Cannabinoids or cannabis sativa, also known as C. sativus, is a sub-species or species of cannabis that is native to Central and Eastern Europe as well as Russia and Asia. It is a perennial weed that grows in grassy fields, along roads and railways. However, it has been cultivated for the past three centuries by herbalists and others in China, India, Japan and Korea. The word ‘weed’ itself, from the Latin ‘cannus’, refers to a cannabis plant.
There are three main subspecies or species of cannabis ruderalis. The C.V.A.C., or English, is the most common strain of cannabis sativa and accounts for the vast majority of the world’s production. It is also the least expensive and it prefers a damp, shady location. The C.V.B.A., or Western, and the C.H.P., or Hawaiian, can be further subspecies or species. They differ primarily in the manner in which they grow, although all three strains are extremely adaptable to different growing conditions.
In spite of its commonness and relative affordability, the C.V.A.C. and C.H.P. strains are farmed only in small quantities, making them poor candidates for cultivation. This is because they are very sensitive to cold, damp soil and disease; the wintertime frost will kill many of them, even if the soil is kept warm enough. Most hybrid cannabis ruderalis hybrid flowers late in the year and blooms heavily in the spring, but because of their poor performance in colder climates they are largely confined to indoor gardens.
Cultivating cannabis ruderalis can be an interesting project for anyone with a green thumb, since it shares most of the characteristics of most indoor plants. It will grow well in almost any type of soil, except that it does better in rocky or sandy soil. It prefers fertile loam and does not like dense or clay soil. The C.V.A.C. and C.H.P. strains of cannabis sativa can be planted in almost any region, from south to north, west to east, and everywhere in between. So wherever you live, you are sure to have an abundance of cannabis ruderalis in your back garden.
Some of the most valuable characteristics of this shorter flowering strain are its disease tolerance, high yield, and beautiful foliage. A variety of diseases and pests have been known to attack the cannabis indica crop, including gray mites, scale insects, root rot, fungus gnats, whiteflies, aphids, leafhoppers, and thrips. There is even one fungus strain that has been shown to be resistant to some herbicides. If you are growing cannabis indica for ingestion, or as a form of medicine, you will want to be sure to get the right strains so that you can be free from the threat of these insects and other pests.
The shorter stigma of the cannabis ruderalis plant gives it the name, hemp. In addition to being used for the manufacture of clothing, rope, sails, and bags, it has also been used as a food source. Modern day Brazilians uses the husks to make teas and brew jellies. The highest production levels come from regions in the Amazon where coco peels and bark are used to give premium teas. Many herbalists believe that hemp has many healing qualities, including stress relief, muscle and joint pain, cholesterol control, diabetes, and infertility. Some studies have indicated that the resin found in cannabis ruderalis may be useful in combating some forms of cancer, including leukemia, lymphoma, and melanoma.