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Difference Between Indica and Sativa

marijuanaIndica vs Sativa

Indica and sativa are both strains of the cannabis weed, also known as marijuana. Typically, it is used as a psychoactive drug in its dried herbal form. Cannabis has got three known species which are sativa, indica and ruderalis. In this article we’ll look at the contrasts between the sativa and indica species of the cannabis weed.

The plant structure
Sativa plants are just as different in appearance from the Indicas as they are in the chemical composition of the leaves. The sativa plant grows taller, thinner and its leaves have smaller breadth, with a lighter green color indicating less chlorophyll. Sativa plants grow considerably taller and in a single season a plant can reach a height of twenty feet. They take between ten to sixteen weeks to fully mature from the time they start to flower. They give lower yields than indica but with higher potent.

Indica plants are generally shorter, are bushy and the leaves have more breadth with a darker green color because of more chlorophyll they contain. Indica grows faster therefore has a shorter growing season and because they don’t grow so tall, they are more suited for indoor growing than sativa.

Chemical properties
In the chemical properties, indica has got higher levels of Cannabidiol (CBD) which has got higher sedative effects than dranabinol (THC) so indica will most likely get you sleepier compared to sativa. However because sativa has got higher concentration of THC levels than CBD, it has got more psychoactive effects and therefore it will likely cause pronounced effects on the nervous system like mood changes, perception and general behavior. Although it has more sedative properties, sativa is also said to cause alertness and hallucinatory effects.

Various other strains of cannabis can be produced by crossing indica and sativa and individual strains within the crosses are also got, which all have varying cannabinoid profiles and effects. Anecdotal research has shown that indica strains have more anti anxiety effects, provide better sleeping aid, more relaxant, relieve pain, muscle spasms and tremors. Sativa strains have been shown to be stimulants, with higher psychoactive effects.

1.  Sativa plants grow taller and much slower than Indica plants.
2. Sativa plant leaves grow narrower with less chlorophyll than Indica leaves which are wider and darker.
3. Indica has sedative effects while sativa has stimulating effects.
4. Indica gives higher yields than sativa.
5. Indica has got higher concentration of cannabidiol than sativa.

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  1. I believe your summary is incorrect. Even you stated at the beginning of your article that Sativa plants have longer thinner leaves and take longer to mature; however, in your summary you state that “Indica” plants have these qualities?

  2. Thank you for youe essay. For several decades I’ve sought the benefits of marijuana, yet knew only that some made me too sleepy to appreciate its merit, while other was far more useful for everything but sleep. Now, with a bit more time, I’m trying to learn a little something really useful. This sentence at the end of ‘chemical properties,’ however, is a bit confusing to me: “Although it has more sedative properties, sativa is also said to cause alertness and hallucinatory effects.” Is this really what you intended to state? Earlier you wrote, “…indica has got (sic) higher levels of Cannabidiol (CBD) which has got (sic) higher sedative effects than dranabinol (THC) so indica will most likely get you sleepier compared to sativa.” These statements seem to be diametrically opposed. Which, then, is higher in sedation value, and which is more stimulating? Thank you for helping to further in my education.

  3. Summary:
    1. CBD Has energizing effects.
    2. High levels of THC will cause drowsiness
    3. Indica or sativa has no bearing on the amount of THC or CBD a plant will produce, that’s all genetics
    4. THC is not dronabinol… THC-Tetrahydrocannabinol Dronabinol-Marinol
    Dronabinol, THC capsules
    Brand names for this medication

    DRONABINOL (droe NAB i nol) is used to treat nausea and vomiting caused by cancer treatment, especially for those patients who do not respond to other medicines. This medicine is also used to increase appetite in AIDS patients.

    Dronabinol was an attempt to create artificial delta-9 THC, they ended up creating THC but without the synergistic effects of the other cannabinoids, the medicinal value was lacking.

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