Why do we love terpenes? Terpenes give cannabis it’s character, that’s why. They are the building blocks for flavor and aroma in every one of your favorite strains. Without them, not only would your cannabis be odorless, but the subsequent effects of ingesting it would be compromised as well. The reason for this is the symbiotic relationship that cannabinoids like THC share with terpenes. In other words, they work together to modulate your psychoactive experience. Terpenes and cannabinoids essentially live and develop together within the trichomes that cover cannabis flowers and surrounding leaf material. When sublimated into vapor together, their symbiotic relationship carries over to our endocannabinoid systems.
Very much like cannabinoids, terpenes are also affected greatly by temperature, meaning they will boil off into vapor when exposed to the right level of heat. Moreover, it is through reaching a boiling point and evaporating into smoke/vapor that allows terpenes to work with cannabinoids as we inhale them. Some terpenes that are more volatile (i.e. Caryophyllene), will boil off and evaporate at lower temperatures. Due to this, highly volatile terpenes tend to be very susceptible to compromising temperature ranges.
Because terpenes are so sensitive to high temperatures, different consumption methods will prove to be more efficacious when looking to experience terpene modulation. Combusting raw cannabis flowers will expose the terpenes to temperatures that greatly exceed the highest boiling points of it’s chemical constituents. Because of this, it is always best to use vaporizers with lower temperature settings in order preserve the terpene profile through inhalation.
Arguably one of the best ways to experience the power of terpene modulation is through cannabis extracts. When extracts are made, processors in many cases do everything they can to keep temperatures as low as possible in order to save terpenes. Moreover, reintegrating terpenes into extracts not only great way to preserve original plant profiles but it can lead to a world of experimentation with new flavor combinations. Just like with cannabis flowers, it is imperative to keep your concentrates at controlled temperatures in order to maximize the flavor and effects of the terpenes as they come through in the vaporization. One great way of facilitating a perfectly controlled vaporization without scorching the terpenes is with cannabis oil vapor pens. Get your hands on a Bloom Farms Single Origin Reserve series Highlighter to get the quintessential terpene experience from single origin strains like OG Kush and Blueberry Haze.
Be nice to your cannabis and extracts by not exposing them to high temperatures and they will certainly take care of you in return. Terpenes are our friends, and together with cannabinoids, they pair to create a wonderful ensemble of effects. Always remember to err towards vaporizing your cannabis over combusting it, keep temperatures on the lower side when vaporizing concentrates, and if you want to experience terpenes without the hassle of having to worry about temperature, invest in a vaporizer pen; many even work with herb as well!