If you’ve tried more than one type of cannabis flower, you may have noticed that they smell different. That’s because, just like other plants, cannabis contains terpenes, aromatic compounds that provide each strain with its unique scent and flavour.
Terpenes also contribute to cannabis’s effects, and are increasingly being studied for their therapeutic properties. Here are some of the cannabis plant’s most common terpenes, and their effects:
Myrcene is the most commonly found terpene in cannabis. Myrcene can be quite pungent and has an earthy odor, with hints of clove. You may recognize its scent in some of your everyday cooking with herbs such as thyme or lemongrass. As well as possessing antimicrobial properties, myrcene is also anti-inflammatory, analgesic and sedative.
You guessed it – this terpene tastes and smells of trees, specifically pine and fir, which also contain pinene. Pinene is used as a cancer treatment in traditional Chinese medicine, and has been shown to have anti-tumour effects. Research also shows that pinene may also have anti-osteoarthritic properties. Pinene is associated with increased focus and can be an antidepressant.
Close your eyes and let the aromatics of this terpene take you away. As its name suggests, limonene offers an unmistakably citrusy scent and flavour. Because of this, limonene is a popular ingredient in household cleaning supplies. One of the most widely used terpenes, limonene can promote gastric healing and prevent outbreaks of yeast.
This terpene is best known for giving lavender its distinctive scent, exhibiting sweet floral tones and a hint of citrus. Because linalool encourages relaxation, some people turn to it as a sleep aid or treatment for anxiety. Linalool can be a fairly powerful anti-inflammatory, too.
Caryophyllene gives off a robust woodsy scent with a distinctive peppery note. If you’re looking for this terpene in your local grocery store, you’ll find it in black pepper, basil, cinnamon and caraway. Caryophyllene has numerous medicinal benefits including acting as antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-carcinogenic and local anaesthetic. Caryophyllene may also alleviate the paranoia and anxiety associated with THC.