Terpenes: The Aromatic Compounds in Cannabis

Whether you're a medical patient or recreational cannabis user, your knowledge of terpenes will surely deepen your appreciation of the cannabis plant.  

What are "Terpenes"?

Terpenes are a family of chemical compounds, offering a large array of different odors and tastes.  

There are over 120 kinds of terpenes in cannabis which are specifically found in the same oil glands that produce cannabinoids like THC and CBD.  Terpenes are responsible for the pleasant, or not so pleasant, aromas and flavors of cannabis.  They are the pungent smells that are either fruity, woody, spicy, earthy, floral, or herbal:

Most of the research that has been done on cannabis specifically focuses on the benefits of cannabinoids, but terpenes are known to have pharmacological value as well.  The most common terpenes are Pinene, Limonene, Caryophyllene, Myrcene, and Linalool.  

*These are also found on Leafly's article entitled "Terpenes:  The Flavors of Cannabis Aromatherapy".*

   The Most Common Terpenes:

Aroma: Pine Effects: Alertness, memory retention, counteracts some THC effects Medical Value: Asthma, antiseptic Also Found In: Pine needles, rosemary, basil, parsley, dill *High Pinene Cannabis Strains: Jack Herer, Chemdawg, Bubba Kush, Trainwreck, Super Silver Haze  

Aroma: Pine

Effects: Alertness, memory retention, counteracts some THC effects

Medical Value: Asthma, antiseptic

Also Found In: Pine needles, rosemary, basil, parsley, dill

*High Pinene Cannabis Strains: Jack HererChemdawgBubba KushTrainwreckSuper Silver Haze

 

Aroma: Pepper, spicy, woody, cloves Effects: No detectable physical effects Medical Value: Gastroprotective, anti-inflammatory; good for arthritis, ulcers, autoimmune disorders, and other gastrointestinal complications Also Found In: Black pepper, cloves, cotton *High Caryophyllene Cannabis Strains: Hash Plant

Aroma: Pepperspicywoody, cloves

Effects: No detectable physical effects

Medical Value: Gastroprotectiveanti-inflammatory; good for arthritisulcersautoimmune disorders, and other gastrointestinal complications

Also Found In: Black pepper, cloves, cotton

*High Caryophyllene Cannabis Strains: Hash Plant

Aroma: Floral, citrus, candy Effects: Anxiety relief and sedation Medical Value: Anti-anxiety, anti-convulsant, anti-depressant, anti-acne Also Found In: Lavender *High Linalool Cannabis Strains: G-13, Amnesia Haze, Lavender, LA Confidential

Aroma: Floralcitruscandy

Effects: Anxiety relief and sedation

Medical Value: Anti-anxietyanti-convulsantanti-depressant, anti-acne

Also Found In: Lavender

*High Linalool Cannabis Strains: G-13Amnesia HazeLavenderLA Confidential

Aroma: Citrus Effects: Elevated mood, stress relief Medical Value: Antifungal, anti-bacterial, anti-carcinogenic, dissolves gallstones, mood-enhancer; may treat gastrointestinal complications, heartburn, depression Also Found In: Fruit rinds, rosemary, juniper, peppermint *High Limonene Cannabis Strains: OG Kush, Super Lemon Haze, Jack the Ripper, Lemon Skunk

Aroma: Citrus

Effects: Elevated moodstress relief

Medical Value: Antifungal, anti-bacterial, anti-carcinogenic, dissolves gallstones, mood-enhancer; may treat gastrointestinal complications, heartburn, depression

Also Found In: Fruit rinds, rosemary, juniper, peppermint

*High Limonene Cannabis Strains: OG KushSuper Lemon HazeJack the RipperLemon Skunk

Aroma: Musky, cloves, earthy, herbal with notes of citrus and tropical fruit Effects: Sedating “couchlock” effect, relaxing Medical Value: Antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic; good for muscle tension, sleeplessness, pain,inflammation, depression Also Found In: Mango, lemongrass, thyme, hops *High Myrcene Cannabis Strains: Pure Kush, El Nino, Himalayan Gold, Skunk #1, White Widow

Aroma: Musky, cloves, earthyherbal with notes of citrus and tropical fruit

Effects: Sedating “couchlock” effect, relaxing

Medical Value: Antioxidant, anti-carcinogenic; good for muscle tensionsleeplessnesspain,inflammationdepression

Also Found In: Mango, lemongrass, thyme, hops

*High Myrcene Cannabis Strains: Pure KushEl NinoHimalayan GoldSkunk #1White Widow