In most Dispensaries, we usually like organize our menus based on three categories of cannabis: Indica for the night time, Sativa for the daytime, and Hybrids for the in-between. I have been working behind the counter in a dispensary now for four months, and one of the main flaws I see in our menus and cultivators' labels, is the lack of terpene profiles. This is a new category I would like to see our medical cannabis patients classify, understand, and even challenge their budtender on.
What Are Terpenes?
Terpenes are these oily compounds secreted by the trichomes of the cannabis plant. This is what gives different cannabis strains their distinct aroma. More than a couple hundred terpenes are found in cannabis. Terpenes should be fairly easy for one to understand if you think about the natural world outside of cannabis. Different herbs, spices, flowers, and vegetables have their own terpene profile. The easy way to define terpenes is just by the smell of some of these herbs and spices in our every day life.
Some people rely on a different method of healing through terpenes called, Aromatherapy. There are essential oils one can buy and infuse their airspace with, or it can be used as a topical and absorbed into the skin. Many people use aromatherapy to enhance their mood, stimulate brain function, and find relief from pain. Finding some of your favorite terpene scents might be a good way to try through essential oils and getting to know some of the common terpenes in cannabis.
Because it is believed that certain terpenes in aromatherapy can aid in pain relief and different ailments, we like to believe, in the cannabis world, that the same concept can be applied. Some experts have found that specific terpenes work together with cannabinoids to contribute to the overall effect of specific strains. They call this the "Entourage Effect." Because of this effect, certain terpenes in those specific strains can help benefit in finding relief from certain ailments.
COMMON TERPENES Lavender, Citrus, Rosewood, Coriander
Linalool has been known for generations as a sleep aid, especially in lavender. This terpene can help lower stress, fight acne, help relieve pain, heavily sedative effects, and can be used as an anti-depressant.
Strain to try: G-13
Thai basil, Cloves, Black pepper, Cotton
Carophyllene typically has a woody or earthy smell. Cannabis with this terpene are typically good for arthritis, autoimmune disorders, gastrointestinal disorders, and will have antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory benefits. This terpene typically gives the "couchlock" effect.
Strains to try: Hash Plant and Super Silver Haze
Mango, Bay leaves, Lemongrass, Eucalyptus
Myrcene is earthy, musky with notes of citrus and tropical fruit. Myrcene is wonderful for relaxing and finding relief for pain. This terpene also has anti-spasm, anti-inflammatory, and anti-insomnia benefits.
Strains to try: White Widow and Harlequin
Citrus rind, Rosemary, Juniper, Peppermint
Limonene is a mood-enhancing terpene with an aroma of heavy citrus. Limonene fights gastrointestinal issues, gallstones, depression, and anxiety.
Strains to try: OG Kush, Super Lemon Haze, and Lemon Hash Plant
Pine, Rosemary, Basil, Parsley, Dill
In my opinion, Pinene is one of the top popular terpenes. With a sweet, piney aroma, Pinene aids in inflammation, asthma, alertness, memory retention, and may even counteract some effects of THC.
Strains to try: Jack Herer, Bubba Kush, and Trainwreck
Please keep in mind, these are just some of the more common terpenes that I have listed above. There are many more terpenes out there just waiting for you to find them and then come and tell ME all about it! I can't wait to hear about some of the terpene profiles that benefit you and which ones are your favorites. Leave a comment below! Thank you for taking the time to read through this post about terpenes. I hope it benefits in some way and reaches those that need the knowledge. If there is something that you think I have missed and should add to this post, please feel free to leave some feedback below in the comment section!