Types of Cannabis Plants: Sativa, Indica & Ruderalis

Cannabis Sativa – Energizing and uplifting effects, typically grown in equatorial regions.

Cannabis Indica – Relaxing and sedative effects, typically grown in regions with a more temperate climate.

Cannabis Ruderalis – Native to colder regions, ability to flower automatically, regardless of light cycles.

Sativa Cannabis Plants

Sativa is one of the most popular cannabis strains, as it is being used all around the world for both recreational and medicinal use. Moreover, it is also used as a source of industrial fibre, seed oil, and food. This type of plant can either be male or female, and they are harvested based on the need.

Since both types of plants have different benefits and outputs, it is important to know your requirements before growing or buying one. Male sativa plants are generally taller and less robust than female ones. This type of plant contains more than 500 types of chemical compounds, 113 of which are cannabinoids.

  • Leaf Shape – Compared to indica strains, sativa strains have long, slender leaves that are lighter in colour.
  • Plant Structure – Sativa plants often grow higher, with a more airy, open structure, longer internodes, and fewer branches.
  • Growth Pattern – Sativa strains often grow in equatorial locations and require more time to blossom than Indica strains do.

Chemical Composition

  • Sativa strains often contain less CBD and more THC than Indica strains.
  • Depending on the particular strain and growth circumstances, the ratio of THC to CBD in a Sativa strain might vary significantly.

Uses of Sativa Cannabis Plant

  • Sativa strains are popular for activities like socialising, creativity, and exercise because of their uplifting and invigorating qualities.
  • Sativa strains are useful in treating diseases like sadness, tiredness, and appetite loss.


  • Sativa strains are well-known for their uplifting and energetic qualities, which can assist in increasing energy levels.
  • Sativa strains are popular for activities like writing, drawing, and other kinds of creative expression because some users claim that they can aid in boosting attention and creativity.

Indica Cannabis Plants

Cannabis Indica is more popular than other types of cannabis plants because it produces a high amount of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which makes it perfect for recreational purposes. These types of plants are generally cultivated for the production of charas, a form of hashish grown in the subcontinent of India.

Along with making a person “high”, Indica plants are beneficial in treating medical conditions such as insomnia and an anxiolytic. Since this type of plant originated from harsh, dry, and turbulent climates, it is grown abundantly in the regions of Afghanistan, India, Pakistan, and Turkey. However, many professional growers have started growing it everywhere around the world.

  • Leaf Shape – The leaves of Indica cannabis plants are short, wide, and often darker in colour than Sativa strains.
  • Plant Structure – Indica plants often have shorter internodes, a bushier, more compact shape, and more branches.
  • Growth Pattern – Indica strains usually thrive in temperate climates (not very cold and not very hot) and take less time to blossom than Sativa strains do.

Chemical Composition

  • Indica strains often contain more CBD and less THC than Sativa ones.
  • The THC/CBD ratio in an Indica strain can vary substantially depending on the strain and growing circumstances.

Uses of Indica Cannabis Plant

  • Because of their soothing and sedative qualities, indica strains are popular for activities like relaxation, watching TV, and sleeping.
  • Indica strains are beneficial to certain medicinal users for illnesses like anxiety, sleeplessness, and chronic pain.


  • As a result of their calming and soothing properties, indica strains are well-known for reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation.
  • Many people have claimed that indica strains can ease discomfort and pain, making them popular for ailments including rheumatoid arthritis and muscle cramps.

Ruderalis Cannabis Plants

Ruderalis is not as popular as Sativa and Indica because it contains a very low quantity of the psychoactive compound tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

This species is very small in height as compared to sativa and indica but tends to contain more amount of cannabidiol (CBD) than others. This is just another reason why Ruderalis cannabis is not being used as recreational cannabis and is only used by some medical marijuana users.

It is often bred with other Indica plants to create a cross-breed plant, as Ruderalis has a unique auto-flowering characteristic that keeps insects and diseases away from the plant, making it easier to grow. Recently, after much research, many medical institutions have started using Ruderalis for the treatment of cancer, sclerosis, and loss of appetite.

  • Leaf Shape – The leaves of this plant are generally smaller than others, but they do lookalike like those of the Sativa cannabis plant.
  • Plant Structure – This plant has short internodes because it is very small in size, but it does have more branches making it bigger in yield.
  • Growth Pattern – Ruderalis strains are native to colder regions and have a unique ability to flower automatically based on their age rather than their exposure to light.

Chemical Composition

  • Ruderalis strains are typically lower in THC and CBD compared to Sativa and Indica strains.
  • The plant can be crossed with other cannabis plants to create unique effects.

Uses of Ruderali Cannabis Plant

  • Due to their distinctive capacity to blossom automatically and their resistance to cold regions, Ruderalis strains are frequently utilised in the production of hybrid strains.
  • Ruderalis strains are favoured by certain gardeners because they immediately blossom, making them simpler for beginners or those with minimal resources to grow.


  • For growers trying to optimise yields or produce cannabis in areas with short growing seasons, Ruderalis strains are a perfect choice because of their rapid flowering times.
  • Ruderalis strains are a fantastic choice for outdoor gardeners since they are often resilient and can thrive in a range of temperatures.

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