Sativas tend to be more mental, and indicas seem to be more physical, but it's important to read what the breeder says because most strains are hybrids and carry a mix of both. Some growers are really interested in growing the most famous strains and cannabis cup winning strains of the moment, and recent strain winners. One thing to keep in mind is that newly created strains tend to be less stable and your plant may end up growing in an unexpected way. Yet many cup winners offer unique characteristics which can’t be found anywhere else.
For a lot of cannabis growers the most important thing when it comes to strain choice is to get the most cannabis bud as fast as possible. Luckily, there are lots of cannabis strains and breeders that cater directly to this market. You don't necessarily have to give up quality for quantity. If you want to get bud the fastest possible, you want to get an autoflowering strain. These strains will automatically start making buds after about 3 weeks, and can be ready to harvest in as soon as 8 weeks from seed. With a regular strain you may be able force your plant to harvest in the same amount of time (by using the 12/12 from seed method) but you will get terrible yields.
With an auto-flowering strain you will get from seed to harvest in 8-12 weeks (depending on strain) and still get decent yields. I got over 2 ounces per plant in my last autoflowering grow under a small grow light. I planted in mid-October and was able to harvest the first plant before the New Year. There are also photoperiod (non-autoflowering) plants that have short flowering times, but usually they'll still end up taking longer to get to harvest than most auto-flowering strains. If you want to get the biggest yields possible, you need to get a high-yield strain. Some strains are popular for their effects or appearance, but don't yield as high as others. You'll usually get the best yields with photoperiod strains. Most breeders will list expected yields with their strain descriptions, so you can find the strains that yield the most when you're looking at your options. If you're really concerned with yields, make sure to still pay attention to flowering time, too. If two strains are rated the same in yields, but one takes 4 weeks less in the flowering stage than the other, you'll end up with the most bud by getting the plant with the shorter flowering time because you'll be able to grow more plants more often. But probably even more imortant than strain, if you're growing indoors the best way to increase your yields is to train your plants during the vegetative stage . Now it’s time to create a list of possible cannabis strains. Definitely add as many as you want at first, but then I recommend narrowing down your list of strains so you’re not caught up with overwhelm. I have few strategies to help you narrow down your list. To start, make a list of a few possible strains to grow. You’ve already made a list of desired characteristics a moment ago. If you don't already have an idea about which strain(s) you want to grow, it’s time to make a list of possible strains that might fit your needs. So let’s find strains that have characteristics you’re looking for. Note for Medical Cannabis Patients: If you’re looking for medical cannabis strains, and most especially if you’re looking for high CBD, low THC strains, you want to start with clones if you possibly can. The best case scenario is to get a clone from a trusted grower who can provide cannabinoid percentages for the buds produced by this plant. Just because someone says a strain is “Harlequin” doesn’t mean that it necessarily has high CBD levels.
Always check and ask for documentation about cannabinoid levels! When I'm researching for a new grow, I usually start by using the website of a big seed bank. These sites give you lots of helpful information about each strain they carry. These big seed sources usually have a "strain selector" option that lets you put in the specific features you're looking for and get a list of results. Recently I’ve been using Seedsman because they carry seeds by a lot of trusted breeders and have pretty good profiles for each strain. Here’s how I research cannabis strains on seed bank websites: Step 1: Narrow Down: Regular vs Feminized.
After choosing Regular vs Feminized, I’m brought to a page where only feminized seeds are displayed, and I have a list of options going down the left side of the page to narrow down my possible strains. Here you can see a list of options on the left side.