This comprehensive visual guide will help you navigate the often-confusing cannabis terminology. It is important to note that because cannabis has been illegal for so long, many of the terms have no formal ‘Websters’ definition. Many words have multiple meanings and some can be used interchangeably. Please keep in mind that while some of these words may have a slightly different meaning depending on your geographic location, I have done my best to address the common nuances of each term.
An acronym for Butane Hash Oil (BHO) used to identify cannabis concentrates extracted with butane as the solvent. This type of cannabis concentrate can take on a variety of consistencies including shatter, budder, snap n’ pull, and sap.
A blunt is a cannabis cigar. The term originated from the Phillies Blunt brand cigars but has since been used to refer to any inexpensive cigar or cigarillo that is hollowed-out and then re-rolled using ground cannabis or organic hemp flower. Learn how to roll a blunt.
A bong, also known as a water pipe, is a filtration device used to smoke cannabis or organic hemp flower. As the user inhales, the smoke passes through the water and bubbles up into the chamber prior to being cleared, filtering the smoke for a smooth hit. Bongs are typically comprised of at least two pieces, the larger tube (that holds the water) and a smaller bowl piece where the ground buds are loaded. That said, there are many different types of bongs that may include multiple chambers with percolators, ice catchers, and more.
The bud sites and associated flowers produced by the cannabis plant. Also refers to the dried, trimmed, and cured flowers familiar at the consumer level.
Cannabis can refer to the hemp plant itself and/or the various parts of the plant from which psychotropic drugs are prepared. Commonly (and unless otherwise specified on our blog), it refers to bud. The cannabis plant is tall with a stiff upright stem, divided serrated leaves, and glandular hairs.
Cannabis is a genus of flowering plants that includes three different species, cannabis sativa, cannabis indica, and cannabis ruderalis. These species are native to Central Asia and the Indian Subcontinent. Industrial hemp is technically a subspecies of the cannabis family, but in the interest of clarity we’ll refer to it as organic hemp flower unless otherwise specified.
A carb cap is a tool used to helpfully vaporize cannabis concentrates or CBD isolate at lower temperatures. The carb cap is typically dropped on top of the nail, creating a partial seal. Think of it as creating a tiny oven for optimum vaporization of concentrates.
CBD is one of over 85 active phytocannabinoids identified in cannabis. It is non-psychoactive and is considered to have a wider scope of medical applications than THC. CBD is available in many concentrated forms, but it can also be consumed in the form of organic hemp flower, just as you would traditional cannabis buds.
Cannabinoids are a class of diverse chemical compounds found in cannabis (and in the human body — these are referred to as endocannabinoids) that act on cannabinoid receptors in the body. There are over 85 identified phytocannabinoids, the most prevalent being THC and CBD. These are the compounds responsible for the therapeutic effects associated with cannabis.
A term used to describe a joint that burns unevenly. Typically, a portion of the cherry burns faster than the rest of the joint, creating a long run of burnt herb in the joint. Typically, this is the result of an improperly rolled or lit joint. For more on how to avoid this annoyance, try our tips for rolling better joints.
Individuals allowed to assist specific, state-registered medical patients by cultivating medical cannabis on their behalf.
The burning portion of bud in a joint or bowl that stays lit without further ignition. Ideally, it should be round and compact to prevent canoeing or torching the bowl.
A cola refers to the part of a female cannabis plant where the flowers or buds grow together tightly. This is known as the terminal bud in plant physiology.
The separated or extracted resin obtained from cannabis; synonymous with hash.
A joint shape that flares from a small base to a larger-diameter tip.
A device, typically made of wood pulp or glass (but easily MacGyvered from just about any paper or card stock material), that is incorporated in the joint rolling process to create a mouthpiece. Also known as a filter or tip, you can learn more about their benefits in our crutches guide.
A dose of cannabis concentrate. See dabbing.
A tool used to collect cannabis concentrate and apply it to a heated nail, skillet, or chamber. They are typically made of titanium, stainless steel, or glass. Be mindful of materials, as using a sub-par dabber could allow heavy metals to leach into your dab — yikes!
The process of dropping a dose of cannabis concentrate onto a heated water pipe attachment (known as a nail) and inhaling. jAlso applies to using a more traditional pen-style vape to consume cannabis concentrates. Looking for tips to help maximize the flavor of every dab? We can help!
A dab rig is a water pipe specifically designed for consuming cannabis concentrates as opposed to ground buds. The primary difference is that a dab rig generally has a male joint as opposed to the female joint usually found on a bong (male joints are ideal for most nails). Typically, a dab rig is also smaller than a traditional bong.
To be out of cannabis.
A legal clinic, medical and/or recreational, that provides cannabis products to medical cardholders and/or recreational users. As CBD becomes more popular, this term is also being applied to stores that sell CBD products in accordance with federal regulations.
To suck or take in air; inhale. Also referred to as a hit.
Dry sift is a form of solventless hash that involves using a series of taught silk screens of varying microns to separate the trichome head (where all the good stuff is) from the stalk and plant matter.
Hash, also referred to as hashish, is the oldest term still currently in use to refer to a cannabis product composed of separated or purified trichomes. Hash is considered to be a form of concentrated cannabis. There are many separation and extraction methods; both solvent and non-solvent based.
Hemp refers to high-growing, industrial cannabis plant varieties, and their products. Hemp is grown primarily for its fiber, oil, and seed, but increasing attention is being paid to creating high-quality organic hemp flower strains that look, smell, taste, and smoke just like their high-THC counterparts. Hemp is low in THC, typically less than 0.3 % according to federal regulations.
Ice Water Hash
Cannabis plants of the indica variety grow short and bushy. Indica leaves are short, wide, and deeply serrated. Cannabis indica plants typically mature in 6 to 8 weeks. The effect of cannabis indica is typically described as a body high and is characterized by physical and mental relaxation, sleepiness, and often “the munchies.”
A European rolling technique also referred to as a backroll, in which the orientation of the rolling paper is flipped and the excess paper is torn off after completing one rotation around the rolled cannabis. To learn how to roll inside out, check our step-by-step instructions.
A rolled cannabis or hemp flower cigarette created with paper, as opposed to a tobacco, palm, or hemp leaf wrap.
Kief is a grade of dry sift that contains a mixture of trichome heads, stalks and cannabis plant matter. Kief often accumulates in grinders with chambers for that purpose, but it can also be sifted from dry cannabis or hemp buds with a mesh screen, sieve, or similar tool. Kief is an Arabic term meaning ‘pleasure or intoxication’.
Live resin refers BHO made from freshly harvested, flash-frozen plant material (as opposed to dried and cured buds/trim). Live resin captures the terpenes and flavonoids — and the resulting aromas and flavors — present in the living plant immediately after harvest, many of which would be lost in the curing process.
A nail is water pipe attachment for dabbing, typically made of titanium, quartz, or ceramic materials for safety at high temperatures. It is heated using either a torch or an electric coil for the purpose of dabbing cannabis concentrates.
A term used to describe a perfectly rolled, visually appealing joint.
A thin, straight, cigarette-shaped joint, as opposed to a cone.
A narrow tube, typically made from glass (though metal, ceramic, wood, bone or antler, and even silicone are also common), with a bowl at one end for containing burning cannabis, the smoke from which is then drawn into the mouth through the other end of the tube. Many pipes feature a carb, but some do not.
A pre-formed rolling paper that’s manufactured in a cone shape. This term may also apply to pre-rolled cannabis or hemp flower joints or blunts. For more on pre-rolls click here.
Rolling papers are small sheets, rolls, or leaves of paper that are sold for rolling cigarettes, joints, or spliffs either by hand or with a rolling machine. Learn more about sizes and material types to find the right paper for your rolling style.
Rosin, also referred to as rosin tech, is a solvent-free process used to extract concentrated cannabis resin from either dried flower/budor solventless hash using heat and pressure. It’s safe and easy to make at home!
A term used to describe the soft, viscous, sticky consistency of some cannabis concentrates. This consistency is typically pliable, oily, and forgiving to work with.
Cannabis plants of the sativa variety grow tall and lanky. Its leaves are long, narrow, and narrowly serrated. Cannabis sativa plants typically mature in 10 to 16 weeks. The effect of cannabis sativa is typically described as a cerebral high.
A common term for bits of ground cannabis and resin that get sucked through the bottom of the bowl or end of the roll and enter the mouth when inhaling. Scooby snacks are typically the result of not using a crutch or screen.
Refers to cannabis concentrates of a hard, smooth, glass-like consistency. As the name indicates, this type of cannabis extract breaks easily into shards and is often referred to as being ‘stable.’ That said, it’s not as forgiving as softer concentrates.
Snap N’ Pull
As the name indicates, snap n’ pull refers to concentrates with a consistency between shatter and sap (the two extremes), similar to a taffy. It can stretch or snap when pulled based on ambient temperature and amount of force used, making it exceedingly forgiving and easy to work with.
A cannabis cigarette mixed with tobacco.
Cannabis strains are either pure or hybrid varieties, typically of sativa and indica. Varieties are developed to intensify specific characteristics of the parent plants. Strains are named for purposes of identification. There are also strains of organic hemp flower as CBD grows in popularity.
Terpenes are the aromatic compounds found in plant resins (trichomes), including those from cannabis and organic hemp flower. There are thousands of terpenes found in the plant kingdom and more than 100 found in cannabis alone. Terpenes provide the aroma and flavor of cannabis varieties and may support the action of THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids in the body.
A trichome is a small hair or other outgrowths from the epidermis of a plant, typically unicellular and glandular. In the case of cannabis and hemp flower, the trichomes contain the beneficial phytocannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. To learn more about trichomes in the context of cannabis, read this article.
A term coined by @WA5280 to describe applying hash or concentrates to the inside, outside, or tip of your rolls/bowls in any way shape or form. View our step-by-step guide showing how to twax your joint or blunt!
A vaporizer is a device that heats cannabis or hemp buds and/or concentrates to 315-440°F (157-227°C), which causes the cannabinoids stored in the plant’s trichomes to evaporate into a gas without combusting any plant material. It’s a healthy alternative to smoking cannabis.
This term refers to cannabis extracts that have been whipped into a creamy, buttery consistency. The consistency is comparable to a soft wax and tends to crumble when being handled. Also referred to as budder or crumble.