Cannabis Types and Terminology
There is only one species of cannabis plant on our planet, which grows in three sub-species:
Cannabis Sativa (C. Sativa)
Cannabis Indica (C. Indica)
Cannabis Ruderalis (C. Ruderalis)
The effects, in a nutshell: Sativa is more energizing, uplifting, in the head. Indica is more sedative, in the body. Ruderalis, not much known in North America, is adapted to cold weather so it grows in northern climates that would be impossible for sativa and very difficult for indica but it never made it’s way, naturally to Canada. It is primarily known from Russia and that part of the Northern world. Ruderalis is commonly used today in the creation of auto-flower seed strains, where it lends it’s hearty genes to the clone’s hybrid DNA, resulting in the auto-flowering capability of these new strains, it also results in plants less susceptible to mould.
Indica is considered the most medicinal subspecies, especially for serious internal conditions, because it encourages rest and relaxation, which is more conducive to healing.
Pure strains are very uncommon in 2016 because cannabis hybridization is such an exciting and exploding field. With hybrids breeders can select for the good traits and leave the negatives ones behind as this happens the native vs indica differences get blurred.
Many growers prefer Indica plants because they grow quicker, have a higher yield and produce plants that are low and bushy, easy to harvest. Sativa plants are tall and thin, they take longer to grow, the yield is not as high, harvest is more difficult. So, by natural selection most growers chose Indica. However all of the foregoing is, more like was, true when dealing with pure strains.
Today almost all strains are Hybrids of the three subspecies but mostly only Sativa and Indica percentages are reported in strain descriptions. When buying cannabis today, strain A, may be 80% Sativa and 20% Indica. This is called Sativa Dominant, you see how it works. When you see a note like 60/40 S Dom or similar shorthand on web sites, the cannabis being described is 60% Sativa and 40% Indica.
New cannabis strains are becoming available regularly; this is a fast developing science and all of these new strains are Hybrids.
People who are regularly dosing with cannabis are usually buying by the gram. Knowing the Hybrid information and the basic effects produced by the subspecies, patients might choose something like this as a vaporizing routine: