Of the thousands of strains being produced every day, over 99% of them are derived from one of the two most prominent Cannabis categories. These two main classifications are popularly known as Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Sativa. It is essential, when choosing your ideal strain, to know the fundamental differences between the types of highs, so as to achieve the most pleasurable and personally beneficial high.

indica vs sativa geographyGeographical Location

Most Indica varieties are grown in central Asia and parts of the Indian subcontinent such as Afghanistan, Pakistan, northern India and Nepal. Indica strains will thrive in cooler environments. While Sativa strains tend to do best in warmer, equatorial countries such as Thailand, Mexico, Columbia and South East Asia. Growing conditions

Visually, Indica plants tend to grow darker, denser buds, while Sativa plants produce longer, narrower leaves. Indicas are generally faster flowering varieties with a flowering time period of up to 60 days. Indica plants are ideal for indoor growing due to their short and stocky composure. They will grow between 2-4 feet tall, yielding a noticeably smaller crop (1.5 to 2.5 ounces per plant). The paler green Sativa plant, however, has been known to grow to heights of up to 20 feet tall in outdoor environments. Their maturation period can take anywhere from ten to sixteen weeks. Due to their extended vegetation periods, these plants will often yield a much higher crop (3 ounces to 1 pound per plant).

indica sativa plants

Scent Specificity

indica vs sativa scentCannabis Sativa plants tend to produce more fragrant buds. Their pungent aromas range in scents from sweet and sugary to earthy with the occasional diesel fuel undertones. While Indica plants tend to give off a muskier, spicy, skunky scent. Strain specificity is often easiest to detect based on its scent, more formally known as its Terpenes. The terpenes within the plant are responsible for the main aromatic compounds found in cannabis. Terpenes, however, are not Cannabis specific; in fact, they appear in plenty of herbs and spices and are responsible for the spiciness in black pepper.

Different Highs

The central difference between Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Sativa is, of course, the highs they produce. A Cannabis Indica high gives off narcotic-like effects, and has been known to leave its users with “couch-locked” syndrome, which is incidentally, exactly what it sounds like. In gaining a pure “body-buzz,” Cannabis Indica is the perfect post-work day stress reliever. Indica enthusiasts will mellow-out with movie marathons right at home. Cannabis Sativa, on the other hand, produces a more cerebral, or “heady high.” While Indica is preferably a night-time high, Sativa is the perfect morning medication. Sativa strains produce an energetic, uplifting high with has been known to stimulate creativity and intellectual ability. . Additionally, Sativa has been known to heighten the five senses while enhancing audio and visuals. For this reason, Sativa buds have become increasingly popular among the art-based community

Medicinal Effects

medical marijuanaDue to their fundamentally different highs, Indica and Sativa strains each have their own unique medicinal benefits. Cannabis Indica, because of its numbing properties, is ideal for providing full-body pain relief. For patients with generalized chronic pain, muscle spasms, nausea or anxiety, Indica is the perfect choice. Other individuals who can benefit from Indica usage are those suffering from such specific diseases as Fibromyalgia, Multiple Sclerosis, or Lupus. Due to its heavily sedative effects, Indica provides an ideal sleep aid for those suffering from sleep apnea or insomnia.

Cannabis Sativa is extremely effective in helping to treat mental and behavioral issues such as depression and ADHD. It works to promote focus and mental stability for its users. Sativa works as an appetite stimulant, which is incredibly important for patients diagnosed with eating disorders such as Anorexia Nervosa or different forms of Cancer. The high levels of THC in Sativa strains can work to calm electrical brain storms induced by epilepsy, multiple sclerosis spasms, cancer cell growth mutations or convulsions.

Common Indica & Sativa Strains

Now that you’re an expert in the field, here are some of our top picks for your optimal toking experience. Some of our favorite Sativa strains include Haze, Jack Herer, AK-47, Green Crack, Durban Poison, Purple Haze, Lemon Haze, Kali Mist, Trainwreck, Maui Waui, White Shark, Elephant, Dutch Dragon and Blueberry Headband Sativa. Some of our top Indica strains include, Grandaddy Purple, Northern Lights, G-13, Black Jack, K2, Master Kush, Hindu Kush, Purple Urkel, Hawaiian Skunk, Bubblegum Indica, God’s Bud, Grapefruit Diesel, Jupiter Kush and Headband Kush.

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