The Secret World of Trichomes

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They’re purple, magenta, creamy white and yellow, opaque and translucent. They come in a surprising array of colors, even though the naked eye might only see sparkly white. Yes, we’re talking about trichomes, the part of the pot plant where the cannabinoids and terpenes reside, which is responsible for making frosty nugs sparkle like dank little diamonds. Seeing them up close is like peering into an alien world you never knew existed. But this is not some radical DMT trip. This is photographer Shwale’s trichome collection and it is astounding. Macro photography has captured close-ups of cannabis trichomes for decades. But the images created by professional pot photographer Kale Worden – better known as Shwale – are stunning. He’s captured two-headed trichomes before even three-headed ones. He’s shot some that tower and then lean forward under the weight of their own bulbous heads. And he manages to capture their sparkling essence in a way that deserves high praise. A foxtail of Silver Surfer reveals a sea of trichomes, the resinous bulbs on cannabis flowers that contain cannabinoids such as THC and CBD. One double-headed trichome that shares the body of a purple stalk looks like some underwater alien life form you’d see on “Blue Planet,” with conjoined bulbs for eyes that are not too dissimilar from the Cookie Monster — but actually on Cookies. From pink and purple stalks with creamy heads (or glands) to bright magenta trichomes protruding from green stalks and even multiple colors on a single trichome, Shwale’s photography produces some of the most fascinating images we’ve seen. Some of the most interesting photos in his repertoire include a creamy white trichome with burgundy racing stripes down either side that Shwale found on a Black Cherry Soda plant. One particularly eerie and mysterious shot features what appears to…

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