The difference between hemp and marijuana is discussed frequently, especially with the recent legalization of weed in some states and demand for CBD infused products. Due to the demand of CBD infused products, it has become even more vital to grasp the full understanding of what the differences are between hemp and marijuana.
So, What the Difference Between Hemp & Marijuana?
The main difference between the two is the percentage of THC in the plant. Both are a type of cannabis plant, however, hemp is a plant with less than 0.3% of THC and marijuana contains much more. While this is the most important factor in the difference between hemp and marijuana there are multiple other ways you can define the difference between the two.
How Can You Actually Tell The Difference?
Appearance: Marijuana looks different from when you observe the leaves. Marijuana’s shape is usually broad-leafed a tight bud or looks like a nugget with organ hair. However, hemp has thinner leaves that are more concentrated at the top and a small amount of leaves exist below the top part of the plant. When observed from afar, hemp is also skinnier and taller, approximately up to 20ft.
Chemically: The most important thing to note is you will never get high smoking hemp. You will find an extremely low amount of THC in hemp. THC stands for tetrahydrocannabinol which is what causes the psychological effects of marijuana. On average marijuana contains somewhere between 5-20% of THC content. However, hemp only contains a maximum of 0.3% of THC which makes it impossible to feel the psychoactive effects of THC. The chemical makeup of hemp has high amounts of cannabidiol or CBD which fights against THC and makes the small amount of THC in the hemp worthless.
Agriculture: The cultivation of hemp versus marijuana is strikingly different. When hemp is grown it is grown closely together and is usually grown in large acres. Hemp is the strongest natural fiber in the world and can be grown in a variety of different climates. On the other hand, marijuana takes intricate and careful attention to be grown properly in a controlled, humid, and warm environment. Also, marijuana is not grown close together and can be grown 6 feet apart. If the two are grown close together this would automatically destroy the marijuana crop which would dilute the marijuana psychoactivity.