With cannabis sales forecasted to top $4.8 billion in 2022, the cannabis market continues to expand by leaps and bounds. And as breeders continue to develop new and exciting strains, there’s truly something for everyone interested in cannabis.
But if you’re exploring cannabis products for the first time, it can be overwhelming. Which cannabis strain is right for you? After all, each strain has its unique properties, including flavour and effects. That’s why it’s essential to do your research before trying a product.
This article will walk you through what you need to know about cannabis strains, including the different types and how to pick a strain that’s right for you. We’ll also cover the five most popular cannabis strains and their effects.
What Are Cannabis Strains?
Cannabis strains refer to different genetic breeds of cannabis that are meant to have specific effects when consumed. Cannabis growers cultivate to attain specific effects and physical attributes in their new strains. Each strain can have different levels of THC and CBD, and other terpene profiles that affect aroma and flavour.
To achieve a particular effect in a cannabis plant, cultivators select a variety of traits from parent strains. These traits could be appearance-based (colour, size, shape of bud) or effect-based (mellowing indicas vs uplifting sativas). They also consider the terpene profile to create a pleasing flavour and aroma. They have to choose the right strains to propagate or crossbreed from there.
Sometimes, growers look for tried and true strains with consistent effects by batch. People can rely on these strains to produce the same general experience every time they are consumed.
Other times they’re looking for new genetic crossbreeds or want to build on the popularity of an old favourite. Which begs the question, how does a strain become an old favourite? Perhaps through consistent taste or effects. Or probably because their effects are reliable enough to be a part of a time-specific daily ritual.
Types of Strains
Cannabis strains come in three major types: indicas, sativas and hybrids. Cannabis indica strains can help achieve a relaxed feeling. The high is more physical and causes more body effects. Indicas have been known to cause couchlock, a total body relaxation that keeps you locked or glued to your couch. Typically indicas are recommended as night-time strains.
Meanwhile, sativa strains tend to offer a more energizing effect and are often paired with feelings of creativity. Sativa strains have been noted to create a head high, meaning they impact mental processes more than the physical body. Sativas are recommended as daytime strains.
Lastly, a hybrid strain combines indica and sativa cannabis strains. A crossbreed of two different strains. Hybrid strains have been found to create a mix of body and head highs. The effects of a hybrid strain will vary depending on which parent strain is dominant. Sometimes there’s a dominant strain, and other times, the strain is equally balanced between indica and sativa.
How to Choose the Right Strain for You
When choosing a cannabis strain, it is important to consider the effects you are looking to experience first. According to research findings from 2014, participants preferred indica strains for pain management, sedation, and sleep and chose sativa strains to help improve energy and mood. When selecting your strains, do you want a body high (indica) or a head high (sativa)?
Knowing the difference between THC (gets you high) and CBD (no high) is key when buying cannabis. It’s essential to note that strains can be categorized by their THC and CBD content.
Marijuana and hemp are the two primary species of the cannabis plant. Hemp has a higher concentration of CBD and a low concentration of THC. Strains with a higher CBD content typically do not cause psychoactive effects, but its important to check the THC: CBD ratio to be sure. If the THC content is higher than a trace amount, there could still be some psychoactive effects.
The key to choosing your strains is to understand both the effects you intend to experience and how potent you want those effects to be. Your own cannabis tolerance and frequency do come into play when considering the potency of your strains.
Popular Cannabis Strains to Try
Below are 5 cannabis strains ranging from indica to sativa to hybrid, worth trying next. We’ll tell you about their potency, genetics, the effects they can have on your body, and the flavours you may experience.
Potency: 16-24% THC (high potency)
Potential Effects: Relaxation, possible pain-relieving effects, mood boosts, creativity.
Smell & Taste: Notes of pine, spice and berries.
Potency: 13-20% THC (mid to high)
Potential Effects: Potential calm, uplifting mood, pain management, and appetite stimulation.
Smell & Taste: Citrus, smokey, bold.
Potency: 19-24% THC (highly potent)
Potential Effects: Potential management for stress, pain, depression, anxiety, and insomnia.
Smell & Taste: Fruity and peppery.
Potency: 20-30% THC (highest on the list)
Potential Effects: Possible insomnia, nausea, pain management and relaxation.
Smell & Taste: Sweet and savoury.
5. Wedding Cake
Type: Indica-dominant hybrid.
Potential Effects: Possible relaxing and calming effects.
Smell & Taste: Vanilla, sweet, earthy taste.
Picking Your Next Strain
You can walk into a dispensary and be overwhelmed by choice, which isn’t necessarily bad. However, there are worse questions than “what am I going to try today?” And with so many different kinds of varieties out there, there is always something new to try.
Knowing the difference between strains and what effects you want will ensure you have a good experience trying new strains. Every strain is indeed different. Effects, potency, and flavour vary from one flower to the next.
If you want to learn more about how cannabis strains work, visit Cannabis Bazaar. We can provide detailed information on the effects of various strains and help you choose a strain that’s right for you.