Marijuana 101: Indica Vs. Sativa


There always seems to be a cloud of confusion surrounding the differences between sativas and indicas. It’s important for those who partake to understand the differences between the two types available because each will have it’s own unique effect on the user. It’s high time we clear the air.

Indica plants are short and compact, usually growing wider and rounder than plants. Indicas will give you a delicious body buzz, and will occasionally make you believe that you’ve turned into a cube of melting butter. Famous for their overwhelming sedative effects, indicas are the perpetrator of couchlock, a condition which makes removing oneself from soft and comfortable places next to impossible. Medically, indicas are useful for the treatment of chronic pain, insomnia, and anxiety. Many people prefer to smoke indicas at night, and they are often used as a sleep-aid.

Sativa plants are much taller, sometimes growing up to 25 feet. Because they have a higher THC content, sativa highs are cerebral, psychoactive, and may cause mild hallucinations. Many people prefer to smoke sativas during the day because the high is more uplifting and energizing. Sativas are often used medically for nerve-based pain, such as Fibromyalgia and Multiple Sclerosis. People who require something on a daily basis for pain management tend to prefer sativas because they are less likely to inhibit one’s ability to function in a work environment.

As a pot smoker, I cannot stress the importance of choosing the correct type of marijuana to smoke in accordance with whatever activity you may have planned. For example, I like to smoke sativa before I go on long runs. Usually, smoking weed prior to a run energizes me and urges me to run faster. I get lost in a wonderfully hazy time-space continuum. A sativa high keeps my mind so engaged with the way the sunlight flickers on glass buildings and the symphonic sound of sprinkler heads tick-tick-ticking that the sheer discomfort of my feet relentlessly pounding against the pavement barely even registers. In fact, it feels good. That is the power of sativas.

Once, before heading out on one of these runs, I smoked a bowl generously packed by my roommate, who smokes only indica. I should have known better than to stray from sativas for this activity, but I truly believed that I could compensate for any differences between the two types of weed through sheer force of will. Needless to say, after running only a mile, I felt an overpowering urge to lay in the cool shade of drooping tree boughs — to close my eyes and let the soft grass lull my body in a peaceful, gorgeous sleep. Next thing I knew, I found myself slowing to a stop as I passed a Sonic Drive-In, unable to fight the compulsion to order an Extra Large Cherry Cream Slush. I dragged my feet all the way home as I sucked down my sugary drink, thinking about nothing but the soft furry blanket on my couch that awaited my return. That is the power of indicas.

So, if you’re in your cubicle, under a shower of fluorescent lights, with a huge stack of paperwork to sort through, don’t start your morning by smoking an indica. You run the risk of waking up in a puddle of your own drool with your boss staring down at you and your unfinished task, scowling. Instead, stay alert and smoke a sativa. On the other hand, if you are dog-tired and you want to zone out for a while, choose an indica and experience it’s melty gloriousness.

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  5. Plantguardian on

    Very good explanation of the differences… with examples that you could picture in your mind’s eye beautifully.

  6. i prefer the hashish taste of indica and the high of sativa so the hybrids are the most popular! the sativa is more time and space consuming and less productive! we need more outdoor growers of sativa in the future legal market!

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