Acapulco Gold

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Name: Acapulco Gold
Variety: Sativa
THC: ~23%
Flowering Time: 70–75 Days

Acapulco Gold, also known as Mexican Sativa,[1] is a popular sativa (or strongly sativa-dominant hybrid)[2] strain of cannabis, originating from Acapulco, Mexico and surrounding areas. Its exact genetics are unknown, but this landrace strain is now bred throughout the United States and Europe. It features orange hairs and gold, green and brown colors of resin, giving the appearance of gold nuggets. Despite its highly positive reception, the strain can be difficult to obtain.


The strain's name refers to its origin (Acapulco, Mexico) and its appearance, which is sometimes compared to gold nuggets due to its orange hairs, with gold, green and brown colors of resin collecting on the buds. When a bud is broken up, an aroma of burnt toffee lingers.[3] It is known to reach an approximate THC level of 23%.[2][3]


Traditionally, the strain was grown outdoors; plants cultivated are ready for harvest by mid-October and can yield up to 500 grams per square meter.[2] Growing indoors can be difficult due to lack of established cultivation guidelines.[2] Despite this, more growers cultivate Acapulco Gold indoors, making it more difficult to obtain the strain.[3] When grown indoors, the strain flowers for 70 to 75 days.[2]


According to Wikileaf, the strain produces a "powerful cerebral high that raises one's mood without producing overpowering feelings of happiness. Instead, the cerebral high mixes with a calming body high for a relaxing experience". Using the strain may also cause anxiety, dry mouth and eyes, headaches, or mild paranoia.[2] Contradictorily, Acapulco Gold has been recommended for anxiety, depression, and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), or to relieve aches and pains.[2]


Once available only via import, this landrace strain is now bred throughout the United States and Europe, "causing the name to spread much further than the plant it was originally used to describe".[4] According to, which attributes the fact to "wiki", in 1965 the Oxford English Dictionary first described Acapulco Gold as "a special grade of pot growing only in the vicinity of Acapulco… [that] has a potency surpassed by few of the green varieties and usually comes at slightly higher prices or in short weights."[4] Since then, the strain entered Western pop culture and has been referenced by David Crosby, John Lennon, Robert Plant, the band Rush, and more recently by MF Doom and Devin the Dude. The strain was mentioned on Saturday Night Live in 1975 and was used as the title of Edwin Corley's book "imagining corporate America’s preparation for legal marijuana".[4]

In 2010, Acapulco Gold was one of many marijuana trademarks people tried to register after the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office created a new category: "Processed plant matter for medicinal purposes, namely medical marijuana."[5]


According to Leafly, Acapulco Gold "has a reputation for being one of the best cannabis strains ever created".[3] says: "This mythic sativa landrace is one of the crowned jewels of cannabis culture, arguably the greatest sativa to flower in the entire world. Ever. Sounds like I’m blowing smoke up your ass, but its the truth. Acapulco Gold is as good as it gets."[4] Comparing the landrace strain with its modern offspring, the website reports: "This isn’t to say that the modern versions are bad, the Acapulco gold sold at Barney's Farm is excellent, only that they are engineered cross breeds, Frankensteins compared to the potent purity of the old stuff." Finally, quipped, "[Acapulco Gold is] the best thing to come out of Mexico since Quesadillas!"[4]

Barney's was the Sativa Cup Winner at the 2010 High Times Cannabis Cup.[6] In 2014, Acapulco Gold was included in High Times magazine's list of the "25 Greatest Strains of All Time".[1]

Additional Resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 25 Greatest Strains of All Time by Nico Escondido (October 9, 2014). Retrieved January 22, 2015.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 Acapulco Gold Strain Attributes, Wikileaf. Retrieved December 18, 2014.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Acapulco Gold Cannabis Strain Details, Leafly. Retrieved December 18, 2014.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 Acapulco Gold Strain Information, Retrieved December 18, 2014.
  5. From Acapulco Gold To Albino Rhino: The Marijuana Trademark Land Rush by Jacob Goldstein (July 19, 2010), NPR. Retrieved December 18, 2014.
  6. Award Winning Cannabis Strains: Acapulco Gold: Barney's Farm, Cannabis Cup Winners. Retrieved December 18, 2014.