top of page

Have you heard a term used to describe cannabis in some capacity and had no idea what the word meant? There's a ton of slang and cannabis-specific terminology that can be lost upon those newer to cannabis treatment, so we put together all of the significant terms that patients may see when at a dispensary or hearing a product description.

We have separated the glossary into three sections: General Cannabis Terms, Medical Cannabis Terms, and Cannabis Compounds.

General Cannabis Terms

Aroma: the smell of cannabis flower and buds, caused by the distinct combination of terpenes specific to each strain


Blasting: the process of extracting concentrates from cannabis flower

Blunt: cannabis flower wrapped in a cigar wrapper

Bong: also called a water-pipe, this is a tube-shaped device used to combust and smoke cannabis

Bubble hash: high-grade cannabis resin, typically extracted using ice water, which bubbles when flame is applied

Bud: the individual nuggets of flower that are cut from the cannabis plant

Budder: a type of cannabis concentrate with a loose consistency

Budtender: an employee that works at a dispensary with the role of helping patients choose appropriate products for treatment

Butane Hash Oil (BHO): cannabis concentrates extracted using butane; can range in appearance and consistency

Chemotype: a term for a plant type, including cannabis, that produces a distinct combination of chemical compounds


Carb Cap: tool used to "carb" an oil rig nail; purpose of the carb cap is to get the most vapor possible from the lowest temperature

Cloning: a technique for propagating cannabis in which a piece of the mother plant is removed and placed in a grow medium, where it produces new roots and becomes a new plant

Close-Looped Extraction: an extraction device that creates cannabis concentrates without exposing solvents to open air; the device maintains pressure using a solvent to strip the cannabis material of cannabinoids and terpenes, often seperating the two for reintroduction to processed products 

CO2 Oil: the extraction device used will freeze and compress CO2 gas into a "supercritical" state that is used to gently extract compounds without damage or denaturing

Cola: the top flower cluster of a female cannabis plant

Combustion: the act of smoking involves combustion; essentially, applying direct heat, often with a flame, to cannabis material

Concentrated Vape Cartridges: a form of concentrated cannabis that uses distillate or live resin inside a vaporizing cartridge that is then attache to a battery for power

Concentrates: cannabis material that has been extracted and refined to include only concentrated cannabinoids and/or terpenes

Cotton Mouth: a common side effect of cannabis that involves persistent thirst and sticky, dry mouth

Couchlock: slang term for sedation without sleep brought on by high-THC cannabis


Cross: to genetically combine two or more strains to create a new cultivar (strain) with properties of the parent strains that are being combined

Crumble: a form of concentrated cannabis wax that

Cultivar: a plant variety produced in cultivation through selective breeding


Cure: a prolonged process of removing moisture from cannabis flowers under controlled environmental conditions that affects the end quality of the product

Dab/Dabbing: the act of using concentrated cannabis products via vaporization

Decarboxylation: in cannabis, the process of converting acidic cannabinoids produced by the plant into their more bioavailable neutral form, typically by the application of heat


Dispensary: term used in the United States to refer to storefronts providing medical cannabis products


Edibles: food products that have been infused with cannabis or cannabis extracts

E-Rig: an oil rig that is temperature controlled electronically by an external device

FECO (Full Extract Cannabis Oil): click here to learn more

Flowering Time: the period required for cannabis flowers to develop and fully ripen


Fresh Frozen: cannabis flowers that have been frozen immediately after being cut to maintain the terpene and cannabinoid content

Full Melt: high-quality cannabis resin or hashish that readily melts when flame is applied; mistakenly believed to be an indicator of resin quality


Ganja: Indian term for seedless female cannabis flower clusters, also known as sinsemilla


Genotype: specific characteristic of a plant, the expression of which is controlled by genes


Germination: the process by which a new cannabis plant begins to grow from seed, also referred to as "popping"

Grinder: a plastic or metal tool that is used to break down cannabis flower into finely ground pieces

Hashish: cannabis resin


Hash/Hash Oil: solvent extraction of cannabis


Hemp: low-THC (less than 0.3%) content cannabis used for producing fiber. Hemp often produces CBD rather than THC


Hybrid: a classification of cannabis that is a mixture of a sativa and indica strain; hybrids can range from indica-dominant, to 50/50 balanced, to sativa-dominant

Hydrocarbon Extractions: this extraction technique involves the use of certain hydrocarbons such as propane and butane, to separate terpenes and cannabinoids from cannabis material

Hydroponics: the practice of growing plants without soil, typically in a medium consisting of sand, clay, pellets, or gravel with liquid nutrient solutions


Ice Wax: a solventless form of concentrated cannabis that is known as one of the most flavorful, potent forms of concentrate, create using only ice and water to agitate trichomes

Indica: a term commonly used to refer to broad-leafleted cannabis varieties, often used for nighttime relief


Joint: a cannabis cigarette


Kief: trichomes collected by sifting or tumbling dried cannabis


Kush: a term broadly applied to high-potency varieties of cannabis


Landrace: a variety of cannabis which has adopted to the local conditions without minimal intervention


Live Resin: this form of concentrated cannabis gets its name from the freshness of the cannabis plant it is made from, as live resin is made from plant material that hasn't been dried or cured and therefore retains the terpenes that would normally be lost during those processes

Mother Plant: a cannabis plant kept in a vegetative state (not allowed to flower) so that clones may be taken to produce more plants identical to the mother

Nail: titanium or quartz dish used in a specialized pipe (dabbing rig) to vaporize hash oil. The nail is heated with a gas torch, then a dab of oil is applied, instantly vaporizing it for inhalation.

Nug-Run: concentrated cannabis extracts that have been created from cannabis flower in nug form, often denoting higher-quality as there is more content found in the nugs

Oil Rig/Dabbing Rig: a device, similar to a bong, that is used specifically for concentrated cannabis; there are a number of different types but all will have a dish made of titanium, ceramic, or quartz that is heated up and the concentrate is melted onto

Phenotype: the distinct characteristics of an individual plant resulting from the interaction of the plant's genotype with the environment in which it is raised


Pistil: the female cannabis plant sex organ

PPM: Parts Per Million, refers to the concentration of the particulates in cannabis feeding solution, used to balance between under-feeding and over-feeding cannabis plants


Purple Cannabis: cannabis that possesses a genetic tendency to produce anthocyanin when cold stressed, which turns the leaves purple


Resin: sometimes called "sap", describes the gooey trichomes that appear on the flowers and sugar leaves of cannabis plants; it is the source of all cannabinoids and terpenes in cannabis

Reclaim: concentrated cannabis that is left over after dabbing; reclaim is activated THC and therefore can be repurposed as an edible


Rosin: a form of concentrated cannabis that is created by using a pressure plate and heat to squeeze the resin out of the cannabis material without the use of hydrocarbon solvents

RSO (Rick Simpson Oil): click here to learn more


Ruderalis: cannabis classification that includes wild species of cannabis that grows throughout Central Asia and Russia, known to product a smaller yield of flower compared to other species

Sativa: commonly used to describe narrow-leafleted cannabis varieties with stimulating psychoactivity, generally used for daytime relief


Sauce: sometimes called "terp sauce", refers to a runny, terpene-rich concentrate; sometimes labeled HTFSE or high-terpene full-secptrum extract

Shatter: a form of concentrated cannabis with a consistency that can range from glass-like to a more viscous snap that is often referred to as "pull-n-snap"

Seed Bank: a company that produce drug cannabis seed for cultivation


Sinsemilla: Spanish for "without seed," referring to seedless, unpollinated female cannabis flower

Solvent-Free Extracts: the process of extracting concentrated cannabis products without the use of hydrocarbon solvents; generally speaking, the only "solvents" utilized in this process include heat, pressure, time, water, and ice

Strain: a particular cannabis cultivar that has been named to standardize and identify the specific cultivar

Sugaring: refers to a shift in consistency of concentrated cannabis products that have not been dewaxed; sugared cannabis concentrates resemble the name

Tincture: a processed product derived from cannabis using alcohol as an extraction medium; designed for controlled dosage and long-term relief

Topical: a processed product derived from cannabis to be applied directly on problem-areas, being absorbed through the skin and into the blood stream

Transdermal Patch: a patch of concentrated THC and/or CBD that is adhered to a veinous area of the body allowing the medicinal compounds to enter the bloodstream for effective, long-lasting relief

Trichomes: the tiny little crystals found on cannabis leaves and buds; these are the "factories" that produce cannabinoids and terpenes

Trim-Run: concentrated cannabis products that have been created with the loose leaves and smaller pieces of cannabis run-off from grinding

Vaporizer: a device that is designed to heat cannabis like an oven, in which cannabinoids and terpenes are vaporized while leaving behind the non-medical aspects of the cannabis plant

Wax: the general term for concentrated cannabis products made from extracted oils from the cannabis plant

Whole Plant: a form of concentrated cannabis processing that utilizes the entire cannabis plant rather than just the nugs and/or trim

Winterization: the removal of fats, waxes, and lipids from concentrated cannabis products for a purer final product

General Cannabis Terms

Medical Cannabis Terms

Bioavailability: the portion of cannabis dose that can be absorbed


Blood/brain barrier: a barrier consisting of cells that prevent bacteria and large or water-loving molecules from crossing into the central nervous system


Cannabis Hyperemesis Syndrome: an uncommon condition affecting a small population of cannabis users characterized by nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain that can be alleviated by abstinence from cannabis


CB1 receptor: a cannabinoid receptor located primarily in the central nervous system that is activated by cannabinoids


CB2 receptor: a cannabinoid receptor that is expressed in the peripheral tissues of the immune system, the gastrointestinal system, the peripheral nervous system, and to a lesser degree in the central nervous system


Endocannabinoid System: a system of neuromodulator chemicals and their receptors throughout the body involved in the regulation of appetite, pain, mood, and memory


Entourage Effect: the synergistic pharmacological effects that emerge through cannabinoid and terpene interaction

Micro-dosing: a technique for employing the minimum effective dose of cannabis medicine that delivers the desired outcome or level of effect


Plant Growth Regulators (PGR): synthetic plant hormones regulate plant growth, some of which may be harmful to humans


Psychoactivity: the measure of how cannabis and other drugs affect the mind, mood, or other mental states


Receptor Downregulation: the decrease in the number of receptors available to a cannabinoid molecule, which reduces the sensitivity to cannabinoid effects and underlies the buildup of tolerance


Sublingual: beneath the tongue

Medical Terms

Cannabis Compounds

2-AG (2-arachidonoylglycerol): an endocannabinoid abundant within the central nervous system.


7-hydroxy-CBD: the metabolite produced by liver metabolism of CBD


11-hydroxy-THC: the metabolite produced by liver metabolism of THC that is 2-4 times more psychoactivally potent relative to THC


Anandamide: an endogenous cannabinoid that regulates feeding and suckling behavior, along with baseline pain levels and sleep patterns


Beta-caryophyllene: terpene responsible for anti-inflammatory effects; it is the only terpene known to also act as a cannabinoid


Cannabichromene (CBC): anti-inflammatory cannabinoid


Cannabidiol (CBD): non-psychoactive cannaboid, second most common cannabinoid produced by the cannabis plant


Cannabidiolic Acid (CBDA): the acidic form of CBD that is naturally produced by the cannabis plant


Cannabidivarin (CBDVA): CBDV is the propyl variant of CBD


Cannabigerol (CBG): non-psychoactive cannabinoid that serves as the precursor used by the plant's enzymes to produce THC and CBD


Cannabinoids: compounds that activate the cannabinoid receptors, including endocannabinoids produced by humans and animals, phytocannabinoids produced by cannabis and a few other plants, and synthetic cannabinoids


Cannabinol (CBN): the weakly psychoactive breakdown product of THC; not produced by the cannabis plant.

Farnesene: terpene known for promoting head clarity and focus

Humulene: terpene known for providing hunger suppression


Limonene: terpene known for providing anxiety and stress relief


Linalool: terpene known for promoting relaxation and calming effects


Myrcene: terpene known for promoting calming effects


Ocimene: terpene known for uplifting effects and anti-inflammatory properties


Phytocannabinoid: term for the cannabinoids produced by the cannabis plant and a few other plant species


Pinene: terpene known for promoting alertness while counteracting some effects of THC


Terpenes: volatile hydrocarbons found in the essential oils produced by many plants, including cannabis; cannabis terpenes provide unique medical benefits that give a strain its "personality"


Terpinolene: terpene known for providing uplifting effects in addition to antibacterial and antifungal properties


Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) or delta-9-tetrahydracannabinol: the principal cannabinoid of the cannabis plant, responsible for much of cannabis' psychoactivity

Cannabis Compounds
bottom of page