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How To Tell Indica From Sativa

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Cannabis plants come in three major varieties, though the best known are the indica and the sativa strains. Many individuals have questions about how to tell indica from sativa when it comes to planting, growing, or purchasing marijuana.

You can learn more about indica and sativa cannabis with our team at Cannabis and Glass. We provide expert information about marijuana strains to individuals right here in Ontario, Oregon. View our menu online or get more information by calling (541) 907-1234.

Basic Facts About Indica and Sativa Plants

We mentioned that there are three recognized cannabis varieties, including:

  • Cannabis sativa
  • Cannabis indica
  • Cannabis ruderalis

Cannabis sativa was the variety discovered first by Carl Linnaeus. Linnaeus identified and named the plant in the 1750s. Sativa grew across much of Europe, allowing Linnaeus, who was from Sweden, to become familiar with the plant.

Cannabis indica was identified in India by Jean-Baptiste Lamarck in 1785. Finally, D. E. Janichevsky identified cannabis ruderalis in Russia in the 20th century. Scientists still debate the exact taxonomy of these cannabis varieties but generally accept them as separate species.

Physical Differences Between Indica and Sativa

Want to know how to tell indica from sativa? You can often distinguish indica and sativa plants based on their physical characteristics.

Physical Appearance: Sativa Plants

cannabis sativa

Sativa marijuana plants are native to warm areas with tropical climates. You can often find them growing naturally in Africa, Mexico, Vietnam, and Thailand. These plants have adaptations that allow them to thrive in humid and hot areas. Sativa plants usually have:

  • Tall stalks
  • Lax branches with internodal spacing
  • Wispy buds
  • Narrow leaves

These plants often do well growing outdoors and have natural adaptations to deal with mold and pests. When these plants flower, they gain some height, but mostly they form an impressive canopy that becomes very bushy.

Physical Appearance: Indica Plants

marijuana indica

Indica plants often grow naturally in areas that are mountainous, dry, and cold. You may locate them in places like northern India and Nepal. These plants have adapted to their conditions and often have:

  • A conical shape
  • Wider leaves
  • Denser foliage

Indica plants stay shorter than sativa plants until they blossom, at which point they often shoot up in height, sometimes growing up to nine feet in total. They flower more quickly and do well when grown indoors.

You should know that many people experiment with hybrid strains that blend indica and sativa plants. Therefore, you may not be able to identify these plants based on their physical appearance.

Tasting the Difference Between Indica and Sativa Plants

Visual differences often help people decide how to tell indica from sativa. You may also use your sense of taste when trying to distinguish between these types of cannabis. Many people find that indica plants generate a sweet taste that may include hints of honey and fruit.

Sativa plants, on the other hand, often taste earthier. Some people even describe them as having a flavor that reminds them of fuel. In many cases, the exact taste of marijuana depends upon the terpene profile of the weed, which can vary even amongst different kinds of sativa or indica plants.

Different Effects of Indica and Sativa Plants

In general, the cannabis community agrees that sativa and indica strains have different medical benefits. For example, people may credit indica with having a sedative effect and working to ease chronic pain. Experts may also tell you that sativa strains are more energizing.

While this common knowledge can help you identify the strains you want to try out, you should know that many research facilities argue that you cannot determine the effects of a marijuana plant based solely on the strain.

Instead, the unique concentrations of flavonoids, terpenes, and cannabinoids in marijuana will determine the effects produced when the compounds are eaten, smoked, or otherwise consumed. You can speak with the experts to discuss different cannabis products to find one that may cause the effects you want.

Contact Us To Review Cannabis Strains

Do you want more information on how to tell indica from sativa? You can reach out to the professionals at our Ontario Oregon Dispensary,  Cannabis and Glass, to learn more. Feel free to contact us with your questions by calling (541) 907-1234 or visit our store.