Cannabis vs. Hemp vs. Marijuana

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July 1, 2019

Is hemp the same thing as marijuana? Is cannabis the same thing as hemp? Is cannabis exactly the same thing as marijuana?

This is so confusing and we haven’t even talked about the numerous nicknames for all these plants. How can anyone ever keep them straight when the incorrect terms are used so frequently?


Cannabis is a plant family that includes many species of hemp and marijuana.  All cannabis plants produce natural cannabinoids, some in greater concentrations than others. The main intoxicating cannabinoid in cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Hemp is a variety of cannabis grown for its tall, sturdy stalks, low levels of THC (<.03%) and high levels of beneficial cannabinoids, like CBD.

Marijuana is a variety of cannabis grown for its HIGH levels of THC.  THC levels can typically run from >.03% to as high as 30% or more.

When it comes to appearance, Hemp leaves are a lot thinner than the marijuana leaves, and in contrast to marijuana, grow mainly on the top of the plant. In general the hemp plant is a lot thinner and taller than marijuana, and looks more like a ditch weed.

Another difference between hemp and marijuana is the way that both plants are cultivated. Hemp is usually grown close together, on multiple acres of land in a large variety of climates all across the world. On the other hand, Marijuana is typically grown about 6 feet apart from each plant, and requires controlled temperature and humidity in order for it to grow optimally.

Written by Lisa Scheerer, CEO and Creative Alchemist of Not The Same dba Alise Body Care
July 1, 2019

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