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Cannabis 101

What Are Cannabis Concentrates & What Are They Used For?

By | Cannabis 101

Cannabis concentrate covers a variety of products that use extracts from the Cannabis plant. Concentrates are prized for their potency and high THC content, though this varies depending on the qualities of the original plant.

What are Marijuana Extracts?

Extracts are highly concentrated forms of marijuana that typically contain higher levels of cannabinoids, the active chemicals in Cannabis. Marijuana extracts are usually high in THC, the psychoactive component while hemp extracts contain more CBD, which is valued for its therapeutic qualities. The main benefit of extracts is that you can experience the effects by taking much smaller quantities.

How are Concentrates Made?

Concentrates are produced by passing a solvent such as butane or CO2 through Cannabis material. Depending on the type of extract, Cannabis may be fresh or cured. Live resin is made by using fresh flowers while types such as wax, crumble, and shatter are made using dried and cured flowers. The final result can be processed into a variety of consistencies. Users have their own preferences when it comes to concentrates.

Cannabis Concentrates

Popular Types of Concentrates

There are many types of cannabis concentrates and new ones are still being introduced. Concentrates are categorized in different ways, such as the solvent used during extraction (such as butane, propane, or CO2) and the consistency. Some of the most common types right now include:

  • Shatter —Known for its brittle, glasslike consistency.
  • Wax —Has the texture of beeswax.
  • Crumble —Has a honeycomb texture that easily falls apart.
  • Live Resin —Has a dark yellow color and the consistency of sugar or sap.
  • Solventless extractions —Methods of extraction that don’t use a solvent, including hash, kief, and rosin.

Within these categories, you’ll find many variations. The particular appearance of any concentrate varies depending on the original plant and the process used.

History of Concentrates

The earliest use of Cannabis concentrates was in the form of hashish, which has been used extensively in Asia and the Middle East for thousands of years. In the 18th and 19th centuries, hashish made its way to Europe and the United States and enjoyed a period of legal use until it was outlawed. Hashish was used by the government in the MK-Ultra program with infamous experiments designed to improve interrogation techniques.

Modern extraction methods using a closed-loop method weren’t developed until the 1990s. The most popular of these methods, which allows the solvent to be recycled, uses butane. For this reason, extracts are often called BHO for Butane Hash Oil. Other solvents include CO2, propane, and ethanol.

How are Concentrates Used?

Concentrates are often consumed using a process called dabbing, which is why the products are sometimes called dabs. The most common devices used to heat concentrates are water pipes called dab rigs and portable vape pens called dab pens. Some concentrates, such as shatter and crumble, are often added to flower and smoked in joints or blunts. Another option is to include concentrates in edibles.

Effects of Concentrates

The effects of concentrates vary according to the cannabinoid levels of the plant. As a rule, though, concentrates are stronger than flower. One of the primary motives for creating concentrates is to have a more potent experience. Here are a few points to remember when considering concentrates.

  • While concentrates are generally high in THC, there are also varieties that remove most or even all the THC. For example, CBD wax and CBD shatter are made for people who are mainly seeking the medicinal benefits of CBD.
  • Extraction often removes the terpenes, which produce many of the flavorful and aromatic qualities of Cannabis. If you prefer to experience the terpenes, which may have certain therapeutic benefits as well, live resin is an extract that retains most of these chemicals.
  • If you’re new to concentrates or are not familiar with a particular strain, begin with a small amount to gauge the potency and its effect on you.

Concentrates: A Convenient Way to Enjoy the Benefits of Cannabis

There is much to learn about cannabis concentrates. They encompass a wide variety of products with differing methods of extraction. If you’re seeking a potent experience, either for psychoactive or therapeutic effects, concentrates are worth considering. It’s important to do your research, buy from legal and trustworthy sources, and to read the labels so you know what you’re getting.

Want to learn more about concentrates or want to try them? Visit one of our Colorado locations. 

Live Resin

What is Live Resin and How is it Used?

By | Cannabis 101

Cannabis concentrates are currently very popular, giving people a way to experience higher levels of THC from small quantities. Live resin is a popular type of concentrate that’s made using a distinctive process. Let’s explore what live resin is, how it differs from other Cannabis concentrates, and how to use it safely.

What is Live Resin?

There are many types of marijuana concentrates, each with its own qualities and effects. Live resin is extracted from Cannabis that hasn’t been dried or cured. This helps it retain important chemicals such as terpenes and flavonoids that can be lost during the drying process. Live resin can be recognized by its dark yellow color.

History of Live Resin

Cannabis concentrates such as hashish have been used for many centuries. Other types of concentrates, including live resin, were developed more recently. Live resin is one of the newest concentrates, having been created in 2013 by a grower known as Kind Bill whose real name is William Fenger. He wanted to develop a concentrate that retained the plant’s terpenes, which give Cannabis its distinctive aroma.

Live Resin

How is Live Resin Made?

To make live resin, growers immediately flash freeze the Cannabis plant to preserve freshness and active compounds. After freezing, the process is similar to that used to make other concentrates. The most common solvent used is butane, which is why live resin, like other concentrates, is often called BHO (Butane Hash Oil). Dry ice or liquid nitrogen is often used to keep the temperature down. Like any concentrate, the final result depends on the qualities of the original plant.

How is it Used?

The most common way to ingest live resin is by dabbing, a process that uses a type of water pipe called a dab rig and a nail, a flat bowl that can withstand high temperatures. Another option is to use a dab pen, a convenient and portable device that lets you control the dabbing temperature. In addition to live resin, dab pens can be used to heat a variety of hash oils such as crumble, wax, and shatter.

What are the Effects of Live Resin?

As with all types of Cannabis, the effects depend largely on the qualities of the original plant. Thus, different varieties of live resin will have different effects and potency. THC levels are the main factor that determines the potency of Cannabis. While all concentrates tend to be high in THC, what distinguishes live resin from other concentrates are the terpenes that are retained in this type of extract.

For many people, the taste and aroma of marijuana are a crucial part of the experience. Live resin lets you enjoy the benefits of a Cannabis concentrate while retaining the flavor found in flower. Some people believe that, because live resin preserves more of the plant’s compounds, it also has greater medicinal benefits than other concentrates.

How Live Resin Differs From Other Concentrates

Because live resin preserves the terpenes more than other concentrates, the most obvious distinction is the taste and aroma. However, this won’t be the same in all varieties of live resin.  Your experience depends largely on which terpenes are preserved. Terpenes not only impact the aroma but can have effects on the body and mind. Some terpenes, such as myrcene, have a calming effect while others, such as terpinolene, are more energizing. There are many terpenes, so the particular makeup of each strain is unique and the effects will be slightly different.

Is Live Resin Safe?

Safety concerns are always important to consider when using Cannabis concentrates. When the proper precautions are followed, live resin is safe. The manufacturing of live resin is a dangerous process that should be left to professionals. When heating live resin, you need to consider dabbing safety precautions, such as working in a space far from any flammable materials.  When ingesting live resin (or any Cannabis extract), you should be familiar with the potency of the strain, especially if you’re susceptible to side effects such as anxiety or depression. It’s always best to start with small doses to find out how it affects you.

Enjoy the Benefits of Live Resin

Live resin is a Cannabis concentrate that provides a full-bodied experience compared to other concentrates. It’s important to buy products from a legal source that you trust and to select a strain that has the potency and effects that you prefer.

Want to try live resin? Visit one of our Colorado locations. 

Shatter

What Is Shatter and How Do You Use It?

By | Cannabis 101

Shatter is a type of Cannabis concentrate that gets its name from its brittle, glasslike consistency. Because it’s a highly concentrated extract, shatter tends to be high in THC. However, there’s also another variety known as CBD shatter that’s low in THC. The latter is valued by people who are seeking a concentrated form of Cannabis for medical benefits.

What is Shatter?

Let’s look at the history, qualities, and uses of shatter.

History of Shatter

Cannabis extracts, such as hashish, have been used for many centuries. Shatter is a relatively recent creation, as an extract that became popular in the 1990s. Shatter was introduced by one of the pioneers of modern Cannabis concentrates, BudderKing. It’s become even more popular since the 2000s.

Shatter

How Is Shatter Made?

As with other concentrates, shatter is made by extracting the cannabinoids from raw Cannabis using heat and compression. The solvent most often used for this process is BHO (Butane Hash Oil). During the shatter purge, which occurs at very low temperatures, unwanted materials are removed from the mixture. The entire process can take as long as 24 hours. As creating shatter is a long, complicated, and potentially dangerous process, it’s something that should only be done by professionals. It’s illegal to produce in many areas, even where Cannabis itself is legal.

Shatter and Dabbing

All Cannabis extracts can be consumed by a process known as dabbing, which employs a type of water pipe that’s heated at a high temperature. For this reason, shatter as well as other extractions are often called “dabs.” Dabs, however, is a general term that can refer to shatter or any number of extracts.

Shatter vs. Other Extracts

Cannabis extracts are valued for their potency. There are several types of extracts, such as wax, crumble, crystalline, and others. The distinguishing characteristic of each type is the consistency, though effects may differ as well. Wax, for example, has a beeswax-like consistency. Crumble, also known as honeycomb wax, as the name suggests, has a texture that breaks easily in your hand. Although shatter tends to be hard and brittle, the consistency depends on the process and materials used by the manufacturer. The effects of any concentrate, though, depends on the THC levels.

Uses and Effects of Shatter

Shatter, like other concentrated forms of Cannabis, contains high levels of THC, the plant’s psychoactive ingredient. The effects will depend on the THC levels of the strain you’re ingesting as well as your sensitivity to Cannabis in general.

How to Use Shatter

Shatter can be used in several ways.

  • Add to flower. You can mix in a small quantity of shatter to a blunt, joint, or bowl.
  • Hash pipe. You’ll need a pipe that’s designed to work with extracts.
  • Dabbing. You can heat shatter using a dab rig, which involves heating the shatter on a heated surface called a nail.
  • Vaporizer. Only modern, more costly vaporizers are designed to work with extracts.

CBD Shatter

CBD shatter is an extract that has the same consistency as other types of shatter, the difference being that it only contains CBD cannabinoids. As such, it’s mainly used by people who are seeking the medicinal benefits of CBD without the psychoactive effects.

Safety Tips

These guidelines can help you enjoy shatter safely.

  • Don’t try to make shatter yourself as the process is quite dangerous.
  • Only buy extracts from a reputable and legal source.
  • Read the label so you know the strength of the strain you’re buying.
  • Remember that extracts such as shatter contain high levels of THC (unless it’s CBD shatter), so only use a small quantity.
  • If you’re new to Cannabis it’s best to avoid dabbing and start with flower and learn your tolerance level.

Enjoy the Benefits of Shatter

Experienced Cannabis users who are looking for more ways to appreciate the psychoactive and/or medicinal benefits of the plant can enjoy shatter for its potency and convenience. If you’re interested in extracts, you can try other varieties such as wax and crumble as well as shatter as the main difference is in the consistency. As with any type of Cannabis, when you shop for shatter, make sure you trust the source and know what you are getting in terms of potency and THC levels.

Want to try shatter yourself? Visit one of our Colorado locations. 

Wax

What Is Wax and How Do You Use It?

By | Cannabis 101

Marijuana wax is a Cannabis concentrate known for its potency and high THC concentration. It’s a substance that’s extracted from Cannabis plants using a solvent such as butane. Wax is consumed for both medicinal and recreational purposes. Before using it, you should be familiar with some of its qualities and follow certain precautions.

Wax and Cannabis Extracts

Wax, named after the beeswax that it resembles, is a type of Cannabis concentrate. Like other concentrates and extracts, wax is prized for its potency and high levels of THC.

Concentrates and Extractions

Extracts or concentrates have been long used as a way to consume Cannabis in a more potent and concentrated form. The purpose is to keep only the most potent and active chemicals of a plant and dispose of everything else. This process is widely used for foods as well as psychoactive substances. For example, orange juice is commonly made into concentrate as pulp and other substances are removed. Many pharmaceutical drugs are similarly concentrated forms of plants and herbs. In the case of Cannabis, the objective is to extract the cannabinoids and terpenes and remove inactive parts of the plant.

Cannabis Wax

History of Cannabis Extractions and Wax

The history of Cannabis extraction goes back many centuries, though not as far back as the use of Cannabis itself. As Sweedsy explains, Cannabis-based drugs, which utilized concentrated forms of the plant, were used in many drugs in the 19th century before prohibition. The best-known form of Cannabis concentrate is hashish, commonly called hash, which can be traced back at least as far as 12th century Cairo.

Lebanese or Moroccan hash is often considered the precursor of modern wax and sugar.  Although containing as much as 5 times the THC of weed, traditional Moroccan hash was still less extreme and concentrated than modern forms.

It wasn’t until the 20th century that modern methods of extraction using butane were developed. In the 1990s, BHO (Butane Hash Oil) extraction was discovered, allowing for the creation of extractions with very high THC levels. Wax comes under this category, along with other extracts with different consistencies such as shatter and crumble.

How Is Wax Consumed?

Wax can be added to the Cannabis flower to make it more potent. You might, for example, add drops of concentrate oil to the flower before smoking it. Extracts can also be consumed on their own, as in dabbing. A popular method is to use a vaporizer or dab rig, a type of water pipe. The heating element, called a nail, is lit with a butane torch. Because the process involves high heat, at temperatures as high as 800 ℉, it’s essential to use caution. A simpler and older method of dabbing involves heating two kitchen knives and squeezing the dab between them.

Risks and Precautions When Using Wax

There are certain risks that you should know about when using wax. Wax has THC concentrations of up to 90%, making it significantly more potent than other forms of Cannabis. For this reason,  it’s best to proceed responsibly and with caution, starting with low quantities and long periods of time between dabs to find out how you respond to it.

Safety Tips for Dabbing

When dabbing, it’s important to follow the proper safety precautions when preparing it. There are also some guidelines to keep in mind before consuming it.

  • Start with a small amount. When using wax or any highly concentrated form of Cannabis, you only need a small amount to produce effects. It’s best to take a single hit and wait several minutes to find out how you react.
  • If you’re sensitive to THC, try CBD wax, which is an extract that only contains CBD and no THC.
  • Don’t mix wax with any other psychoactive substance, including alcohol.
  • Have a partner nearby, preferably someone who is not indulging.
  • Stay hydrated before and after dabbing.

When the proper protocols are followed, wax can provide a powerful Cannabis experience. One of the main benefits is that you only need a small amount to enjoy the effects. If you’re new to this method of consuming Cannabis, however, you should proceed with caution.

Want to try wax yourself? Visit one of our Colorado locations. 

Cannabis Shake

What is Shake & What Is It Used For?

By | Cannabis 101

The world of Cannabis has its own terminology. One term often used by users, not always in the same way, is shake. Shake most commonly refers to the leftover leaves that break away from the larger buds. People may refer to the leftover pieces from a jar or bag as shake. It can also be purchased separately at dispensaries. One reason people sometimes seek it out is that it is generally cheaper than flower. As with any Cannabis products, the quality and effects of shake depend on many factors.

Shake vs Flower

Since shake refers to smaller leaves that come from a larger flower, to ask about its quality is similar to asking about the quality of any strain of Cannabis. It depends entirely on where it comes from. However, the situation is complicated when shake from multiple strains are mixed together by sellers. If you’re buying shake, then, you need to ascertain where it comes from.

Shake vs Trim

Although some sellers attempt to pass of trim as shake, they are not the same thing. Trim is the part of the Cannabis plant that growers cut away before the curing process. Trim is inactive and has no value either for medicinal or recreational purposes.

Cannabis Shake

Is Shake Inferior?

As noted, the main point that determines the quality of shake is the flower from which it comes. However, shake may not be quite as potent as the original flower. Bud normally maintains its chemical consistency over time. When it gets broken up, however, the smaller pieces can dry out and lose their potency. For this reason, the quality of shake can also depend on how long it’s been lying around. One test is to smell it. If it has the aromatic odor of the flower, it’s most likely retained a good portion of its potency. On the other hand, if it’s lost its distinctive aroma, the effects may be similarly weak. You also have to watch for shake that contains lots of stems and trim, which dilutes the potency.

Shake is Cheaper Than Flower

One of the main advantages of shake is that it’s cheaper than flower. If you don’t care about consistency, you can save money by buying shake. As long as you’re buying shake that isn’t too old or dried out and that comes from a quality flower, it can be a good value.

How to Use Shake

There are a few ways you can enjoy using shake.

  • Joints and Pre-rolls—One of the easiest ways to use shake is to roll the pieces into joints for smoking.
  • Blunts — Shake is also convenient to roll into larger joints known as blunts. You can also use a combination of flower and shake for these.
  • Edibles —Shake can also be used in edibles such as brownies, beverages, candy, and anything else.

Know What You’re Getting

To get the best experience from shake, you should be familiar with the flower from which it originates. If shake is taken from different types of flowers, the effects will be unpredictable.

Pros and Cons of Shake

Here’s a summary of the main pros and cons of shake.

Pros

  • It’s cheaper than flower, making it ideal if you’re on a tight budget.
  • It’s perfect for edibles or rolling into joints or blunts.

Cons

  • May not be as potent as flower.
  • Not ideal if you’re using Cannabis for medical reasons and want to be sure of CBD content.

Shake Can be Part of Your Cannabis Consumption

Shake isn’t really something distinct from other types of Cannabis. It’s similar to leftovers at a meal, where the quality depends on how good the original meal was and how you’re keeping it in the refrigerator. There’s no reason not to use shake if you’re seeking low-cost marijuana that serves a variety of purposes. It’s not ideal if you want to be certain of the quality and potency of the product.

Hybrid Cannabis

What is Hybrid Cannabis & How Are Its Effects Different?

By | Cannabis 101

Cannabis is a genus of plant that comes in several varieties. If you smoke or ingest Cannabis, it helps to become familiar with the different strains and their effects. The most common types are Cannabis Sativa and Cannabis Indica. However, there are also many hybrid strains. Let’s explore what hybrid Cannabis is and how its effects differ from pure strains.

Sativa, Indica, and Hybrid Strains of Cannabis

Cannabis Sativa is known for its energizing effects. It’s often taken to inspire creativity and euphoria. Sativa plants often have a higher dosage of THC relative to CBD, increasing their psychoactive quality. Cannabis Indica, on the other hand, brings about states of extreme relaxation. Indica strains are typically higher in CBD and lower in THC. Aside from the type of feeling you prefer, the time of day is a factor to consider. Indica is generally preferred later in the day as it’s more conducive to sleep.

Hybrid strains of Cannabis are those that contain both Sativa and Indica. Just as Sativa and Indica plants can differ significantly in their chemical composition, so hybrid strains are all different. For one thing, growers have their own combinations in order to create plants with particular effects. Because hybrid plants are all different, you have to ask the grower about the ratio of THC to CBD.

Hybrid Marijuana

Ratio of CBD to THC

Experts on Cannabis will tell you that what really matters is the individual strain and, in particular, the ratio of active chemicals. The most important cannabinoids are THC, which provides the psychoactive effects and CBD, which isn’t psychoactive but has important medicinal effects such as helping with pain relief.

When shopping for Cannabis, it can be a little confusing when you hear about hybrids, balances, and ratios. The balance or ratio refers not to the Sativa-Indica mix but the ratio of CBD to THC. A 1:1 balance refers to equal parts CBD to THC 2:1 is two parts CBD to one part THC. 1:2 contains twice as much THC as CBD. People using Cannabis for mostly medicinal reasons seek high ratios, such as 18:1, indicating much higher levels of CBD.

Types of Hybrid Strains

While growers all have their own blends, there are several general categories of hybrid strains.

Indica Dominant

An Indica dominant hybrid strain tends to be slightly more energizing than a pure Indica strain. In terms of appearance, these plants have darker leaves and are shorter than Sativa plants. People who are sensitive to the side effects of Cannabis, such as anxiety or insomnia, often prefer Indica dominant strains if not pure Indica.

Sativa Dominant

Sativa dominant strains of Cannabis appear taller and narrower than Indica dominant plants, with lighter green leaves. This type of hybrid is often recommended for people who want a stimulating effect that’s a little mellower than pure Sativa.

50/50 Cannabis

Balanced, also known as 50/50 Cannabis, contains equal parts Sativa and Indica. This type of balanced strain is often marketed as giving you the best of both worlds. As the name suggests, this type of blend provides an effect somewhere in between the typical Sativa and Indica strains. \

Popular Hybrid Strains

New strains of Cannabis appear on the market all the time. Some gain almost legendary status for their reported benefits. Currently, we can identify a few very popular hybrid strains such as Larry Bird Kush, named after the basketball star, which is quite high in THC. Another blend that’s very much in demand right now is Cannatonic, known for its anti-anxiety effects.

Find the Right Blend for Your Needs

Browsing the different strains of Cannabis can be overwhelming as there are so many choices. You can read reviews and the copy created by sellers, but you really have to find out for yourself which strains provide the effects you’re after. You can, of course, use guidelines such as CBD-THC blends and Sativa vs. Indica to guide you as you decide which strains to sample.

Sativa

What is Cannabis Sativa and How Does it Affect You?

By | Cannabis 101

When shopping at a dispensary, you may be wondering about the different strains of cannabis. The main distinction to understand is between the Sativa and Indica strains, though there are also hybrid strains. Let’s take a look at Cannabis Sativa and how it differs from other strains.

What is Cannabis Sativa?

Cannabis Sativa is a herbaceous plant native to Eastern Asia that is now cultivated all over the world. It has been used for thousands of years as a fiber as well as for medicinal, recreational, and spiritual purposes.

History

Cannabis Sativa is one of the first plants cultivated by humans. It can be traced at least as far back as 4,000 B.C. in China, where it was used as a fiber, food, and medicine. From late antiquity through the Middle Ages, cannabis was traded along the Silk Road, spreading to Africa, the Middle East, and Europe.

Sativa

Appearance

You can recognize sativa plants in a number of ways. They are taller than other Cannabis types. They have a longer flowering cycle than Indica strains, making this strain easier to cultivate in mild climates with long growing seasons. Sativa leaves are slender and light green. Compared with Indica, their foliage is sparse.

What are the Effects of Cannabis Sativa?

The actual effects of Cannabis on your body and mind depend more on its chemical composition than on the strain (i.e. Sativa vs. Indica). The most important chemicals in cannabis are cannabinoids and terpenes.

Cannabinoids and Terpenes

Cannabinoids are the chemicals in cannabis that have a psychoactive effect. The most powerful is THC, which produces the typical high, euphoria, or relaxes state typically associated with marijuana. Another important cannabinoid is CBD, which isn’t psychoactive but has medicinal benefits. CBD is beneficial for pain relief and may help with various health conditions such as migraines and preventing seizures.

Terpenes are chemical compounds that affect the smell of cannabis, often producing a variety of fruit-like and spice-like odors. Terpenes are studied in aromatherapy for their influence on mood, and they can also affect your reaction to cannabis. The medicinal effects of terpenes are less well-known than those of cannabinoids but some show promise for relieving pain and reducing stress.

Cannabis Sativa tends to have higher doses of THC and lower doses of CBD than Indica strains. Individual plants, however, will differ in their composition.

Physiological and Emotional Effects

Once again, it’s not accurate to generalize too much about a strain of cannabis as the effects depend on so many factors. However, users often report the following effects from Cannabis Sativa:

  • Energizing and supporting creative activities. Whereas Cannabis Indica is usually associated with relaxation and lethargy, sativa often produces a more active state.
  • More conducive to performing normal, everyday tasks, especially those that require concentration.
  • Better suited for daytime use. Using this strain at night may make it difficult to sleep.
  • The stimulating effect of Cannabis Sativa often makes it useful for treating conditions such as migraines, chronic pain, and nausea.

Cannabis Sativa vs. Cannabis Indica

Cannabis Indica tends to produce a quieter, less active state of mind than sativa. Indica is not the best choice if you’re planning any type of activity that requires focus. On the other hand, it’s perfect for relaxation and socializing. Sativa is generally chosen when you want a more active, outgoing experience.

The Prevalence of Hybrid Strains

While Sativa and Indica are distinct cannabis strains, many cannabis growers create their own hybrid strains. These may contain any proportion of Sativa and indica. Each strain also has its own CBD to THC ratio. When considering hybrid strains, you should ask the producer or seller about the particular composition of the strains they’ve grown.

When to Look for Cannabis Sativa

Many experts question the usefulness of separating cannabis into neat categories such as Sativa and Indica, considering that most plants today are hybrids anyway. At the same time, there are distinctions that can be identified in both appearance and effects. As noted, Cannabis Sativa often has a more energizing influence than Cannabis Indica. When considering the effects of cannabis, you have to consider your own preferences as well as where a particular strain was grown.

Indica

What is Cannabis Indica and What are its Effects?

By | Cannabis 101

Cannabis Indica is an annual plant cultivated in many parts of the world for fiber as well as its psychoactive effects. Along with Cannabis Sativa, it’s the most widely grown strain of Cannabis. Let’s look at some qualities of Cannabis Indica and how it differs from other strains.

Indica

Qualities of Cannabis Indica

History

The cultivation of Cannabis dates back to distant antiquity. The Indica strain was originally found in the Kush mountain range between Pakistan and Afghanistan. As Cannabis was cultivated and traded, it made its way around the world. Both Indica and Sativa, whose origin is further East in China, were widely traded and increasingly blended as demand for Cannabis increased around the world.

Appearance and Growing Season

Cannabis Indica has a shorter, denser appearance than Cannabis Sativa. Its leaves are wider, with fewer leaflets than Sativa. The leaves are usually olive green, compared to the lighter green of Sativa leaves. Indica has a shorter flowering cycle than Sativa, making it easier to grow in colder climates.

Effects

The effects of any strain of Cannabis mainly come down to its chemical properties, especially the cannabinoids and terpenes. The most important cannabinoids are THC, which is responsible for the psychoactive effect, and CBD, which contains important medicinal properties such as providing pain relief. Terpenes, meanwhile, influence the plant’s odor and provide aromatherapy benefits. Both Sativa and Indica Cannabis plants have different chemical compositions, making it difficult to generalize. Nonetheless, there are some distinctive qualities associated with Indica.

  • Lower levels of THC and higher levels of CBD compared to Sativa.
  • Relaxing, sedating effect. This is perfect for relaxing and socializing but less appropriate for activity.
  • Appropriate for evening use.
  • May reduce pain and nausea. Sativa also has these benefits.

Differences Between Indica and Sativa

While Cannabis Indica is known for its sedating effects, Sativa is more energizing. Sativa is often used for creative inspiration and any situation where you want to be mentally alert. Using Sativa at night is not recommended as it can interfere with sleep. However, the individual strain of Cannabis and its levels of THC and CBD is more important than whether it’s Indica or Sativa.

Hybrid Cannabis Plants

While people often refer to Cannabis plants by the names Sativa and Indica, the fact is most plants are hybrid. Growers often create their own hybrid variations based on the THC and CBD levels. As noted, Indica and Sativa have their distinct appearances but few plants today are pure specimens of one or the other. Because of this, shopping for either Sativa or Indica is not always the most useful way to choose your Cannabis. At the same time, many Cannabis connoisseurs maintain an overall preference for one or the other.

Shopping for Cannabis Guidelines

When shopping for Cannabis, it’s more useful to ask about the chemical composition rather than focusing on terms such as Sativa or Indica. Because growers create their own blends, you should seek out the strains that are in alignment with your needs. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Potency. Higher levels of THC will produce a stronger psychoactive effect. Strains lower in THC are appropriate if Cannabis tends to produce anxiety or other unwanted side effects.
  • Medicinal benefits. If you’re primarily using Cannabis for pain relief or to treat a medical condition, you’ll want to look for higher levels of CBD.
  • Smell and taste. If you’re going to be smoking or otherwise consuming Cannabis, you may as well enjoy the experience as much as possible. The terpenes contained in Cannabis influence the flavor and produce a variety of herbal, fruity, and spicy aromas.

When shopping for Cannabis Indica or any other type, you may need to do your own experimenting to find out which strains produce the effects you prefer.