*The Thoughts And The Opinions Expressed Herein This Article Do Not Reflect The Brand Of The Relief Leaf. Their Opinions And Views Are Solely Their Own.*
The Following Is A Guest Post From Jack Conway
Contributor: Jack Conway
Knowledge is the key to learning which cannabis strain is best for you. There are no “dumb questions.” But, sadly, it is that mentality that has prevented millions of new (and veteran) cannabis enthusiasts from inquiring about certain aspects of marijuana. I get it – nobody wants to feel like they don’t know something, but the only way to learn is to do some research. If you utilize your due diligence and find out what makes one strain better than another (for your personal needs), then it will make the entire marijuana shopping experience so much easier.
Think of it this way, without proper knowledge, you are essentially heading into a store without a shopping list. When armed with the data and facts helping guide your journey, that once ramshackle trip to the store only takes a fraction of the time because you have prepared yourself by knowing exactly what to look for, as opposed to aimlessly walking from display case to display case, curiously wondering which product may be best for you.
While there’s a lot of information one should be aware of before heading to a dispensary, one of the lesser known items that is making its way to the forefront of most cannabis conversations is the subject of terpenes – and they actually do.
In short, terpenes are the main reason your bud gives off its delicious scent. Each aroma profile is present solely because the specific terpenes that created it. While the wide array of scents and odors can be a delight, on its own, there’s so much more to terpenes than a simple smell here or there. I believe, once you become more familiar with this vital element of cannabis, your love affair for any and all things marijuana will grow exponentially. Not only that, but you will be able to head into your local cannabis store and know precisely what to look for. Anything that adequately prepares a marijuana enthusiast before check-out time is crucial, in my opinion.
To be more specific, terpenes can be found in the very same glands that create the more popular cannabinoids – CBD and THC. These terpenes are scent-fueled oils that help certain strains attain their beloved flavor spectrums. They aren’t chemically created, either. Terpenes are a natural occurrence in the genetic makeup of marijuana, and were initially used to help ward off any potential predators, while simultaneously luring in any sort of critical pollinators. In the case of cannabis, terpenes are often molded and shaped by their surrounding climate, soil, fertilizer, age, time of day, and maturation process. So, needless to say, there are a lot of factors that play a pivotal role in the creation of these intricate terpenes.
While there are still some studies that need to be done on the matter, cannabis terpenes can also help dictate how a certain strain will affect you. Obviously, there’s no hard-and-fast rule as to how just yet, but scientists can see that there’s at least a smidgen of truth to this hypothesis, and many such as myself, can’t help but agree with that thesis.
For example, there are some terpenes that assist various strains with helping the consumer relax and decompress after a long day. Conversely, there are a handful of terpenes that can aide with the increase of focus and attention that many buds are famous for. While there’s no determinate number of how many terpenes exist, scientists and growers have come to a consensus that the number is easily in the hundreds, with a few specific ones sticking out more than most. The fact that these terpenes can often be indicative of effects to come, makes it all the more important to educate oneself on the various terpenes available, and what they are known to do.
One of the more popular terpenes you can find at any dispensary is Limonene. This citrus-inspired scientific namesake was likely chosen for this terpene because it can also be found in oranges and lemons, as well as juniper. Limonene is famous for helping folks deal with everyday stresses and to boost the mind and it can be found in wildly popular strains such as: Do-Si-Dos and Wedding Cake.
Another beloved terpene that many tend to look for when perusing the shelves is Terpinolene. This particular terpene is believed to help consumers achieve a more uplifting, mood-boosting high, as opposed to some sleep-inducing indicas.
Also, studies have shown that you can find this particular terpene in 10% of strains on the market today. Which may not seem like much, but when you consider the multitude of terpenes that exist, that’s a pretty healthy showing. Terpinolene is one of the main components in buds such as XJ-13 and Jack Herer – two of my all-time favorites.
For folks who are looking for some help with managing discomfort , I would suggest you start looking for strains that possess the terpene Humulene.
This terpene, which can also be found in wood and hops (one of the main ingredients of beer), is known to help consumers. It’s one of the reasons why Girl Scout Cookies and Gelato are such fan favorites amongst the cannabis community.
For those of you who are constantly looking to cannabis as a quality sleep aide, may I suggest any strain that has Linalool in it. This snooze-creating terpene, also found in lavender, can be crucial for those looking for a calm, relaxing way to chill out at the end of the night. You may have even tried it without knowing, as it can be found in many popular strains – such as Kosher Kush and Zkittles.
Lastly, let’s touch on the terpene that’s most readily available to patients and consumers, alike, and that terpene, my friends, is Myrcene. Blue Dream, OG Kush, and Grandaddy Purple, three of the most popular strains in the history of marijuana, are chock full of Myrcene. While others have a far more specific aim with their effects, the only thing Myrcene concerns itself with is calming comfort. With Myrcene, it may bring a more restful, comfortable state of mind and body.
Like I mentioned above, there are a laundry list of terpenes out there, but these by far, are the most popular (and noteworthy). As we all know, cannabis hits every single person in a different way. Making it vital for consumers to educate themselves as much as they possibly can before hitting up a dispensary. Now that you know the initial “nuts and bolts” of terpenes, chances are you will know what to look for when cruising through a cannabis store.
As useful as this knowledge is to have, it is not the end-all, be-all of information. As you can plainly see, we are learning more and more about the intricacies of cannabis with each passing day. So, we strongly urge all enthusiasts to keep their antennas up when it comes to “breaking news” about the genetic makeup of various strains, and how they affect the consumer. Because, at the end of the day, the more you know – the better off you will be.