Hemp plant: What it is and differences with marijuana
All the information about the hemp plant
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Hemp and marijuana, are they the same?
The two belong to the same family: Cannabis Sativa L. However, they are two different varieties. Over time, these differences between the two floors have also been accentuated.
While hemp has been grown and molded to obtain raw materials such as seeds, fibers, oils, etc., marijuana stands out for its psychoactive effects. The cultivation of the second, as well as its selection, has focused on increasing its THC levels.
Differences between hemp plant and marijuana
Mainly, they differ due to their morphology. Also because of the use that each of them has and for its composition. Until recently, marijuana was characterized by its high levels of THC. This cannabinoid causes the psychoactive effect.
In the case of hemp, the levels of said compound are very low. Therefore, it is cultivated to obtain raw materials and the previous one for medicinal and/or recreational use. It used to be easier to distinguish them, as marijuana contains low levels of CBD.
Hemp, for its part, was just the opposite. Despite this, the new marijuana strains are very rich in CBD, so this is no longer the distinguishing feature that differentiated the two plants.
There are marijuana plants with high levels of CBD and very low THC. However, under no circumstances can they be considered as a variety of the hemp plant, as they remain two different specimens.
How their crops differ
In general, hemp is cultivated with a very high degree of density. That is, these plants are always very close to each other. They are also poorly branched and, consequently, the result is that the fields are very thick.
However, marijuana is a crop in which more space must be left between the specimens. Otherwise, they could not be developed in the right way. The marijuana plant has more branching side and its flowers are more abundant.
In the cultivation of marijuana, plants that have male organs are usually eliminated. This prevents pollination, as what is usually sought is to have the flower but without its seeds.
As they are not pollinated, these plants continue to produce huge clusters of flowers. The highly sought-after seedless buds are used for both medicinal purposes, for their CBD levels.
In the cultivation of hemp, however, pollination of female plants is allowed. The goal is to produce seed because it is one of the most commonly taken advantage of the plant.
If pollination occurs accidentally between hemp plants and marijuana, the result is the reduction of the potency of the second to psychoactive levels. It’s something that’s often not interested.
Main features of the hemp plant
Hemp is known as industrial hemp due to its different applications in this field. In addition, it is an important renewable source of raw materials, making it an ecological and sustainable alternative to our planet.
It is also useful at the nutritional level, and its structure results from a process of cultivation and domestication that arose thousands of years ago. Humanity has been varying it to get its best. As a result, a number of materials have been produced.
Among them, we find different oils, cellulose or various types of fibers. At the industrial level, all of them have a wide variety of important uses.
If we talk about its morphology, hemp is higher than marijuana, being able to easily reach five meters in height. Its stems are thicker and less hollow. In addition, they do not have so many branches, standing out for having hardly any flowers.
However, its structure will also vary depending on the purpose for which it is grown.
Industrial hemp: What it is and varieties
The hemp plant belongs to the botanical family Cannabaceae. It is characterized, above all, by its petiolated leaves. If we talk about varieties, we can find three aspects: the industrial, the cannabis sativa L and the sativa var Indica.
In the case of industrial hemp, it is allowed to grow by having less than 0.2% THC. The second has a higher content of this compound and has psychoactive effects. Its cultivation usually leads to some problems due to the resemblance to marijuana.
Spain, a perfect country for your cultivation
Being a fast growing plant, it requires a lot of moisture to do so. Therefore, wet and warm and temperate climates are perfect when it comes to growing hemp. Spain is therefore an ideal place to grow industrial hemp.
Today, it is cultivated in various autonomous communities. In the north, thanks to rain and humidity, its cultivation is used for food products. In the south, it is aimed at the paper industry.
There are several well-known industrial seedlings in Spain such as those based in Guadalajara, Tarragona, Barcelona, Huesca or Lugo, among others.
Varieties of industrial hemp
We can distinguish between three main varieties of industrial hemp.
The varieties of hemp that are grown to obtain fiber stand out for being tall plants, two to five meters, and very long stem. They have little interior branching, as well as having a hollow or slightly woody stem. Its cultivation is very dense, leaving little space.
In which they are grown to obtain seeds we find many similarities with marijuana at the morphological level. However, they have a smaller branch and also fewer flowers. Like the previous ones, they are also grown with a high density.
In varieties oriented to the extraction of oil and cellulose we find as main characteristic a much denser stem. They are also cultivated as bases of woody materials.
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