Whether you’re buying pot for the first time or a hardcore ganja enthusiast, one of the most important factors to consider before sparking up is: What to smoke. It sounds silly at first. “What to smoke? I’ll smoke weed, obviously.” However, things are much more complicated than that. There are thousands of strains out there, and one of the first questions you need to answer is whether you want a sativa, indica, or hybrid. This article will teach you the weed basics and give you a list of the most legendary and best sativa strains.
So read on to learn about the effects of sativa flower and how it compares to indica and hybrid strains. Later on, we’ll go through some of the most famous, potent, and rarest sativa strains out there.
Sativas, hybrids, and indicas: What’s the difference?
To start, the most widely-used way to classify cannabis strains are
Hybrid strains consist of a balance of indica and sativa effects, although some would argue that pure sativas or indicas don’t even exist anymore, and basically, everything on the market is some form of hybrid.
When most people think of the effects of smoking weed: physically sedating (“couchlock”), appetite-inducing, psychedelic visuals and thoughts, they think of THC. Also known as Tetrahydrocannabinol, THC is the psychoactive compound that gets you ‘high’ by binding with the cannabinoid receptors in your brain. Indicas typically bring on a heavy, more sedative body-high than sativas, which are more energizing and mentally stimulating.
One good way of remembering the difference between indica and sativa is this pneumonic device: Smoke indica, you’ll be “in da couch”.
What about CBD?
Cannabidiol, also known as CBD, has long been THC’s lesser-known cousin, but it is becoming more popular, especially in treating anxiety, physical discomfort, and chronic pain. Whereas ten years ago, CBD was not that common, these days you can buy CBD oil, sprays, gummies, and many other products.
Whereas THC is psychoactive and will create an intoxicating effect, cannabidiol is not. Since there is no high from CBD, its effects aren’t as easy to spot as they manifest in more subtle ways in your body.
Terpenes (aromatic compounds in cannabis that imbue each strain with a unique scent) are another factor that influences the cannabis experience. Still, for the sake of simplicity, we’re going to focus on sativas and cannabinoids for the time being.
Famous Sativa Strains
Some notable sativa strains you may have heard of already include Sour Diesel, Jack Herer, Purple Haze, Maui Wowie and, of course, Alaskan Thunder Fuck2. Ghost Train Haze is another well-known sativa strain that was named by High Times as one of the Strongest Strains on Earth in 20173. During the 2019 Canadian Cannabis Awards, Tangerine Dream was named as the Top Sativa Flower.
These are just a few of the most famous sativa flowers out there, but you don’t need to purchase the “top” strains in order to enjoy yourself.
Many musicians, writers, and entrepreneurs have credited marijuana use with giving them a creative boost. Some of the most famous of these include The Beatles, Snoop Dogg, Ken Kesey, and Steve Jobs. If you’re also looking for a creative spark, you may want to consider the following sativa strains: Durban Poison, Jack Herer, AK-47, OG Kush, and Jillybean. These strains typically have a higher THC:CBD ratio, usually along the lines of 20% THC and 0-3% CBD.
Sativas for Anxiety
If you struggle with anxiety when smoking, you may want to try a strain that has a more balanced THC:CBD ratio. Chemically, CBD binds with the same cannabinoid receptors that typically bind with THC molecules. This means CBD can mitigate some of the adverse effects of too much THC, like paranoia or anxiety, because when CBD binds to your cannabinoid receptors, it blocks the THC.
This video breaks down this process in simple, easy to understand terms:
CBD is more akin to stepping out of a hot bath. It will manage pain and leave you feeling relaxed and clear-headed.
Hawaiian Snow is a THC-heavy sativa that is nevertheless very good at alleviating anxiety. Just toke with caution. If you’re looking to relieve anxiety with little to no psychoactive effects, ACDC is a sativa-dominant hybrid with an extremely high CBD:THC ratio. Consisting of ~15-20% CBD and only ~1-5% THC, this strain is an extremely relaxing sativa that creates feelings of euphoria, peace, and happiness. Another option is Johnny’s Tonic, another CBD-heavy sativa that will clear your mind and allow you to feel well maintained and happy all around!
Need a productivity boost?
If you’re looking to get shit done and want a strain with a bit more kick to it, take a look at Durban Poison, Green Crack, or our own Red Congolese. These strains can leave you feeling like you drank a few shots of espresso and are the epitome of “wake and bake” strains. These strains typically test at 15%-20% THC levels so if you’re a newer smoker, rather than smoke an entire bowl or joint all at once, try micro-dosing with only a hit or two at first, and then waiting ten to fifteen minutes to see how you feel before taking another hit.
Pre-rolls, the most convenient way to smoke
Sometimes a bowl or bong hit just won’t cut it. Sometimes, you just want to hang out with a group of your buds and pass a joint along. But, maybe the show you’re going to is starting in less than an hour or perhaps your rolling skills just aren’t up to par! Not to worry, pre-rolled joints have got you covered. These convenient cannabis cones allow you to smoke whenever you feel like, without the hassle of any of the prep work of rolling the joint yourself. Whether you’re a blunt or joint fan, XPressGrass has got you covered. Choose from a variety of strains to get you to where you need to go without any hassle. Check out our pre-roll selection here!
Rare sativas: Treasure hunt
We all have that friend that swears every other week that they just smoked “the dopest dope they ever smoked”. That they just picked up some “Super Stardust Mandalorian Bud”. Most of the time, though, when someone says this, they usually just picked up some regular kush, or they want to impress you. However, every once in a while, you’ll be able to chance upon some rare strains that will have you re-evaluating every strain you’ve ever previously smoked. Here are some of the more rare and intriguing strains you can toke:
“When you smoke the herb, it reveals you to yourself”. Also known as Lamb’s Breath, this sativa dominant strain hails from Jamaica and was supposedly Bob Marley’s preferred cannabis strain. Popular for relieving chronic stress and depression.
Originally grown by Malawi tribes in Africa, Malawi Gold is one of the strongest Sativa strains on the planet. Giving a stimulating and energetic high, this strain is hard to come by due to its 120-day cultivating period. If you’re ever in the country of Malawi, make sure you pick up a cob of this golden goodness.
This strain has a legendary history that dates back to a Grateful Dead tour in 19915. Known for a euphoric high and skunky aroma, this strain is also famous for the strains it birthed, such as Sour Diesel and OG Kush. Though technically a hybrid, most Chemdog 91 crops tend to lean sativa.
With a reputation for being one of the greatest cannabis strains ever created, while simultaneously one of the hardest to find, Acapulco Gold produces effects that are motivating and energizing. With its golden hue, from where its name is derived, it was particularly popular in the 60s amongst the counterculture movement and is referenced by Hunter S. Thompson, Cheech & Chong, and others in their works.
A favourite amongst hikers, this strain’s potent psychedelic and uplifting high will send you straight to the moon. Named after legendary researcher, advocate, and author Dr. Lester Grinspoon, this pure sativa heirloom is notable for its extremely high THC content (~25%)7.
When someone is looking to buy weed, they often go for whichever weed is the “strongest,” i.e. which strain can produce the strongest “high”. However, there are widely different kinds of sativa that can produce different highs depending on their chemical composition. If you are looking for a psychedelic head high, consider one of these high-THC strains:
Ghost Train Haze (28% THC)
I previously mentioned this strain named by High Times as one of the Strongest Strains on Earth in 2017. At 25% THC, this is one of the most potent sativa strains out there.
Bruce Banner (28% THC, 0% CBD)
Offering fruity notes and a powerful and energetic boost, this strain earns its name from the alter ego of The Incredible Hulk. This is a hybrid strain that is sativa dominant, and its name is appropriate, considering its vibrant green colour.
Sour Diesel (27% THC)
Known for its diesel fuel smell since the early 90s, Sour Diesel is another excellent strain for productivity. If you struggle with anxiety, maybe don’t mess around with this one.
If you are trying to blast off with a more relaxed body high, consider these CBD-strong sativa strains:
Fuji (23% CBD)
Full of tropical flavours and an ability to improve focus and concentration, this is a great strain to smoke during the day.
Papaya Nights (~20% CBD)
Calming and energizing at the same time, this strain also packs a fruity punch and provides a positive mood throughout the day.
Hawaiian Haze (15%-21% CBD, 0.3% THC)
Apparently first bred in the mineral-rich volcanic soil of Hawaii, this sativa strain has notes of pineapple/citrus, allowing oneself to feel like they are on the beaches of Maui.
There is no one best way to consume your product. Everyone has their own methods; the secret is finding out the one that works best for you. Ultimately, this means experimenting on your own. Whether you’re looking to unwind after a long day of work, seeking a boost before your workout, or you just want to stare at the stars in peaceful bliss for the next couple hours, there is a marijuana strain/product for you.
This article outlined the differences between sativa and indica strains and then went in-depth into which sativa strains are best for different situations. The rest is up to you. Don’t worry; no matter what strain you choose, you’re likely to have a good time. Cheers!
XpressGrass is here to satisfy all your cannabis needs. Whether you’re into flowers, vapes, edibles, or extracts, we have something for anyone to enjoy, at home alone or with friends.
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