Best Strains for Bubble Hash Production

Best strains for bubble hash

Some cannabis strains are much more suited than others to bubble hash applications due to the shape, size, and abundance of trichome heads on the buds. The trichomes are the resinous glands on cannabis flowers that contain the plant's cannabinoids and terpenes. These resinous glands are collected in the ice water extraction process to make concentrates that can be pressed for rosin, dabbed (if of very high quality), added to joints and bowls, or made into edibles.

Selecting the right strains from the start will not only give you a better-quality hash but will also give you higher yields. There are several ways to identify the best cannabis cultivars for hash-making before you freeze or wash your fresh cannabis plants. Some of these techniques involve additional equipment such as a microscope. Once you have identified suitable cultivars, you can take cuttings for replicable results.

Characteristics of Good Cannabis Strains for Bubble Hash

Look for the following when selecting cannabis strains for ice water extraction:

Trichome Quantity

Trichome Shape

Strains with heavy trichome production give great hash yields, especially when they are processed using commercial hash washing equipment.

You can identify trichome-heavy strains with the naked eye and by performing a "test wash" on the buds. This involves shaking pieces of cannabis flower vigorously in a mason jar filled with ice-cold water for 10-15 minutes and then allowing the trichomes to settle at the bottom of the jar. The more trichomes at the bottom of the jar, the higher the yield you can expect when washing the strain for bubble hash.

Pro Tip: Test wash each new strain in a mason jar before downing and freezing the entire harvest. Some flower might be better suited for selling as-is. Once you freeze your cannabis buds, you have to extract them.

Trichome Shape

bubble hash expert examining cannabis flower under microscope

The shape of the trichome heads has a significant impact on the success of the ice water extraction process. The shape is influenced by genetics as well as plant age. This makes it essential to harvest your cannabis plants at the right time as well as choosing the right strains.

Hashmakers—ourselves included—prefer capitate-stalked trichomes with clear abscission points. These trichomes have big heads that connect to small stalks that taper to a narrow point where the stalk and head meet. This makes it easy for the trichome heads to snap off cleanly in the ice water extraction process. 

Pro Tip: Use a jeweler's loupe or microscope to examine the trichome heads before dedicating a strain to solventless production.This will allow you to see the structure of the trichomes in more detail. You want to avoid strains with a very strong connection between the trichome head and the stalk as well as strains with trichomes with weak cuticles that might rupture during the wash process.

Trichome Size

Trichome head size becomes important when making bubble hash because the trichomes are collected in mesh bags by size. The highest quality hash is typically found in the 120µm to 72µm range with 90µm as the sweet spot. However, master growers can produce genetics that yield excellent resin in trichome heads as large as 160µm.

At Lowtemp, we sell sets of 8 mesh wash bags that allow you to easily sort your trichome heads by size when draining your wash vessel. This set includes wash bags in the following sizes: 220µm, 190µm, 160µm, 120µm, 90µm, 73µm, 45µm, and 25µm. If pressing the bubble hash for rosin, you can either keep the trichome head sizes separate or mix several sizes to make "full-spectrum" rosin.

Bud Shape

Fluffy buds are preferred for washing hash because they allow the trichomes through the gaps and out into the water. Dense buds don't wash well because they make it difficult for the water to remove the trichomes.


Cannabis concentrates are valued for their aromas and flavors as well as their potency. Look for strains that are highly fragrant when selecting cultivars for making hash and use fresh frozen material rather than dried material for washing to preserve the maximum percentage of terpenes.

Best Cannabis Strains for Bubble Hash

Finding the best cannabis strains for bubble hash involves some trial and error. However, in our experience, the following strains produce high yields and quality resin:

  • Bubble Hash
    Banana Shack
  • Black Maple
  • Cake Crasher
  • Candy Fumez
  • Chem De La '91
  • Dulce De Uva
  • GMO
  • Grape Cream Cake
  • JOMO
  • Lemon Heads
  • Melted Strawberries
  • Panda Puffs
  • Papaya Juice
  • Peach Oblivion
  • Poon Diesel
  • Poon Tang Pie
  • Spritzer
  • Starburst OG
  • Strawguava

Popular phenotypes to use or create crosses with include:

  • Cake strains
  • GMO variants
  • Papaya strains
  • Pie strains
  • Zkittlez strains

Bear in mind that the genetics of the cultivar you obtain are just as important as selecting the right strains. The top genetics providers in our experience are:

Cultivation, Storage, and Equipment Matter

After choosing the best strains and obtaining the best seeds, your cultivation, harvesting, and storage practices will impact the final quality of the trichomes.

  1. Test-wash in a jar
    Pay close attention to the cultivation practices that produce the highest quality trichomes and resin.
  2. Test-wash a small amount of flower before harvesting the entire crop.
  3. Freeze strains that are suitable for bubble hash immediately after harvest. Fresh frozen flowers produce higher quality hash than dried flower. Freezing the buds also makes the trichomes brittle so that they separate more easily from the buds during the washing process, and reduces the amount of chlorophyll that will leach out during the wash.
  4. Use hash washing equipment that is gentle on the trichomes and doesn't break them apart, such as the Mini Osprey™.
  5. Write down the process you use for each batch so you can replicate your best results!

Quality Genetics + Quality Processes = Great Hash

The best cannabis cultivars for bubble hash will give you higher yields, stronger aromas, greater potency, and cleaner hash. To identify the most suitable cultivars, look at the quantity, shape, and size of the trichomes, consider the shape of the buds, and smell the buds to see how aromatic they are.

Certain strains tend to be better suited to ice water extraction than others. However, the plant's genetics and how you grow, harvest, store, and wash the plants also influence the final result. Invest in quality from seed through final product and you'll undoubtedly make some great hash!

Article written by

Levi Lanzrath

Levi Lanzrath is a cannabis extraction expert and founder of Lowtemp Industries.