Sativa and Indica – The Differences between the Two Cannabis Species

Cannabis Species

The use of marijuana for medical and recreational purposes is becoming legal in more and more areas, which has led to increasing interest in the effects of various species, including Sativa and Indica. These two are the species of Cannabis. This is why they have many similar characteristics but are still unique and distinct. This article focuses on the differences between the strains and the effects they produce.

Physical differences

Sativa and indica vary physically, meaning that they have different heights, branches, and shapes of leaves.

1) Sativa

Sativa plants are tall and slender, growing more than 12 feet in height. They have light green finger-like leaves. Sativa also takes longer to mature as compared to other species.

2) Indica

Indica plants are much shorter in height than the Sativa plants, and they grow to be bushy and broad. Their stalks are woody. They have dark green chunky leaves. Indica plants have a faster growth as compared to Sativa and produce more buds.

3) Hybrids

The physical appearance of the hybrid plants depends upon the combination of their parent plants.

Chemical differences and their effects

1) Sativa

The Sativa plant has its origins in the hot and dry climate in areas like Africa, Southeast Asia, and South America. Sativa contains a higher content of THC and a lower content of CBD.

The common effects associated with the use of sativa are stimulating and energizing as they produce a high. They reduce anxiety, depression, nausea, and headaches. Since this strain increases productivity and creativity, it is usually used in the daytime. The common strains of Sativa include Panama red, Durban poison, and Acapulco Gold.

2) Indica

The Indica plant has its origin in the middle east, Afghanistan, Tibet, and Pakistan. The CBD content of indica is higher than Sativa, while the CBD to THC ratio is around 1:1. The common effects associated with the use of indica are relaxing and relieving. Medically it can relieve pain, nausea and improve appetite.

Due to its relaxation effects, it is consumed more at nighttime. Some of the popular strains of Indica include Afghan kush, Granddaddy purple, and the Hindu Kush.

3) Hybrids

There are various hybrids of Sativa and Indica created by both natures as well as growers. The grower creates hybrids to combine the good effects of both plants and grow a plant that grows faster, gives more yield, and has both calming and stimulating effects. Most of the hybrids are grown to increase the THC content, but each hybrid is different.

CBD and THC ratio. Hybrids are created to improve the effects they have. They are categorized as Sativa-dominant, Indica-dominant or balanced. Their common effects range from relieving stress and anxiety to improving chemotherapy side effects. Common types of hybrids include trainwreck, clue dream, and pineapple express.


Sativa and Indica both have different properties. Sativa is more stimulating and energizing, while indica is more relaxing. The CBD and THC content also ranges from strain to strain. So, people interested in using these strains need to check the biochemical content to see which strain suits their requirements.

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