Kush And Haze Strains
4 min

Understand The Difference Between Kush And Haze Strains

4 min

Get a better understanding on the difference between Kush and Haze cannabis plants. Learn about the influence of plant genetics on the marijuana experience, and some of the best Kush and Haze strains available.

In the long, storied history of cannabis strains, several names rise to the fore, but a couple big names keep popping up in smoke sessions across the globe.

Many of the most popular strains smoked today find either Kush or Haze at the end of their names, meaning they count on one strain or the other as a parent. The pleasure of smoking a particular strain stretches well beyond its name though, and each family of strains offers their own rewarding experience.


Difference Between Haze And Kush

Just because two great strain names rise to the top doesn’t mean they are the same kind of great. While both are known for their potency and exquisite flavor, the two types vary greatly in their scent, appearance and how it feels to be under its influence. One main way to differentiate between the two is that Haze takes on more sativa-dominant traits, whereas Kush follows a more Indica-dominant subgroup.

Sativa-dominant strains are known for their lighter yellowish green appearance, lighter scent, and their brilliant “head high,” where Indica-dominant strains typically take a darker, more colorful hue; deeper, richer aromas, with a slouchier “body high.”

The words “Haze” and “Kush” can be misused in an attempt to make lesser-quality flower more appealing, so know your source, and appreciate each bud on its own merits.


Both strains bring with them the history of a rich tradition of marijuana cultivation, and they carry the wisdom of many green thumbs forward in hybrid after hybrid that boast their name.

“Haze” rose to prominence in Northern California around the same time. Haze’s long flowering time slowed its initial take off, and the strain was almost extinct by the 1980s. Then some Haze seeds made their way to the Netherlands, into the hands of cannabis seedbanker Neville Schoenmakers, who crossbred them into the sativa superstar known and loved today.

“Kush” takes its name from the Hindu Kush mountain range, which stretches through Afghanistan, Pakistan, and India, where the strain emerged as a regional landrace plant. In the 1970s though, it would be introduced to the United States, where it quickly gained popularity with growers and consumers alike.

Related article

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When looking at these strains side by side, you can see the difference in the plant as it grows and in their smokable buds.

Indica-dominant Kush has broader leaves and is stout by nature. The plant’s compact size helps it grow easily indoors and outdoors. Sativa-dominant Haze on the other hand, grows tall and thin. Some can grow up to 25’ (approximately 8m), which explains their popularity in outdoor grows. Haze leaves reflect their sativa nature, skinny and long.

The flower buds of Haze and Kush plants also differ sharply. Haze buds are lighter green with lots of hairy bright orange pistils covering the outside of the flower. Kush varieties are brightly colored, with deep green and rich purples.


Taking in a big whiff of these strains will also let the user know which plant they are about to use. Indica-dominant strains tend to have a sweet and sour odor, while sativa-dominant strains seem to have more fresh types of odors to their buds.

Haze and Kush strains generally follow these broad characteristics, but their own aromas help differentiate between the two. Haze has a uniquely spicy, citrus smell that is earthy-sweet. It definitely stands out in a crowd. Kush carries its own distinctive sweet, pungent earthiness, but it hits the nose hard with rich notes that can vary with pine, spice, pepper, and even incense.

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Taste The Greatness Of Cannabis

Reflecting through each inhale and exhale provides the smoker a unique experience when it comes to the taste of each strain. Both of these strains boast distinctive flavors. Haze strains taste “brighter”; they are said to have earthy-sweet citrus profiles with an almost a sweet-and-sour flavor. Kush strains offer smooth and complex flavors, filled with notes of flowers, grape, citrus, diesel, and earth.


When using these strains, their experiences differ widely: Indica strains lean to strong body highs and are helpful for people looking to relieve anxiety, body pain and insomnia. Sativa plants provide an experience described as uplifting and energetic. Their cerebral highs drop the user in creative, active moods, but every experience is different.

Both Haze and Kush are known for their highs feeling euphoric and “happy” in nature, but Haze highs feel more energetic while Kush tends to feel sleepier. Hazes are heavy-hitting among sativas. Their potent cerebral and social head highs are accompanied by a body brightness thanks to its medium-level CBD content. Kushes are typically heavier indica varieties, providing significant body sedation and pain relief.

What's your favourite?


    There are a number of Haze strains to be enjoyed, but here some of the most noteworthy!

    1. Amnesia Haze

    Amnesia Haze - Royal Queen Seeds

    Amnesia Haze is a cross between the original American Haze and a Dutch variety, and it provides a stellar head high. Because of its strong sativa dominant lineage, Amnesia Haze pushes the boundaries of psychedelic toking with its THC reaches around 20%. It's a medium sized plant growing to about 120cm and yielding 600g/m².

    2. Super Silver Haze

    Super Silver Haze  - Greenhouse Seeds

    Super Silver Haze was created when Dutch growers crossed Skunk Haze and NL Haze. The result is a plant with high THC levels that bring a head buzz to every session. She reaches a height of 70-80cm and potentially 200cm with enough light. Super Silver Haze yields growers an average of 500g/m². This plant's sweet flavour has sativa lovers always coming back for more.

    3. Liberty Haze

    Liberty Haze - Barney's Farm

    Liberty Haze crosses the power strains Chemdawg 91 and G13. It results in a plant that offers a powerful, uplifting, social high. This plant stays on the smaller size (100cm), so she can save her energy to produce fat, dense buds that make a grower's mouth water. Liberty Haze takes sativa smokers to a new level by giving them the energy to tackle anything that may come with a smile.


    Here are three excellent Kush strains to be appreciated every day.

    1. OG Kush

    OG Kush - Zamnesia Seeds

    OG Kush mixes Chemdawg, Lemon Thai and Pakistani Kush for a sweet and sour experience for both body and mind. The high THC levels help with stress, anxiety and insomnia. She is a perfect strain for both body and mind with a sweet flavour with every exhale. OG Kush grows only to 100cm in height and yields approximately 500-600g/m².

    2. Critical Kush

    Critical Kush

    Critical Kush crosses the original Critical with the legendary OG Kush, providing an indica-driven experience that will soothe and stone even the most staunch of cannabis enthusiasts. Growers can expect an easy ride with this pint-sized plant. She'll reach a height of 140cm, which makes her a discreet and low-maintenance growing companion. When ready, she boasts large yields in the region of 500–550g/m². With great flavours and effects in tow, she'll impress all that try her.

    3. Auto Purple Couskush

    Auto Purple Couskush

    Auto Purple CousKush is an autoflowering hybrid derived from the combination of Purple Kush and ruderalis. She offers well-rounded effects that seamlessly travel between the uplifting and the relaxing. She grows to a maximum height of roughly 150cm and yields 250–300g/m² indoors, providing enough buds to have a smoke or vape just about any time the mood strikes for quite some time.

    Adam Parsons
    Adam Parsons
    Professional cannabis journalist, copywriter, and author Adam Parsons is a long-time staff member of Zamnesia. Tasked with covering a wide range of topics from CBD to psychedelics and everything in between, Adam creates blog posts, guides, and explores an ever-growing range of products.
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