The differences between Sativa and Indica plants – Which type is right for you?

The differences between Sativa and Indica plants – Which type is right for you?

Imagine this, you walk into your favorite dispensary and the bud-tender behind the counter presents you with the question “What kind of marijuana are you looking for?”. You look at them with a blank stare thinking that marijuana is simply marijuana and you ponder what he could possibly be trying to ask. After reading this article, you will gain the know how in order to answer this question and ultimately receive the product that perfectly fits your cannabis needs.

Cannabis is divided into two main sub-categories, sativa and indica. We will get into hybrid classifications later. Both of these types still provide the psychoactive effects that marijuana users strive for however they make you “feel” differently. In more common language, this is referred to the differences in the “high” that you would experience. Both types of marijuana originated from the soils of central and south Asia however the journey they have taken to a modern world is staggering.


Sativa plants generally grow tall and slender, sometimes reaching heights of over six feet tall. This type of bud gives the user a more intense “head-high” than an indica strain would. Sativa strains leave your mind in a creative, energetic cloud that allows the user to stay active and engage in daily events or activates. Sativa’s are generally more suitable for day-time use because of this quality. Increased focus, creativity, energy, happiness, and calmness are the main traits of this type of marijuana. Activities that sativa use would be recommended for would be doing something artistic, working on a project where out of the box thinking is needed, camping and hiking, as well as general sightseeing or shopping. Popular sativa strains are Sour Diesel, Willie Nelson, Maui Waui, and Purple Haze.


Indica varieties of cannabis still get you “high” but they come with a very different set of key features. This type of high is considered to be more physically calming. Cannabis Indica plants are generally shorter and fatter than sativa strains making them great for indoor growing operations. After smoking an indica flower, the user generally feels very sleepy or tired. This is where the “couch-lock” syndrome comes from. Becoming couch locked basically means that you want to get off the couch, but you determine that you can live without whatever you where thinking of trying to get. It is quite the dilemma. Indica strains relax your body, help to fight pain, reduce headaches and seizures, makes you sleepy, and helps to eliminate stress or anxiety. It is recommended to use this type of marijuana after a long day at work, going to watch a movie, for medicinal pain killing effect or right before going to bed and whenever you are in a calm environment. Popular indica strains are Northern Lights, G13, Granddaddy Purple, and White Rhino.

This brings us to the question, “What happens when you mix the two types?”. Let me introduce you to the wide world of hybrids. Hybrids are made by breeding specific sativa and indica strains in order to try and either accentuate their strengths, or to try and improve a quality within the other. Hybrid strains bring you the best of both worlds and allow you to expand your selection of different types of marijuana. It is nearly impossible to say which hybrid strain is the absolute “best” because each hybrid strain was created to try and achieve something different. Dabbling with hybrids is equivalent to walking the grey area between indica and sativa qualities. Growers like hybrid varieties because it gives them the ability to achieve the qualities that they want from their plants. This can come in many different areas such as harvest size, sativa/indica blend, overall plant size, taste, color and much more.

After noting the differences between indica, sativa, and hybrid types of marijuana, you can now be a much more educated and informed marijuana consumer. Each strain gives something new to offer and it is all personal preference as to which one is best. The best advice I can give as an author is to go out and try many different types of strains and write down the ones you like and/or dislike. This is especially useful when experimenting with hybrid variations because they are not all going to be the same. It takes time to find YOUR perfect cannabis concoction and don’t be afraid to try something new. You just might like it even more than the stuff you have now. Happy smoking!


You knew it was coming, the text in this article is informational only and not intended to be legal or medical advice or recommendations in any way. Use this information as you will with your own discretion.

The bottom line is – be safe, follow the rules, and enjoy some Mary Jane while you are in the Bicentennial State for your Rocky Mountain High!