Need to Know Cannabis Terminology

As marijuana growth, manufacturing, distribution, and consumption becomes more mainstream, so does the terminology used to discuss it.  Here are some of the more popular terms you might hear when discussing this burgeoning industry.

Access point: An access point is a marijuana dispensary, or a location where state regulated marijuana is available for purchase.

Agitation: Agitation refers to the physical breaking off and harvesting of cannabis trichomes.

Alcohol extraction: Alcohol extraction refers to the use of isopropyl or ethyl alcohol to strip the essential oils and trichomes from the cannabis plant to create hash oil.

Auto-buddering: When taffy or shatter product is kept at too high of a temperature, if it has an elevated wax content, or if it is affected by other environmental factors, the consistency will change into one more like budder.

Backcross: Backcrossing refers to a breeding method in which the plant breeds a cannabis plant with one of its parents in order to fortify specific desirable genes.

BHO: Butane hash/honey oil, colloquially referred to as “dabs” or “shatter”, is an extract made with the non-toxic solvent butane.

BlastingBlasting is the use of a solvent to create hash oil from plant material.

Blunt: A blunt refers to marijuana wrapped in an emptied cigar wrap.

Bong:  A plastic, ceramic, or glass device used to smoke cannabis flowers.  Bongs range from simple to complex, but they all use water to filter and cool the smoke.

Bowl: As it’s name suggests, a bowl is the bowl-shaped location in a smoking device where the cannabis flower is loaded.Bowl, Cannabis Terminology

Bubbler:  A bubbler is a (typically) glass smoking apparatus that filters smoke through a water chamber, but is smaller and easier to transport than a bong.

Bud: The cannabis bud is the cannabinoid-containing flower of the plant.

BudderBudder is a soft, wax-like, potent cannabis concentrate that can be dabbed with an oil rig.

Budtender: Like a pharmacist, a budtender is a dispensary employee knowledgeable about cannabis products and means of consumption.

ButaneButane is a popular, affordable solvent used to extract concentrates.

Cannabidiol:  Also known as CBD, cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive cannabinoid known for its medicinal uses to treat an array of conditions including seizures, pain, cancer, and nausea.

Cannabinoids:  The organic substances found in cannabis that have medicinal and psychoactive effects on consumers are known as cannabinoids.

Cannabis: Cannabis  is a flowering plant including Cannabis ruderalis, Cannabis indica, and Cannabis sativa that has industrial, medicinal, and recreational uses. instagram2-340

Carb cap: A carb cap is a glass, ceramic, titanium, or quartz dabbing tool with a rounded end and a pointed handle used for low-temperature dabbing.

Clone: A clone, or a genetic copy of a cannabis plant’s mother, is created when the plant clipping is planted and grown.

Closed-loop extraction: A safer method than open blasting, closed-loop extraction refers to the use of butane or propane in a closed system to extract cannabis concentrates.

CO2 extraction: CO2 extraction refers to the use of pressurized liquid or gas CO2 to extract waxes, oils, and cannabinoids from the marijuana plant and produce hash oil with a lower viscosity than BHO.

Concentrates: Concentrates are the potent form of cannabis extracted from the flowers such as hash, kief, or hash oil.

Crystals: The THC-holding trichomes, also known as crystals, cover the cannabis flower.

Dabbing (Dabs): Very, very simply put, a dab is a vaporized (by high heating) dose of cannabis concentrate, and dabbing refers to the inhalation of said dab through a dab rig.  A controversial practice, dabbing can produce a potent high, a positive for someone needing a strong dose of medicine quickly and a negative for the legalization movement when viewed by outsiders as a way to overdose on marijuana.

Dab rig/oil rig/concentrate pipe: A dab rig  is a water pipe specialized for use with concentrates.

Decarboxylate: Decarboxylate refers to the activation of cannabinoids like THCA and CBDA into THC and CBD by heating the cannabis at low temperatures.

Diesel: A cannabis strain known for its strong “diesel” odor and potency.

Dispensary: A dispensary is a store where state regulated cannabis products are available for purchase.

DTFO: The colloquial expression stands for Dabbed The Fuck Out, or a state of semi consciousness one finds oneself in after dabbing too damn much.

Edibles: Edibles are products infused with marijuana that can be consumed as food.

E-nail/Electronic nail: An e-nail is a digitally controlled heating tool used to keep dabbing results consistent.

Hemp: Though hemp comes from Cannabis sativa, it has very low THC levels and is primarily used for industrial uses such as paper, building materials, fuel, and livestock food.Hemp, Cannabis terms

Hybrid: A hybrid is an accidentally, but, more commonly, intentionally crossbred strain produced by mixing two cannabis strains.

Indica: A smaller species of cannabis, indica is known for its intensely relaxing high.

Jelly hash: A combination of water hash/bubble hash and hash oil, jelly hash is used by patients with severe symptoms because of its powerful effects.

Kief: Kief, commonly referred to as dry sieve hash, is a potent concentrate made by separating the trichomes from the cannabis plant.

Kush: A popular indica strain with Afghani and Pakistani origins, kush has many varieties including Hindu Kush, Master Kush, and OG Kush.

HCFSEHigh-cannabinoid full spectrum extract, an extract with a strong cannabinoid profile, is made from fresh-frozen cannabis and used medicinally because of its high cannabinoid concentration.

HTFSE:  Made from “live” fresh-frozen cannabis, high-terpene full-spectrum extract is a type of concentrate with an elevated terpene level, making it desirable for anyone interested in testing the delicious and therapeutic world of terpenes

OG: OG Kush, or Ocean Grown Kush, is a potent strain known for its enduring psychoactive effects.

Pressed hash: Pressed hash is a dense concentrate made from compressed trichomes that can be consumed via bong, pipe, joint, or vaporizer.

Propane: Propane is a solvent used to extract cannabis concentrate.

QWISO: Like RSO, cannabis is soaked in alcohol but for a shorter amount of time to create quick-wash isopropyl oil, making it a quality smoke.

Resin: The term resin is a reference to the trichomes used to create hash.  It is also a term used to describe the residue accumulated on the inside of a bowl after smoking.

RSORick Simpson oil, a cannabis concentrate made from alcohol-soaked cannabis, is an easy to make smokable but more commonly orally consumed treatment for cancer and other serious illnesses.

Sativa: A tall species of the cannabis plant with Asian and South American origins, sativa is known for its energizing highs.

Skunk: A sativa-dominant hybrid strain, skunk is known for its potency and strong “skunk” like odor.

Strain: A cannabis strain is a breed containing distinct traits within the cannabis species.

Terpene: The organic substances found in a cannabis plant responsible for its flavor and smell.  Terpenes are associated with medicinal benefits in addition to their olfactory ones.

THC: Tetrahydrocannabinol is the cannabinoid responsible for producing the psychoactive effects characteristic of a “high.” It has both recreational and medicinal benefits.

Tincture: A tincture is a flavored, liquid form of cannabis capable of producing a high without requiring a large amount of consumption.

Topical: A topical is a cannabis product such as a lotion or balm applied to the user’s skin.

Trichome: Trichomes are the resin producing, cannabinoid containing crystals that cover the cannabis flower.

Trim: Trim refers to the excess leave snippings from cannabis plants that can be used in edibles and to make extracts.

Water hash: Water hash refers to the concentrate produced by the use of micro-screens, ice, and water to separate trichomes from the cannabis plant.

Dianna Benjamin

About the author: Dianna Benjamin is a freelance writer, teacher, wife, and mom horrified and fascinated by social justice and our inability--yet constant pursuit--to get it right.