The legalization of cannabis has led to a surge in new clinical research on marijuana, and it’s also made the general public more sophisticated cannabis consumers. Where once people just put whatever marijuana they had in a joint and smoked it, now, not only do they know precisely what strain they’re consuming, they’re deliberately burning it at specific temperatures!
Here are some new ways that cannabis consumption is becoming more of a science.
All About Terpenes
Years ago, few people in the cannabis community knew much about terpenes, but that has changed. Terpenes are tiny molecules found in all plants — they’re responsible for the plant’s smell and flavor. Terpenes have implications for every kind of plant and fruit, but they are of particular importance when it comes to cannabis.
Cannabis is perhaps the most hybridized and diverse plant in the world — the number of different strains is truly stunning, and each strain has its own unique flavour because it has its own unique combination of terpenes.
While the usage of Sativa and Indica as a classification system is common, many in the cannabis industry find it more precise to catalogue cannabis strains according to its unique combination of terpenes. For people who still wonder what is terpene vaporization and why it matters beyond simply understanding more about the strain of cannabis in your possession, the answers will directly impact your high.
Why Terpenes in Cannabis Matter
The number of terpenes in your particular strain of cannabis will dictate the optimal temperature at which to burn it. The terpenes themselves have a combustion rate, which is the temperature at which they evaporate. If they aren’t heated enough, there are qualities in the plant that won’t be released. If there is too much heat, the cannabis will burn.
In order to control the temperature, you need a vaporizer: this is the healthiest way to consume marijuana, and it also lets you consume each strain in optimal fashion because you have total control over what temperature the terpenes are burning at. In other words, you can control the flavor and the high you experience.
The ideal temperature for most marijuana is between 180-210 degrees Celsius, or 350-410 Fahrenheit. If the same cannabis is burned at a different temperature, the experience will be different. This is why understanding the terpenes in your strain matters. See charts which match different cannabis strains with their ideal temperature.
To be sure, you can enjoy any cannabis by putting it in a joint and smoking it — pot appreciation comes in all forms. But just like certain scotch is best drank with a splash of water to bring out the flavour, ideally a drop of water from the river near the distillery, there is an optimal way to consume marijuana.
Legalization of cannabis is increasing our knowledge of the plant in incredible ways. While many casual cannabis consumers may not know much about terpenes, perhaps it will be standard information in the future. Who knows what other ways new knowledge will impact marijuana consumption in the years to come, but understanding the implications of terpenes will definitely improve your experience with cannabis today.