Strain or Terpenes? How to Pick Your Weed

Today’s cannabis consumer has a wealth of options to choose from, no matter what their needs and preferences may be. Whether you are interested in medical relief from a tincture, are looking for recreational flower or just want to try something new, the marketplace has something to offer. This huge range of options does however beg the question, how do I choose? For many cannabis users, the answer to that question has always come down to strains. Users often find they prefer a bright sativa for creative and active situations, a mellow indica for relaxing, or a hybrid for those points in the middle. There are a lot of good reasons to pick your buds on this tried and true method, but there is also another way. Today more than ever, customers are making marijuana purchases by terpenes. Here is a quick look at these two different ways to pick your favorite buds.

Why might we want to pick out our buds by strain? Strains are essentially individual types of cannabis plants with common traits. Famous names like AK-47, Blue Dream, and Girl Scout Cookies are essentially named breeds of cannabis plants that share a lineage. For generations, cannabis growers have bred together different plants in order to change variables such as sativa or indica dominance, color, aroma, and other characteristics. This has led to established strains that offer consistency, the same way you can get a Big Mac that (hopefully) tastes the same in Florida as it does in Montana. Ideally, you should be able to walk into Denver Dispensary in 2020 and pick up a bud of Super Lemon Haze, and it will give you the same experience as that Super Lemon Haze bud you bought in California three years ago. Of course, individual plants are going to produce their own buds with a bit of variation, but ordering by strain is a way for customers to get a consistent distribution of sativa/indica dominance, taste, and experience. Strains are often known for specific characteristics, such as their aroma profile or the type of high they produce. Because of this, picking out buds by strain is an obvious choice. To borrow an example from the wine industry, picking your cannabis by strain is like ordering wine by the type of grape used. 

Selecting buds by terpene is a little bit different. Instead of ordering your wine by the type of grape used, you can also order it based on the flavor profile. This is the same for cannabis. Terpenes are the organic chemicals that produce different flavors, aromas, and even effects in marijuana. Different strains might share common terpene profiles, even though the buds come from different plants. Instead of asking your budtender for a specific strain like Bubba Kush, you can ask them for something that is “piney” or “spicy”. In this case, they might explain that you are looking for a particular terpene or terpene profile. For instance, if you’re looking for stress relief or something lemony and citrusy, ordering buds with the terpene “limonene” might be the way to go. Because limonene has been shown to help with stress, and, just as it sounds, a citrus-flavored terpene that can be found in other plants and products besides cannabis.

If you want to learn more about terpenes or would like guidance in choosing flower with a terpene flavor that’s right for you, visit Denver Dispensary at 4975 Vasquez Blvd E. in Denver, Colorado.



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