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Cannabis has an identifiable musky, skunky, and strong odor; most people can smell it before seeing it. Terpenes, the aromatic chemicals responsible for the perfume of several flowers and plants, provide cannabis with its particular aroma and taste.

Cannabis includes about 150 different terpene kinds; although most terpenes are present at trace levels, the most prominent ones collaborate to give various cannabis strains their own aroma profiles.

Terpenes serve a variety of roles in the cannabis plant and can create various mood-altering effects in cannabis users.

What Is the Origin of Terpenes?

Terpenes are naturally-occurring chemicals present in the trichomes of cannabis female plants. Trichomes are viscous, transparent glands which coat the surface of buds, and in much lower quantities, leaves and stems. Importantly, trichomes include resin glands that generate terpenes.

Terpenes are crucial for the development and survival of cannabis plants. In addition to providing fragrances, these chemical components contribute to the colour and pigmentation of cannabis leaves and buds (as well as its taste). In brief, terpenes serve to increase the plant’s attraction to certain species while discouraging others which can be harmful.

Certain terpenes, like geraniol, repel insects and herbivores lured to consume cannabis. Other terpenes, such as terpinolene and linalool, attract pollen-spreading insects and other tiny animals. These aromatic chemicals serve the immune system of plants by communicating information about the surrounding environment, protecting plants from stressors and pathogens, and aiding with the induction of immunological responses.

Various factors influence the number of terpenes a cannabis plant generates. Terpene levels can be affected by factors such as whether the plant is cultivated outdoors or inside, its exposure to light, temperature, certain growth media, nutrition levels, and when it is harvested.

Several terpenes are volatile chemicals frequently lost during typical cannabis extraction procedures. However, a greater understanding of the medicinal significance of terpenes is leading to the development of more delicate extraction techniques, such as living resin.

Live resin is extracted from freshly frozen cannabis plants (while maintaining freezing temperatures throughout the extraction process) to preserve terpenes and other volatile chemicals in the plant, resulting in a cannabis experience that’s more aromatically nuanced and tasty.

Why Are Terpenes Important?

Why Are Terpenes ImportantKnowing the terpene profile of a cannabis product assists you in selecting one with a fragrance and flavour profile which you are likely to appreciate.

Since many terpenes are related to plants and herbs used in naturopathic medicine, some hypothesize that terpenes contribute to the impact of cannabis. For example, linalool, a common terpene found in lavender, has been linked to relaxation. Some believe in the “entourage effect” which refers to the likelihood cannabinoids and terpenes contribute to cannabis’ overall impact. The influence of terpenes beyond flavour and scent has not yet been empirically established; these are only hypotheses. 

5 Most Common Cannabis Terpenes

  1. Myrcene Terpene

Myrcene is the most prevalent terpene present in current cannabis products. Individual cannabis strains can create a variety of terpenes; however, myrcene is present in more than 20% of cannabis terpene profiles, on average. Myrcene is so plentiful in medical cannabis that it is regarded as the “Mother of All Terpenes” in the business.

  1. Limonene Terpene

Limonene is one of the most fragrant terpenes, making it simple to recognize by its lemony fragrance. Due to the potency of limonene’s scent, many cannabis strains which smell lemony may include additional terpenes that are difficult to discern by smell alone.

  1. Pinene Terpene

The pinene molecule is one of the most extensively studied and recorded cannabis flower terpenes. Alpha-pinene (α-pinene) and beta-pinene (β-pinene) are the two types which are accessible. In the terpene profiles of cannabis strains, alpha-pinene is more prevalent than beta-pinene (which is more prevalent in other plant species).

  1. Humulene Terpenes

Humulene is a prevalent terpene found in several cannabis profiles and other well-known plants. The humulene terpenoid is responsible for hops’ unique aroma and bitter taste.

  1. Terpinolene Terpene

The terpinolene terpene is the “least frequent common terpene” identified in cannabis flower. Numerous cannabis strains have terpinolene in their terpene profiles; however, it is normally present in minute quantities.

Learn More About Terpenes and Cannabis at The Stash and Co.

Our cannabis budtenders give customized recommendations for strains with different terpene and THC combinations. Visit our new cannabis store in Ontario to meet our knowledgeable staff, and to be guided through our collection of premium recreational cannabis.

Call us at (647) 522-1736 for more information on cannabis terpenes or visit online today.