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Trichomes vs THC


Well-Known Member
I'm wondering how TCH in any given plant is measured. That is to say, what is it that gives one plant a higher TCH content that another? If you have two different strains of marijuana growing side by side and both have equal, or close to, tricomes on the flowers, how is it that one plant may have a 10% rating while her neighbor may have 25%?
In laymen's terms, how is this measured??

Thanks, all, Andy.


New Member
Hey Andy, found this..


It is helpful to review some often used terms when addressing this question. Terms are frequently interchanged when talking about strength, potency, concentration, and dosage.

Percent Concentration
The cannabinoid profile analysis gives you the concentration of cannabinoids expressed in %. This is the weight of the cannabinoid divided by the total plant weight. What this means is that 15% THC contains 0.15 grams of THC for every 1 gram of plant matter. Percentage is a concentration; a concentration in its simplest form is just a ratio of two things, like salt in water. The ocean, for instance, has a salt concentration of about 3.5%. This means that in a hundred pound of seawater, there are three and a half pounds of salt. The concentration can be expressed in other ways besides %, for instance, 3.5% is the same thing as 35 mg/g, or it could be expressed as 35 parts per 1000. These are all the same ratios.

Potency is an expression of the relative strength of the concentration, for instance the higher the concentration the higher the potency.

Dosage is the concentration, multiplied by the total weight. This is a very useful tool for the dispensing of edibles.

Percent H2O
This is the weight of the water relative to the total weight of the sample. Laboratory samples are reported in both dry and wet weight. Dry weight is the standard laboratory practice, and any laboratory reporting wet weight should make an obvious disclaimer to that effect, as it will result in a lower value. The %H2O of properly cured medicinal cannabis should be between 5–15%.

Interlaboratory Results
The primary discrepancy between laboratories lies in their individual choices of instrumentation, as well as the complex chemical reactions that are taking place at the molecular level. The two options available to the chemist are, Gas Chromatography (GC), or High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC). These instruments are both capable of delivering precise results in the hands of an experienced technician. The important difference between the two instruments is that the GC utilizes heat to analyze the sample, where the HPLC does not. This is an important difference because the vast majority of the cannabinoids (70% -90%), are present in the form of an acid and must be converted before consumption to their neutral form by a process
called decaryboxylation. The decarboxylation process activates the THC when it is heated. This is the same thing that occurs when medicine is smoked, when it is baked, or when a sample is analyzed by way of Gas Chromatography. The HPLC system does not heat the sample so no decarboxylation occurs. The HPLC system detects both the neutral cannabinoid of interest, as well as its acidic counterpart. Laboratories that utilize HPLC systems then combine both compounds and report them together. This system does not take into account the loss of cannabinoids by way of decomposition, and the result is a higher reported value. The two different approaches are both accurate and may be used independently as relative references inside of individual

Source: http://www.thcanalytical.com/docs/THC-Interpreting Your Data.pdf


Well-Known Member
Thanks DankWolf! Read both through and through. Still didn't quite answer what I was looking for. Maybe we just don't know. I'm wondering if every tricomb, individually, has the same amount of THC to it. So from that, can I them extrapolate that the visible tricombs (density of) is a direct reflection of probable percentages of THC concentration?

The reason I bring this up is, I have a 1:1 THC / CBD at 8% as per breeder, and I can't understand the low THC rating when I see so many tricombs. If I follow the above articles right, visually you should have a fair judgment potency.

Great reading, just the same. I do, now, understand how mmj is tested.

Thanks, DW, Andy. :Namaste:


New Member
I was under the impression that the 1:1 thc to cbd ratio is what is wanted in mmj..... 8:8 should be very successful mmj ... maybe won't provide a head high but, you know, that isn't always necessary.
Anyway, I understand your question. If trichs are where thc is stored how is it frosty, sticky stuff comes out with low numbers. Or, more precise. how do two of the same plants raised together register with different levels?
Good question. Anyone?
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