The kratom tree is native from certain regions of Southeast Asia where it grows naturally. People from these areas have used kratom for centuries to help them treat a wide variety of ailments and to let them go through exhausting working days.
Except for Thai, the different types of kratom take their names from the region where they come from, i.e.: Malaysia, Indonesia, Borneo, etc. Each variety has its own properties and characteristics. This is due to the fact that each region has its own unique microclimate, which makes each type slightly different from the others.
We’ll see in this article the main kratom regions and the characteristics of each kratom plant.
This type of kratom comes from Indonesia. Located between the Pacific and Indian oceans, it is the world’s largest island country with more than 13,000 islands. It has a tropical climate and two seasons. The wet season goes from November to March, the rest of the year falls under the dry season, with less precipitation and more sunny days. This is the perfect climate for kratom to grow.
There are three varieties of Indo kratom: red, green and white vein. Indo kratom is one of the most popular types. So, let’s explore the different kratom regions within Indonesia.
Borneo (or Kalimantan) is the world’s third largest island. The island territory is divided among three countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, and Brunei. But it is Indonesia the one that possesses the biggest part of the island. 73% of Borneo’s territory belongs to Indonesia. The kratom strains that grow here are:
White vein Borneo (or the poor man Maeng Da): this is an energizing strain. It helps alleviate symptoms of depression, tiredness and helps with concentration.
Red vein Borneo (or Bali kratom): known for its relaxing and soothing effects it’s commonly used to help relieve pain.
Green vein Borneo: this strain incorporates some of the properties of white and red vein kratom. On the one hand, it brings euphoria and improves the general mood. It also helps relieve anxiety and stress. On the other, it acts as a painkiller, helping minimize the symptoms of chronic pain.
Sumatra is the sixth largest island in the world and its territory belongs in its entirety to Indonesia. But, not only kratom grows in this area, Sumatra is home to a wide variety of species, including 17 endemic genera of plants. Also, it is the largest producer of Indonesian coffee.
The kratom strains that grow in Sumatra are:
Red vein Sumatra: As most red vein varieties, red vein Sumatra’s properties are more calming and relaxing. Although it is one of the milder and smoother types, it is also one of the most longer-lasting varieties. Its effects can be felt up to 10 hours.
White vein Sumatra: this type, on the other hand, is one of the most energizing and euphoric. White vein Sumatra helps boost energy levels and relieve social anxiety. It is also used to increase focus and motivation. Some users report that it can cause jitters, like a very strong coffee, that’s why is better to avoid it when working. As it is a very strong and stimulant variety, most people blend white vein Sumatra with other types, instead of using it alone.
Although located in the southwest of Sumatra, the kratom strains that come from Riau are different from those coming from Sumatra. This strain has the sweeter taste and aroma, which make it a variety of choice for those who can’t stand kratom bitterness. Riau’s main strains are:
Red Riau: Although not as strong as red Bali and red Thai, is effective as a painkiller and also helps mitigating symptoms of anxiety.
Green Riau: Like other green vein types, green Riau provides a wide variety of effects. It is a middle-ground between the white and red varieties. Its effects go from energizing and stimulating at lower doses to the most calming and relaxing at higher ones.
Malaysia is one of the 17 megadiverse countries in the world, with a large number of endemic species. Its climate is equatorial with 2 monsoons, that go from April to October in the southwest and from October to February in the Northeast. Kratom from this area is unique and its effects are very long-lasting, going up to 7 or 8 hours. Some even say that it is possible to feel the effects of Malay kratom for the whole day. At smaller doses, the effects are very euphoric. On the contrary, they are relaxing and soothing at higher doses. The amount of Malay kratom needed to start feeling its relaxing effects vary from each person, so there is no general recommendation to this, apart from trying until you find the dosage that works better for you.
Formerly known as Siam, Thailand is located in the center of the Indochinese Peninsula in the Southeast of Asia. But, due to the ban of kratom in the country, the Thai variety doesn’t come from Thailand anymore. Most of Thai kratom that we can find in headshops or internet vendors come from Indonesia.
Probably, the most popular variety of Thai kratom is Maeng Da. Its effects are mostly energizing and stimulating, and it helps with concentration and focus. Many kratom users consider Maeng Da the best type of kratom, as it contains one of the highest (if not the highest) concentration of alkaloids. Consequently, you will need a considerable less amount of kratom to feel its effects.