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Published: November 30th, 2022
While many of us have a fantasy of growing towering, majestic cannabis plants under the summer sun, the reality is that most of us are relegated to the indoors, where our plants must be raised under artificial grow lights. But there’s no reason to despair! Indoor cannabis cultivation allows growers to maintain a high degree of environmental control, resulting in large hauls of high-quality weed from healthy plants.
Still, if we are to be successful, it’s key to select cultivars suited to the spatial limitations of most grow rooms and tents. With that in mind, we’ve amassed 10 of the best cannabis strains to grow indoors—all of which thrive within the confines of discreet grow spaces.
The original Skunk strain was formulated precisely for indoor cultivation, during a period when outdoor cultivation was under significant threat of legal repercussions. Enter Super Skunk Automatic by Sensi Seeds, a compact cultivar that serves up a hearty helping of buds while racing to the finish line in no time. Combining genetics from Skunk #1, Afghan hash plant, and ruderalis, Super Skunk Auto completes its entire life cycle in 8–9 weeks, with around 4 weeks dedicated to vegging. This, alongside its vigorous growth and manageable height, makes it a great candidate for indoor growers seeking fast, but high-quality, results. Come harvest time, medium yields of dense buds can be expected from this 80% indica.
Upon opening a jar of these nugs, subtle notes of lemon and hash become apparent, and intensify once the buds are set alight. This variant of Skunk is known for exacting a balanced high that caters to the body and mind simultaneously—expect euphoria and relaxation in equal measure.
White Widow needs little introduction, and its autoflowering version retains everything that makes the original so sought after—including its propensity to thrive indoors. Fusing the original WW (which itself harnesses a mysterious mix of genetic influences) with Critical Automatic, White Widow Automatic by Zamnesia Seeds manages to impress from seed to stash, with large yields and a diverse cannabinoid profile to boot. Reaching heights of around 1m indoors, White Widow Auto doesn’t take up too much space, and doesn’t hang around long either—evidenced by her 11–12-week life cycle. Once all is said and done, indoor specimens are capable of churning out up to 450g/m².
Bearing 14% THC and 3% CBD, as well as a complex mix of earthy, spicy, and citrusy aromas and flavours, White Widow Auto makes for a soothing but highly creative smoke that is perfect for enjoying whenever you desire a boost of inspiration.
Northern Light Automatic by Royal Queen Seeds takes the influence of Amnesia Haze, Skunk, and ruderalis, and channels it into something truly special for indoor weed growers. This heavily indica-dominant plant is also heavy in the yield department, and in terms of her stoning effect! As plants progress through their 11–12-week life cycle, they’ll reach medium heights and develop a huge mass of buds per m². Despite being an autoflowering specimen, this variety can return up to 550g/m² indoors! Perfect for growers working with limited space, who still want to achieve a superb haul.
Smoking NLA is a pleasure that no one should deny you of. Mixing earthy, fruity, sweet, and spicy notes, each hit tastes better than the last. But, despite a seemingly modest THC content of 17%, this cultivar is quite stoning, so proceed with caution!
Sativa lovers rejoice! Just because you’re growing indoors doesn’t mean you should be stripped of your right to cultivate sativa-dominant plants. But not just any specimen will do. Consider Carnival by Ministry of Cannabis. Despite bearing 80% sativa genes, this strain only reaches heights of up to 1.4m indoors, which is still short enough not to overtake most grow spaces. Furthermore, this strain can be trained and tied to limit its height without limiting yields. Speaking of which, once this specimen’s moderate flowering time of 9–10 weeks is over, yields of up to 450g/m² are up for grabs.
While the harvest might not be as massive as some of the other strains on this list, the potency of the buds makes up for any discrepancies in weight! With 23% THC, Carnival quickly gets to work inspiring a cheery, euphoric high that's perfect for chill social situations and daytime activities. Alongside flavour notes of sweet incense and Haze, what’s not to love?
Another sativa-dominant specimen, Zamnesia's Blue Dream turns many sativa stereotypes on their head, especially with its fast flowering time (9–10 weeks) and dreamy, physical high. A combination of the high-flying Haze and the uber-soothing Blueberry, Blue Dream plants require a slightly more hands-on approach to tease out yields of up to 350g/m². Given their medium height indoors, they may benefit from some training to remain closer to the ground, to which they generally respond favourably.
Blue Dream is perhaps best known for its distinct effect, which combines an intense cerebral high with an undeniably soothing physical stone that lingers for hours. This experience is perhaps best suited to days off, or any time when you can really indulge in daydreaming. And then there’s the taste to consider; gear up for juicy notes of blueberry alongside spicy-citrus Haze—certainly a flavour profile to remember.
If it wasn’t evident from the name, this strain screams “power”. A high yielder with equally high THC levels, this 90% indica-dominant specimen is born to perform. Despite taking only 8–9 weeks to flower indoors, Mega Power Plant by Spliff Seeds has no issue developing huge yields of up to 600g/m². And while plants grown outside can reach up to 1.8m in height, those grown indoors will happily remain at 1m with a little LST.
Once loaded into a bong or rolled into a joint, this descendant of Power Plant and Northern Lights is ready to unleash its mega-stoning high. Though powerful, Mega Power Plant is geared toward relaxation and wholesome effects, so get ready to kick back for a while. And while you do, you’ll be treated to moreish flavour notes of earth, licorice, and diesel—unique and savoury.
A high-yielding sativa with a penchant for the indoors, Kannabia’s Amnesi-K Lemon is a veritable canna-celebrity child, given its 3-way parentage of heavy-hitters: Amnesia, Lemon Skunk, and Jack Herer. Though it takes slightly longer to flower than some other strains on this list (10–11 weeks), with yields of up to 550g/m², who could complain? In order to keep her height on the lower end, consider flipping her to the bloom stage once she’s reached half of the desired final height.
Amnesi-K Lemon doesn’t hold back when it comes to her citrus-centric aroma and flavour profile. Tangy notes of grapefruit mingle beautifully with sweetness and a hint of freshness for a smooth, enjoyable smoke. Given its invigorating terpenes and THC content of 23%, it will come as no surprise that Amnesi-K Lemon is capable of overwhelming novices with its euphoric, heady rush. But lovers of Haze varieties will happily indulge in these high-flying, trippy sensations—that’s what good sativa weed is all about.
Time to get trippy! LSD by Barney’s Farm won’t cause you to hallucinate like the psychedelic drug after which it’s named, but it’s incredibly powerful nonetheless. This indica-dominant cultivar is a perfect fixture in an indoor grow environment, taking 9–10 weeks to flower and delivering exceptional returns of up to 700g/m². Furthermore, this progeny of Skunk #1 and Afghan indica reaches a compact height of just 1m, which means it can be made to fit almost anywhere.
LSD boasts an exceptional aroma highlighting notes of musk, earth, and flowers, with an earthy chestnut-like taste. With each toke, your taste buds will detect new nuances, as your mind begins to activate, thanks to a THC level of 24%. After experiencing a prolonged uplifting, cerebral rush, prepare for a powerful stoned sensation to round out the “trip”.
This strain is capable of making the mouth water at the mention of her name alone—so just imagine what it’s like to smoke her sweet, fruity buds! With parents like Watermelon and Candy Kush (with some ruderalis thrown in for good measure), Watermelon Candy Automatic by Zamnesia makes no apologies for its candy-sweet smoke. In a grow tent or room, Watermelon Candy Auto reaches a manageable, medium height and takes just 9–10 weeks to progress from a small seedling into a fully mature plant. Rewarding growers with up to 400g/m² of buds bearing 20% THC, this auto is certainly on the productive end of the spectrum.
Given its potency, Watermelon Candy Auto is capable of exhibiting a deeply relaxing yet upbeat high that is ideal for easing daily tension. Clear your mind as you pick up on flavour notes of earth, berries, and lemon candy. Just take things one toke at a time, as this auto is known to knock back even experienced smokers!
Cherished for its insane productivity, Critical by Sensation Seeds is a classic indoor strain whose popularity shows no signs of waning. Reaching heights of anywhere between 70–140cm indoors, Critical is arguably one of the best photoperiod strains for covert indoor cultivation. Despite its short flowering phase of 7–8 weeks, this plant is capable of returning proportionately massive hauls of up to 750g/m².
Critical may be known chiefly for its impressive growing traits, but its aroma, flavour, and high are equally appealing. High levels of THC and a diverse blend of terpenes inherited from its Mexican and Colombian lineage make for a balanced mind–body high that’s great for enjoying after a long day of work.
Who said cannabis only belongs outdoors? With the advent of new breeding and growing technology, home cultivators can easily achieve satisfactory yields of top-quality bud, without having to worry about plants growing out of control! Any of the strains above will make for a great grow room partner; the only question is, which one(s) will you choose?