At this point, most cannabis connoisseurs have come across the phrase “Runtz Yo Life Up,” or have smoked White Runtz. However, many may not know the origins of the strain, the work that went into its creation, and how we got to where we are today, with plenty of swag wrapped in the name of this cultivar-turned-brand.
Runtz originated around 2017 in California with a breeder named Nick, who's a part of the crew of the same name alongside rapper Yung LB and manager Raybamba. Nick was seeking out Zkittlez cuts to breed, and managed to procure some seeds from a Bay Area grower. The resulting flower was crossed with Gelato 33, a staple in the modern cannabis world. The winning phenos of that Zkittlez and Gelato 33 cross are known as Runtz, with two phenotypes expressing as Pink and White Runtz. These names are used to denote the differences in appearance and terpene profiles between the three. Pink Runtz and White Runtz were later released through the Cookies brand.
The public got its first peek at the cultivar when Yung LB debuted it at the 2017 Emerald Cup. The rapper and his manager used their marketing experience to create an incredibly successful PR campaign for the strain. They used their connections to grow demand, and promoted the brand by trademarking and putting the name on everything from sweatshirts to rolling trays.
“Berner had been coming to the mini mansion since ‘08/’09. I’ve been seeing him since before ‘Drought Season One’ came out,” Yung LB explains in a Youtube video. “Straight up like that, when he was working at the Cannabis Club we were pulling up and Jack was rolling up those jackhammers.”
It’s obvious that Berner and Cookies reciprocated the love. “LB, Ray, and Nick used the recipe Berner spoke about to build their own platform to launch Runtz,” says a Cookies rep. “The credibility the Runtz crew had, due to their connection with Berner, helped to give them a foothold in cannabis, entertainment, and fashion.”
For those that haven’t smoked White Runtz but feel like you've heard of it, perhaps the multitude of references in songs like “Buck 50” from Juice Wrld, or Yung LB’s 2019 hit “Runtz Yo Life Up,” will ring a bell.
At the 2019 Emerald Cup, Ridgeline Runtz took first place for sungrown flower, with White Runtz from Humboldt Redwood Healing coming in third. As the hype trajectory rocketed upwards, Leafly named Runtz its "Strain Of The Year" for 2020, solidifying it as a fan favorite amongst the cannabis community.
What Are the Effects of White Runtz: Indica or Sativa?
White Runtz has been described as having a fast-acting, long-lasting, euphoric and relaxing effect. If you like to kick back without falling asleep, you'll enjoy White Runtz. Its parent strain Zkittles is on the sedating side, while it other parent Gelato 33 offers an inspired unwinding effect, so the White Runtz phenotype strikes a nice balance. Smokers say that a heavy, sometimes spacey feeling can be accentuated from over-consumption. Some medical cannabis patients use White Runtz to curb anxiety attacks, while others use it for chronic pain. Keep a glass of water nearby when consuming Runtz, as it can lead to a dry mouth a.k.a. cottonmouth.
What Does White Runtz Smell, Taste, and Look Like?
The name Runtz actually refers to the small buds of this strain as compared to other highly sought-after cannabis cultivars. According to grower Jason Gellman of Ridgeline Farms, Runtz isn't a high-yielding strain. Nonetheless, he says, everyone wants it: “It’s not a slow grower, but you won’t get giant colas out of Runtz. You will get the name Runtz. That’s how it grows—in nice little chunks.”
Aside from the long red and orange hairs on White Runtz buds, this flower is similar to White Widow, in that its spade-shaped nugs are completely engulfed in white trichomes.
Upon first encounter, the floral sweetness of both parents to this cultivar shine right through both the smell and taste. A tad bit of citrus flavor is on the back end, but for the most part, White Runtz gives off a fruity, candy-like profile that hits the taste buds in the tastiest way possible.
How Do You Grow White Runtz?
As mentioned, Runtz isn't known for its huge buds. The average flowering period is around eight to nine weeks. You’ll want to have it flowering in October if you’re doing things outdoors. It’s got a pretty decent THC content averaging around 29%, but it’s really the sweet terpenes that most growers are chasing when cultivating this variety. Those who are growing in smaller spaces should note that White Runtz grows an average of five to six feet, which can be too tall for certain setups.