very resistant, compact, quick and good yielding strains getting the best of the Pakistan side and adding some potency and new scents in the final result.
Garru : What type of growing you prefer to use ? Aeroponic maybe ? Also, do you have any tip for your strains ? readers would love some.
We prefer doing organic grows for our own personal use and when producing seeds. We’ve tried several ways and techniques during the past years but we like best the results coming from organic. Quality is first for us rather than quantity, not saying our yields are lower, we’re happy and quite proud of the final results we get from our flowers and seeds. We do recommend everyone to try to grow this way and get your own conclusions when smoking.
We take special care when preparing a good mix for our plants ; an airy and moist, equilibrated one, providing a good drainage. Having as exception Ciskei and the hybrids created with this line, the rest of our offers are not very demanding in the fertilizing to pic, so, we recommend giving a light scheme when growing the tropicals. Some in between watering with no ferts are needed, draining well, always with correct PH & EC levels.
When going into techniques as to grow the big and long sativas such as Durban Punch, Swacky, Zambia or Old Congo, we love going to the direct 12/12 photoperiod from seed to maturity. Using small pots until they have sexed and they are prepared to enter the flower time is a good way to control their final size. The last repotting has to be done with special care for the plant not to be stressed. Then, we can go progressively reducing the photoperiod in the last 3-5 weeks for sativas to finally mature best. This really helps to lower the sometimes seeming never stop foxtailing blooming. We can make one big and large cola plants this way, getting to try different strains in the same grow.. and lowering the final flowering times of this lovely effect plants. A good way to fall in love again with the good looking sativas !