Everything You Need to Know About Cannabis Sativa

Cannabis is an incredibly diverse plant that comes in many varieties. Each strain has unique properties when it comes to its appearance, how it grows, and the effects it produces when consumed. Usually, when you buy cannabis in stores or online, you’ll notice that cannabis strains are split into categories- sativa strains, indica strains, and hybrid strains.

Sativa cannabis strains are considered to be more stimulating in comparison to indica strains. While indica strains are prominent for making you feel stoned and sedated, sativa strains can boost your mind and make you feel more alert, focused, and creative. But the differences don’t stop there. Sativa plants also grow differently to indica plants and can be used for various purposes.

If you’re not familiar with sativa cannabis, you might be interested to know what the plants look like, their uses, and what kind of effects and benefits to expect from using sativa marijuana. It also helps to know how sativa strains differ from indica and what sativa-dominant means. Here’s a guide to everything you need to know about sativa cannabis.

What Is Sativa Cannabis

Sativa cannabis is one of the main species of plants in the cannabis family. While there’s a wide variety of sativa strains each with unique properties, these plants differ significantly to indica cannabis plants when it comes to how they look, how they grow, and what they’re used for.

The main thing you’ll notice about sativa plants is how tall they are. While indica plants are usually short and bushy with dense buds, sativa plants can grow exceptionally tall- sometimes up to 20 feet. They usually look long and lean and the buds are often also narrow in shape.

Compared to indica plants, sativa plants can be tougher to grow. They take longer and require much more space due to their height. You’ll notice that many stores have more indica strains than sativa strains as they’re more difficult to grow. With that said, many growers still enjoy growing sativa plants due to the amazing effects they can produce.

Interestingly, sativa cannabis plants are grown for more than just marijuana. Hemp is a strain of cannabis sativa, and hemp fibers are often used in things like jewelry, clothing, building materials, and food products. Hemp extracts are also used to create CBD products, especially as these plants are high in CBD and low in THC.

However, many sativa strains contain high levels of THC among other cannabinoids and terpenes. They’re known for invigorating effects and flavorful buds, and you’ll notice that many popular and well-known marijuana strains are sativa strains.

What Do Sativa Cannabis Plants Look Like

What Do Sativa Cannabis Plants Look Like?

Sativa cannabis plants are usually easily recognizable, especially due to their tall size and thin leaves. While indica plants usually grow to around 3-6 feet tall and are covered in bushy leaves, sativa plants are much longer and more spread out.

Under the right conditions, some sativa cannabis plants can reach heights of 20 feet tall. While indica plants look bushy, the stems of sativa plants are usually more spread out. Sativa plants are usually longer in color and the leaves look long, narrow, and fan-like.

The buds of sativa strains are also unique. Instead of being dense and bushy, sativa buds are long and thin. Sativa plants often grow “foxtails”- clusters of cannabis flowers that grow in spiky, tower-like formations.

They’re usually more wild-looking than indica counterparts, especially as they can grow exceptionally tall with widely-spread leaves. They can take a while to fully mature, but some sativa plants can produce impressive yields due to how tall they grow and how many buds they produce.

Growing Sativa Cannabis Plants

Growing sativa plants can be trickier than growing indica plants. After all, they take longer, are harder to grow indoors due to their height, and require good weather conditions to grow to their full potential. With that said, growing sativa strains can be rewarding and end up in good yields of quality marijuana.

While indica plants generally reach up to around 3-6 feet, sativa plants are significantly taller. Some can even grow to impressive heights of 20 feet. Although this can be great for outdoor growers who want large plants full of flowers, indoor growers will often have a tough time growing sativa plants.

Sativa plants can still be grown indoors, but creating a space to grow such tall plants can be difficult, especially for regular home growers. For this reason, many indoor growers choose to simply stick to indica or hybrid strains.

Since sativa genetics come from hotter climates near the equator, they’re ideal for outdoor growing. What’s more, these plants can handle plenty of heat and, when grown outdoors, don’t require as much effort. However, they still require plenty of light and water and growers will need to wait for warmer months to start growing them.

Since they grow so tall, sativa plants also take a longer time to fully mature. On average, sativa plants take around 10-16 weeks to flower- significantly longer than indica plants. If you start growing sativa plants, you have to be ready to dedicate a good few months to grow them successfully. But while they take longer to fully mature, they do offer faster vegetative growth.

What Are The Effects Of Sativa Cannabis

What Are The Effects Of Sativa Cannabis?

Every strain is different when it comes to effects. However, on the whole, sativa strains are notorious for giving you a more stimulating, head-focused high. While most users find that indica strains put them into a deep state of relaxation, often making them feel lazy and sedated, sativa strains are more uplifting.

Many people use sativa strains as morning or daytime strains as they can lift your mood and give you the usual euphoric effects without making you feel tired and hazy. Users often find that sativa strains boost their mental creativity and focus, giving them a more clear-headed high that makes it easier to navigate the day.

Since they heighten your senses and make you feel more mentally-stimulated and curious, sativa strains can make pretty much any activity seem more fun. Many people use them for creative purposes, but they can also make hobbies such as listening to music or watching TV shows more interesting. They can also be great for social use.

A lot of these strains have higher levels of other cannabinoids such as CBD, CBN, and THC-V. These often provide an entourage effect, providing extra medical benefits as well as reducing the sedating effects of THC. However, sativa strains can still give you powerful physical relief while also uplifting your mind, and potent sativa strains may make you feel sleepy.

When Should You Use Sativa Cannabis?

Whether you prefer to use marijuana for recreational or medical purposes, there are various situations where using sativa cannabis strains makes sense for you. With their uplifting effects, sativa strains can provide a highly enjoyable recreational high as well as offering plenty of mental benefits.

Medical users often use sativa strains to deal with mental health issues. Research shows that cannabis can help reduce symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression, and sativa strains are a prime example of this. Since they can swiftly boost your mood and ease your mind of worries, they’re great for users suffering from mood disorders or negative moods in general.

Although indica strains are generally considered superior for dealing with physical ailments such as chronic pain, sativa strains can still help. These strains usually offer soothing physical without being too overpowering or sedating. Many users prefer to use sativa strains when they want physical relief but still want to feel energized and focused. 

They can even help counteract fatigue. Users who want to avoid feeling lazy often prefer to use sativa strains as they can give you a burst of energy and motivation. As well as helping with physical fatigue, sativa strains also boost mental creativity and focus, making them great for mental fatigue as well.

You should use sativa cannabis strains when you want a strain that’s going to give you an invigorating mental high. They often make for great wake-and-bake strains and can also be great for daytime use when you want to remain functional. They’re also ideal for users looking to counteract stress, anxiety, and depression, as well as helping with pain, inflammation, and fatigue.

How Is Indica Cannabis Different

How Is Indica Cannabis Different?

While we’ve covered everything you need to know about sativa cannabis, you might be interested in knowing how indica cannabis differs. Indica cannabis is another one of the main species of cannabis. Indica strains are particularly popular for their relaxing effects, and indica plants can be great for indoor growers.

Whereas sativa plants are known for being tall with long, narrow stems and leaves, indica plants are usually short and bushy. Buds grow closely together in densely-packed clusters, which can often make for great yields. Indica plants also grow faster with an average flowering time of 7-9 weeks.

Indoor growers often prefer growing indica plants. They’re small enough to grow even in limited indoor growing spaces. This gives growers the ability to control the growing conditions to produce fantastic indica plants.

Indica strains are known for giving you a more body-focused high. They’re ideal for relieving pain as they give you potent physical relief throughout your body, often leaving users feeling lazy and couch-locked. They can also be ideal for insomnia as they’ll help you get to sleep.

What Are Sativa-Dominant Strains?

Pure sativa strains are relatively rare, although there are some popular examples. Often, when shopping for cannabis, you’ll notice that many strains are labeled as being sativa-dominant. These are hybrid strains with both indica and sativa genetics, although they lean more towards sativa than indica.

Hybrid strains are made by crossing the genetics of indica and sativa plants, resulting in strains that have qualities of both. These often make sativa strains quicker and easier to grow, as well as providing strains that give you the best of both worlds when it comes to effects.

These strains can still give you an exceptionally stimulating high along with stronger physically relaxing effects. Sativa-dominant strains are popular for many users as the effects are versatile and the buds often smell great. You can also find indica-dominant hybrid strains or hybrid strains with an almost even balance of indica and sativa genetics.

Best Sativa Strains To Buy

Best Sativa Strains To Buy

Whether you’re looking for a pure sativa strain or a sativa-dominant strain with uplifting effects, there are plenty of great choices. Sativa strains are often popular due to their ability to boost your mood and heighten your senses while still keeping you focused and clear-headed. Here are some of the best sativa strains to buy.

Jack Herer – Jack Herer is one of the most popular sativa strains out there. It’s known for being a go-to strain for creative type as it stimulates the mind and brings out the best in you. It’s also fantastic for helping with various mood disorders, as well as being a good daytime strain in general.

Pineapple Godbud – Pineapple Godbud is a sativa-dominant strain with a delicious tropical taste. Along with its sweet flavor, this strain gives you a happy and euphoric high along with soothing physical relief. It can relieve your stress and make you feel like you’re relaxing on a tropical island.

Sour Diesel – Sour Diesel is a legendary sativa strain with exceptionally stimulating effects. It’ll quickly bring you out of a bad mood and make you feel optimistic and motivated, making it a prime strain for dealing with stress, anxiety, and depression. It’s perfect to use as a wake-and-bake strain.

Ghost Train Haze – Ghost Train Haze is another fantastic strain that perks up your mood to make you feel happy and giggly. It’s ideal for social situations as well as being a prime strain for daytime use. It can also help counteract stress, depression, migraines, fatigue, and more.


Cannabis sativa is a type of cannabis known for its impressively tall plants and stimulating effects. Marijuana lovers often opt for sativa strains when they need a pick-me-up as they can make you feel energetic, creative, and mentally-focused. Although they can take longer to grow, the results are worth it.

If you want to try cannabis sativa for yourself, you can find plenty of strains online. You can also find a range of indica strains, hybrid strains, and various other high-quality cannabis products at WCCannabis.ca.

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