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Cannabis Indica vs Sativa

What Is The Difference Between Indica and Sativa Cannabis Plants

This is a general overview of indicas vs. sativas. Today’s cannabis plants are products of a long history of plant breeding.  Many strains have been breed to be a hybrid – both indica and sativa.

Not all of these methods are sure fire ways to determine indica vs. sativa; however, if you can identify several of these indicators then you’ll have a pretty good indication.


Geographic Origin

Marijuana plants have quickly spread worldwide. The origins have been traced back to general geographic locations. Below are a few examples of countries from each region.

Indica – Hindu Kush region of the Middle East –  Turkey, Morocco, Afghanistan

Sativa – Grown near the equator – Colombia, Mexico, Thailand, Southeast Asia.


Leaf Shape

One of the easiest ways to tell if a marijuana plant is indica or sativa is to look at the shape of it’s leaves. As with all the categories, hybrids my exhibit either shape, or a combination.

Indica – Broad leaf

Sativa – Slender leaf


Plant Height

If the plant is mature then the size is a pretty good indication. This makes indicas more suitable for small grow spaces, while sativas are often grown outdoors. In order to keep a decent size I didn’t even go with the tallest height for sativa in the graphic. Sativas can get massive.

Indica – 3-4 ft.

Sativa – Up to 20 ft.



Flowering Time

Flowering is the stage of a grow cycle when a plant begins to produce buds. Once flowering is complete it’s time to harvest and cure.

Indica –  8 to 12 weeks

Sativa –  10 to 16 weeks


Yield Size

The size of the plant (obviously) plays a big role in accounting for the size of the harvest. I used the higher yield size from each in the graphic.

Indica – 1.5 to 2.5 ounces per plant

Sativa – 3 ounces to 1 pound per plant



If you know which type of cannabis you’re ingesting you can plan certain activities around it.

Indica – sedating and relaxing – get ready to chill out on the couch and listen to music or take a nap

Sativa – energized, cerebral – this is great for getting work done around the house or going on adventures.

This Post Has One Comment

  1. Ian Kelly

    Excellent blog. Very informative (:

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