This is a rolling series in which we will periodically present to you many bits of awesome and useful knowledge on all things terpene.
Over our past two blogs on terpenes, you should have at least learned that terpenes are the most abundant compounds in nature, and their multitude of uses in everything from food to ritual to medicine has in a sense helped shape society as we know it. But one of the more simple and amazing aspects of terpenes is their wide array of aromas, and everything those various scents do.
A world without smell would be pretty boring. Imagine never being able to smell a freshly bloomed rose or lilac bush, or never knowing that distinctive smell of your significant other. All those things intoxicating your nose are simply the many types of terpenes in the world. When you smell the plant, you smell the terpenes. Then the terpenes are extracted from the plant and used to make your favorite perfume or cologne, the one that makes you just that more attracted to someone.
But the smell of terpenes isn’t just for aesthetic purposes. They’re also the compounds responsible for attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies, ensuring that the plants continue to grow and grow in new places. Beyond that, many terpene’s aroma’s are designed to deter herbivores like deer and rabbit from approaching (usually by sending out a signal that the plant is poisonous), but even if those little vegetarians are persistent, terpenes have even been known to attract predators, luring them in and exposing them to a buffet of herbivores.
Since the commercial world of cannabis has now moved predominantly indoor controlled environments, and thus eliminated the need for pollinators and deterring rodents (or attracting predators), the aroma of terpenes is predominantly aesthetic (although the scents present can generally give you a feel for the effects of the particular strain). Terpenes are what attract us to cannabis. It’s that distinctive smell of your favorite strain, and lets you know that good times are right around the corner.