What is the Difference Between Marijuana CBD and Hemp CBD?

What is the Difference Between Marijuana CBD and Hemp CBD?

What is the Difference Between Marijuana CBD and Hemp CBD?

Isn’t all cannabis the same? Many people think that marijuana plants are essentially the same thing as hemp plants. Even more, people believe that CBD is all the same. However, there are actually two versions of CBD on the market: Marijuana CBD and Hemp CBD. One is created by hemp and the other is created from marijuana, but what’s the difference?

Hemp Versus Marijuana Plant

Hemp and marijuana plants are not the same. They are a part of the same family of cannabis, but their uses and makeup are quite different from each other.

But, don’t feel bad if you thought they were all the same. In fact, the government still has a lot of confusion between the two plants which is why some states have legalized the use of CBD and hemp plants whereas others have not.

There are 3 main ways to tell the difference between a hemp plant and a marijuana plant: their appearance, their chemical makeup, and their cultivation.


Marijuana plants look completely different from the hemp plant. If you really look at the plant, you can see strikingly different appearances.



Marijuana plants typically have broad leaves, tight buds, or nuggets with hairs. In essence, marijuana plants kind of look like a short fat push.



Hemp has skinnier leaves that are concentrated to the top of the pant. They have very few branches or leaves below the top part of the plant. Hemp plants are not short and fat; instead, they are typically skinny and tall and can grow up to 20 feet.

As you can tell, the appearance of the two plants is drastically different.

The Chemical Makeup

As you can guess, the appearance does affect the chemical composition of each of the plants. Hemp and marijuana plants are quite different in their chemical makeup. The major difference of chemical makeup in these two plants is their THC levels. THC is the chemical in “pot” that is responsible for marijuana’s psychological effects.


The THC content of an average marijuana plant is anywhere from 5-20%. However, some high-grade marijuana plants can contain up to 30% THC.


Hemp, however, has very low THC levels. In fact, most Hemp plants have a maximum level of .3% THC which makes it virtually impossible to feel a “high” even when smoking it. Hemp is also very high in Cannabidiol or CBD.

How it is Cultivated

Additionally, marijuana and hemp plants are cultivated differently. This means the environment needed to grow each plant is drastically different to the point that one can’t thrive in another's environment


Hemp is grown very close together. In most cases, it is only about 4 inches apart. Hemp can survive in a variety of climates and is grown on multi-acre plots of land. Hence, the industrial hemp. Hemp is fully ready to go between 108-120 days.


Marijuana, on the other hand, needs a carefully controlled, warm, humid environment for proper growth. It is much harder to grow marijuana than it is hemp. They also need lots of space, and each plant needs to be planted up to 6 feet apart. Marijuana only takes 60-90 days to be fully ready to go.

It is also important to note that if marijuana plants are too close to a hemp field, the hemp’s pollen will ruin the marijuana crop and dilute its THC and psychoactivity.

Though they are both cannabis, each plant is unique and has different effects on the body.

Marijuana CBD and Hemp CBD

So, now comes the questions of what is the difference between the CBD that is made from marijuana plants and the CBD that is made from hemp plants?

As you can tell from above, Hemp plants produce more CBD than marijuana plants; however, marijuana plants do have some CBD as well. Therefore, CBD can be derived from both plants.

So, what is the difference? Essentially, NOTHING! CBD is CBD. Even at its very core, CBD from Hemp is exactly the same molecule as CBD from marijuana. In fact, the human body does not give any care in the world where the molecule comes from and uses it just the same.

It is like drinking water. Whether you get H2O from the faucet or a water bottle, it acts the same way in your body. Thus, even though water can come from different sources, it is still water!

So, what is the big deal??? Well, the law. Some states like Colorado, Washington, and California have found the recreational and medicinal benefits of the marijuana plant including the cannabinoid THC. However, most states still see marijuana as a drug.

Related: Which States is It Legal to Buy CBD?

Which One Works Better?

When deciding between marijuana CBD or Hemp CBD, it depends who you ask as to which one works better. According to research, it is believed that CBD works better when it is coupled with other cannabinoids. This is called the entourage effect.

The entourage effect happens when more than one component of the cannabis plant interacts with the body producing a stronger effect than just one component alone.

This means that CBD modulates the effect THC has on the body. What research is finding is that plants with equal parts of CBD and THC are the most effective in symptom relief and pain relief without an intoxicating high.

Due to this research, we have found that full spectrum CBD is more effective than isolate CBD. This is because instead of taking ONLY the CBD out of the plant, you are using the entire plant and more than 100 cannabinoids that all actively work on the body.

Because Marijuana is still considered a drug if it contains over .3% THC, it is a lot easier to derive full spectrum CBD from the Hemp plant that is very low in THC.

Related: Full Spectrum CBD Oil VS CBD Isolate

When in Doubt

When in doubt, we would suggest you stick with hemp derived CBD oils. Both plants are showing incredible health benefits, but the marijuana plant and use of it are not legal in every state. This means that you can potentially get into legal trouble if you are using CBD made from marijuana plants.

Here at Nuvelio Naturals, we provide a full-spectrum CBD oil that is carefully and meticulously extracted from certified agricultural hemp using a CO2 extraction process. If you want a product you can trust with full transparency, head on over to our shop, and get your bottle, today!

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published