Cannabis terpenes

You’ve probably heard about marijuana’s most famous components, THC and CBD, but did you know that hundreds of additional compounds work hand-in-hand with those cannabinoids to produce a cannabis high?

In this section of Cannabis University, we’ll take a look at what makes marijuana taste, smell, and hit the way it does.

The Big Takeaway

Terpenes determine a strain’s flavor and aroma, but they also combine with cannabinoids to change what your high feels like. Rather than just looking at THC and CBD percentages, you can learn a lot about how a strain will affect you by digging into its unique terpene profile.

How Terpenes Work

Terpenes — the hydrocarbons found in all essential oils – are responsible for the distinctive smells and flavors of nearly every plant. Even if you’ve never smoked weed, you’ve encountered terpenes in the form of Limonene in lemons, b-Pinene in pine trees, and Ocimene in mint and basil, just to name a few.

But these compounds also work directly with cannabinoids like THC and CBD to unlock and enhance each strain’s unique effects and medicinal benefits.

Although consumers have historically looked to THC as the end-all indicator of a strain’s quality and potency, we now know that cannabis is characterized by a complex blend of cannabinoids and terpenes working in harmony. When they’re consumed together, they deliver more robust and well-rounded effects that result in a product with a robust flavor profile and a more enjoyable high. This miraculous partnership is known as the “entourage effect.”

How We Maximize Terpenes

So how do we make sure our flower is bursting with terpenes? It’s been proven that the best terpene profiles are developed by growing cannabis in the full spectrum of sunlight. Botanists understand that specific wavelengths are responsible for increasing the density of terpene-rich glandular trichomes, which in turn enhance the final plant’s terpene concentration. So try as they might, indoor cultivators will never be able to replicate the superiority of a sun-powered crop.

At Maggie’s Farm, we only cultivate our flower in natural sunlight out in the open air. This results in our final product having a richer and more reliable terpene profile than any other brand or product. Try any of our strains and experience the difference for yourself!

Common Terpene Types

Below are some of the most common terpenes that power your favorite strains:


The most common terpene found in nature, a-Pinene is responsible for the distinctive pine scents, and it lends a hand in some of our favorite energizing strains.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Anti-anxiety Bronchodilator Pain relief
Potential Effects
Energizing Uplifting
Balsam Earthy Musky
A-Pinene is prominent in these strains
Electric Lemon Golden Strawberry Sparkling Blackberry Soda


Known for its distinctive peppery, spicy scent, Caryophyllene is prevalent in strains that are said to provide stress and anxiety relief as well as providing potential anti-inflammatory benefits.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Anti-anxiety Antioxidant Pain relief Stress Relief
Potential Effects
Enhanced Cognition Relaxing
Cloves Pepper Spicy Woody
B-Caryophyllene is prominent in these strains
98 Special Chemodo Dragon Guptilla Kush Happy Camper Island Spice Lemon Drops


Though closely related to a-Pinene, this terpene stands apart as a mental stimulant, countering the short-term memory loss associated with THC and invigorating the mind to new levels. Unsurprisingly, it’s found mostly in sativa-dominant cannabis strains, as well as sharply fragrant plants like eucalyptus, basil, parsley, and (of course) pine trees.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Bronchodilator
Potential Effects
Enhanced Cognition
Pine Woody
B-Pinene is prominent in these strains
Green Crack Tangerine Medicine


Camphene is known for its pungent smell, and is found in conifers, nutmeg, and sage. It is most commonly used as a fragrance and flavoring additive. It is said to have potential therapeutic properties with antiviral , antimicrobial, and pain-relieving effects.

Potential Benefits
Antioxidant Stress Relief
Potential Effects
Calming Relaxing
Herbal Pine


Ocimene can be found in common household herbs like mint, parsley, and basil, and lends a sweet, woodsy smell to cannabis strains. Ocimene has potential antiviral, antibacterial benefits, and is oftentimes found in uplifting strains.

Potential Benefits
Antibacterial Antifungal Antiseptic Antiviral Decongestant
Potential Effects
Herbal Sweet Woody
Cis-Ocimene is prominent in these strains


Humulene is prevalent in ginger, ginseng, and hops, and has been used for centuries in holistic medicine. It contributes a woody, earthy scent, and can be an effective anti-inflammatory and appetite suppressant.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Antibacterial Antifungal Anti-tumor Pharmacokinetic
Potential Effects
Analgesic Anti-inflammatory Appetite suppressant
Earthy Musky Spicy Woody
Humulene is prominent in these strains
Doobiebird Daydream Nurse Jackie


Found in orange and lemon rind, Limonene might be the most recognizable of the terpenes. Strains high in Limonene tend to be energizing, yet offer stress relief, and not surprisingly have a citrus or fruity scent.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Anti-anxiety Antioxidant Antibacterial Pain relief Stress Relief
Potential Effects
Awakening Energizing Euphoric Uplifting
Citrus Fruity
Limonene is prominent in these strains
Aloha Limone Crazy Glue Crown Fire Granddaddy Purple Lemon Crown Lemon Fire Crush


The soothing characteristics of Linalool, which is also found in lavender, make it one of the most widely used substances to help reduce stress. Strains testing high in Linalool will oftentimes have a floral scent with spicy undertones.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Anti-anxiety Sedative
Potential Effects
Calming Relaxing Sedative
Floral Spicy


Myrcene or B-Myrcene is a significant component of the essential oil in several plants, including lemon grass, mango, and hops. Expect strains high in myrcene to have an earthy, peppery scent, and a calming or relaxing personality.

Potential Benefits
Anti-inflammatory Analgesic (pain relief) Antibiotic Sedative
Potential Effects
Calming Relaxing Sedative
Balsam Earthy Musky Pepper
Myrcene is prominent in these strains
14er Special Black Cherry Cookies Blue Chocolate Bubble Gum Cara's Cookie Shock Chocolate Thai


Prevalent in lilacs, nutmeg, and apples, Terpinolene can provide a variety of scents and flavors, from sweet to floral. Potential benefits include antioxidant, and antifungal, and this terpene tends to be found at higher levels in strains associated with calm and relaxing personalities.

Potential Benefits
Antioxidant Antibacterial Antifungal
Potential Effects
Calming Relaxing Sedative
Citrus Floral Herbal Pine Sweet
Terpinolene is prominent in these strains
Blueberry Headband Brightberry Cookies Durban Poison Lucky Leprechaun Magic Strawberries Pixie Dust
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