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Blog | Delta THC

What Is Exotic Weed? Is It Better Than Regular Buds?

The weed most of us smoke is typically cultivated locally or regionally. But did you know there are also rare, unique strains of cannabis dubbed “exotic weed?” 

Companies are cultivating hard to come by strains grown in far away places that cannabis connoisseurs covet. 

Exotic bud can refer to weed grown in a different country, or even a different state. A West Coast strain grown in Cali could be labeled exotic to someone living on the East Coast or in the Midwest. 

The line between regular weed and rare weed gets continually blurred. There are ways, however, to differentiate between the two. 

Keep reading to find out what makes weed truly exotic vs “really good” smoke.

exotic buds

Key Takeaways: Exotic Bud

  • The cannabis industry often uses the term “exotic” freely making it hard to differentiate exotic cannabis from regular weed.
  • Exotic weed strains are not grown locally.
  • Exotic cannabis has specific cultivation requirements.
  • Exotic cannabis buds are denser, more aromatic and contain more trichomes.

What Is Exotic Weed? 

Genuinely exotic marijuana, however, refers to weed strains that were originally grown in foreign regions, under specific conditions with traceable origins.

But, the term exotic weed is used loosely these days. 

Consumers from the West Coast might claim that cannabis grown on the other side of the country is “exotic.” 

What Makes Weed Exotic? 

The biggest thing that makes weed considered exotic?

Rarity. True exotic strains aren’t cultivated locally. They originate in places outside of the United States.

Exotic weed is rare due to its origins and cultivation requirements. Growing a genuine exotic strain requires its own unique environment and specific location. 

Exotic weed requires strict growing conditions such as humidity, light, climate, temperature, soil type, water content and nutrients.

An exotic weed strain will look, smell and hit better than a regular weed strain and will be grown indoors to maximize yield. Such as the strain linked below:

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Where Does Exotic Weed Come From?

Exotic weed is foreign, not your locally grown high-quality chronic. 

These are strains native to distant countries outside of the US. If you live outside the US, however, weed grown in the States could be considered exotic depending where you are. 

Exotic weed strains often originate from these countries:

  • Africa
  • Afghanistan
  • Amsterdam
  • Netherlands
  • Malawi

How to Tell If Weed Is Exotic? 

There are a few specific ways to tell if weed is exotic. 

Number one being where it came from. A strain’s origin is essential to establishing if weed is exotic or regular. 

That said, there are other tell-tale signs that differentiate cannabis that’s exotic from the non-exotic. 

Here are some other ways you can determine if weed is exotic:

Trichome Dusted Buds

Exotic weed strains are glistening with eye-catching trichomes. Exotic buds will look like they’re dripping with crystals under the light. Heavily frosted buds are indicative of exotic weed strains.

High Terpene Concentration

If a strain smells specific yet unfamiliar, chances are that it is a genuine exotic. Truly exotic weed strains have more pungent aromas than regular weed strains. Cannabis with unusual aromas often point to exotic origins.

Potent Effects

Depending on the strains, exotic weed often has a higher potency. Certain strains are up to 2x stronger than regular cannabis. However, this is not a full proof indicator. Some exotic weed strains have similar THC levels and cannabinoid contents as regular cannabis strains.


An exotic strain sports more vivid colors than a normal cannabis. Exotic indica cannabis strains have intense purple colors while exotic sativas have brighter green colors.

exotic marijuana

Exotic Weed VS Regular Weed

So we’ve answered the question: what is exotic weed? We’ve also explored the distinctive characteristics between regular strains and exotic ones, including  origin, appearance and higher potency. 

But do exotic strains and regular weed have any similarities?


Exotic marijuana strains and regular strains can share similar genetics. For example, purple weed can be exotic or regular. Naturally occurring purple weed is often a pure indica strain. Purple strains adapt to cold weather by acquiring pigments called anthocyanins. These pigments give purple weed its bright hue. Purple weed is rare, so it’s often considered “exotic.”

For example, Purple Kush is a cross between Hindu Kush and Purple Afghani and was created in the Bay Area. Though it was made in the US, its genetics are true exotic strains.

Regular and exotics can also share similar cultivation methods. 

Hydroponic weed can be defined as exotic or regular depending on plant origins. Hydroponic cannabis are plants that are cultivated in a water-based system without soil. Most regular strains can be grown hydroponically. Some uncommon strains, or exotics, can be grown hydroponically as well.

For example, Amnesia Haze is a great strain that originates from the Netherlands that’s well suited to hydro grows.

On the other hand, a major difference between regular and exotic weeds is the grade. Marijuana buds that are designated as exotic tend to be high-grade and have a hefty price tag. Regular marijuana buds can be low grade, mid grade or high grade.

Mid grade cannabis, or mids weed, refers to average quality weed. It will not be as smooth and trichome-rich as top shelf bud, but it is a step above the cheapest eighth you can find.

Related Read: Weed Measurements Guide

The 5 Best Exotic Weed Strains Of 2023

Although you can find a few exotic strains grown in the US, the best exotic weed originates outside the country. 

If you’re serious about being a cannabis connoisseur that knows all there is to know about the distinctive characteristics of good weed, knowing the best exotic cannabis strains is key. 

Following are a few of the top exotics you can find. 

1. Cheetah Piss 

Cheetah Piss is a rare, balanced 50/50 sativa-indica strain with a funky ammonia aroma. The dominant effects are intense euphoria. Most users report a boost in mood and feeling uplifted.

This hybrid is a cross between Gelato 42, Lemonade and London Poundcake 97. It was created by the famous Cookies brand.

Cheetah Piss is a high potency strain with a THC content upward of 20%.

2. Skywalker OG 

This indica dominant hybrid strain has an earthy aroma mixed with notes of sweet blueberries. It has heavily relaxing and sedative effects.

Skywalker OG is native to Amsterdam. The strain is cross between Mazar, Blueberry and OG Kush.

One of the stronger exotics, its high potency THC content is between 20-25%.

3. Amnesia Haze

Amnesia Haze is a powerful sativa strain with citrus and pine aromas. It has uplifting and energetic effects. Users also report increased social connection when consuming Amnesia Haze.

The strain originates from the Netherlands, with genetics that include Jamaican and Asian landrace strains.

Amnesia Haze has an average THC content of 20-25%.

4. Durban Poison 

This dank pure sativa strain has pungent aromas of pepper and pine. It produces high energy and laser focused effects.

Durban Poison originates from South Africa. It’s a landrace strain native to Durban.

It’s one of the strongest exotics, with a THC content of 25%+

5. Hindu Kush 

Hindu Kush is a pure indica strain with a gorgeous green color. It contains herbal sandalwood aromas and is famous for its potential relaxing and pain-relieving effects.

This indica originates from the Hindu Kush mountain ranges in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This strain is seldom grown in the U.S. and is often expensive.

Hindu Kush produces a potent high and has an average THC content of 15-20%.

Is All Exotic Cannabis Grown Indoors?


Exotic strains have stricter cultivation requirements than local strains, and in order to grow exotic weed in the US, the exact growing conditions from its native habitat must be recreated. 

Exotic cannabis can only be grown in places that mimic their native climate. Indoor grows can replicate the specific environments that rare stains naturally grow in, but the process isn’t easy. This is one of the biggest reasons why exotic cannabis is so expensive. 

For example, when cultivating Hindu Kush in the US, the same conditions that exist in the Middle East must be replicated. This requires the proper light, soil, humidity and nutrition.

Why is Exotic Cannabis Expensive? 

Overall, exotic cannabis is considered superior to locally grown weed. 

The combination of quality, effects and overall smoking experience make rare strains labeled with the word exotic carry a higher price tag than regular weed.

Following are a few reasons exotic cannabis is so pricey:

  • Potency: Exotics can be twice as strong as regular weed.
  • Flavor: Exotic cannabis has distinctive and unusual terpenes not typically found in regular cannabis.
  • Effects: Exotic strains have rare genetics which contribute to unique highs and novel psychoactive effects.

Wrapping Up Exotic Cannabis: Is It Worth Buying?

Absolutely yes! If you’re looking for a superior smoking experience in terms of flavor, potency and effects, exotic weed is the answer.

Due to its rarity, full terpene profiles and specific cultivation techniques, exotic cannabis usually comes at a price. The difference in quality, however, can be detected by both the novice and seasoned cannabis user. 

Though the word exotic may be misused at times, truly exotic weed is well worth the price you pay for it.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is The Most Exotic Weed?

The most exotic weed is cannabis that is native to places outside of the U.S. Foreign strains are very rare. The harder a strain is to find, the more exotic it is. Here are some examples of extremely exotic cannabis strains:

  • Red Congolese – Africa
  • Hindu Kush – Afghanistan
  • Malawi Gold – Malawi
  • Amnesia Haze – Netherlands

Is Exotic Weed Stronger? 

Yes, exotic weed can definitely be stronger than regular dispensary weed. 

True exotic strains can even be twice as strong as normal weed! Other exotic strains will have similar cannabinoid contents as non-exotic strains. 

To be absolutely sure of a strain’s potency, it’s always recommended to check the lab reports.

Is Exotic Weed Better Than Regular?

It depends on personal preference, but we think exotic weed blows regular weed out of the water! 

Not only does exotic weed tend to be better cultivated, it typically contains higher potencies and more terpenes than regular weed. 

It also tends to look better. The colors of exotic weed are more vivid, the trichomes are more prevalent and the buds are denser.

And in the end, exotic cannabis provides a superior smoking experience and heightened effects.