A common problem that people who are just getting into the world of cannabis is that it can get confusing when learning all the terminologies and the differences between them. In particular, hemp, marijuana, and cannabis are often used interchangeably, to the point where you won’t understand what each one means. Luckily, we’re here to help, and we’ve got the definitions for each, as well as all the differences between both hemp and cannabis flowers.
Cannabis, Hemp, Marijuana – What Do They All Mean?
Before we dive into the similarities and differences between cannabis flowers and hemp flowers, it’s a good idea to understand what those terms (as well as marijuana) so you won’t have a difficulty to follow along later on. Cannabis refers to the genus of all cannabis plants, which is comprised of sativa, indica, and ruderalis. Generally, most of the popular strains come from sativa or indica, or even a hybrid of the two.
Hemp and marijuana have a different definition altogether. Based on legal definition, hemp is defined as a cannabis plant with less than 0.3% THC in it, whereas marijuana is a cannabis plant that contains more than 0.3% THC. In other words, no matter what strain or species the cannabis plant comes from, if it has high amounts of THC, it’s marijuana, and if it doesn’t, then it’s hemp. For those who aren’t familiar with the term, THC is one of the many cannabinoids found in cannabis that is responsible for most of the plant’s psychoactive effects.
What’s the Difference Between Cannabis and Hemp Flowers, Then?
Since all hemp flowers can be classified as cannabis flowers, but only some cannabis flowers can be considered as hemp flowers, there isn’t too much to compare as they do share a lot of similarities, however hemp flowers do have unique characteristics that aren’t found in other kinds of cannabis. The most notable difference between hemp and other cannabis flowers is the lack of THC in the plant.
Hemp flowers are legally defined as cannabis plants with low THC levels, so there’s no way you can get high out of smoking them, unlike other cannabis plants. Aside from this, hemp flowers are generally known to have a lot more CBD in them than, say, marijuana. CBD stands for Cannabidiol, a cannabinoid that’s known to have various beneficial properties, and is smoked for that reason. Hemp flowers become an even greater CBD source when turned into oils, and is the preferred variant of cannabis when it comes to this cannabinoid.
Aside from the chemical makeup, there are some physical differences that are worth mentioning. Hemp has been used for thousands of years as a source of fibre, a material for paper and rope, and many other benefits. This is due to the tall, sturdy structure of many hemp strains. Other cannabis plants like marijuana, though, are shorter, bushier, and don’t provide a lot of industrial benefits. However, as the legal definition of hemp and marijuana is purely based on THC levels, these physical traits don’t necessarily hold true for all hemp and cannabis plants in general.