So I’ve decided to grow my own cannabis this year, I’m a first-timer so I’m hoping to find a whole bunch of new friends that are either new like me or are experts that are willing to provide some guidance without making me feel like a total shmuck.
My hope is we’re going to try and grow our cannabis together and help each other learn along the way. I figure a great place to start, is to learn about the types of strains that are available. There’s a lot of research can be done here and it’s easy to get into the weeds but my promise is always to adhere to We’d Share’s 3rd value statement which is BEAUTIFUL SIMPLICITY or to put it another way, to use the KISS principle – Keep It Simple Stupid.
Alright, let’s start with the 3 unique species of Cannabis:
Originally grown in countries near the equator (Colombia, Mexico, Thailand), sativas thrive in hotter climates with longer daylight hours and loads of sunshine. These strain typically grow to between 8 and 12 feet, but are capable of growing taller than 20 feet if they’re allowed to do so! Other traits to note are that they take longer to grow and have thin leaves that generate huge yields.
Sativas, on the other hand are often viewed as typically having energetic and uplifting effects. Sativas are commonly linked with creativity, energy and mental focus. If you suffer from creativity blocks or tend to self filter ideas before exploring them, then this may be the strain that helps you though those hurtles.
For starters, they were much shorter, roughly 3-4 feet high, and densely branched with broad, wider leaves to protect itself from the harsh, turbulent conditions, cannabis indica developed the ability to produce resin — a sticky, organic substance produced by plants. Resin is very dense in cannabinoids (more on those later) which often makes indica cannabis strains very potent.
Indica strains typically linked with very relaxing and mellowing effects. Often associated with the phrase In-da-couch, indicas are often used to help with insomnia and are known to provide intense muscle relaxation. They can be so relaxing that you can find yourself sitting on the couch for an extended period of time and not really mind all that much. Indicas are often the strain type associated with heightened sense of pleasure while listening to music, eating food or touching different textures.
But wait there’s more there’s one more species out there…
From Russia… has virtually no benefit due to a much lower concentration of THC (the psychoactive element in cannabis). So don’t waste valuable brain space on this one and feel free to purge this tidbit from the memory banks immediately.
So now we know the major species and how each can affect us.
Moving on the chemicals that cause the effects… CBD & THC:
CBD is a cannabinoid that has no psychoactive effect and can actually help reduce the effects caused by THC. Both Indica and Sativa cannabis strains contain THC and CBD However; It’s been widely thought that Indica strains are more psychoactive and therefore higher in THC, while Sativa strains are thought of as higher in CBD so you don’t necessarily feel an intense “high” which is why the effects are considered to be more functional. The only way to know is to check the listed percentages for each compound in your strain.
And last but not least terpenes…
When you really start to pay attention to the subtleties of each cannabis strain you will notice that one strain smells can smell like berries while another can smell like a lemon? Once you develop a more sophisticated palette (which I haven’t yet) I’m told you’ll find that one strain can taste like cheese while another will offer a citrus flavour. So what is it that gives cannabis different smells and tastes? The answer is their terpenes.
Terpenes (pronounced tur-peens) are organic, aromatic compounds found in the oils of all flowers, including cannabis. Naturally produced to attract beneficial insects and repel predators, terpenes emit strong smells and flavours and change based on various growing conditions.
So that it. With the basic above you’re well on you why to understanding what this amazing and complex plant has to offer. If you have anything to add, any tips of wisdom to bestow, or any questions that I can dig into for you, please share.