In cannabis culture, we hear a lot about the differences between sativa and indica strains.
Sativas are uppers, and indicas are downers – as the saying goes.
But are they really? Although that may be true to a degree, it turns out it’s a bit more complicated than that.
Sativa and indica are two different types of cannabis plant from the same family. For the ease of explaining them, it’s best to see them as siblings. Sativas are the taller energetic and hyper one who loves art and sports, and indicas are the shorter chubby sibling who enjoys just taking it easy, meditating and going with the flow.
From that understanding of how each behaves, let’s go into a bit more detail on each one and break down the specifics on how they look, grow, and how they affect the common cannabis smoker.
Sativa weed plants are the taller, more slender looking variety of marijuanna. Originally from modern day Thailand, sativas are the less climate sensitive of the two sibling plants. They grow best in warm outdoor tropical climates and grow much taller than their indica counterparts.
Generally speaking, sativas tend to have a higher THC content relative to CBD, however due to so much cross breeding in plants, this now varies more than it has in the past. Sativas also take longer to flower than do indicas, due to how tall they grow before flowering. A typical timeframe for this sibling from full grown to flower takes roughly 60-90 days depending on the sub-type of sativa being grown.
The buds from this plant tend to match the profile of the weed itself. They are slender but also longer in shape and tend to have hints of orange or red in the coloration.
Sativas are best used in the daytime, but as mentioned with so many varieties on the market, along with everyone being different in terms of biological interactions with cannabis, this is best used as a general guideline rather than indisputable fact. The same can be said for the effects, but generally the old sayings still hold water for most things believed about this plant. Known effects include: uplifted and energetic, increased appetite, and increased creativity. For those with anxiety conditions, it might be best to go for a sativa that is lower in THC relative to CBD as high THC can overstimulate an already anxious individual.
As mentioned in the introduction, indicas are the shorter, stockier plant of the siblings which, funny enough, is a fairly accurate physical indication of the expected effects.
Native to central Asia, the indica varieties are less dependent on tropical hot climate and as a result are more robust in terms of being able to tolerate harsh weather such as cold snaps and drought. They are a much shorter and wider bush shaped weed that resembles more of a shrub than a typical member of the grass and weed families. They have thicker, wider leaves and prefer to grow out rather than straight up.
As alluded to with the description of the sativa buds, indica buds also borrow their appearance from the indica plant. They are a shorter but much fatter bud with purple tones in coloration as opposed to the orange/red of the sativa sibling. Time to flower for most indicas who have reached maturity is slightly less than their sativa sister, taking an average of 40-60 days, depending on strain and growing conditions
In contrast to sativas, indicas tend to produce a higher quantity of CBD relative to THC. This is not to say that they produce more CBD than they do THC – it is simply a matter of ratio. THC remains the dominant of the two, but CBD is present in higher quantities than in sativas.
In general the effects to be expected are as rumoured, but like sativas, many new strains have been bred which makes it difficult to know if this is still universally true. The effects include: reduced pain, inflammation control, sleep aid and anxiety reduction. These effects are in large due to the higher relative CBD content indicas tend to have.
We hope this has helped you get a better understanding of sativas and indicas! Don’t forget to check back in our store and find a bud that’s fits your needs!