When we talk about weed, what commonly comes to mind is marijuana, smoke, and reggae music. We might think that we know weed when we see it and that weed plants or cannabis plants are all the same. We might want to change this thinking as since cannabis is a plant, there are different variations of this plant all over the world.
In the field of horticulture, there exist different strains of plant species. A strain is, by definition, the variation found in plant cultivars. A strain can also refer to the offspring of modified plants. For cannabis, there are three types wherein its strains fall into pure (sativa and indica) or hybrid.
Sativa and Indica are the most commonly grown Cannabis genus all over the world and these are the ones most popularly available in the market, while hybrids are a mix of both and can also be found all over the world, mostly made by trusted breeders. There is also one Cannabis genus that exists which is called Ruderalis but this isn’t commonly marketed due to its low -THC characteristics and is more commonly used in auto-flowering Cannabis strains.
Hybrid strains are a combination of the commonly grown genus of the cannabis plant and are manmade to customize desirable characteristics f the plants into its offspring. These are made from both pure strains and existing hybrids that have already been industrialized.
Each strain also has different levels of THC. THC, an abbreviated form of the chemical Tetrahydrocannabinol, is the chemical responsible for the effects of marijuana in a person’s psychological aspect. These are found in the resin secreted by glands found near the reproductive part of the marijuana plant. This is a chemical that acts like the Cannabinoid chemical that is naturally produced in small quantities by the human body.
In the brain, cannabinoid receptors are concentrated in the area of the brain which is associated with thinking, memory, pleasure, coordination and time perception. This is where THC attach themselves. Once activated, this affects a person’s sensory and time perception, coordination, thinking, concentration, movements, memory, and pleasure.
One other compound that can be specifically found in marijuana is cannabinoids. They are also present in the resin wherein TCH are harvested from. One form of this cannabinoid is called CBD or Cannabidiol is said to be non-psychoactive and actually blocks the high that THC gives.
Sativa cannabis plants are taller in structure and they have long narrowing leaves. Sativa have longer flowering cycles, which can take up to 60 to 90 days, and they are more recommended in warm temperature with a long season. The buds are described as lightweight compared to Indica and has fruity aromas with hints of red and orange. This strain comes from the equatorial climates such as Thailand, Southern Africa, and Mexico.
It is believed that Sativa gives more exciting and cheerful cerebral results that go well with physical activity, social gatherings, and ideal for creative goals like art, music, and writing. This strain is known to be used for pumping up and in waking and baking pot smoking session which is almost similar to coffee sessions. Sativa usually has higher THC content and lower CBD content compared to Indica.
Strains such as Strawberry Cough, Panama Red, Trinity, Chernobyl, and Amnesia Haze, Durban Poison, Thai, and Ghost Train Haze are one of the few purest strains of sativa.
As opposed to Sativa, Indica plants are short, sturdy, and bushy and its leaves are somewhat dense and plump. It also takes shorter time for these plants to flower at 40 to 60 days and it has higher yields and is good for indoor grows. Their buds are dense with pungent aromas and sometimes is purple. Indica flowers faster Sativa due to the fact that they were bred to flower before the frost bites; it usually gets it done in 6 to 8 weeks. This makes indoor growers love this strand type due to its quick flowering.
These plants physiological traits have adapted from the harsh weather environments found in the mountain of the Hindu Kush which is located in Central Asia. These plants were also bred in a manner wherein they could become great producers of a hash. In the area of their origin, hashish was the preferred way of consuming cannabis.
Indica is seemingly valued by most people with insomnia, anxiety, nausea, and pain due to the soporific potency and heavy resin of its flowers. The other effects of this strain type include happiness, drowsiness, a strong feeling of hunger, and relaxation. Indica strands, in contrast to Sativa strands, has lower THC content, and a somewhat higher CBD content.
Northern Lights, Critical Mass, Hindu Kush, God’s Gift, and Purple Kush are some of the purest strains of Indica.
Hybrid strands, as mentioned earlier, are a mix of both pure strands and currently existing hybrid strands. These can be categorized or grouped into 3 basic categories; Sativa dominant strain hybrids, Indica-dominant hybrids, and balanced hybrids.
First, Sativa-dominant hybrid strands usually combinesSativa’s cerebral high effect with Indica’scalming body results. Some examples include Alien Girl, Headband, Purple Trainwreck, Sour Diesel, and Juicy Fruit, and many more
Second, Indica-dominant hybrid strands are usually made for pain relief while having the objective to sooth the head. Popular strains of this include Afgooey, Skywalker OG, Purple Urkle, Tahoe OG, and Girl Scout Cookies Purple Urkle and many more.
Lastly, balanced hybrids, as stated in its name, are balanced in its Sativa and Indica genetic composition. One of the many examples of this is White Widow, Purple Diesel, Blue Dream, and Super Silver Haze.
Hybrids caused debate amongst stoners that there is not much difference between Sativa and Indica strands. These are also the crowd favorite amongst cannabis users due to their ability to combine the effects of Sativa and Indica. Some growers even find the time to breed their own variation in their home garden. A lot of hybrid variety already exists in the world and there are furthermore combinations that can be possibly done in the future, creating a unique high with cannabis.