How to Identify a Cannabis Plant

A cannabis plant can be identified by its long, thin leaves and its green, brown, or reddish-purple flowers. The flowers are usually small and white, but they can also be purple, blue, or yellow.

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The Different Types of Cannabis Plants

There are many different types of cannabis plants, and they can be indica, sativa, or hybrid. Indica plants are shorter and have broader leaves, while sativa plants are taller and have thinner leaves. Hybrid plants are a mix of both indica and sativa.


Indica plants are shorter, with broad leaves. They grow between 1 and 6 feet tall, with a typical height of 3 to 4 feet. Indicas tend to have a higher THC content than sativas.


Sativa is a often tall, loosely branched and sparsely leaved. It typically grows between 6 to 16 feet tall, with long, narrow serrated leaves. The buds are often larger and more loosely packed than indica buds. They have a longer flowering cycle than indicas, taking anywhere from 10 to 16 weeks to mature.

Sativas are thought to have originated in the hot, humid climates of Thailand, Africa and South America. They thrive in warm weather with long days and plenty of sunshine. They are popular with outdoor growers in warm climates such as California, Australia and Spain.

Some common sativa strains include:
– Haze
– Skunk
– Jack Herer
– Durban Poison


A hybrid, as the name suggests, is a mix of two different types of cannabis plant. For example, a White Widow and a Northern Lights #5 would be classed as a hybrid. There are many different types of hybrid plants, each with their own unique set of characteristics. The main advantage of hybrids is that they tend to have the best of both worlds – they can inherit the best qualities from both parent plants. For example, a hybrid might be more resistant to pests and disease than either parent plant.

The Different Parts of the Cannabis Plant

The cannabis plant is a dioecious plant, which means that it has both male and female reproductive organs. The male cannabis plant produces pollen, while the female cannabis plant produces flowers. The pollen from the male plant fertilizes the flowers on the female plant, which then produces seeds.

The Leaves

Cannabis leaves are perhaps the most distinct and immediately recognizable part of the plant. These leaflets come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, and are arranged opposite each other on the stem in a pattern called “opposite leaves.” Each leaflet has a stalk (or “petiole”) that attaches it to the main stem, and the margins of the leaflets may be serrated or smooth. The size, shape, and color of cannabis leaves can vary considerably between different cannabis strains.

The surface of a cannabis leaf is covered in tiny hairs called “trichomes.” These trichomes produce cannabinoids like THC and CBD, as well as terpenes that give cannabis its distinctive smell. The concentration of these cannabinoids and terpenes varies from one part of the leaf to another, which is why certain leaves are more valuable than others. For example, leaves that are coated in resin (or “sugar leaves”) are often trimmed off and discarded by growers, while fan leaves with fewer trichomes are generally considered less potent and are used to make things like cannabutter or infused oils.

The Stem

The stem is the main support structure of the cannabis plant. It runs vertically from the base of the plant to the tip of the main stem, where the leaves and flowers grow. The stem is covered in small, feathery leaves called stipules. These stipules help support the plant and protect it from damage.

The stem is divided into two parts: the upper part, which is called the shoots, and the lower part, which is called the rooting system. The rooting system consists of a network of roots that anchor the plant in place and absorb water and nutrients from the soil. The roots also store carbohydrates and provide support for the plant as it grows.

The upper part of the stem, or shoots, is where most of the plant’s growth occurs. The shoots produce leaves, flowers, and buds. Leaves are responsible for photosynthesis, which produces food for the plant. Flowers are reproductive organs that produce seeds. Buds are unopened flower clusters that contain high concentrations of cannabinoids like THC and CBD.

The Roots

The roots of a cannabis plant are large and thin, with a network of smaller rootlets that spread out from the main taproot. These roots can grow up to several feet long, and they play an important role in stabilizing the plant and absorbing nutrients from the soil. Cannabis roots are typically light-colored, ranging from white to brownish-yellow.

How to Identify a Cannabis Plant

Cannabis plants can be identified by their long, thin leaves and their tall, slender stature. The leaves of a cannabis plant are usually a deep green color, but they can also be shades of brown, red, or purple. The leaves of a cannabis plant are typically serrated, or have small teeth-like structures along their edges. The flowers of a cannabis plant are small and yellowish-green in color.

Look for the Telltale Signs

Cannabis plants are easy to identify if you know what to look for. The most obvious sign of a cannabis plant is the presence of flowers, or buds. Males and females both produce flowers, but only female plants produce the buds that are used for smoking. Female plants also have slightly different leaves than males. Another way to tell a female plant is by the presence of what are called “pistils” – tiny hairs that protrude from the flowers and eventually turn into seeds.

Check the Physical Characteristics

When it comes to identifying a cannabis plant, there are a few things you can look for. First, check the physical characteristics of the plant. Does it have long, narrow leaves? Are the leaves arranged in a fan shape? If so, it’s likely that you’re looking at a cannabis plant.

You can also look for certain physical characteristics that are unique to cannabis plants. For instance, most cannabis plants have seven or more leaflets on each leaf. They also tend to have serrated edges on their leaves, and their flowers are usually small and white.

If you’re still not sure whether or not you’re looking at a cannabis plant, try doing a Google search for “cannabis identification.” There are many online resources that can help you identify a cannabis plant.

Use a Cannabis Identification Tool

If you’re ever unsure about whether a plant is cannabis, your best bet is to use a cannabis identification tool. These tools work by asking you a series of questions about the plant in question, and then using that information to give you an accurate answer.

There are a few different cannabis identification tools available online, but our personal favorite is the Cannabis Identification Wizard from Weed ID. This tool is free to use, and it only takes a few minutes to get an answer.

Once you’ve identified the plant as cannabis, you can then proceed to identify it as indica, sativa, or hybrid. However, if you’re still unsure, don’t worry! There are plenty of other ways to identify a cannabis plant.

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