Thai people call cannabis gunja (pronounced: Gun-Cha in Thai) so if you are talking with a local Thai person, they may not understand if you use the words: cannabis, marijuana, or weed. Use gunja and they will understand quickly. The most common types of ganja in Thailand are:
The effects of Sativa are feelings of relaxation mixed with invigoration. Energizing effects that help reduce anxiety, and help the brain be more creative, and often people feel music more than normal too. Sativa strains are good for making boring jobs more interesting and helping to pass the time. We have talked about Sativa in some of our previous articles, as it is a common strain around the world.
This strain produces a heavily sedating effect. After being smoked, you may feel sleepy and lazy. Your thoughts muddle while your body stays relaxed and still. It is very helpful with muscle pain. This strain will help you let go of stress, and it will help with insomnia and anxiety too. It’s more suitable for nighttime use before sleeping.
Ruderalis is another strain that feels like leftover Sativa from yesterday mixed with Indica, where the CBD softens the intensity of the THC. This strain is mostly used for breeding new hybrid strains and to cumulate CBD for medical treatment. Ruderalis is adaptable and appealing to breeders looking to capitalize on its auto-flowering trait. The Ruderalis gene offers the ability of breeders to create an auto-flowering hybrid with the advanced potency and flavor profile of its genetic partner.
The Weed that Thai People Smoked before Legalization
If you ever heard of the words “Thai Stick”, this is what was commonly found in Thailand before legalization. It’s the legendary Thai cannabis that was exported around the world in the 1960s and 1970s.
The distinctive characteristic of Thai Stick is its high THC, at around 18-22%. Originally this type of marijuana came from the Phu Phan Mountain Range in Sakon Nakhon in Issan, Thailand, just over the border from Laos.
“Thai stick” is the nickname for the Hang Krarok Strain, which translates into English as Squirrel Tail. It gives Sativa-like feelings and has a unique appearance. It always comes in a cylinder shape with plugs through the middle from top to bottom to keep it tightly packed. Usually, Thai people will cover it with a banana leaf to keep it from drying out too quickly.
Weed grows well here due to the fact that Thailand has a climate that is highly suitable for growing. Thai people commonly speak about the weather here as having only 3 seasons in the year: hot, hotter, and hottest.
Thai Stick was nearly extinct, but it never completely disappeared. Instead, it evolved into a brick weed with a red string wrapped around it, which was secretly imported from neighboring Laos by Thai ganja smugglers. So, before legalization, Thai people smoked brick weed, which is Squirrel Tail Sativa Strain. The brick weed comes in 2 types, one which is wrapped with red thread, and one which is not.
The one with red thread usually uses only the flower part to make up the brick. The sellers will always inform us that this red-threaded weed and will not make you dizzy or get vertigo from added pesticides or any chemical fertilizers.
The other type is the one without red thread. Because of the power of the sun’s rays here, most strains in Southeast Asia are Sativa. brick weed makes you sleepy and lazy. The effect is similar to Indica, but this strain is surely Sativa. According to Thai rumors, heavy headaches around the temple area are caused by pesticides and chemical fertilizers on cannabis. Some rumors even propose that there is some opium added to these bricks during the pressing process. We can’t verify that either way for sure, but it seems unlikely based on the cost of opium.
Brick weed is commonly available in Thailand nowadays. 1kg costs as little as 4000 baht. Thai people call other cannabis strains “OG” (oh-gee), which is a short form for the word “organic,” meaning no chemical products were used to help make it grow. Thai people never saw cannabis flowers during the cannabis ban era, so they assume that all flowers are from other strains, all are “OG”, and sometimes refer to the flowers as “OG”. They may ask “Mi OG Mai?” – which translates to “Do you have organic?”, but actually they are asking if there are buds/flowers available.
After legalization, “Moo Yor”, became more prevalent here. This is compressed weed rolled into a cylinder shape, just like “Moo Yor”, a Thai food that has the same appearance and cylinder shape. This is commonly wrapped with red thread, but not only red, sometimes other colors like black are used as well.
Traditional Thai Items for Smoking Weed
Nowadays, here are many ways to smoke weed in Thailand, whether we cut it, grind it, or whatever. With a plethora of new tools at our disposal to carry out various methods, even the traditional bong has advanced to the point we can now use air and water pressure to force smoke into the lungs.
Cutting Boards made from Brush Trees
Traditional Thai cutting boards are made from toothed, brush trees. This gives the benefit of reducing phlegm in the throat, so, mostly out of pure laziness, these boards became the default for weed smokers to use. While you are cutting on this board surface skin of the board will come off and mix with weed which helps a lot when smoking.
The wood of the brush tree is anti-inflammatory, and especially helpful for coughing and phlegm after smoking. The worst part of smoking cannabis is coughing after smoking. You cough and then sweat, and the high feeling gradually comes on after. With no cough, no inflammation of the throat, and therefore no bronchitis or other lingering issues.
Mixing with Tobacco
Thai people often also use tobacco to soften the strength of cannabis smoke. Previously, if you smoked and coughed and there were people nearby to hear, it may have drawn attention to what you were doing. Thus, mixing with tobacco was a way to keep smoking more discreet.
Tobacco also helps add more weight to whatever you have to smoke, so you have more to smoke with friends if you add in tobacco.
Buying Marijuana in Thailand Now
After legalization, many shops opened all around Thailand. On social media, many sellers have created pages and online shops promoting cannabis to display their inventory such as OG, brick weed, hash, pipes, bongs, and other cannabis equipment, etc. They use text, pictures, and videos, in an attempt to attract buyers. You may find some scammers selling online, but at least now you can go to the police if you get ripped off.
The common problem with online commerce where the received products that were ordered show up and don’t look like what was expected, is still common here. In this case, for cannabis, the weed can be too dry and/or smell very bad. You may not feel anything except for intense coughing. It happens a lot in the brick weed business. Some buyers will send you a replacement item to prevent losing a customer, but others will just ignore you. If some customers put up a bad review on the internet, word will spread very fast, so most sellers want to avoid this. Many other potential buyers are checking for feedback before they make a purchase.