Terpene Series – Pinene
This is “part 2” of our Terpene Series. For an overview of what terpenes are, and to start with “part 1” of our Terpene Series, please CLICK HERE.
What is Pinene?
Pinene is an aromatic, chemical compound found in a variety of plants, including cannabis. It’s what gives plants that distinct piney aroma (hence its name) and makes your cannabis smell like a magical forest.
It takes the form of a clear and colourless liquid that is especially fragrant!
Beyond cannabis, you can find this aromatic terpene in pine needles (obviously), rosemary basil, parsley and many more plants! So, this is a smell that everyone should be familiar with.
Pinene is one of the simplest terpenes – a monoterpene. This is the reason that it is one of the most widely occurring terpenoids in the natural world. It can also come in multiple forms – alpha-pinene and beta-pinene.
What’s the Difference between the Alpha-pinene and Beta-pinene?
The two forms of pinene, alpha and beta, are essentially mirror images of one another. This is because they share the same chemical formula and exist in both positive and negative enantiomers.
For those of us who aren’t scientifically inclined, we’ll cut to the chase and tell you what the main difference between the two are.
Alpha-pinene is a colourless, slightly water-soluble liquid. Meanwhile, beta-pinene is not water-soluble at all. This is the main difference.
The biggest thing for you to know though, is that alpha-pinene is the most common form of pinene found within cannabis. So, this is the pinene you’ll be consuming.
How common is pinene in cannabis?
As mentioned, pinene terpenoids are the most common within the natural world. As such, they’re also very common within cannabis.
Strains containing high amounts of pinene are quite common and are usually widely available in licensed dispensaries.
Luckily, identifying pinene in cannabis is quite easy – at least, easier than most other terpenes. This is due to its strong pine aroma. So, if in doubt – give your marijuana a sniff.
We’ll get into what strains you’ll find that contain pinene, but to satiate your curiosity, some of the most common are: Blue Dream, OG Kush, and Critical Mass.
It is worth noting, however, that while pinene is a common terpenoid within cannabis, it often isn’t the dominant terpene within a strain. It’s only the dominant terpene in around 4% of strains.
How does pinene impact the taste of cannabis?
We’ve discussed the piney aroma of pinene, but what about its taste?
Well, as you might expect, this terpene adds a dry, woody, herbal, and sometimes resinous taste to your cannabis. While that might not sound very appetizing, trust us when we say it’s quite refreshing and makes you feel like you’re deep in the forest.
So, if that’s your thing – pinene is the terpenoid to look out for!
What effect does high levels of pinene have?
As you’re probably aware, the presence of specific terpenes within your cannabis flower provides different, varied effects. And pinene is no different – adding its unique personality to your weed.
One of the affects you can expect from pinene include increased attention and alertness. So, surprisingly, a pinene-dominant strain might be a consideration when you need to sit down and focus. Some have also claimed it helps with memory and learning.
Pinene also has some calming effects that help stabilize your mood. So, if you’re looking for something to help you calm down a little, then this might be the terpene for you.
The Journal of Natural Products has also claimed that pinene may have strong anti-inflammatory properties, after studying the effects of numerous terpenes. It’s important to note, however, that this study was not done on the pinene terpenes found within the cannabis flower.
Research has also claimed that pinenes may contribute to the entourage effect. This is the idea that CBD and THC is more effective when consumed together.
High-pinene Cannabis Strains
We mentioned a few of them to warm you up, but if you’d like more options to choose from, here’s some of the different strains you should try if you’re looking for a hit of pinene:
- Big Smooth
- Blue Dream
- Cotton Candy Kush
- God’s Gift
- Haze Berry
- OG Kush
- Snoop’s Dream
There’s a lot more out there, too! So, take your time and keep trying new cannabis flower strains to find the best one for you!
And remember, that you can find pinene in a lot more than just the cannabis flower. Try oils, edibles, and more! And, if you’d like our advice, be sure to ask a member of our team – we’re always happy to point you to our favourites!