Daniel John aka “DJ Short” has been developing and cultivating new strains of cannabis for well over 30 years. DJ is best known for creating the legendary strain “DJ Short’s Blueberry” as well as other award winning cultivars like Flo, Vanilluna, New Berry and Whitaker Blues. He is also known for his passion for educating the public about cannabis and a distinctive style of activism for the ending of cannabis prohibition.
They call him the Willy Wonka of Pot, the Wizard of Weed, and the Cannabis Professor
The path to greatness never comes without struggle, for Daniel, the struggle inherent in his path led him to experiment with Cannabis as a young teen. His first few experiences with cannabis sparked curiosity in his young mind, and according to DJ, “One day in 1973, he bought a box of cereal that came with a plastic seed sprouter. Out of simple curiosity, he moistened the chamber, inserted a bud from his stash of Hawaiian, and watched with delight as it grew roots and a sprout.”
High Times was publishing its homegrown variety of guerilla cultivation methods in various publication releases. DJ wanted to cultivate and experiment, but knew that outdoor cultivation was out of the question. He purchased some high end fluorescent shop lights so he would be able to cultivate indoors, in secret.
One downfall to the early seventies and cultivation of Cannabis was the wide availability of rich landrace sativa genetics in the US. Not until the latter seventies did shorter, stout and robust Afghani Indica varietals became available. DJ sourced some of these new genes for himself to reduce the long winded flowering time of the Sativas, which falls around 14-16 weeks. After successful cultivation of Indica varietals, DJ discovered the relaxing and sedative nature of these hash rich Afghanis was not the same enjoyable experience as the buzzy, energetic and creative experience of the Oaxacan and Thai genetics he had grown fond of.
Hybridization was the answer. His plan, to combine the unique traits of the Sativa genetics with the short, stout and faster flowering Indicas to create a balanced, routinely easier to cultivate Cannabis plant that was an enjoyable middle ground for the end consumer.
As DJ crafted indoors in his secret garden, outside the Drug war was getting into full swing led by then President Ronald Reagan. During early 1980 national anti-cannabis rhetoric built up and spilled over, coincidentally, as the square footage of the breeding garden diminished. This reduction in square footage did not limit the abilities of DJ during cultivation but rather allowed him to hone in on and patiently seek the specific qualities he was seeking, exploring each phenotype with his nose. Cataloging which plants produced floral, sweet and fruit notes and which produced the chemical, fuel and acrid skunk notes.
DJ compares the subtleties of quality Cannabis to that of fine wines. The olfactory chart used by cannabis connoisseurs is not unlike the wine wheel. Like Sommelier, Cannabis aficionados have the ability to detect a diverse blend of aromas such as fruit and berries, grasses, teas and earthen humus, fuels and chemical notes.
“The range of flavors expressed by the genus cannabis is extraordinary. No other plant on the planet can equal the cacophony of smells and tastes available from cannabis.”DJ Short
Short credits his passion for cannabis and natural propensity for successfully crossbreeding Sativa and Indica varietals into award winning hybrid strains as an inherited trait from his Romanian great-grandmother.
According to DJ, she was a gypsy herbalist who cultivated cannabis and among other herbs for medical purposes, taking time to pass down her acquired knowledge and skills to her daughter, DJ Short’s Mother.
Honey and Fruit
After extended trial and error, establishing specific genetic traits and isolating terpene levels via testing with the WERC Shop in California, DJ began comparing his flowers with those that were considered above par and high-grade on the underground marketplace. Armed with this data, DJ continued to select the plants he favored most, deftly cultivated them to maturity, carefully cured the buds, and personally smoked privately for months before releasing them to friends and buyers, to ensure an enjoyable, superior quality of Cannabis flower was offered.
Before long, selective breeding led to a lineage with sweet honey and strong fruit aromas. From this line rose the now legendary DJ Short’s Blueberry. Known by name, smell and sedative, pacifying body high. Once DJ stabilized this special genetic, he sought to create an energetic, uplifting strain. This project led to Flo, which gifted DJ with the effects he was seeking.
After realizing how popular his new genetics were, he began cloning his mother plants and releasing the genes to underground cannabis growers in Oregon and California and some overseas to Europe.
It is well known that the widely revered DJ Short’s Blueberry, bred and cultivated just outside of Pendleton, Oregon is in the ancestral pedigree for most any modern hybridized varietal that includes “Blue” or “Berry” in the name.”
DJ Short’s renowned seeds and Cannabis breeding capabilities earned him a revered spot in the High Times Seed Bank Hall of Fame, which was created to commemorate “brave pot pioneers and trailblazers.” DJ was included in the first commemoration in 2007. He was spotlighted as “The Willy Wonka of Pot” in a 5,000-word tome for the website Grantland, and wrote the 2003 book “Cultivating Exceptional Cannabis: An Expert Breeder Shares His Secrets.”
2016- Daniel crafted a “letter to the Editor” of Pendleton, Oregon’s premiere media source, The East Oregonian. In this letter he wrote, ” I would very much enjoy the opportunity to help teach my community about the wonders and merits of this valuable plant that offers something beneficial for almost everyone.”
DJ Short x Kind Leaf
Kind Leaf is proud to announce that we are the destination which will provide the space in which to bridge the gap between our local residents and visitors and world renowned breeders like DJ. We are set to host a Meet-and-Greet with the infamous DJ Short on Saturday, November 9, 2019 from 5 pm -7 pm.