Big Sur Holy Weed

Big Sur Holy Weed is one of the legendary California strains, but not from the Emerald Triangle.  Big Sur Holy Weed comes from the coastal area of California just south of San Francisco and Monterey,  and north of SamLuis Obispo.  It is one of the most beautiful places on earth.

Of course there is a back story to this strain just like with other legendary strains like Trainwreck or Chemdog.  Supposedly there was a monk named Perry living in the Big Sur area back in the 70s who developed this strain.  There are various versions of this story some involving a town called Gorda and an individual named Danbo.  Just google “monk named Perry.”

“now lets go to the book WEED by Jerry Kamstra 1974. this is fairly early report on BSHW. if you read the book you will believe the author really knows what he is talking about. he was down there buying the mexican weed in Zacatecas and elsewhere in Mexico. but he was a very early buyer and smuggler. go to the bottom paragraph of page 149.

“Zacatecas Purple is a variety of marijuana that grows in a particular high mountain valley in the state of Zacatecas. When cured the seeds from the colas have a distinctive purple hue. and the weed is exremely potent. especially if it is allowed to cure properly. in the late sixties a beatnik dealer planted a crop using some Zacatecas Purple seeds in the mountains of Big Sur. The resultant weed came to be known as Big Sur Holy Weed and holy it was too. “”

“heres an article from marihuana monthly feb 1976 (see picture) about zihuatenejo purple a famous strain that did the rounds in the 70’s. maybe simmilar to the zacatecas purple that rellikbuzz dug up. ive even heard the rumours of a band of buddhist monks that originally grew bshw near tasahara in the big sur mountains, giving it the name holy weed by the dealers of that time. ”

There seems to be general agreement that Big Sur Holy Weed is an old Mexican strain called Zacatecas Purple, which may be now extinct, but some stories have it orginally  crossed with an Afghan.   At any rate all reports of the effects of Big Sur Holy Weed suggest that in effect it is mostly sativa, psychedelic and trippy.  There are also reports that the TH Seeds hybrid called S.A.G.E. contains Big Sur Holy Weed as it’s sativa component, and Mazar – i – Sharif as it’s Afghan component.

So we have a legendary strain, apparently held by an individual “Danbo” who sold it to the breeder Reeferman.  According to Reeferman (in one of the threads below) he only germed 10 or so seeds so this line was undoubtedly bottlenecked a bit.  So Reeferman is one source of this legend.  Also known to hold it (though unknown if it is the same Danbo/Reeferman line) are the breeders hothouseflowers (hhf) and the Breeders Choice Organization (not the Sannies Breeders Choice, the Breeders Choice from Cannabis Eye) and perhaps the breeder British Hempire and the breeder Bodhi.  Bodhi’s story is below,  and I suppose the question will be is Bodhi’s line the real deal, a related line, or perhaps as some suggest a Durban-Afghan cross of some kind, unrelated to Big Sur Holy Weed though attractive on its own merits.

So where can you find Big Sur Holy Weed?  It is not clear that Reeferman is still in business, or whether or not he still has the mamas and papas or any remaining seed stock.  Remaining Reeferman seeds are disappearing from the seed banks that carry his gear.  Breeders Choice listed Big Sure Holy Weed and a BSHW x Haze cross on their site a couple of years ago, and they might still have some stock but it is not on their site.  The Bodhi version is still listed at the Attitude under limited releases but it has been sold out for months.  So Big Sur Holy Weed is very hard to find at the moment.  I do think that there are several breeders working to preserve the strain though so perhaps in 2012 we will see new presentations of it.  Short of that I guess you could buy some SAGE and breed some F2s, F3s and F4s and look for some purple sativa phenos.  You will never get the original strain back but you might find something similar.  Or maybe you could mount a strain hunter expedition to the high mountain valleys of Zacatecas, where this strain might still exist (but maybe doesn’t due to paraquat.)  Even better, you could mount an expedition to the hills of Santa Cruz and Big Sur California where the strain might still exist.  Also possible that you might find a clone even if you can’t find seeds.  As long as you are there you might as well score some Blue Dream seeds too, another legend from the Santa Cruz area.

A discussion on Grass City:

The center of the marijuana-growing industry in the United States is in northern California, especially Humboldt County, where growers use the latest scientific methods to produce first-quality crops. California marijuana is not only as good as most foreign varieties but far more likely to reach American consumers in a relatively fresh state, at or near peak potency. Among the best California varieties is one known as Big Sur Holy Weed, which was originally grown from seeds of Zacatecas Purple, a rare Mexican strain.[13]

13. California marijuana: William Carlson, “Marijuana Crops Revived California Town,” New York Times, 1l March 1979. See also John Dowdy, “Spice Valley, U.S.A.: Marijuana Moonshiners,” Atlantic Monthly, January 1979, pp.6-24.

A discussion with pix on THC Farmer:

2011 discussion on THC Farmer:

Another version of the monk named Perry story and another connection to Gorda:

A thread about Bodhi Seeds version with pix:

Smoke report and some nuggage:

A smoke report:


“This strain smelled so delicious! Although listed on the menu as an Indica, the buzz provided was definitely more Hybrid like and “old school.” If your youth years consisted of the 70’s or 80’s, be SURE to get your hands on your this one if you come across it. Big Sur Holy Weed just took me back in time.”

Strain description of the Bodhi Seeds line:

“these were a special gift to a well connected friend from an old grower in big sur, she gave them to me because she knew that i loved seeds, and would do them right. can i 100% verify this is the original undiluted or unhybridized big sur holy weed line from perry the monk, no can do, but what i can say is this is unique, oldschool, mind ablaze green fire time capsule weed from the big sur mountains.

the plants do great indoors and out and can get quite big. it has genetically purple phenos, pink pistilled phenos, indica dominant phenos, a less common sativa pheno, and loads of hybrid phenos, smells range from soggy bread to blueberry menthol, it seems to be a afghani mexican hybrid masterfully bred towards the sativa high and the indica frame. the true magic of this strain is the amazing sublime sativa high, a beautiful blast from the past.

this seed run was an open pollination of 4 males and 6 females, not alot, but enough to get the job done… a small population open pollination in a tent means your going to mostly the beans made from the first two males that opened…. the super quick sativa pheno male… and the fat indica dom male, initial reports are showing that the indica pheno is mostly represented… this line is called big sur holy bud to differentiate it from the big sur holy weed lines by hhf, danbo, and reeferman. everybody that has tried this line has fallin in love with it. im really happy to gift this back to the community.

5 Responses to “Big Sur Holy Weed”

  1. Hey – currently working the Big Sur Holyweed line – one from Danbo one form NDNGuy (the NDNGuy Line leans toward the purple sativa pheno) – we’re doing an open pollination to get these out there widely again.

  2. Mustafunk (ICMAG) Says:

    Great info on the BSHW… I personally love heirloom and oldschool strains lover, specially sativas. Mexicans are very hard to trace nowadays, only know about Oaxaca’76, Michoacan Spicy Cola and some more but nothing else. It’s a shame that so many heirlooms are gone, fortunately thanks to many cannabis connoisseurs we still have old thais, panaman, mexicans, africans and so on. Due to the prohibition, it’s up to us to preserve this strains for the future generations. Peace.

  3. Roselynn Says:

    The place which you are talking about, Tassajara is a place in the Los Padres national forest, up the Carmel Valley Road twenty miles inland of Big Sur. There is a Zen monastery out there but I would doubt the credibility of it being grown by these monks. Being from this area and knowing several older propagators of the strain who claim to be a part of it’s birth I tend to believe that it originated up in the Bixby Creek area off of highway 1 in Big Sur.

  4. My brother suggested I would possibly like this blog. He was once entirely right.

    This publish truly made my day. You cann’t believe just how so much time I had spent for this information!
    Thank you!

  5. incredible article your knowledge and ability to weave the information is highly appreciated – I want to get some seeds/clones of these guys omg

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: