Garden City/Greeley:

Cannabis 101

What are Terpenes?

The Naturally Occurring Compound that Gives Cannabis Its Flavor Profiles – and Changes How You Get High

We all have had questions about cannabis in our journey from that first puff to doing dabs.

For example, ever wonder what is in cannabis? What compounds get you high? What gives weed its flavor?

Cannabis has more than 485 chemical components. Around 150 of them are recognized active components, which means they have an impact on how cannabis affects us when we consume it.

I have heard the term terpenes…what exactly are they?

Terpenes are a type of chemical compound found in cannabis. Not just cannabis, but all plants contain these naturally occurring chemicals. Aromatic herbs and citrus fruits are common examples of plants containing terpenes.

Do terpenes have a purpose in plants?

Terpenes exist in nature to shield plants from their surroundings. Plants generate unique terpenes based on their environment over time to protect themselves against insects, animals, and changing temperatures.

Growers and breeders have been able to identify cannabis plants from different places with unique terpene profiles and breed them for specific qualities because landrace cannabis is prevalent all over the world.

What do terpenes do to Cannabis?

Terpenes are compounds that give plants their smells and flavor profiles, as well as affect their color. Terpenes can distinguish certain cannabis strains from others by causing them to smell and/or taste differently.

Terpenes are the reason your OG Kush tastes like oranges or Purple Haze tastes like grape candy.

These magical compounds can also interact with THC as consumers smoke or ingest edibles. Terpenes can have a direct effect on the body or can modulate the effects of other plant ingredients in what is known as the “entourage effect.” The action of myrcene on THC is an example of this. Myrcene increases the permeability of the blood-brain barrier to THC, resulting in a stronger intoxication effect with a shorter duration. Indicas have higher myrcene concentrations, which contribute to their calming effects, whereas sativas generate less myrcene and are therefore more stimulating and uplifting.

This means that two cannabis strains with the same amount of THC can create diverse human experiences, flavor profiles, aromas, and colors.

Mind. Blown.

So the next time you are in Nature’s Herbs and want to know more about the terpenes in your cannabis, don’t hesitate to ask one of our amazing budtenders. And keep checking back to the Cannabis 101 blog for more industry news, cannabis knowledge, and anything related to our favorite plant

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