Kratom Strains By Color & Region And Their Effects

Last Updated: April 30, 2020

Newbies to Kratom frequently encounter confusion because of the huge variety of the plant’s strains. The strains of Kratom primarily differ by color, the country of origin, and the growing method. It can be crucial to know the difference between the strains, as various types of Kratom can have specific and sometimes opposing effects on a person’s body.

Kratom Strains By Color

Mitragyna speciosa (kratom) naturally comes in three colors, distinguished by the color of the vein of the leaf. Kratom veins can be green, red, or white. Currently, red Kratom strains are the most widely used, trumping the sales of white and green types combined. This sort also has slightly different properties and mood-altering effects than the other two strains.

Red-Veined Kratom

Red kratom has a red stem and red-colored veins in the leaves. The bright color is supposed to signal danger and keep the plant safe from external threats. This type is the most widespread and persistent, growing in many countries.

Generally, the red kratom strain is known for its calming and relaxing effects. Regardless of its origin, the red strain is thought to relieve pain, prevent withdrawal symptoms of opioids, and grant the user a sense of peace. Although the plant doesn’t have any FDA-approved applications, some people report that the red strain of the plant helps them fight insomnia.

White Vein Kratom

White-veined Mitragyna speciosa derives its name from the white stem and leaf veins. This is considered to be the strongest kratom strain regardless of its origin. White vein kratom usually enhances mood, improves concentration, and boosts alertness. It also has the most potential for producing euphoria among all types of the plant. Therefore, users should experience caution. One of its most popular applications is a substitution for coffee when this type of plant is used instead of caffeine in its most widespread form.

Green Vein Kratom

Green kratom has a softer effect than both red and white strains, settling somewhere in the middle. It exerts a mild energizing influence on the body. When mixed with red and white types, green-veined Mitragyna speciosa can even their influences and cancel the excessive drowsiness or agitation, respectively. This sort of drug is believed to make people more open, talkative, and friendly. Those looking for kratom for sale frequently pick the green type among many different strains because of its milder intensity.

green plant

Kratom Strains By Region

As a rule, white kratom strains will always be more energizing and stimulating than red ones. Apart from this major distinction, the influence of the plant varies depending on the country of origin. The differences are quite subtle, lying mainly in the flavor and slightly different intensity of the effects.


Bali kratom is one of the best-known strains of the plant for pain relief. It can be red, white, and green. Some report that smoking kratom powder works similarly to opioid painkillers. While the red type of the Bali plant has calming effects, white and green Bali strains are stimulating when large quantities of the drug are ingested.


Borneo kratom is one of the most relaxing types of the drug. It comes in red, white, and green colors. By interacting with opioid receptors in the brain, the red Borneo strain of the plant exerts an incredibly calming influence. The type originating from Borneo is thought to be the most sedating kratom, too.


Malaysia is a country of origin for kratom strains of all colors, including white, red, and green. The most notable of them is called Malay kratom. This type of Malay plant has green veins and stems. Reports suggest that Green Malay improves mood, causes relaxation, and produces high.


The strains originating from Thailand are mostly used for their stimulating effects. Green strains of this origin are known to produce intense feelings of euphoria, inducing a “high” that sometimes resembles the high of opioid drugs. The Thai Mitragyna speciosa is among the most euphoric kratom strains.

In Thai kratom, mitragynine is the most abundant alkaloid in the plant. Due to its potency, the substance had been subject to a kratom ban in Thailand until 2018. In 2018, the plant became legal for medical purposes across Thailand.


Indo kratom is considered to have milder stimulating effects than other strains. It may still be energizing to some people, but Indo strains are better known for their relaxing and pain-relieving qualities. This type of plant also affects the mood and promotes the general feeling of well-being.


Vietnam kratom comes as green, red, white, and yellow types of the plant. Only white-veined plants are thought to produce strong stimulating effects. Yellow Vietnam strain, in particular, might act as a relaxant with fewer side effects of kratom and less sedating influence.


Sumatra kratom is the type of Mitragyna speciosa that has the most long-lasting effects. Red strains, in particular, are reported to produce relaxation and the sense of calm that both last for up to 10 hours. In comparison, the effects of typical red strains of other types last for around 3 hours.

sumatra mitragyna speciosa

Other Strains Of Kratom

Different types of kratom are bred for specific purposes and distinguished by their properties rather than origin. Depending on the strain, some of these types may have more pronounced kratom withdrawal symptoms than others.

Maeng Da

Maeng Da kratom is a specific type of the plant, created to deliver pain relief together with stimulating effects. Maeng Da can be red, white, and green. Maeng Da of all colors is incredibly potent, energizing, and long-lasting.


Horn kratom is named after the shape of the plant’s leaf. This type of the drug displays the typical properties of red, white, and green strains of the plant.


Hulu kratom is one of the rarest types of the plant. It is grown in Indonesia, away from the densely populated locations. The Hulu strain is also the most unexplored due to its scarcity in typical stores that sell the drug.

Red Dragon

Red Dragon kratom is a strain that is considered among the most powerful types of the plant. Unlike the name might suggest, it’s not the most stimulating kratom. Typically for all red strains, Red Dragon binds to the opioid receptors to promote relaxation, ease pain, and provide durable sedation.


Elephant kratom carries its name because of the shape of the plant’s leaves: they are typically large and droopy, resembling elephant ears. This strain is thought to be one of the most balanced types of the plant.


Among all types of the drug, Kali kratom is one of the best for pain relief. Kratom for pain comes in many forms, but red Kali is thought to provide long-lasting, moderately sedating, and soft effects. The Kali strain is also among the purest forms of the plant, which accounts for its more natural and mild-acting qualities.

Green vein Kali is also a special type of the plant because it provides pain relief and an energy boost in nearly equal intensity. This strain is more potent than almost all other types of green Mitragyna speciosa.

The designed strains of the plant are among the most dangerous. They often are extremely potent and affect a person’s body and mind. In extreme cases, addiction may develop. An urgent call to emergency or addiction centers where a person can get professional treatment for drug abuse.

kali mitragyna speciosa

Fermented Kratom

Bentuangie Mitragyna speciosa grows in Indonesia, in the region with the same name. Among various kratom types, this strain is special because it is fermented to alter its effects. While the plant is normally dried and ground, fermented Mitragyna speciosa goes through a different process.

The fermentation process increases the concentration of 7-hydroxymitragynine, an active component of the plant. The element is known to exert an analgesic effect by interacting with the mu-opioid receptors. This allows manufacturers to increase the potency of this kratom strain, but it can also lead to dangerous kratom drug interactions. That’s why those who use the plant need to be cautious.

Be Aware Of Effects And Possible Adverse Consequences

The difference between kratom strains can be paramount, depending on the color and purpose of any particular type. In general, the origin of the plant is not as influential in determining its effects as the color is. Red strains constitute the most popular kind of the drug. They are associated with feelings of relaxation, sedation, and pain relief. Green strains work more smoothly and exert mild mood-improving qualities. White strains are considered to be the most potent kratom types, primarily because they are always stimulating, energizing, and sometimes euphoric in large quantities.

Although there are many reports of people using Mitragyna speciosa to improve their health, the substance doesn’t have any approved applications in the U.S. unregulated use can lead to abuse, addiction, or experiencing adverse effects after ingesting the plant. Therefore, it’s vital to seek help at a rehabilitation center as soon as any signs of abuse are noticed.

Page Sources

  1. Kratom. National Institute on Drug Abuse. 2019.
  2. Kruegel AC, Uprety R, Grinnell SG, et al. 7-Hydroxymitragynine Is an Active Metabolite of Mitragynine and a Key Mediator of Its Analgesic Effects. ACS Central Science. 2019; 5(6): 992–1001. doi:10.1021/acscentsci.9b00141.

Published on: April 30th, 2020

Updated on: April 30th, 2020

About Author

Peter J. Grinspoon, MD

Dr. Peter Grinspoon is an experienced physician with long-term clinical practice experience. As a former analgesic addict, Dr. Grinspoon knows precisely how important it is to provide patients with effective treatment and support. Medical writing for him is the way to communicate with people and inform them about their health.


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