We’re all familiar with the many smells of cannabis, some more pungent than others. At the root of these scents are terpenes, aromatic compounds produced predominantly by plants. Through terpenes, we can alter the smell, flavor, and the effects of cannabis extracts, oils, and flower.
What are Terpenes?
Simply put, terpenes are the part of the plant we actually smell. Whether it’s the distinctive scent of rosemary, lavender, or mint, what you’re smelling is a combination of plant terpenes. In nature, the purpose of terpenes is to attract pollinators and deter predators.
Lotions, soaps, candles, perfumes, and other scented products made with natural extracts all contain various terpenes tham give them their smell. Besides smelling good, terpenes have been the topic of study for years regarding their possible therapeutic benefits. Aromatherapy’s underlying principles completely rely on terpenes’ effect on the mind and body.
Nowadays, terpenes mainly come up in conversations about enhancing the taste and positive effects of weed. In learning how to effectively add terpenes to flower, a user can change the profile of a marijuana strain and create an effect known as “the Entourage Effect:” the process in which cannabinoids and terpenoids interact with each other in the brain’s receptors.
Benefits of Adding Terpenes to Flower
Be cautious where you’re getting your terpenes, as not all terpene formulations have the same potency and effect. While more cost-effective brands may be enticing, they often contain additives and contaminants, even harmful ones. They could be less effective and potent. You should choose reputable brands that lab-test their terpenes will ensure that you are getting a high-quality product that will set you on the right path for a great experience.
A top reason for adding terpenes to your flower is to improve the flavor. While some may enjoy the naturally pungent flavor of cannabis, its overwhelming earthiness can be a turn off to many. Adding alternative flavors to your smoke session can make the experience more pleasant to your taste buds. Change the taste to your liking; whether you prefer a citrus bite or a woody palate.
Alternatively, add to the flavor of your bud with strain-specific terpene formulations. You can also intensify the dankness, kushiness, and more with terpene solutions designed to enhance your bud. No matter what taste you’re looking for, you’ll have a more pleasant and enjoyable experience.
Adding terpenes to your flower can also be used to freshen up its taste. When you have a bunch of leftovers that build up over time, drying out with each day that passes, terpenes can add some moisture back into your flower, giving it a better taste, smell, and effect. While it won’t return your flower completely to its original freshness, adding terpenes to dry herb will make a noticeable difference in the smoking experience.
The effects of adding terpenes to dry herbs go beyond relieving stress and calming anxiety. While many terpenes are tailored to specific strains, they all boast unique combinations of therapeutic benefits. Some of the effects terpenes have on humans are reminiscent of their original role in plants, like helping the body fight off unwanted microbes and pathogens. Terpenes that promote and encourage pain-relief include humulene, geraniol, linalool, and β-pinene. Your overall experience of smoking will improve when adding terpenes to dry herb, as they also help your body process the effects of CBD and THC.
How to Add Terpenes to Your Flower
So now that you know why terpenes are great, it’s time to actually prep for 4/20. Terpenes are typically sold in highly concentrated, extremely potent solutions, so you don’t need to add a lot to feel its effect. If you add too much, you risk ruining your kush. To avoid this, make sure you’re always using your dropper so you have more control over how many terpenes you’re adding to your weed.
While there isn’t a perfect ratio, it’s generally recommended that you add 1-2 drops of terpenes for every gram of weed. You can either add directly to your bowl before smoking, or mix it in with your weed while it’s still in the grinder. If you want to add terpene to whole pieces of flower or bud, you can do that also. Just open the baggy or canister that contains your weed, add a few drops, and shake so the flower absorbs the terpenes. Again, it’s important not to add too much, even if you’re adding it to whole buds. If you want more, you can always add more later — but once it’s in, it’s in, and there’s no going back.
There’s still a lot to learn about the relationship between terpenes and flower, but what we do know is fascinating. Adding terpenes to dry herb is an easy way to increase the lifespan of your flower, improve its taste, and better its effect. Terpenes are a worthwhile purchase for anyone who wants to improve their smoking experience this 4/20, so let’s make this year’s kickback an unforgettable one!