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What Are Terpenes

Table of Contents

Marijuana flower

There are 400 odd compounds in the Cannabis plant. Over 100 of them are terpenes with the majority of these being cannabinoids, of which there are about 130 odd. You would have heard about CBD and THC which are the two most famous ones. You may have heard about Flavonoids, the carriers of the oil but for some reason, we don’t talk about Terpenes.


They have important roles to play in nature and as we all know, nature does most things for a reason. When you smell something in nature you are most likely smelling Terpenes. If you are familiar with Hemp or Cannabis you would be familiar with the smell of it and each strain or variety has a different smell. These Terpenes play a huge role in the plant and thus they have a massive impact on our health also. There are various studies on them and they point to how important terpenes are and your CBD product should contain them. Of course, Prime Spectrums CBD products do.

Terpenes in cannabis that are also found in other plant species have shown to be beneficial for wellbeing, and increased cannabis research in recent years suggests that terpenes could be responsible for lending to the suggested health benefits cannabis contains.

Here we’ll take a deeper look at terpenes to gain a deeper appreciation and understanding of the complex chemical makeup of the cannabis plant and the varied effects it contains.

What Are They? 

I am sure you would have heard of Aromatherapy and this transfers into the Hemp and Cannabis plants. They give flavour, provide an aromatic smell and are the essential oils of the Genus. Some Cannabis plants smell citrusy, fruity or even musky and these are the Terpenes at play. The colours of the Hemp or Cannabis plants also come from the types of Terpenes in the plant.

Terpenes and Trichomes

Terpenes are produced in the trichomes of the cannabis plant and are crystals that cover the leaves and flowers of mature cannabis. Trichomes resemble tiny little hairs and function as a defence from predators.  These areas of the plant play a massive role in how your Hemp or Cannabis plant produces cannabinoids. These areas of the plants also produce Terpenes for the plant. You need to know how the plant is grown from the soil to the country as it has a massive impact on the quality of your CBD product. Hence why I always stress you should know where your CBD comes from.

If these conditions are poor then the end product will be poor and this is why we choose to import PCR HEMP from the worlds leading producers of Cannabis in the USA. The weather, strains, growing and manufacturing procedures are all of the highest quality ensuring the end product is too. Unfortunately, Ireland and most of Europe is not there yet.

Common Terpenes 

Lets us explain some of the most common ones and why you read about these you will understand how important they are to have in your CBD product. A CBD profile and a Terpene profile go hand in hand.


This is a huge part of the chemical makeup of citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and oranges. You would be aware that these are in cleaning products and give a very inviting smell. It is the most common one found and it has an antibacterial and antifungal aspect and is the basics for keeping insects away from plants. It also helps other terpenes absorb and is associated with keeping stress a down and the mood up.


This found in black pepper, cinnamon, and cloves. It is unique as it acts like CBD (Cannabinoid) by interacting with your endocannabinoid system. It has been associated with helping with stress anxiety and depression and anti-inflammatory properties are also associated with this terpene.


This is found in mangoes, lemongrass, thyme, and hops and is known for its analgesic and antibiotic properties. It is a very abundant terpene and has a more of relaxation properties. It might explain why, when we drink so much alcohol we want to fall asleep as this is found in Hops which is used to make alcohol.


This is found in conifer trees, citrus peels, and turpentine. It comes in two different forms:

  • Alpha Pinene: The most common terpene found in nature that smells like pine trees.
  • Beta Pinene: Contains the aroma of dill, basil, parsley or rosemary.

Pinene has been used for centuries as a natural antiseptic and for its anti-inflammatory effects. It is also known to help improve airflow to the lungs and is said it may help increase alertness. It could counteract some of the memory loss associated with THC and it could help with PTSD.


This terpene is abundant in lavender plants and contains a lovely, floral scent.  It is widely known to have mood-enhancing effects and was used for centuries. It was used to relieve symptoms of stress, anxiety, and depression and it may also provide a sedative-like effect.

The Following Was Added – 21-04-2020


In nature, this terpene contributes to a plant’s defenses and possess antifungal properties. We use it frequently in perfumes as it has a very pleasant odor that we seem to enjoy.


This also has a smell we seem to enjoy and it is also used in perfumes and soaps.


Geraniol has a rosey scent to it and it is also used in perfumes. It is odd that is a good repellent for mosquitos.


This has a floral note and is shown to exhibit antioxidant and anticancer properties on studies that were performed on rats. It can also have a sedative effect if inhaled in large quantities.


Valencene has a pleasant citrus aroma and is found in types of oranges.


This has a very hoppy scent and acts as an appetite suppressant. It has found to be very good as an anti-inflammatory.

The following are could be considered secondary terpenes.


This has a peppermint, with a slight citrus tone and is thought to help with depression. It is mainly found in the eucalyptus genus.


Carene has a sweet smell and is found in pine and cedar resin. It dries out excess body fluids like mucus and sweat.


This is used in the cosmetic and food industries and the pharmaceutical industry uses it as an additive. It has been known to have very good antioxidant properties.


Found in basil and used extensively in perfumes a lot and it features some good t antibacterial properties.


With calming benefits, this is used to help fight off fatigue whilst helping people deal with stress. It has a menthol scent and also shows some anti-inflammatory effects.


A unique Terpene as in recent models in leukaemia it has been shown to induce apoptosis. It is used in many chamomile essential oils.


Another powerful terpene as it has been found to reduce the severity of seizures in animal models. It seems to be researched a lot for its therapeutic benefits and anti-inflammatory properties.


This has a calming and relaxing effect and this is why green teas would be found to be good before bed.


It has shown to be good for pain relief and is located in certain trees and the oils are extracted and used.


Great for liver and the digestive function this has a spicy, oak, and black pepper smell. It has been known to help with skin conditions.


This is used for its cooling effects and can have a touch of an anesthetic effect. It can get through the skin easily and is found in some trees like the camphor.


Menthol exhibits analgesic properties and is used topically to treat inflammatory pain.


This is found in oranges and acts as a sedative with potent antifungal and antimalarial activity.

Geranyl Acetate

With a very floral smell, this is found in many essential oils and has shown to have antimicrobial effects.


It has shown to be very good at protecting the lungs against acute injury. With good anti-inflammatory effects, it can be found in many essential oils.


With good antifungal effects, this has a very earthy like smell with a minty scent.


 Being a strong insecticide this has a nice peppermint smell.

CBD And Terpenes 

From all, you have read here and from the other posts on CBD, you can see that if your CBD product does not contain terpenes you are missing out. You need a good Terpene and Cannabinoid profile to ensure they can all work together to get the benefits you require. No one item works bests alone and it is why Isolates are not as popular among the educated CBD users.

We have barely scratched the surface when it comes to the understanding of how CBD and terpenes interact and work together with our bodies. However, it is clear they work better together and it is why we make sure they are present in what we supply you.

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