Reproduced with permission from The Denver Post “The Cannabist” section, Ricardo Baca, editor September 2014
The New Cannabis Lexicon: Terms to know, from A-Z
By Ry Prichard and Jake Browne, The Cannabist
Editor’s note: The world of weed is growing every day. Here’s a compendium of marijuana terms and definitions, from the plant, to concentrates, vapes, pot culture and beyond.
Alcohol extraction — This method uses alcohol (preferably pure ethyl alcohol, but also isopropyl) as a solvent to strip cannabis of its trichomes and essential oils. After washing the plant material, the remaining alcohol is evaporated off, leaving behind a golden hash oil. Further processing via heat, agitation, or vacuum pressure will aid in removing any residual alcohol from the oil, which is essential prior to smoking, as well as result in different textures (shatter, budder, or oil).
Blunt (see also: Dutchie)—A hollowed-out cigar which is then rerolled with weed; the name originally came about because the most commonly used brand of cigars were Phillies Blunt. A blunt only becomes a “Dutchie” when it is rolled using the Dutch Masters brand of cigar. A newer (and many argue less authentic) version utilizes a specially-made rolling paper called a “blunt wrap” rather than a cigar; these wraps come in a huge variety of sizes and flavors. Blunts are known for being very long-lasting and thus suitable for parties, often burning for a half an hour or more. Tobacco-avoiders might want to pass on the blunt, as they do have some nicotine content due to the tobacco wrapper, which adds to the effect for many nonsmokers.
Blunt wrap —Specialized rolling paper made of tobacco which mimics the more traditional hollowed out cigar method of rolling blunts. These wraps come in a wide variety of sizes and flavors.
Bogart — One of pot lore’s most ancient of verbs, used when someone is taking entirely too long to pass the joint or have taken more hits than is allowable. “Puff, puff, pass” or risk becoming the much-maligned Bogart of your social circle.
Bongwater — The foul-smelling, sewer-like liquid sloshing around at the bottom of a water pipe or bong (which you really need to change, by the way).
Bowl — Also a unit of measurement (i.e. “spot me two bowls”), a bowl is the part of the pipe or bong where you put the weed.
Bubbler — A handheld pipe (normally made of blown glass) that has a water resevoir at the bottom, which helps to cool the smoke and makes for a smoother hit than a dry pipe. Bubblers are the middle ground between a traditional pipe and the larger, less travel-friendly bong.
Budder — Another term for the opaque form of hash oil. The difference between wax and budder is subtle, but generally, budder is a softer, pliable product (like softened butter at room temperature) while wax trends more towards the crumbly side.
Buds — The dried flowers of the cannabis plant. Ideally, buds should be well-trimmed, dry enough so that the stems snap, and cured for a couple of weeks prior to being smoked.
Budtender — Like a bartender (or a pharmacist), except for weed. This is the person who works the counter at your local dispensary, whose job it is to offer suggestions, answer questions and showcase a shop’s products to customers. A common variation of budtender is “boobtender,” a derogatory term which means: “an attractive female who was hired solely to cater to the highly-competitive 18-35 male demographic with her looks rather than her deep knowledge of the nuances between Bubba Kush and Master Kush.”
Butane hash oil (see also: “BHO, budder, crumble, dabs, earwax, errl, honeycomb, honey oil, live resin, oil, pull ’n snap, sap, shatter, taffy, wax”) — A non-polar hydrocarbon which is used as a solvent in many other industries such as essential oil extraction, butane is especially well-suited for stripping cannabis buds or trim of their cannabinoids, terpenes, and other essential oils while leaving behind the majority of unwanted chlorophyll and plant waxes. Home manufacturers generally use a glass or steel tube and lighter fluid-grade butane, while commercial producers rely upon expensive, “closed loop” extraction units and high-quality n-butane to perform butane extractions. With either method, the solvent washes over the plant material and is then purged off from the resulting solution using a variety of techniques and variables such as heat, vacuum and agitation. These post-extraction processes also determine what the final texture of the product is, whether it be budder, shatter, or a more traditional sticky hash oil. Routinely testing at over 60% THC, BHO is the most popular choice for “dabbing” — when well-made, it offers a very potent, direct, and flavorful method of ingesting cannabis.
Cannabidiol (CBD) — Gaining popularity as the primary therapeutic cannabinoid for a variety of diseases, specifically autism as well as epilepsy and other nerve-related conditions, cannabidiol is generally the second-most common cannabinoid found in cannabis, after THC. It is becoming highly sought after despite being nearly bred out of modern cannabis in the hunt for the highest THC strains; many breeders now pride themselves on their CBD-to-THC ratios instead. Traditionally, hemp varieties have varying amounts of CBD but almost no THC.
Cannabinoid (see also: CBC, CBCV, CBD, CBDA, CBDV, CBG, CBGV, CBL, CBN, CBV, THC, THCA, THCV) — The chemical compounds found within the cannabis plant, cannabinoids come in both psychoactive and non-psychoactive varieties, but all of them act upon the human body’s built-in cannabinoid receptors. Cannabinoids can be absorbed via inhalation or ingestion (both of which go into the bloodstream) as well as transdermally, which acts directly upon cannabinoid receptors (primarily of the CB2 variety) which lie throughout the skin and nervous system. In the acid form (THCA, CBDA, etc.), the cannabinoids are not active, but still carry various medicinal properties when consumed, as seen in the case of juicing raw cannabis leaves. In order to decarboxylate and therefore activate the acidic form cannabinoids, heat is required — when you smoke cannabis, this process is what is allowing the plant to have a chemical effect; when you make a batch of cannabutter, the cannabinoids are getting decarboxylated and becoming orally active.
Cashed — When a bowl burns away to nothing but ash.
Cheeba — Slang term for cannabis. Famously part of Colorado’s most ubiquitous edible companies, Cheeba Chews.
Cherried — When a bowl stays lit and no lighter is needed. This usually happens late in the bowl, but if your weed is super dry, it can happen from the start.
Clone — A clipping from a cannabis plant, which can then be rooted and grown. Like many plants, cannabis can be asexually propagated via cloning, which creates an exact genetic copy of the “mother plant.” Most cannabis strains are really nothing more than a chosen close which has been passed around.
Closed-loop extraction — Chemical extraction (whether using a hydrocarbon solvent or CO2) using a closed system, which means that the machine recycles the solvent rather than dispersing it in the air. Most commonly this is referring to a butane or propane extraction, but technically CO2 extraction machines are also closed-loop. A closed-loop system is much safer than traditional “open blasting” methods, and as such are now required for all legal concentrate production in Colorado.
CO2 extraction — When high pressure is applied to CO2, it becomes a liquid that is capable of working as a solvent, stripping away cannabinoids and essential oils from plant material. This process is called supercritical extraction and is the most common method of making hash oil using CO2 instead of a hydrocarbon solvent such as butane. CO2 extractions can take many of the same textures as BHO, but generally they tend to be more oily and less viscous..”
Concentrate — The word “concentrate” in the cannabis world refers to any product which refines flowers into something more clean and potent. This umbrella term includes any type of hash (water hash, pressed hash), dry sieve (kief), as well as any hash oils (BHO, CO2 oil, shatter, wax, etc.) and indicates that these products are a concentrated form of cannabis, carrying a much higher potency.
Cone — The European style of joint, which is slightly conical rather than straight, getting wider towards the end. Most cones also include a rolled paper “crutch”, which works to keep the weed from falling out the small end, but also helps aerate the joint so the resin doesn’t cake the end shut. In Amsterdam and many other places around Europe, smoking joints with pure cannabis is rare — most locals will be found with a mix of cannabis or hash and tobacco.
Cotton mouth — When you smoke weed and your mouth gets dry. Often, cotton mouth is accompanied by its cousin, known as “the munchies.”
Crystals — The common layman’s term for the cannabis plant’s trichomes. These tiny structures contain the vast majority of the plant’s cannabinoids, and are what is removed to create concentrates such as hash, hash oil, and kief.
Cure — The curing process is a very important step in a well-grown cannabis plant’s life cycle. After being harvested, trimmed, and sufficiently dried, the plant’s flowers are then put into airtight containers which slows the drying, allowing for a more measured and gradual process, which helps to maximize the flavor and smoke quality. Similar to what you would see with cigars or even wine, the drying and aging process develops deeper flavors and mellows the smoke. Uncured or improperly cured flowers often taste and smell like hay, burn badly, and are harsh on the throat.
Dab — The act of “dabbing” concentrates onto a hot surface, producing a vapor. Can also used as a noun, meaning a small amount of concentrate (a dab’s worth).
Dabber — A metal, glass, or quartz tool which is used to gather up the concentrate and dab it onto the hot surface.
Dabbing (see dabs) — The newest activity of the sub-culture within a sub-culture, dabbing refers to dropping concentrates onto a hot surface (nail, skillet, etc.) and inhaling the resulting vapor via a “rig,” which is usually made of glass and sends the vapor through water.
Dank — Dual use, meaning either very strong-smelling, high-quality weed, or as a general term for anything good.
Decarboxylate (Decarb) — The process of converting the acid form (also called “inactive”) cannabinoids such as THCA and CBDA is an essential part of the process if you wish to consume cannabis orally. Decarboxylation occurs at around 240 degrees Fahrenheit, converting THCA and CBDA into THC and CBD, respectively. Though the acid forms of these cannbinoids have some medicinal benefits, normally decarboxylation is desired for maximum potency and effect in edibles, tinctures, and salves.
Diesel — A particular family tree of cannabis strains, which originated on the East Coast, specifically the New York metropolitan area. Thought to have stemmed from the ChemDawg family, Diesel is known for its incredibly pungent and distinctive smell, which includes elements of skunk, burning tires, lemon-pine floor cleaner, and notably, fresh diesel fuel.
Diffuser — Part of many “heady glass” rigs and water pipes, diffusers come in many configurations, but their purpose is the same: to add additional sites for the formation of bubbles as well as help with airflow. Diffusers and all the agitation that they create help to cool the smoke or vapor prior to inhalation, which makes it smoother on the lungs and often more flavorful. They generally are found dipping into the water at the bottom of the downstem, which is where the bowl connects to main part of the pipe.
Dispensary — The purveyor of medical (and if you’re lucky, recreational) marijuana products, a proper dispensary is your source for every pot product known to man; flowers, edibles, concentrates, salves, tinctures, teas, clones, seeds, paraphernalia, and more lines their shelves on a daily basis. If you’re still buying weed from your buddy who “gets it from a guy,” a plane ticket to Colorado is in order.
Ditch weed — In rural areas, you may stop the car when you see a marijuana-like plant and attempt to harvest it, but there’s no real THC content and you just wind up with a headache and a car that smells funny. Ditch weed can grow anywhere as it’s very hardy, but you should just keep on driving.
Dome — Part of the typical oil rig, these blown-glass pieces fit over the stem where the nail sits and make it possible to quickly catch and inhale the vapor.
Domeless nail — A relatively new innovation in the cottage industry which has popped up around dabbing, the domeless nail replaces the traditional dome and nail arrangement with a single piece, usually made of titanium, quartz or ceramic. The entire piece is heated with a torch, the concentrate is dabbed into the channel, then the smoke is inhaled though a hole in the middle.
Doobie (see joint) — This term is primarily reserved for old hippies, folks over the age of 50 and undercover police offers posing as high school students.
Downstem — Most commonly found on bongs, bubblers, and oil rigs, the downstem is the part of the piece which reaches from the bowl and delivers the smoke down into the water. They normally have a glass joint at the top which is either 14 millimeters or 18mm wide that accepts attachments such as a weed bowl, oil skillet, nail, etc.
Dry sieve hash (sometimes “dry sift”) — A mechanical separation process which generally uses a variety of screens and agitation to separate the trichomes from the plant material, dry sieve hash is also traditionally known as “kief.” One of the oldest cannabis extraction processes, dry sieve can be traced back through centuries to the great Moroccan, Afghani, and Lebanese hash fields; traditional Lebanese blonde hash is in fact nothing more than pressed dry sieve. This method can be perfected to produce perhaps the highest-purity and most natural concentrate available (nothing but trichome heads), but generally, it is less pure than high-grade water hash or hash oils because it is more difficult to remove all of the plant matter. Quality dry sieve will generally test between 50 percent and 60 percent THC, but the ultra-pure examples can have higher content.
Dugout — A two-chambered wooden box that fits conveniently in your pocket for on-the-go smokers. One half holds pre-ground herb, while the other has a little metal one-hitter that’s supposed to look like a cigarette, even though you’re not really fooling anyone. The top slides open, usually expelling the pipe, then you mash it down into the herb chamber.
E-nail — One of the newest innovations in dabbing technology, these plug-in devices use a heating element and a controller to keep the nail at a designated heat setting. Having full control of the heat on the nail (especially when used in combination with a carb cap) enables lower temperature dabbing, which offers more flavor and greater preservation of terpenes compared to using a torch. There are a variety of companies making similar devices, but the original invention can be credited to Task Rok, head of Highly Educated, which produces a line of titanium products for dabbing.
Earwax — One of the many interchangeable terms used to describe the opaque variety of hash oil. This texture is normally achieved by whipping the extracted oil over heat, which infuses air into the product and makes a lighter, aerated texture. Some extractions will automatically turn to wax, which is known as “auto-buddering”.
Edibles — Any cannabis product which is consumed orally and digested is considered an edible. Whether it is the stereotypical “pot brownie” or one of the sophisticated orally-active cannabis capsules, edibles are often recommended as the best choice for those who want to enjoy the benefits of cannabis without having to smoke anything. Cannabis consumed orally is quite a bit stronger and lasts longer, so it is always best to consume a little bit at a time in order to allow the full effects to develop.
Eighth — 1/8th of an ounce of cannabis, weighed out to 3.5 grams. This is perhaps the most common unit of measurement for cannabis in the United States, but the rest of the world sticks with grams and kilos.
Endo — Also spelled “indo,” this was popularized by the Snoop Dog song “Gin and Juice” and is a broad term for marijuana that was grown indoors, although people use it for just about any kind of bud today.
Extract — See Concentrate.
Fatty — A joint or blunt that’s rolled with a ridiculous amount of weed in it, like something out of a Cheech & Chong film. These can be rolled for parties or concerts to allow for for a generous number of passes, or just by one really sad guy sitting in his apartment with nothing much to do.
Fire — A generic term for really, really great looking marijuana. So great, all you want to do is light it on fire and enjoy the smoke.
Flower — Rather than calling them “buds,” many modern cannabis aficionados refer to the female plant’s racemes (that’s the official horticulture term) as flowers. When you go into a dispensary, one of the most common first questions is, “Flowers, edibles, or concentrates?” This term may also refer to the flowering cycle, which is the point in the cannabis plant’s life when it receives 12 hours of light or less per day, which signals the onset of autumn and causes it to begin the flowering process.
Flowering stage — Every cannabis plant goes through two distinct cycles in its lifetime: vegetative stage, when the plant is actively growing; and flowering stage, when the plant is focusing most of its energy on producing flowers, which are essential for reproduction. When the plant’s light exposure falls at or below 12 hours daily, it triggers the flowering cycle. This natural response to the onset of autumn occurs in artificially-lighted environments as well, which is used to the advantage of the cannabis grower, as plants can be flowered at any time and the grower no longer has to wait an entire year for a harvest.
FMCD (Full Melt Clear Dome) — The top grade of water hash and dry sieve, which is indicated by the way it bubbles when heated. In order to see this most clearly, it’s best to use a screen and smoke the hash on its own. Applying light, indirect heat will cause the hash to start to melt and puddle — if it’s really good, you’ll see large, clear bubbles forming readily as the hash melts away to basically nothing.
Ganj/Ganja/Ghanja— The most Rastafarian way to refer to your herb if you’re not in any way Rastafarian. Often used by guys in college dorm rooms adorned with Bob Marley posters.
Germination — The initial growth phase of a cannabis plant’s life, when it is grown from seed. Germination is also commonly called “seed popping”, as the seeds literally crack in half as the tiny seedling emerges and reaches for the light.
Glass — One of the most ubiquitous and popular ways to smoke marijuana, and way cooler than through a metal pipe. Unless, or course, you buy one of those little glass crack pipes by mistake from a gas station. Then, it’s pretty much the worst.
Green out — Similar to blacking out from overconsumption of alcohol, green outs occur when you smoke so much cannabis that you lose a sense of time and place, often falling asleep or becoming incredibly quiet and paranoid. If someone greens out, they may want to go to the hospital, even though they’re just really high and a medical professional can’t do much for them. Green outs tend to occur more with incredibly potent edibles or dabs, but can still occur by smoking a boss amount of marijuana.
Grinders — Generally made of metal and containing multiple pieces, these are used to break up marijuana by threshing it between teeth attached to the top and bottom as opposed to your hands, preventing all of the sticky-icky from ending up on your fingers. High-end grinders contain a screen that allows kief to pass through, allowing you to collect it and top your bowl off.
Half — 1/2 ounce of cannabis, weighed out to 14 grams.
Hash, Hashish — Traditionally “hashish” refers to any collection of the resin glands (trichomes) of the cannabis plant. Collection of the trichomes is performed via a variety of methods (dry sieve, water extraction), and the resulting product can be pressed, sieved, or microplaned into different consistencies depending upon the desired use and smoking method. Traditional hash-making countries press their hash, which makes it burn longer and also makes it easier for discreet transport.
Haze — One of the pillars of modern cannabis, the original Haze line is thought to have come from Colombian, Mexican and possibly Thai varieties which were being worked in Central California by a pair of brothers who became known as the “Haze Brothers.” This genetic line was passed onto breeders Sam the Skunkman and later Nevil Schoenmaker and became the craze of the Netherlands and most of Europe in the years following. The Haze is a tall, rangy plant that often takes 12 or more weeks to flower, which is difficult in most indoor grow rooms as well as with most outdoor growing seasons; this prompted the breeders to introduce shorter-flowering indica genetics into the mix such as Northern Lights and Skunk #1, creating some of cannabis’ most award-winning and noteworthy varieties such as Super Silver Haze, Nevil’s Haze, Super Lemon Haze, etc. Haze is prized for its almost electric, creative buzz which makes it a favorite of sativa smokers everywhere.
Heady glass — The upper echelon of the craft of glassblowing, so-called “heady rigs” can cost upwards of $20,000 depending upon the level of intricacy and the amount of time it takes the glassblower to create it. Thought of more as fine art than they are used for actual smoking, most of these pieces would blend in at any gallery but often find their home on the shelves of trust fund dab kids.
Hookah — A smoking device that originated in India, the large centralized bowl and multiple hoses (or “whips”) make it ideal for lots of people to get high together. Hookah bars, where people sit around and smoke flavored tobacco, frown on marijuana use, so don’t try to be that cool guy who tosses a little weed in there.
Hybrid — Though nearly all modern cannabis strains are hybridized in some form or another, this term most often refers to the in-between option which lies between the energetic, uppy sativa and the relaxing, sedative indica sides of the cannabis spectrum. Most dispensaries will organize their shelf in terms of indica, hybrid, and sativa to help patients understand how a given variety will effect them.
Hydro — A soil-less grow medium that delivers nutrients through water as opposed to dirt. Hydro refers to hydroponic systems used in the process.
Hydrocarbon extractions — Any extraction process that uses hydrocarbons such as butane, propane, pentane, or hexane.
Ice wax — A term for very fine water extracted hash, it was originally coined by Matt Rize, a California-based hashmaker. A key part of the traditional Ice Wax process is to use a microplane grater to break up the patty of hash after extraction, allowing it to dry quickly as well as bursting many of the trichome heads, which makes the hash extra melty when heated.
•“I had the craziest ice wax when I was in Colorado, it just disappeared to nothing on the screen.”
Indica — Though recent plant taxonomy studies have mostly determined that cannabis does not actually have two distinct species in indica and sativa, these classifications are still used in the culture to help describe the differences between plants while they are growing, as well as the effect they provide. Though there are some exceptions to the rule, indica varieties are shorter plants which mature more quickly, they also provide a relaxing, sedative effect. Indica varieties are most often used for relieving pain, muscle tension, insomnia, anxiety, lack of appetite, as well as easing spasms and reducing inflammation.
•“Bubba Kush is my favorite indica because it really helps my pain and back spasms without totally knocking me out.”
Iso (isopropyl hash oil) — When alcohol (specifically isopropyl) is used as a solvent to strip trichomes from plant material, the resulting hash oil is normally refered to as “iso” hash oil. Though generally a less dangerous and equipment-intensive process than making BHO or CO2 oil, it is still essential to try to remove all of the residual alcohol from the extract, as vaporizing alcohol sugars can cause lung issues in some patients. Unlike the more selective butane, isopropyl often pulls chlorophyll as well as the cannabinoids, which necessitates a quick wash method, also known as “QWISO”.
•“You made that with just iso? It tastes great and dabs almost like it was made with butane.”
Jelly hash — A mixture of water hash and hash oil, jelly hash is known for being very potent due to the combination of the two distinct types of extract being consumed at once. To make jelly hash, combine hash oil and water hash with a slight amount of heat, then whip it together until it’s mostly homogeneous; some users then elect to press it and let it dry into a hard puck, as it tends to burn longer that way.
Joint (glass) — The part of a glass pipe or oil rig where the bowl or nail connects to the body of the piece. The industry standard for the size is 18 mm, 14 mm, and more recently, 10 mm, which allows the glass industry to make a variety of accessories in set sizes rather than having to custom make everything.
Joint (see also: cone, spliff, doobie) — Marijuana rolled in non-tobacco papers that are generally light and have one sticky edge to help them adhere together. They come in all shapes and sizes, from pinners (small) to fatties (large), or cross joints that are lit on three ends and smoked out of the fourth. There’s no limit to the number of ways you can roll a joint.
Kief (see dry sieve) — Kief is the traditional term for this process, originating in the Middle East.
Kind — Call it kind bud, KB’s, or Killer INDoor: this stuff gets you very high. Referring to less potent marijuana as kind is a real giveaway that you’re a rookie.
Kush — There are two distinct varieties of Kush that exist in the cannabis arena, and their relationship is a somewhat disputed issue. The first type is the traditional Hindu Kush, which refers to the hearty, wide-leaved, stout varieties which originated in the Afghani/Pakistani mountain region, known as the Hindu Kush mountains. The second type is the OG Kush, which is an American hybrid known for its distinctive lemon Pledge/fuel aroma and may or may not contain the genetics of the traditional Kush somewhere in its makeup; overall though, OG varieties certainly have a distinct sativa influence, which can be seen in their lanky, wide internode growth structure.
Live resin — A relatively new extraction process, reportedly developed by an old school grower known as “Kind Bill,” this process was impossible to do prior to the invention of commercial grade closed-loop butane extraction systems. Instead of using dry plant material as is the norm for BHO extractions, the live resin process used fresh frozen plants, which were harvested only hours earlier; this creates a product which has the terpene profile of the live plant rather than the dried flowers (terpenes degrade and change as the plant is dried).
Mary Jane — This fictional lady is a play on “marijuana” and was once a somewhat discreet way of talking about pot, although nowadays anyone should be able to pick up what you’re putting down if you drop a “Mary Jane.”
Medical — Can simply refer to the medical use of cannabis or to medical cannabis dispensaries. Though some dispensaries can serve both customer groups, many have opted to remain medical rather than opening their doors to recreational customers.
Medicated — The medical cannabis community’s strained attempt to replace the word “stoned” or “high” and make it all sound much more professional. While clearly cannabis is medicine and those consuming it for that purpose are indeed medicating, the kneejerk resistance to using the traditional terms has become a source of comedy for many jaded dispensary professionals.
Mother — A plant, usually large, that is in a vegetative state from which clones are cut. It is, then, the mom for all of the plants that will eventually be harvested. Losing a mother plant can sometimes be the end of a genetic line, which is really sad, although not as sad as losing your actual mom. In most cases.
Nail — A metal device which looks like a nail with a very thick head, they are normally made of grade 2 titanium, quartz, or ceramic, but cheaper versions can also be made from borosilicate glass. This is the part of the rig which is headed with a torch and then has the concentrate dropped onto it, causing the vaporization process to take place. When heating a nail, it is best to get it right to red hot and then let it cool for a few seconds prior to dabbing, as this makes the smoke a little easier on the throat as well as preserves terpenes.
Nectar — This term is a little vague, but the most common usage is referring to hash oil made from entirely nugs rather than trim material, which can also be known as “nug run”.
Nug run — Hash oil or water hash made entirely from cannabis flowers rather than trim material. Since the flowers are the most trichome and terpene-rich part of the cannabis plant, these extracts are known for yielding quite a bit more than trim as well as providing a cleaner flavor.
OG (Original Gansta) — See Kush. OG Kush is perhaps the most popular and coveted variety of cannabis in the USA, taking California by storm throughout the late ’90′s and early 2000′s and then moving across the country and commanding exorbitant prices. Though many believe the original OG may be the Triangle Kush, which originated in Florida, most of the various OGs that float around the world are the result of California’s love of the strain. Known for its incredibly pungent and distinct lemon floor cleaner, fuel, skunk, spice aroma, there are as many OG Kush varieties as there are stars in the sky. Whenever a celebrity or athlete does something noteworthy, you’ll probably see a few California OG varieties pop up in their honor (Charlie Sheen OG, Peyton Manning OG, etc.).
Oil — Refers to any hash oil, whether it is extracted via hydrocarbon, alcohol, or CO2.
One hitter (see also: “one-y, bat, chillum, straight pipe” — May refer to a smoking implement or an incredibly potent bud. If it’s the former, it’s a small, straight pipe that’s easy to conceal and holds very little pot. If it’s the latter, it’s a strain you want to smoke very little of, as you’ll be ripped out of your mind with more than a single hit.
Ounce— Commonly called an “OZ” (pronounced, “oh-zee”), the ounce is the largest amount of cannabis most people will ever possess. This also happens to be the amount that is legal to possess in Colorado (medical marijuana users with a red card can possess two ounces).
Parchment — Traditionally used by grandmas and Martha Stewart types for baking cookies and breads without sticking, the parchment market over the past few years has probably seen a major boost in sales thanks to the extract community. Especially for BHO, but also for water hash, parchment is a required part of the process to prevent the sticky, resinous product from gumming up everything it touches. Parchment can be used for long-term storage of extracts, though it is advisable to put parchments inside a plastic bag to help keep moisture levels moderated.
Percolator — Commonly known as a “perc,” a percolator is a part of the more complicated glass water pipes which adds an additional water chamber to the equation, helping to provide more cooling and diffusion, which makes the smoke smoother.
Phenotype — A technical term from genetics and horticulture, phenotype more or less means “genetic expression.” Each cannabis strain has two parent plants: one male and one female. When the female is pollinated by the male and produces seeds, those seeds contain the genetic material of both parents and (much like animal breeding) the resulting plants have only that genetic material with which to work. Excusing genetic mutations, a hybrid of two stable strains would product three distinct phenotypes: phenotype A, which leans more towards the mother; phenotype B, which leans more towards the father; and phenotype C, which is a blend of the two. Growers will then select their favorite choices from the phenotypes displayed, choosing plants based on a variety of qualities including: appearance, aroma, taste, effect, flowering time and stature. Phenotype is often shortened to simply “pheno.”
Pinner — Tiny, thin joint low on marijuana content. Typically rolled from scraps of pot laying around or by someone who is really stingy with their weed, a pinner joint can be nice if you want to smoke but don’t have a bowl around. Otherwise, it’s a dick move. Called a pinner because it looks as thin as a safety pin.
Pre-roll — A pre-rolled joint that is supplied by a dispensary or a cool dealer, the potency can vary. Because of the pre-rolled nature, some places will put trim or shake in there that isn’t as potent, since most people don’t break them open. They’re sometimes sealed with other people’s spit, which can be a turnoff for some.
Pressed hash — After extraction, hash (normally water extracted, but also dry sieve) can be pressed using pressure and sometimes heat. If using heat, this process can activate the hash partially, but the primary purpose of this is to make it more dense and create an outer shell which keeps the inside terpene-rich and fresh for over a year. Traditional hash-making countries such as Morocco, Afghanistan, and Lebanon almost always press their hash, as it also makes it easier to transport.
Prodo glass (production glass) — Standing in contrast to the custom “heady glass,” production glass refers to pipes which are made in more of an assembly line process and all come out as close to identical as possible. Though the functionality is the same as the more expensive heady pieces, they are quite a bit cheaper, making them a better option for the less serious user who doesn’t want to shell out $500 for a pipe.
Pull ’n snap — The texture of hash oil at which lies between a more runny oil and the shelf stable shatter at room temperature, a proper pull and snap is easily gripped by the dabber but pulls slightly before snapping off. The ambient temperature plays a huge part in oil’s texture, as more heat will make it more runny and sappy while cold will make it shatter.
Purps — Purps refers to any purple cannabis, but especially the true Purple family, which includes Grandaddy Purple, Purple Kush, Purple Urkle, and Grape Ape. Many of these varieties likely came from the Dutch Purple #1 genetic line, which was developed in the 1980′s and spread across the world via seed. Purple weed has traditionall been especially popular in Northern California, but it also commands a high price in places where most weed is brownish-green just because it stands out so much.
QP — The slang term for a quarter pound of marijuana. This is the amount that your drug dealer friend in high school probably bought from his “guy” and then grossly overcharged you for the labor of breaking it up into eighths and grams.
Quarter — 1/4 ounce of cannabis, weighed out to 7 grams. If you want more than an eighth, this is your next step normally.
Re-up — When it’s time to buy more weed, you need to re-up. This is generally used more by dealers who need to replenish their overall stash but don’t control the means of production.
Reclaim — The goop that collects in your concentrate rig. Basically it’s the oil smoker’s version of resin… it smells kinda gross, but it will still get you high. Some people have taken to cleaning out their rigs with alcohol and then evaporating it off to collect the reclaim for cooking, as it is essentially activated hash oil, having gone through the process of being heated and condensed back into the rig.
Recreational — Stores that sell marijuana without being overtly medical in nature. In Colorado, this means anyone who is 21 or older can purchase cannabis by simply showing their ID. Also known as rec shops, prices are generally higher because of demand and high taxes placed on purchases. Recreational shops are generally known by their longer lines, snooty budtenders, and lower selection than medical shops.
Reefer — Likely a version of the Mexican Spanish “grifa” or marijuana/drug addict, reefer became popularized in the 1920′s as a term for a marijuana cigarette. It’s best known for the propaganda film “Reefer Madness” where a man smokes pot and murders his family.
Regs (bottom shelf) — The stuff you’re bummed to get because it isn’t fire, or the stuff you’re overjoyed to get because you’re on a budget/can’t find anything else. Smoking regs will get you high, but even beasters are superior in quality. This is the bottom-shelf offering at a dispensary; they basically give it away and then destroy the genetics, or keep it around because it yields well.
Resin — Most often refers to the black, tar-like substance that accumulates in a pipe after repeated use. If you’re down to smoking resin, times are hard. It has THC in it, but is extremely messy and must be scraped from your piece before you can smoke it, although sometimes a bowl can be so clogged that you can simply light an empty pipe and get a hit from it. It tastes awful and gives you a mediocre high that can result in a mean headache.
Rig — The term for the glass pipes used for smoking concentrates, also called “oil rig.” As opposed to having a bowl for smoking flowers, these pipes utilize a nail or some type of other device which can be heated to a high enough temperature that the concentrate vaporizes. Rigs almost always utilize water for cooling because the smoke coming off the nail is entirely too hot for a dry hit.
Roach — The small, resinated end of a joint that could only be smoked if you wanted to burn the living daylights out of your fingers. The resin tends to make it look brown, resembling a cockroach. Some people take pride in being able to smoke a roach very far down, but doing so can burn your lips, which makes you look like a real tool. The roach clip was invented to make sure the end didn’t go to waste, but people save roaches for when they’ve run out of pot. They’re then broken down and loaded in a pipe, or re-rolled into one really stinky joint.
Roach clip — A small, usually metal device that clamps on to the end of a joint, enabling you to continue smoking without worrying about burning your fingers. When using a roach clip, it’s important to make sure you ash the roach to prevent said ash from flying into your mouth, a most unpleasant end to a smoking experience. There’s also a great propensity to burn your lips, so most people make a stoner version of duck-face when using a roach clip.
Sap — When hash oil is stringy and sappy rather than shattery.
Sativa — Sativa varieties originate mostly in the equatorial areas of the world and are known for their uplifting, heady effects. The most popular near-pure sativa variety in modern cannabis is Haze, but Durban Poison is another very popular sativa line. The plants grow very tall and take a long time to mature, but the resulting yields are normally far greater than traditional indica plants. Sativas are best known for treating depression, fatigue, and promoting creativity and sociability; they can also mitigate the effects of glaucoma and certain nerve conditions, though their effects can definitely vary from user to user. Caution is generally advised for those who suffer from anxiety and fibromyalgia, as these conditions can often be aggravated by a racy sativa.
Schwag—Low-quality weed heavy with seeds and stems (also ditch weed, Mexican brick weed, etc.)—An insulting word for the worst kind of pot, bags of schwag must be thoroughly cleaned of stems and seeds before it should be smoked. Compared to high-end cannabis, it has little flavor or scent and is sparsely covered with trichomes. Schwag is typically consumed in large amounts in order to get you high, typically in a blunt. Because schwag is typically imported into the U.S., it’s flattened into bricks and is much harder than connoisseur quality. Most pot snobs consider schwag an insult and won’t smoke it, even in a pinch.
Seedling — The earliest stage of a cannabis plant’s life, when it first emerges from its seed and rises above the soil. Seedlings are different from small clones because they are by definition produced from seed, not asexually.
Sensimilla — From the Spanish meaning “without seed,” this term has mostly fallen out of use in the modern day, but refers to the top grade of cannabis which has no seeds, as opposed to seeded schwag or mids.
Sesh — Short for a smoking session, a sesh usually involves smoking a good deal of cannabis with a few friends. Sharing a pinner joint with five people would be a fairly weak sesh.
Shatter — Shatter is a texture of hash oil and refers to the transparent, shelf-stable oil which breaks into pieces rather than bending. The most popular choices of butane concentrates on the market are either shatter or wax, which are on opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to texture.
Shotgunning — The act of turning a blunt or joint around and placing the lit end in your mouth, then blowing out to create a stream of smoke from the other end that can be inhaled by a second party (or French inhaled through the blowers nose). A shotgun can be administered by holding hands to create a chamber, over a surface like a book or cowboy hat, or just by placing the recepient’s mouth an inch or so from the end.
Skunk — This term can refer to either particularly pungent cannabis (which often has a skunky quality to it) or to the specific strain of cannabis which is one of the building blocks of modern cannabis breeding. Popularized by Sam the Skunkman, the original Skunk #1 was reportedly made in California from Acapulco Gold, Colombian Gold and Afghani genetic lines, resulting in a sativa-dominant hybrid that was still capable of finishing outdoors in the Netherlands’ short growing season. Skunk #1 has been bred into probably 50% of the gene pool over the last 20 years due to its high commercial potential and its prevalence in the Dutch scene, which was responsible for the majority of seeds that have been sold and grown worldwide.
Slab — A large amount of hash oil, which lays out flat into a golden slab.
Solventless wax — Coined originally by internet cannabis personality and Colorado resident Paul Tokin, solventless wax (or sometimes solventless oil) refers to the highest grade of water hash, which looks and smokes similar to solvent-based hashes and is capable of being dabbed. The originator of the product is Colorado-based hashmaker Selecta Nikka T, who has won multiple cannabis cups for his products over the last 4 years.
Spliff — A combination of tobacco and marijuana rolled together, often in Europe, that can at times be a cone shape. It’s a great way to let people know you’re cool enough to have backpacked in another country and got high with some people who spoke another language. It can add a nicotine buzz to your high, but people who don’t smoke might find it super offensive, so it can be great if you don’t like to share.
Stoner — Typically a derogative term, a stoner is someone who loves getting high, no matter what time of day. Often, they’re a part of a subculture that identifies with marijuana smoking and may be forgetful or slow at times. Some use the term as a source of pride, like CelebStoner.com, and can be reverential. Someone who casually smokes marijuana occasionally, on the other hand, would not be considered a stoner by actual stoners.
Supercritical extractions — When a substance is heated and pressurized beyond its critical point, it turns into a supercritical fluid capable of working as a solvent to strip away oils and essential compounds. It is used in a variety of industries for botanical extractions with several different types of fluid, but in the cannabis world, it generally refers to CO2 extractions. Supercritical extraction by nature is not particularly selective in terms of what it extracts, so many CO2 processors need to utilize a secondary solvent such as ethanol or hexane in order to remove waxes and chlorophyll prior to delivering a finished product.
Terpene — The aromatic and flavor compounds found within cannabis (and nearly every other plant on the planet), terpenes are responsible for the veritable rainbow of cannabis strains, which all exhibit subtle differences in smell and flavor. Terpenes are volatile and evaporate at fairly low temperatures, so when storing or extracting cannabis, it is best to keep everything very cold. Terpenes also have medical benefits in themselves, as evidenced by the aromatherapy industry… this means that some of those super flavorful plants that seem to get you higher than the bland ones do actually have a stronger or more rounded effects package.
THC — Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the main cannabinoid found in the cannabis plant and is responsible for the majority of the plant’s psychoactive properties. THC has lots of medical benefits including analgesic properties, though perhaps its most defined quality is its tendency to increase appetite. CBD acts as an antagonist to THC, reducing its psychoactive effects.
Tincture — A liquid extraction of cannabis, often made with alcohol or glycerin, using methods that date back thousands of years. Tinctures are often administered sublingually (or under the tongue) to help with quick absorbtion, offering a similar high to edibles without having to swallow food for those with little appetite. Glycerin tinctures are sweeter, with almost a syrup-like texture, while alcohol tinctures have some serious burn, as they’re often made with high-proof alcohol like Everclear.
Topicals — Topicals are external applications of cannabis that can be used to treat body pain or skin conditions, infused with THC and other cannabinoids. These can include lotions, creams, balms — pretty much anything you can rub on your skin. They generally don’t give you any kind of head or body high, so they’re a favorite of patients that become disoriented when inhaling or otherwise ingesting weed.
Torch — A torch is used to heat up the dabbing surface on a rig. Your local Bed Bath & Beyond has surely seen a major boost in the sales of creme brulee torches since the dabbing scene developed, as these midrange torches are perfect for this use. The bigger propane torches are too hot and can cause oxidation and degradation of titanium and quartz, while the smaller handheld torches don’t have enough flame to fully heat up the nail.
Trichome — Holding the majority of the cannabinoid content in the plant, the trichomes are crystalline structures which coat the plant’s bract and leaf surfaces. Looking much like a mushroom when magnified, the head contains the majority of the cannabinoid content and essential oils, but the stalk also has some value; the heads are what is broken off and collected in high-grade dry sieve and water hashes, while the entire trichome is dissolved in solvent-based extracts. There are actually three distinct types of trichomes on the plant: bulbous trichomes are the smallest and not visible to the naked eye, the sessile trichomes are slender and have no head, while the glandular trichomes are the ones that are most often seen and provide the highest amount of cannabinoids.
Trim — After harvest, the cannabis plant is generally trimmed of its leaf matter, leaving behind only the buds. Trimming refers to the actual act of removing the leaves, while trim refers to the leftover leaves, which can be used for cooking of extraction. Though trim has less cannabinoid content than buds by weight, it still has quite a lot of good stuff in it. If you are just throwing away or composting your trim instead of using it to make hash, edibles, or tincture, you are missing out on a huge amount of value.
Trim run — When concentrates are made from trim rather than buds, they are often known as trim run. Trim run is generally thought to be a step below nug run in terms of yield, potency and flavor, though some concentrate makers report similar results using either type of starting material.
Vacuum purge — After extraction, most concentrates require further refining in order to remove the solvent which is remaining in the product. In order to do this, concentrate makers have utilized vacuum ovens and devices which serve to reduce the atmospheric pressure on the concentrate, which speeds up the process of removing the solvent and allows it to happen at a lower temperature than would be possible at normal pressures; this enables more terpene preservation, as they evaporate above certain temperatures.
Vape pen — A small, portable vaporizer that uses either pre-filled concentrate cartridges or has a chamber to load your own concentrates or flower. Vape pens became popular for their discreet, compact design and absence of a traditional “weed” smell when exhaling. They’re used at concerts, sporting events, bars, and pretty much everywhere you can’t just light up a bowl.
Vaporizer — Rather than combusting your cannabis product (whether it be flowers, hash, or oil), a vaporizer heats it just enough so that the cannabinoids activate, vaporize and can then be inhaled. This method is preferable for those with breathing conditions, or those who simply don’t want to actually smoke anything but still require the direct and immediate relief that inhalation provides compared to edible consumption. A popular variation on the vaporizer that has taken the cannabis (and nicotine) market by storm is the pen vaporizer, also known as an “e-vape”; these are extremely popular due to their small size and high level of discreetness.
Vegetative stage — The part of the cannabis plant’s life cycle where it is actively growing rather than producing flowers. When the plant receives 12 hours of light or greater, it will continue growing vegetatively indefinitely; when the light cycle reaches 12 hours or less, then the plant will begin flowering. During the vegetative stage, the plants prefer a more blue spectrum of light, commonly produced by fluorescent or metal halide (MH) bulbs, whereas flowering plants prefer the more reddish light produced by high-pressure sodium (HPS) lighting.
Water hash (see also: bubble hash, full melt, iceolator hash, ice wax, jermichael, melt, solventless wax) — Water hash is one of the most popular methods for making hash at home because it only involves a set of microscreen extraction bags, ice, and water. Fresh frozen plant material is preferred to make the best final product, though dry material is also used regularly. The plant material is loaded into a set of the specialized bags, agitated (either mechanically in a washing machine or by hand) and then strained out. The bags have varying micron sizes, which enable different sized particles to pass through; this serves to filter out larger plant matter and smaller pieces such as particulate and debris while keeping all the trichome heads and stalks separate. Generally, the best water hash is found in the 45 to 12 micron range, but the other grades still have cannabinoid content and can be used for cooking or tinctures.
Wax — The opaque, crumbly texture seen in hash oil, generally after being whipped over heat in order to introduce air into the product. Wax is preferred by old school concentrate smokers who don’t have a fancy rig, as it is easy to handle with bare hands and can simply be crumbled on top of a bowl to add an extra punch.
Zip — Slang term for an ounce, derived from the fact that it should fill up a Ziploc bag.
420 — The ubiquitous code term for cannabis, it can refer to the time of day, as well as April 20, the unofficial marijuana holiday. It’s also used to denote places and people who are not opposed to marijuana use (420-friendly).
710 — The new “420″ for dabbers, read it upside down and you’ll understand why (…psst, it spells “OIL”). It carries the same temporal obligations as 4:20 as well, but in true innovate modern dab-head fashion, it’s much easier to be awake and dabbing at both 7:10 a.m. and 7:10 p.m. than it is to be wiping sleep out of your eye and rolling a joint at 4:20 a.m. like some kind of Luddite neanderthal.