Primal purple genetics from the early days of Dutch outdoor cultivation
Genetic background and history
In the mid-eighties, Purple #1 was one of the first purple outdoor strains commercially available as seed strain in the Netherlands. It is a balanced indica/sativa hybrid (50:50), bred from Purple Afghan and several sativa strains. In 1983, Henk van Dalen began to cross this Purple Afghan strain with the sativa genetics, therefrom developing the new variety Purple #1 which was released to the market in 1987. Purple #1 is a hardy outdoor variety with good mold resistance, being fully adapted to the Dutch outdoor climate. Its calyxes turn purple in most cases, starting this discolouration at the beginning of flowering. According to Dutch Passion, up to 90% of the plants turn purple. The colder the nights are, the darker the purple hue is, because this attractive colour is produced by a pigment called anthocyane which acts as a kind of antifreeze for the plant. Purple #1 is expected to have a rough, but subtle aroma and a very good high. This traditional Dutch Passion outdoor strain has filled many Dutch and other European gardens in the past. But what about its abilities nowadays? Has Dutch Passion managed to keep up the nice quality over decades?
Cultivation testIn 2004, a German greenhouse grow with Purple #1 plants gave me an opportunity to experience actual Purple #1 plants in terms of growth, yield and high. This grow took place in a 20 m2 greenhouse owned by a guy called "Greenhouse Joe" and located in rural remoteness. At the end of June, he planted ten Purple #1 clones, pre-grown indoors for two weeks, directly into the greenhouse ground which had been prepared with growing soil and horn chips before. The clones had been grown form original Dutch Passion Purple #1 seed. By means of automatic darkening, Joe is in a position to do two greenhouse grows in one year. Before Purple #1, he had already successfully grown Euforia there from spring to early summer, using artificial darkening when the daily light period got longer than 12 hours. With many cloudy and rainy days, the German summer of 2004 was a great disappointment. Nevertheless, the Purple #1 plants gave a good performance in the vegetative state, and also flowering proceeded well, beginning from early August. The buds had turned violet very early, exhibiting a majestic purple look that got covered with lots of pretty sparkling crystals in the course of flowering. Partly also the stigmas turned purple.
The flower clusters looked quite broad, but taking a closer look revealed that their inner structure wasn't too dense - obviously due to the lack of sun light. At the end of September, the ripe plants were harvested by Greenhouse Joe. The average yield of his Purple #1 plants turned out to be 140 grams after all, which was satisfying to him with regard to the bad wheather and the shorter vegetative period. And despite temporarily high air humidity in the greenhouse, no Purple #1 plant got in trouble with mold. The taste of the dried buds was as purple-typical as expected, somewhat rough, but also spicy and unusual, a real natural outdoor taste. The turn was of decent potency, not knockdown, but very pleasant and refreshing, with some thriving sativa effects. Certainly a suitable day time smoke.