66Zombie, also identified by his company TRex, may be Thailand’s most famous grower. His name was amongst the most excitedly discussed before and after legalization. Other growers, shop keepers, and people in the industry—especially those who know him—would drop his name with a sense of awe and respect reflecting feelings of both charm and frustration. 66Zombie is not the easiest member of Ganjana to interview. He is friendly, affable, thoughtful, intelligent, and creative. He is not shy—but 66Zombie is careful with his words and does not volunteer much. It took four visits and interviews to put together the information in this article—an article which I freely admit is only scratching the surface of this master grower.
66Zombie came to cannabis through necessity. “I was in debt because of my involvement and use of meth. My lenders gave me a week to pay my debt. If I didn’t pay it off, that was it, the end. I was lucky that an associate of mine offered to pay the debt if I agreed to grow and harvest weed for him. I did. It was my first experience growing weed—it wasn’t the best grow—but it saved my life. I never touched meth again. It was only weed from then on.”
Years later 66Zombie is one of the most successful growers in the kingdom and a household name (in cannabis appreciating Thai houses). I asked him what he thought of legalization and how his life was affected, his answer was that legalization brought peace and boredom. “I sleep much better these days under legalization. Growing and harvesting weed in my bedroom came with a lot of stress and sleepless nights. But, when I think back to those days, I think that some of the best weed I grew was in the bedroom. The weed I am most proud of. I miss those days.”
During one of our many visits to Ganjana, 66Zombies and the rest of his Ganjana brethren were deep in excited conversation about a recent bubble hash workshop they put on and were admiring their results. 66Zombies explained, “Bubble hash gives us an opportunity to create a cleaner product. When we grow flowers outdoor, we pick up a lot of dirt—not impurities and pesticides—but filth from pollution. To get the trichomes out we need to wash the flower and with that process of washing we just see so much dirt. We can’t feel healthy with that. Bubble hash will help with the process. The shelf life of flowers is short—moving them—transporting them around the country means we lose time and shelf life. Exploring other means of using the flower, like bubble hash is interesting. Bubble hash has a longer shelf life.”
“The art of cannabis is in the taste of the flower. That taste, the flavor can be captured in the bubble hash. I appreciate the process of bubble hash, its new and fresh. I miss that new exciting feeling from 20 years ago. I need something new to stay fresh. I don’t need to sell it—I’m happy to train growers to do it for their own personal use—but I like to have new challenges.”
Despite 66Zombie’s frustration with success and his excitement for new cannabis mediums, he is well deserved fame and success comes from flowers, specifically gassy and pungent strains. Weeks after the bubble hash weekend, we sat down on the sidelines of the HighTable From the Earth event and smoked a joint of his Obi Wan OG, part of his latest drop. A beautiful sweet, gassy and lavender bud. As we smoked the bud, 66Zombies thoughtfully explained “I can say that this is one of my favorites, my go to bud. When I first started getting into weed and learning how to grow, I realized that I really like OG Kush and I wanted to go deep into the sources—to go as far back to the origin as I could go. First, I studied and grew seeds from Royal Queen and Blimburn. I was growing the plants with a bulb in my closet overnight and then dragging the plants down the stairs and outdoors to get sunlight and then back up the stairs to the closet when the sun went down. I really wanted to get my hands on Josh D OG seeds—the source of the real OG kush. But at the time those seeds where not being released and I didn’t have access. I wasn’t satisfied, I kept researching and searching and got as far back Ghost OG which has roots in the original OG Kush, the mother of Obi Wan OG—Alien Rift is the father.”
66Zombies’s has mixed views on the development of Thai cannabis culture and the market: “The direction of the market depends on the person. The market is moving down many different paths. I can’t say that I am happy or unhappy with the way things are developing. On the one hand I’m very happy for some—but not all people are moving in the right direction. What I really want to see is if Thailand can put out something original.”
“If we want to develop a Thai weed culture—we need to look at what we have in the country and understand what we have. There are all kinds of perspectives. Not everyone gets along. I would prefer that everyone is nice to each other. It’s very important to share experiences to grow. How you treat someone today is how you are going to be treated in the future. It’s good for many people that they can make a living off this. To open shops. But we need more education on the benefits of weed and what it’s like—not just expectations.”
66Zombies is one of the most talented growers I have interviewed. His talent is evident not only from his flowers (his Obi Wan OG is phenomenal) but also his involvement in a wide array of organic growing mediums. The man is at the top of his game—yet he seems uncomfortable and dissatisfied with success. In an earlier draft of this article I characterized 66Zombie as tortured and brooding. I do not believe that is actually the case. Instead, 66Zombie is introspective, engaged, always looking for a challenge, always looking for improvement and discovering new things. He is passionate about cannabis and ultimately focused on high quality in any medium the flower presents itself. Despite his purported boredom with success, he is still proud of the quality of his flowers. He still meticulously follows every detail of the process, living within the detail. The process is not torture for him—it is his life—and it produces the amazing bud we all have access to.