Freshwater Biologists Turned Full-Time Breeders
Humboldt Seed Company – Eureka, CA
“I bred my first seeds in 1998 in Humboldt County and fell in love with the idea of being able to create and explore new kinds of cannabis that the world has never seen before,” says Nathaniel Pennington, founder of Humboldt Seed Company. At 19 years young, Pennington moved from the East Coast to the West Coast and voted Yes on Prop 215 in 1996 — his first legal vote. The idea that every time something is bred something completely new is created fascinated Pennington. Before comfortably dedicating his whole career to cannabis he was a music teacher and freshwater fish biologist with a focus on genomics. “I was a guerilla grower many of those early years,” he says. Until 2001, his love for cannabis seeds was a hobby; he accepted beer as reimbursement. 2001 was a turning point when his hobby grew beyond trading, and he asked for cash compensation. People often returned, offering to pay anyway.
On the Northeast Humboldt based farm, 300 plants grow as various breeding experiments living on 10 percent of the farm. The remaining 90 percent houses 50 breeding chambers, greenhouses constructed to house one pollinator and a number of female receiver plants to make seeds. In 2018 HSC hosted the World’s Largest Phenotype Hunt through a collaborative genetic clone pursuit, teaming with local farm friends to choose the top percentile clones. The selections are now available in California and Oregon nurseries. “The whole point of it is that we only keep the very best of the best. That’s what we will continue to breed with,” says Pennington. HSC co-create with artists like Don Carlos and Slightly Stoopid to release custom seeds.
Clean Green Certified HSC sells seeds in legal markets nationwide, while THC dosed dried cannabis and concentrates are available in California and Oregon. Cultivars include The Bling, Vanilla Frosting, Magic Melon and Blueberry Muffin. “Blueberry Muffin’s a ‘have fun while hustling strain,’ says Pennington, the cultivar’s terpenes are stimulating like fresh-baked breakfast. HSC seed packaging is award-winning. A stunning quality of their design is the real estate, which supplies ample information to growers.