Indica cannabis plant between a sativa plant and a hybrid plant

Cannabis Indica: What is Indica?

If you’ve ever stepped into a dispensary, you know you have the option between indica strains of marijuana, sativa strains, and hybrid options. But really, what is indica? In this guide, we’ll explain:

  • What Is Indica Marijuana?
  • How Different Is It From Sativa?
  • What Are The Popular Indica Strains?
  • How Do You Ingest Indica?
  • FAQs About Indica Strains

What is Indica?

Indica refers to Cannabis indica, a plant that was originally classified by Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, a French biologist, in 1785. Lamarck came up with the name to distinguish this form of cannabis from other types. Visually, indica is a bushier plant that doesn’t grow quite as tall as a sativa might. The leaves tend to have wider blades, and the flower buds are thick and dense. 

You may have heard the popular saying that indica will put you “in-da-couch,” illustrating the commonly held belief that indica is sedating and sativa is stimulating. However, as more research comes out about Cannabis indica and Cannabis sativa, we’re learning that there isn’t much difference between the two plant types. In fact, with molecular testing, scientists have determined there’s really only one species of cannabis: Cannabis sativa L. The reason these plants appear different from one another, and we’ve attributed certain effects to either strain, is actually because of a variety of other factors, including environment, growing conditions, terpenes, flavonoids, and cannabinoids

Learn the difference between indica and sativa from our cultivation expert.

How Different is Indica from Sativa?

Because indica, sativa, and hybrids are what we know, the cannabis industry continues to label them as such. However more cannabis connoisseurs are looking to additional factors like those mentioned above to try to predict their experience. The reality is that everyone experiences cannabis differently, so don’t be afraid to try new products, and always remember to start low and go slow.   

What Are the Popular Indica Strains?

True indica strains are hard to come by, as the majority of cannabis flower on the market today is a hybrid. If you’re looking for pure indica, be on the lookout for a Central Asian landrace strain like Hindu Kush, Afghan Kush, or Pakistani Kush.

It’s important to note that dispensaries have different strains available depending on if they sell recreational or medical marijuana. When you visit a licensed dispensary, explain to them you’re interested in trying an indica strain, and let them share with you what they have available.

How Do You Ingest Indica? 

You can consume indica the same way you do any cannabis product. You have the option to vape, smoke, eat edibles, take tinctures, etc. When you start looking for indica edibles or concentrates, you may notice that they aren’t always labeled indica, sativa, or hybrid. This is simply because some of them only contain certain cannabinoids, like THC or CBD, and therefore, don’t qualify as a particular strain. If you’re looking to truly experience indica, your best bet is to go right for the cannabis flower. This way, not only are you getting the indica, you’re also getting all the molecules and compounds that come with cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids.

FAQs About Indica Cannabis

There is a lot of confusion around whether to choose an indica, sativa, or hybrid cannabis product. Here are a few helpful FAQs to guide your decision.

Do they make indica strain gummies? 
It’s difficult to find gummies at your local dispensary that contain actual indica cannabis. That’s because most edibles are made by injecting extracted cannabinoids and terpenes to create the desired effect. Only full-spectrum edibles will have actual sativa or indica cannabis in it.

Does indica give you euphoria? 
Yes, cannabis products that are labeled as “Indica” will likely contain THC, the psychoactive cannabinoid. 

How do you feel after consuming indica? 
Cannabis experiences are strain-based, so it’s difficult to predict how you’ll feel by simply labeling it “indica” or “sativa.” Visit a local dispensary and ask the budtender for their recommendations for products that will help you achieve your cannabis goals.

Is Indica Right For Me?

Only you can really know the answer for this. Remember, a lot of information out there that is claiming something is an “indica effect” may not be completely accurate. You can always visit your local dispensary and ask questions about available strains.

Recreational cannabis is not available in all states. Cannabis is for medical use only and may only be used by certified patients in Ohio and Pennsylvania. State laws impact what dispensaries can and can’t sell to recreational customers and certified patients. Not every type of product, consumption method, dosage form, or potency mentioned on this blog will be permitted in all locations.