Terpenes and Trichomes: What's the Difference?
Consumers today enjoy cannabis for a variety of reasons. Some find the uplifting mental effects and relaxing physical effects enjoyable purely for recreational purposes. Some benefit from its ability to relieve pain, anxiety, insomnia, and a range of other ailments. These effects are largely due to the trichomes and terpenes contained in cannabis.
Every cannabis strain contains a range of terpenes and trichomes. These natural compounds are responsible for producing the chemicals that impact your body and brain to get you high and provide a range of benefits. They’re also responsible for contributing to the aroma and flavor of each cannabis strain. But what’s the difference between the two? Here’s everything you need to know about terpenes and trichomes.
What Are Terpenes?
Terpenes or terpenoids are naturally occurring aromatic compounds that can be found in all kinds of plants, fruits, and herbs, including cannabis. Terpenes are what give cannabis strains their unique aromas and flavors, and each strain has a different terpenoid profile. Over a hundred different terpenes have been identified in cannabis strains, although a select few are particularly common.
For example, limonene is a citrusy terpene that’s also found in citrus fruits. Cannabis strains that contain limonene often have citrus-like flavors, such as Tangerine Dream. Other examples of common cannabis terpenes include myrcene, pinene, caryophyllene, terpinolene, and humulene.
Each strain contains a range of terpenes that contribute to how it smells and tastes. However, that’s not all that terpenes do. Research shows that terpenes also work in conjunction with cannabinoids to provide a range of helpful effects. For instance, some terpenes contribute to the relaxation or mental boost you feel when you use cannabis while some help with certain ailments.
Common Cannabis Terpenes
Although over a hundred terpenes have been found in cannabis strains, only a handful are particularly abundant. Most strains contain a mix of the following terpenes, each of which is unique in terms of the aroma and effects they contribute.
Myrcene - Myrcene is the most common terpene found in cannabis. It’s an earthy, herbal terpene that’s also found in other herbs and plants like thyme and lemongrass. Myrcene is said to promote relaxation and help with pain, inflammation, and insomnia.
Limonene - Limonene is a citrusy terpene that can be found in tons of cannabis strains. It’s known for its fresh, lemony aroma. It’s also said to help with the mental effects of cannabis, providing relief for anxiety, stress, and other mood issues.
Pinene - Pinene is another one of the most common terpenes that can be found in cannabis strains. It’s also common in pine needles and is recognizable by its earthy, pine-like aroma. Pinene is said to promote alertness, help with pain and inflammation, and reduce some of the effects of THC.
Terpinolene - Many cannabis strains are dominant in terpinolene. It’s a floral terpene that’s also found in lilacs, nutmeg, and cumin. It’s said to contribute to the uplifting effects of cannabis and provide antioxidant and antibacterial properties.
Caryophyllene - Caryophyllene (or beta-caryophyllene) is an interesting terpene as it also acts as a cannabinoid. It has a spicy, peppery aroma and is said to help with stress relief as well as providing pain relief.
What Are Trichomes?
Trichomes are small, bulbous glands that grow across cannabis buds. Some cannabis strains are known for being coated in sticky, crystal-like trichomes, which adds to their bag appeal. However, there are also smaller trichomes that grow throughout your buds that are too small to be seen by the naked eye.
Trichomes don’t just make cannabis buds look good - they’re also responsible for producing the compounds that make them so enjoyable to use. These small glands are responsible for synthesizing the cannabinoids and terpenes in each cannabis strain. In other words, they’re the epicenter of the plant where THC, CBD, and other important compounds are produced.
Cannabis growers often use trichomes to identify when their plants are ready to grow. Throughout the growing process, the trichomes on cannabis buds go from being transparent to milky white to amber. Each stage helps identify how rich the buds will be in THC, CBD, and other compounds.
What Are Cannabinoids?
Although terpenes can contribute to the effects and benefits you’ll experience when you consume cannabis, it’s the cannabinoids that do the bulk of the work. Cannabinoids are naturally occurring chemical compounds that interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, impacting your body and brain in various ways.
THC is the sole psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis. This is the compound that’s responsible for providing intense physical and mental effects. In other words, THC is what gets you high. With that said, other cannabinoids such as CBD and CBN can also contribute to the effects you experience, such as mild relaxation.
Terpenes also work in conjunction with cannabinoids to contribute to the effects and medical benefits provided by each strain. With that said, the effects given by terpenes are generally much milder and they’re more known for contributing to the aroma and flavor of each strain.
Where To Buy Cannabis
If you want to experience the full effects of the cannabinoids and terpenes found in cannabis, you can buy cannabis in Niagara Falls. Not only can you find a wide range of cannabis strains, but you can also find various alternative cannabis products.
Cannabis Flower is a good choice for those who want to smoke or vape cannabis. Indica strains are generally more relaxing whereas sativa strains are more uplifting. You can also try hybrid strains if you want a more balanced high.
Cannabis Concentrates are potent products that are made by extracting the cannabinoids and terpenes from cannabis trichomes. These products are ideal for vaping and can offer a particularly powerful high.
Cannabis Tinctures are ideal for those who want an easy and convenient way to get the effects of cannabis. Simply measure your desired dose using the dropper, apply it under your tongue, and hold it there for a minute or two.
Although terpenes add a lot of flavor to each cannabis strain, it’s the trichomes that are responsible for producing the terpenes, THC, and a range of other cannabinoids.
You can experience the effects of these cannabinoids and terpenes simply by using cannabis. For the best cannabis in Niagara Falls, along with plenty of cannabis concentrates, edibles, vapes, and much more, check out Wonderbuds.