Leaves are an essential part of any plant. They are the source of photosynthesis, vital to growth and development. Cannabis is no exception. The leaves of cannabis plants, which have already become a symbol known around the world, are the key element that allows plants to grow and develop. Now you will learn how to distinguish the leaves of Sativa, Indica and Ruderalis, how they are formed and how the cannabis leaf has become an iconic symbol.
Leaf formation and their main differences
When a marijuana seed starts to germinate, two seedpods appear on its surface and then a leaf begins to germinate from the bud between them. Initially, one pair is formed, in which one leaf is usually wider and sharper, with characteristic serrations. Soon the cotyledons wither and fall off, and new leaves are formed next. Gradually, the shape of the leaf platens changes. In most cases, the second pair of leaves already has three lobes, and subsequent ones up to 5, 7, 9, and in some cases even up to 11.
Often the number of lobes is odd. The widest lobes and largest leaves are in the middle of the shrub’s height. Closer to the top and at the beginning of the stem, they are smaller. You can tell the sex of the plant by the characteristics of the foliage. The leaves of female plants are larger and more dissected than those of male plants. However, it is not just the sex that you can tell by the nature of the leaves. A marijuana leaf is a great way to tell if you are looking at a Sativa, Indica or Ruderalis. Read on for more information.
Learning to distinguish cannabis species by the appearance of the leaves
Sativa cannabis is not difficult to identify. They are tall, can grow up to several meters tall and have long, thin leaves. A Sativa cannabis leaf can be 10-15 centimeters long or even more;
Indica cannabis has wider leaves and fewer petals than Sativa. In most cases we see seven petals. At the same time, the main five are practically the same size;
Ruderalis also has fairly wide leaves, but rather uneven in size. In most cases, there are three large leaves and two miniature ones at the very edge of the stem.
What can I do with cannabis leaves?
After the harvest, there are quite a few dry leaves left over. In most varieties, the ratio by weight of the crop to the leaves is 1:1. While most marijuana leaves do not contain the psychoactive component THC, there are exceptions. First and foremost are those that grow right next to the buds of the plants. The other, larger leaves should not be thrown away either, but they should be folded separately.
Many people really like cannabis leaf tea. It has no effect, but it stimulates your appetite, improves digestion and is excellent for sleep disorders. You can either boil the leaves themselves or add them to your tea.
Either way, you shouldn’t throw cannabis leaves away. They can be put to much better use.
The Marijuana Leaf – Symbolism
Today, images of the cannabis leaf can be found literally everywhere: T-shirts, caps, bags, key chains, magnets, bandanas, etc. Despite the fact that the authorities of many countries are not delighted with the distribution of such symbols, they are not forbidden.
The most curious thing is that the image of a cannabis leaf does not initially carry the message of rastamania and cannabis addiction. The marijuana leaf is a symbol of wisdom and spiritual perfection and enlightenment. Such an image is an integral part of Rastafarianism, a religious belief that emerged in Jamaica in the early twentieth century.
Rastafarianism is a mixture of Christianity, local beliefs, the teachings of socio-religious preachers (mainly Marcus Garvey), and the beliefs of black descendants of slaves from Africa. All of this has coalesced into a kind of religious movement where the hemp leaf is considered an essential element of faith. Therefore, the meaning of such an image is much deeper than many are used to believe.
In today’s developed world the cannabis leaf is no longer just a cultural symbol, but also a marketing tool that attracts an audience of buyers. And could it be otherwise? A bright green leaf on a black or other background looks very eye-catching and provocative. And given that today more and more countries legalize cannabis, the spread of the symbol will only increase.