Is kenaf marijuana? This is a question I have been asked many times. The answer is a resounding NO. Kenaf is not hemp, it is a Hibiscus. Kenaf, however, does share a similar Latin name (Hibiscus Cannabinus) to hemp, which is Cannabis. This can be confusing when kenaf and hemp are from two completely separate families of plants. Kenaf is from Malvaceae, hemp is from Cannabaceae.
Don’t confuse them! Kenaf related to cotton and okra and not to hemp at all. The one major boon they have in common is a multitude of industrial uses and benefits, though kenaf stands by itself without any of the drug liabilities of Cannabis (Hemp), whatsoever.
I have been told the leaf structure of kenaf looks to have the characteristics of hemp, also. I have grown several varieties of kenaf, and I have found this statement to also be false. They do not look alike to anyone familiar with actually growing them.
Kenaf structure is of the Hibiscus leaf. Its flowers are large and interspaced along the stem nodules. The flowers bear no resemblance to the flowering structure of hemp with its tiny flowers in bunches at the stalk's ends.
Kenaf has the advantage of being completely drug free when it comes to the compound of THC, the high inducing drug of the hemp. Thus being free from the drug liabilities, kenaf is also free from the governmental and medical regulations associated with hemp. Even industrial hemp carries the weight of many governmental restrictions for growing and processing.
What kenaf and hemp do have in common is many of their valuable assets. Both are valuable in the making of papers, construction materials, cloth, plastics, etc. What really sets kenaf apart in this field of uses is its lack of any government and medical regulations. Kenaf has no restrictions while even industrial hemp carries the weight of many governmental restrictions for both growing and processing.
There is much research regarding the farming and industrial growth potential associated with both these plants. Kenaf Partners USA website goes into the many aspects of both kenaf and hemp and is on the forefront of its growing and manufacturing potentials.
I personally just wanted to answer the question, Is kenaf Marijuana?
I hope this answers it once and for all.
If you want to get basic information on kenaf's background and uses, our QuickTurtle book, Kenaf, Seeds for Life is a basic primer. This book is a short, quick read that was written and illustrated for future farmers and entrepreneurs. In other words, our youth. This revolutionary cash crop can be grown in all regions of the United States for its wood fiber and core production uses. Though the book was originally written with children in mind, it is fitting and appropriate for adults to gain a rudimentary understanding of this magical plant.
Kenaf, Seeding the World is book 2 in the series. It goes into Kenaf as a rotational cash crop for any farms interested in revitalizing their soil while increasing their cash flow from a kenaf crop.
I am currently working on the next book Kenaf, Housing the world. It should be in print and ebook sometime in the Spring of 2021.