Indica vs Sativa vs Hybrid
Once you get your medical marijuana card online you’ll receive instructions from your doctor on the types of cannabis products you can buy. These days, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a purely indica or straight up sativa strain at your local dispensary. And if you are looking for a 100% pure indica or sativa, your best bet would be to buy cannabis online. Whether you are a marijuana newbie or a cannabis connoisseur, at some point, you would’ve asked yourself what on earth is the fuss about. And what are the differences between sativas, indicas, and hybrids? Overall, it is important to discuss with your doctor and use approved sources.
What are Indicas and Sativas?
Indicas and Sativas are both types of varieties that fall under the cannabis genus that are critical to treatment for medical marijuana patients. They are both psychoactive and will likely cause you to get high. But what defines these two types of what seems to be the same plant? For the untrained eye, cannabis plants will all seem the same. But for the trained eye, the physical differences between the two types will be noticeable. With all the crossbreeding that has taken place over the years, it is essential to note that some sativa dominant hybrids could take on the physical characteristics of the indica variety and vice versa.
The distinction between the two varieties originally stems from their origin.
Original Indica strains can be traced back to Northern India, Afghanistan, and similar mountainous regions and climates. Physically, these plants can be easily recognizable due to their short, stocky nature and dense foliage. The leaves are also typically fatter and wider than the leaves from a sativa plant. These short, fat characteristics are because of how the plant needs to adapt due to the harsh environment.
Indica plants are also famously fast flowering plants as they are usually mature and flowered in less than eight weeks- thanks to their genetics. This is also due to the area where they originate from. The cold mountain ranges do not get long periods of summer and need to be finished flowering before the first frostbites. Indoor growers also love their fast flowering time as they can get their flowers bloomed and ready quicker than sativa plants.
Sativas are from hotter regions in tropical areas. Sativas are strikingly different from indica plants, and they tend to be skinnier as well. They are long and gangly, with sparse branches and leaves. These types of plants are thought to originate from the sunnier regions of Mexico, Central America, and Southeast Asia.
Because of the sunnier climate, Sativas are thirsty for sun and need more light than Indica plants. The sativas plants are ideal for summer crops, as they can grow up to 18 feet tall if they are provided with enough sun or light.
Because these sativa strains can grow to such heights, they naturally take longer to flower. Instead of the 8 – 12 week flowering period that Indicas have, Sativas can take an average of 12 weeks to flower. For indoor growers, this can be frustrating for a number of reasons. Aside from the prolonged waiting period, higher costs can also frustrate growers as the plants will require extended periods of time with lighting and nutrients before they are ready for harvest. This can often be reflected in the price of sativa buds as well, but you may find that buying cannabis online could save you this extra cost.
Hybrids: What are They?
The modern-day marijuana market has opened the doors for an already thriving industry of cannabis breeding. There are many factors driving breeders to create new strains; from maximizing potency to developing strains to treat specific conditions, there are, quite literally, thousands of new strains.
There are three primary hybrid groups:
- Sativa dominant
- Indica dominant
- Balanced Hybrids
Sativa dominant hybrids are strains that contain cerebral head highs while still relaxing the physical body. Some of the sativa dominant strains include Sour Diesel, Purple Trainwreck, Alien Girl, Juicy Fruit, and Headband.
Indica Dominant hybrids are bred to offer pain relief for the physical body while offering a more soothing effect for the mind. The indica dominant hybrids that are most popular are Girl Scout Cookies, Skywalker OG, Purple Urkle, Aurora Temple, and Tahoe OG are good examples of Indica dominant hybrids.
Balanced hybrids are bred to be the best of both worlds and will usually contain a 50/50 genetic profile. Some of the most popular (and best examples) of these strains include; White Widow, Purple Diesel, Super Silver Haze, and Blue Dream.
While recent research tells us that there is much more to a weed strain than whether it is simply indica, sativa, or hybrid, such as cannabinoid and terpene profile (among other things), it is handy to know what sativas and indicas can offer in terms of effects. And while you shouldn’t take it as gospel, they can offer a solid foundation when choosing which type of cannabis you want to use.
These days, you are more likely to see and hear of a cannabis strain that is sativa dominant or indica dominant. Most strains will be hybrids, but with a more indica dominant profile, they will offer more of the “body stone” or a sativa dominant cerebral high. But what type of effects are offered from the indica?
Most people are familiar with India’s typically sedating effects. This physical effect is often synonymous with Indica plants and is well known for their physical “stone.” If you are seeking a strain to settle in for the evening, then an Indica is the way to go. As for the medical aspects of an Indica dominant strain, they are often used for the following:
Other effects that can be expected are a heavy happiness, sedation, and a stimulated appetite.
On the negative side, heavy indicas can often cause a couch lock and could prevent you from getting any work done. So, if you are looking for a daytime strain to support you throughout the daily grind, then a sativa dominant strain is the way to go.
Sativa strains are well known for their uplifting mental stimulation which helps many medical marijuana patients. This cerebral effect can sometimes trigger paranoia, so if you are more inclined to anxiousness, you should seek a more balanced hybrid (let’s say 70/30 or 60/40). These types of strains are ideal for social situations where you would like to feel stimulated and confident enough to participate in the social gathering. Sativa dominant strains are also best for creative endeavors such as art, writing, music, and even exercise.
Sativas are known to be stimulating strains, and so if you are seeking a strain that will get you up and going, or waking and baking, then try a sativa dominant strain.
The following are some of the purest sativa strains:
- Durban Poison
- Panama Red
- Ghost Train Haze
- Amnesia Haze
- Strawberry Cough
On the negative side, sativas tend to exacerbate anxiety. They can also be highly stimulating and could keep you up at night instead of putting you to sleep. If you are seeking a sativa strain but do not want to deal with the anxiousness that comes with it, then you should seek out a sativa dominant strain that contains a high level of CBD.
Remember that the sativa and indica label alone won’t be enough to define a strain’s effects fully. Learn more about a strain’s cannabinoid and terpene profile to find out more about its effects.