Ok, so cannabis “dictionary” may be a bit ambitious. The cannabis world almost has its own language. Assembling a full cannabis dictionary would be going a little overboard for most casual cannabis consumers. Instead, we’ve put together a list — a small cannabis dictionary, let’s say — of terms that every cannabis enthusiast should be familiar with.
Cannabis Dictionary: The Science
Chemical compounds found in both the human body (endocannabinoids) and the plant (phytocannabinoids). They can also be synthetically produced in a lab. The most prominent cannabinoids are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). More than 100 cannabinoids have been identified in cannabis, although there’s no consensus on the exact number. THC is the only cannabinoid that produces both therapeutic and psychotropic effects (i.e., it gets you “high”).
Endocannabinoid System (ECS)
One of the body’s most important biological systems. The ECS is responsible for homeostasis, meaning it keeps the body in balance no matter what’s happening externally. The ECS plays a vital role in appetite, digestion, immune function, inflammation, mood, pain sensation, sleep, and many other bodily functions.
Full-spectrum refers to cannabis products that preserve all of the original cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids found in cannabis. Full-spectrum products are widely considered to be superior to products that rely on extractions that only isolate specific compounds, which is attributed to the entourage effect.
A proposed mechanism that characterizes the combined effects of compounds found in cannabis like cannabinoids and terpenes. Many scientists (and patients) believe cannabis compounds work together synergistically to produce a greater effect than if working separately.
Cannabis Dictionary: The Plant
A concentrate is a type of cannabis product that was specifically made to eliminate undesirable impurities while preserving the most desirable compounds (like cannabinoids and terpenes) found in cannabis. The term is often used interchangeably with “extract.” The difference between the two relates the process by which they’re made.
In common usage, flower refers to smokable plant matter, the bud. It also refers to the part of the cannabis plant that flowers in both male and female plants. However, only female flowers produce THC.
Hybrid strains are a cross between indica and sativa strains. Virtually all strains you find today are hybrids, though to varying degrees. However, in common usage, the term hybrid refers to strains that are roughly equal in indica and sativa genetics.
Indica is a subspecies of the cannabis plant that originated in cooler parts of the Middle East and Asia. Indicas are short and stocky and have relatively short flowering cycles. Indica strains are known for sedative effects. Indicas are more likely to produce the infamous “couchlock effect.”
Landrace strains are strains that haven’t been cross-bred with other strains, thus preserving their original characteristics. Popular landrace strains like Hindu Kush, Afghan, Durban Poison, Northern Lights, and Acapulco Gold form the genetic backbone of all modern cannabis strains.
Sativa is another subspecies of the cannabis plant. Sativas originated in warmer, equatorial climates like Colombia, Mexico, and Thailand. An adaptation to their climate, they are are taller and thinner than indicas. They also have much longer flowering cycles than indicas. Sativas are known for producing a stimulating, uplifting, cerebral high.
Now you can feel confident that you’ve gained some foundational knowledge about cannabis. Why not apply your newfound knowledge and give us a visit?