Growing cannabis is not only rewarding; it can also bring you lots of positive emotions. Watching how a single tiny seed becomes a huge awesome plant with beautiful leaves and flowers is similar to raising a child.
However, just like with any kid, you may face some problems. Some of the issues, like pests, mold, or root rot, can be solved on the way, but others, like choosing the wrong kind of strain, can really spoil the whole time of expectation. Luckily, you can always select which strain suits your conditions and demands best.
Indicas, sativas, and all possible variations in between can surely provide you with a wide selection. That is why it is so important to know the difference between all these kinds of cannabis and to make a choice before you get the seeds or clones.
Plants: short, conical, broad leaflets, bushy type
Flowering time: short (around 50 days)
Yield: medium to high
Effects: relaxing, sedative, calming
Relieved Symptoms: anxiety, ADHD, insomnia, sleep disorders, chronic pain, muscle spasms, cramps
It is considered that Cannabis indica takes its origin from the mountain areas, where the climate is harsh and the weather tends to change a lot depending on the season. That is why indica cannabis plants have a shorter flowering period and a densely branched structure―this allows the plant to get maximum sunlight in a shorter period and to get ripe before the cold winter time arrives.
That is why growers like to cultivate indica strains: they are a nice fit for outdoor gardens in a temperate climate, and if they are grown indoors, indicas allow to get more cycles per year. The small height allows to fit your garden in pretty much any growing room, as well as in growing boxes.
As for the effects of indica, it is definitely less euphoric than sativa and mostly used for relaxation. It provides that famous “body buzz” that can calm you down after a stressful day and relieve pain, including migraines and muscle pain after a hard workout.
Plants: tall, poorly branched, long narrow leaves
Flowering time: long (around 70 days)
Effects: cerebral, uplifting, euphoric, creative
Relieved Symptoms: depression, mood disorders, ADD/ADHD, fatigue
Cannabis sativa takes its origin from the equatorial areas, where the sunlight is abundant and the heat is harsh. That is why the leaves of sativas are thin―this way, the plant can evaporate less of the precious water.
Sativas are generally quite tall—they can sometimes reach 2,5 meters (100 inches), which makes them not suitable for indoor growing. However, this problem can be solved by applying special techniques that correct the height of the plant, such as SCROG or SOG. On the other hand, indicas feel good in growing rooms, where the temperature is constantly high, or in outside gardens if you live in a hot climate.
The yield of sativa is usually lower than that of indicas. However, it is sativa that brings you a guaranteed strong cerebral effect that can make you happy and euphoric. It comes in handy if you need to treat any mood disorders or depression.
Plants: all kinds of sizes and leaf forms
Flowering time: about 60 days
Yield: medium to high
Effects: depend on the dominant landrace
Relieved Symptoms: depend on the dominant landrace
This is where the magic of the cannabis cultivation takes place: hybrid strains can offer growers an almost endless variety of different combinations of properties. They can have a shorter flowering period but at the same time provide you with a strong cerebral high. They can help you treat chronic pain but have a typical sativa bud appearance.
Nowadays, the biggest part of the cannabis market belongs to hybrids. They usually are more suitable for both indoor and outdoor growing and generally are well-balanced to provide you benefits of both sativa and indica.
Most hybrids lean towards either indica or sativa, and that can help you understand how this strain should be handled and what you can expect from it.