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Strain Legends: Subcool Talks 20 Years of Jack’s Cleaner

TGA Subcool Seeds is at the cutting edge of cannabis genetics, but one of their most classic offerings is the Jack's Cleaner, which has been around for over two decades.
Photo courtesy of TGA Subcool Seeds


Strain Legends: Subcool Talks 20 Years of Jack’s Cleaner

The popularity of most cannabis strains waxes and wanes in the same rapid rhythm as music and fashion. Others stand the test of time and become the stuff of legend. Add to that list Jack’s Cleaner — the strain that launched the ascendancy of TGA Subcool Seeds.

A lot of the great strains of the current cannabis era are made with the elite genetics of years past, and when it comes to fancy ingredients, a good pheno of Jack’s Cleaner from Subcool of TGAgenetics is basically some extinct black truffle oil since there were only two clones ever handed out.

The history of this strain now stretches back over twenty years, all the way to Subcool’s first computer.

Back in 1994 the world was as connected as it had ever been thanks to the rapidly spreading phenomenon of the Internet. Within the new digital universe, Subcool found a legion of compatriots growing pot, many of whom were responsible tax paying adults.

One of the first fellow cultivators Subcool befriended early on the web went by the name of Skoosh. Subcool and Skoosh eventually decided they weren’t sketched out by each other after some heart to hearts involving ice cream and traded genetics.

Skoosh sent subcool 200 seeds of a strain he’d put his name on. While Subcool didn’t have the exact generational details of the mixing and matching, Skoosh was said to have a fantastic genetic lineage that included Pluton, Lambs Bread, Purple Haze, and Northern Lights. Pluton was an acclaimed offering from the Super Sativa Seed Club bred by the Legendary Neville.

After popping a bunch of sketchy looking sativas from the Skoosh’s party pack in a propagation project that took roughly a year, Subcool narrowed it down to a few decent phenos that became one awesome one. The winner was an extremely resinous lemon scented pheno that reminded Subcool of Mr Clean household scrub. Subcool decided to name it “The Cleaner.”

The Cleaner on it’s own, while dope and sticky, was not a viable strain. Subcool noted that the stems weren’t holding up and the yield wasn’t there either. Thankfully there was a male Jack Herer from Sensi Seeds in his garage he hadn’t tossed yet. He put a small plant of The Cleaner in with the Jack clone and it resulted in a few dozen seeds.

In those seeds he would find the game-changing strain Jack’s Cleaner that would go on to produce one of the strains of the decade, and generally speaking in an indica-dominant world, one of the greatest sativa-leaning hybrids ever.

He would never produce the Jack’s Cleaner in seed form and bred the Ripper as a viable stabilization. Today Jack’s Cleaner dominant phenotypes of Jack the Ripper are a sought after cut for breeding purposes. Any Jack’s Cleaner you see in a dispensary is Jack’s Cleaner 2, the backcross with Jack the Ripper.

It took Subcool years to see what he’d truly stumbled on. He knew it was good pot, but it wasn’t until 1997, while hosting a gathering of his cultivator peers, that he found out just how banging it was.

In this mini-cup for the ages, organized by the group known as The 77 (which included code writer Shabang and Eric 77, who posessed the original California Orange) Subcool used that Cali O as the mom for Agent orange and Jilly Bean.

That first meeting Jamaica 1 featured cuts like Erkele, Jack Herer, and Blueberry, but Jack’s Cleaner took home every first place vote.

Jack’s Cleaner went on to be included in the genetic lines of many great strains, but its earliest offspring — Jack The Ripper — is still the most famous. It started making huge waves in the late 2000s. Since then its lineage has continued to branch out, including the fantastic Ace of Spades and purple variant of the strain Qleaner.

“A lot of people breed with Jack the Ripper,” Subcool said. “When you see major companies breeding the male they want the cleaner dominant version. That can get up to 6% THCV. For people who are sick it shows great promise.”

Subcool added that the cause for the THCV was the limonene profile of Jack the Ripper and that the effects of the original Jack’s Cleaner are well known.

“Joint one gets you high, joint two gives you a full melting feeling, and joint three causes you to hallucinate,” he said.

One can expect to see many amazing things from the genetic family started by Jack’s Cleaner for many years to come.

TELL US, have you ever tried Jack’s Cleaner?

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