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A Journal of Cannabis and Culture

Botany 101

Botany 101

A mini master class in the anatomy of cannabis.


New to the world of cannabis? Start by familiarizing yourself with THC (or tetrahydrocannabinol), the cannabinoid responsible for the euphoric, mind-altering high marijuana is most famous for. The higher the THC level, the more psychoactive the effects.


On the flipside, CBD (or cannabidiol), THC's healing counterpart, touts a slew of therapeutic benefits, including anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-anxiety, and even anti-epileptic properties, without THC’s psychoactive attributes.

Sativa Versus Indica

Sativa and indica refer to the two different species of cannabis. To tell them apart physically: sativa, the more energizing species, is a tall plant with narrow leaves; indica, which has more sedating effects, is short and stout with denser leaves. (Kind of like that movie Twins, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito.)


Over 200 essential oils give cannabis strains their distinct scents, effects, and flavors, many of which can also be found in other common botanicals. In fact, limonene, a mood-lifting terpene, is found in citrus plants. In cannabis, terpenes work synergistically with THC and CBD to boost or even alter therapeutic benefits, also known as “The Entourage Effect.”

A Journal of Cannabis and Culture
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