We have a huge variety of strains and want to make sure you buy the right one. What makes each strain unique?
The cannabis plant contains a variety of cannabinoids, chemical compounds that interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system to produce different effects. A strain’s cannabinoid profile or, the concentration of cannabinoids like THC and CBD, is a key differentiating characteristic. strains with high THC and little or no CBD are more intoxicating while strains with a 2:1 CBD to THC ratio can be more relaxing and produce less of an intense effect.
Terpenes are molecules in the cannabis plant that not only produce flavor and aroma, but also help support cannabinoids and other cannabis molecules in producing effects in both the body and the mind. The cannabis plant produces over 200 terpenes, and individual strains will have varying terpene profiles and concentrations. As such, strains can have different flavors, aromas, and effects.
Environmental variables during cultivation, like the nutrients in the soil, can affect both the terpene and cannabinoid profile so the same cannabis grown in different environments could wind up as different strains.
The Big 3: Indica, Sativa and Hybrids
Most people think that indica, sativa, and hybrid are used to describe a particular strain’s effects, that sativas produce an uplifting high, indicas leave users more relaxed and hybrids produce some combination of the two.
The truth is, a strain’s classification as indica, sativa, or hybrid isn’t actually about any particular effects. It’s about the physical characteristics and structure of the plant, which can be extremely helpful information for growers, but not so much for consumers.
How to Decide
Flavor and aroma
A strain’s terpene profile can produce subtle or intense flavors and aromas. Depending on your personal preferences, you can choose a strain that provides that flavor and aroma at the intensity that seems appealing to you.
Everyone reacts to cannabis differently, and there’s no guarantee that a strain will produce any particular effect. You can, however, try strains with a cannabinoid and terpene profile that are likely to produce your desired effect. For example, if you want to experience intoxicating effects, it would make sense to go with something with a higher THC content. If you were looking for a more relaxing experience, you might try a strain containing linalool, a terpene reported to have stress-relieving properties.
Depending on the concentration of cannabinoids, particularly THC, some strains are more potent than others and the level of potency you’re looking for can help you decide which strains to try. Looking for an intense high? Try something more potent. Looking for a less intense experience? Go with something less potent.
Potential medical benefit
Depending on a strain’s cannabinoid ratio or terpene profile, it could have a variety of possible medicinal properties. If you’re thinking about using cannabis to treat a medical condition, talk to a medical professional to find out which strains might be helpful.
When it comes to choosing cannabis strains, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. The strains that other people love might fall flat for you (and vice versa). But now that you know the defining characteristics of each strain and how to evaluate them, you have the information you need to explore what’s on the market and choose the strains that are right for you.