Sativa, Indica and Ruderalis
Sativa, indica and ruderalisSince the species was first described as Cannabis sativa L, it has been split, re-grouped, disassembled and bundled as one species several times. Everyone thought something different and on the latter one couldn't see the wood for the trees. However, growers and smokers worldwide have known for decades that not only in effect, but also in appearance and growth, there is an essential distinction between different species. In addition to the obvious differences between (fibre-) hemp and cannabis, there is also a clear distinction between Cannabis indica and Cannabis sativa. All of the thousands of modern species can be traced back to these three subspecies: Cannabis ruderalis, Cannabis indica and Cannabis sativa. By crossing, the best properties of different plants were united in their offspring, which has been applied systematically since the 1980s. Most modern cultivars are hybrids and hybridisation has also occurred in the wild, which sometimes makes it very difficult to distinguish. Pure indica or sativa plants, the' landstrains' that lie at the origin of modern cannabis, are becoming increasingly rare.
A fairly recent phenomenon is the increased focus on CBD-rich cannabis and flower-rich hemp species, due to their therapeutic value.
Cannabis sativais known as the largest species, it usually grows to 2 to 4 metres high. She is known for her cerebral effects, and usually produces a strong long-lasting high. The large shrubs also yield large harvests, but patience is needed, some varieties bloom for up to 16 weeks.
It has its origins in the more tropical parts of our planet, especially around the equator. Wild sativa species occur in the countries of Central America, Central Africa and Central Asia in particular. Their natural environment is usually warm, humid and densely vegetated, with fairly constant environmental factors throughout the year. The species has adapted very well to this climate, it grows in height to be able to reach to the light, the finer fingers on the leaves are a clever adjustment to the high humidity, in fact the whole plant and especially the buds are lighter and looser to prevent moisture problems.
Because the cannabis of Cannabis sativa often contains high concentrations of THC and few CBD, most users experience a mental high, with relatively few physical effects. It is usually described as euphoric, inspiring and motivating and many users indicate that they have an improved mood and appetite, as well as more energy and focus.
Cannabis indica is a smaller, more compact species than Cannabis sativa. Indicas are known for the strong physical effects they provide, but also for their mental calming effects. Pure indicas look like small Christmas trees and usually stay shorter than 1.5 metres. As soon as an indica reaches the correct height, she puts all her energy into making compact, resinous, aromatic buds. The flowering is also shorter, averaging 6-8 weeks.
The plants often grow in dry, arid mountainous areas, such as in Lebanon, Afghanistan and India, where there are large fluctuations in daylight and temperature during the year. By staying more compact, with broader fingers on the leaves and with increased resin production, indicas can make the most of the short growth period in their natural habitat.
Typical Cannabis indica species usually contain moderate levels of THC and relatively high levels of CBD, which makes them very suitable for persons who want to use Cannabis for medical reasons. For most of them, the effect is the classic couch-lock, deep mental relaxation with a reduction of stress and anxiety, and a bodily stoned feeling with relief from muscle tension and pain. Most species also improve appetite.
Cannabis ruderalis is the smallest of the three species, they rarely grow taller than a metre and the flowers are also much smaller. Due to its very low yields and cannabinoid contents, it was not considered useful to the home grower for a long time. Although it was historically used both medicinal and recreational, until recently Cannabis ruderalis was mainly used to produce fibres, the seeds as animal and bird feed.
Cannabis ruderalis occurs naturally in the northern regions of the earth. Wild species grow in cold prairie areas such as in China, Russia or Poland. This strain is perfectly adapted to harsh and cold environments with only a very short growing season. As a result, the plants have developed very strong resistance and rapid flowering, which is not dependent on light. Most species complete an entire cycle in only 3 months. Although the effect for most varieties is virtually non-existent, there are also varieties with elevated CBD-levels. Properties that do make her interesting for some home-growers.
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