Glossary of Terms
Cannabinoids are the chemical compounds in cannabis that act on the body's cannabinoid receptors. Cannabinoids produce a range of psychoactive effects and medical benefits.
THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) is the most well-known cannabinoid. It produces the "high" that most people associate with marijuana. There are more than 85 known cannabinoids.
Cannabis is a plant genus that produces three species of flowering plants: Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis ruderalis. The sativa and indica are used to produce both recreational and medical marijuana.
CBD (cannabidiol) is one of the 85 known cannabinoids found in cannabis. CBD doesn’t produce the psychoactive effects that are associated with THC. It has been shown to effectively treat pain, inflammation, and anxiety.
A cross (or crossbreeding) is the result of two different plant strains being bred together. Super Lemon Haze, for example, is a 3-way cross of Haze, Skunk and Northern Lights. See: Hybrid.
Dispensary is the term commonly used to refer to any location where a patient or consumer can legally purchase cannabis.
Like all flowers, cannabis flowers arel the reproductive organ of the female plants. They are the hairy, sticky, crystal-covered “buds” that are harvested and dried to be sold as “flower” or processed to produce extracts, either for standalone use or to produce edibles. Flowers that are fertilized by male plants produce cannabis seeds. Unfertilized flowers produce a cannabinoids-rich resin until they are harvested.
A cannabis strain that was taken from its native region and propagated in another location.
A genetic a cross between one or more distinct strains of cannabis. Hybrids can occur naturally, but are usually bred specifically for the desired traits of the original plants. Most marijuana on the market today is some form of hybrid and falls into three main categories: indica-dominant, sativa-dominant, and 50/50.
Indica is the common name for the Cannabis indica species of cannabis, originally discovered in India, and later in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Kush (named for the Hindu Kush mountains where it was originally grown) is one of the better known indica strains. This species tends to produce more relaxing physical effects and can have a sedative quality.
Kush refers to cannabis plants that originated in the Hindu Kush mountains in Afghanistan. Kush strains are indicas and generally have an aromas described as “earthy,” “piney” or “sweet.”
Marijuana is the general term for female (flower producing) cannabis plants or its dried flowers.
Sativa is the common name for the Cannabis sativa species of cannabis plant. These plants generally originated in Africa, South America, the Caribbean, and Thailand. The psychoactive effects produced by sativas tend to be more cerebral/stimulating effects compared to the physical/sedative associated with indica strains.
A strain is a specific variety of a plant species. Strains are bred to produce distinct properties and are usually named by their breeders. Traditionally, strain names were based on the plant’s origin, appearance or aroma. Today, many branded strains are based on marketing and are often mistakenly or purposely misidentified.
THC is an abbreviation for tetrahydrocannabinol. Also known as delta-9-tetracannabinol, it is the cannabinoid responsible for the psychoactive effects (i.e. “high”) of cannabis. THC has been shown to be an effective medical treatment for a range of conditions.